Saturday, October 1, 2011

Sanguine Musings: Year One, or How to Succeed in Blogging without Really Trying

images (4)Today is my one year Blogiversary (yeah, knew that squiggly red line was coming). October 1, 2010 saw my very first post. Of course, no one else saw it; I had no followers save my family members who I made follow me to prime the pump, so to speak. I’ve written several posts about how I’ve been a lone wolf or solitary witch. Without any formal schooling or apprenticeship, my only real knowledge of the industry came from writing books and websites. But that by itself did little good. So I hit blogosphere. I started with agent blogs, and then went after their followers: fellow writers, aspiring or otherwise. Soon I had a blogroll chock full of helpful hints, peeks into the publishing world, and just plain moral support.

So here it is: twelve months, 86 posts, and 678 comments* later. I’m up to 258 followers now – an astronomical number to me back then - and I appreciate and admire every last one of you, even though I don’t comment or reply nearly as much as I should. In fact, I haven’t done much of anything with this blog lately. There’s been speculation among my board of directors (consisting mostly of my cats and a partially eaten Boba Fett) that maybe Sanguine Musings won’t see a second birthday. I hope that’s not the case, but really, my heart’s not been in it lately. But S. M. is my baby; I want it to succeed. My biggest fear, though, is that if it does disappear, no one will notice.

Anyway, now that I’m done peeing all over my own birthday cake, here it is: my very first post as was. Hopefully, you’ll think it sucks, which of course means I’m getting better, not worse.

Or, I just still suck. Smile

* and 72 footnotes


Yesterday, after six months revising and nearly three years writing my novel and over a decade before that of failed attempts, aborted story ideas, and general foot-dragging, I finally took my first baby steps into the business end of the book world. No I’m not published yet not by a mile, but for the first time, I interacted (sort of) with an honest-to-goodness literary agent and a tiny piece of the literary world. It may not seem like anything to those actively immersed in the world. To me, however, Publication* is now no longer a mythical city on a hill, but an obtainable, albeit challenging, reality.

I’ve spent the last ten years working on an ambulance. Wonderful people, but not exactly the literati. It’s been difficult just finding people to read my manuscript, finding like-minded souls to muse about the peculiar life of a writer, particularly an unpublished one. I work a crazy amount of hours, and of course there are no writing groups in my immediate area. My friends are all paramedics, EMTs, and firefighters; it would be tough starting a reading group, much less one for writers. Therefore, like the solitary witch, I write without a coven; I edit with only an inkling of feedback. And as I put the finishing touches on my manuscript and prepare with trembling hand to send that first query letter into the world, I do it alone.

Which was why this seminar was so important. To hear from an agent in her own words exactly what she’s looking for, to have her address my questions and even look at my pitch proposal gave everything weight; it made it all real. I can get Published; it’s hard work and could take years, but I know it’s possible. There are people like me, no experience, no background in publishing, that every day are selling their manuscript, or finding that perfect agent who’s passionate about their work. I’m in the game now. It’s the fourth quarter, I’m down by three touchdowns, and my offensive line has snuck off to Applebee’s, but I’m in the game.

As I get older, so much about life seems to involve endings. This, however, is a beginning, and a big one. And beginnings are so much better.


  1. Most of what the agent told you at the seminar was probably just BS. You have about as good of a chance as winning the lottery, which actually pays better so maybe you should just be buying scratch and win tickets instead.

  2. I'd notice if you disappeared! Please hang around for another birthday ... :o)

  3. Nooo. You have to keep it up, your my blog mentor.

  4. I like the Star Trek angle you took with this post.

  5. Hey one year and more to go! You can do it little camper.

  6. Happy Year Blog! Beginnings are great, aren't they? ;)


  7. Hahahaha! This is so funny! I'm pretty sure I went through similar rounds of blackmailing and bribery with my friends and fam when I first started the blog. Only... most of them didn't fall for my pleadings. Perhaps I'm not threatening enough? Hmmmm...

    In any event, I agree. The blogsphere is an amazing source of advice, publishing "peeks" and support! Wish I would have clued into that sooner ( :

    Slowly, I've inched my way to 73 followers... but I'll be honest, I still look at people like you with 200+ followers with equal parts envy and awe.... "Oh, if ONLY I could be that popular of a blogger!!" Hahah!

    Here's me adding number 262 to your following of 261. New stalker alert!

  8. my board of directors (consisting mostly of my cats and a partially eaten Boba Fett)

    See now, this is what I'm missing! I need a board of directors! Although my two cats do both think they are Prime Ministers.

    And your first post strikes at the heart of why I blog - to reach out, to find writerly friends, to be connected to a world that GETS me.

    Happy Blogoversary! And I hope there are more to come!

  9. Wow, isn't it so cool to look back and see what you've accomplished and how far you've come? Sometimes I shudder when I look back but hey, at least its progress. I'm impressed too though - that's a heck of a lot of followers and comments. Keep it up and happy blog-versary from yet another new follower.