Frantic Finch missed her first birthday. Well. She didn't *really* miss her birthday. It happened anyway without fanfare or flourish. The sun rose and set just as it does on every other ordinary day. But her unremarkable first birthday drifted by without mention because I (the writer behind Finchy's facade) have had some issues. Problems and deep rooted concerns which ultimately drained my creativity and any note of routine and normalcy for the entire month of September - and part of August. Okay, a little bit of July too.
Frantic's birthday - for those of you who wishing to jot a note for next year is September 14th.
On September 14, 2015 I published my first ever blog post. That's cool, right? I have been writing and posting for a whole calendar. Now, to be honest; I've been writing for years but never had the guts to share any of it with anyone with the exception of my husband, my baby birds and one or two interested relatives.
But I received unexpected birthday presents this month. They weren't anything to unwrap but I hold them dear because these gifts are worth more to me than you'll know. You see, I could have sent a Facebook request to every single person I know and ask them to "LIKE MY PAGE." It would have been an instant ego boost to see those "Likes" ticking away and tally upward like a population counter. I would have been a junkie, thrilling over each new like and I would've wanted more. And by wanting more I would've had to farm friends' of friends and let them know that I am writing and that I have a blog and they should FOLLOW ME on Facebook, Instagram & Twitter!!
But, here's the real deal. I want my writing to "catch on" organically. Quietly. Bit by bit. Story by story. One painful journey or joyful testimony after another. Like the true introvert I am.
My theory over a year ago was to ask a selective group, no more than10 or 12 people to like my page and read my posts. I hoped they would then *like and share* my work with others, then BAM! instantaneously, the Facebook likes would grow and I would be given the gift of validation of worth and making a difference. I could go to bed and say to myself: People read my blog today and that message made a impact and maybe my words made them feel like they are connected to the rest of the people on the population counter and none of us are isolated or alone! I might have even touched or inspired them in some way. Wouldn't that be a *gift?* Because, truly - it really IS about my readers and our relationship with one another. I'm not sure if you know this industry secret or not but it costs money to have a website and blog but I decided to not have any advertisers on it to compensate the difference. Frantic Finch is pure and real and not weighted with pop up ads. It's just you and me - writing and reading and bonding. *A gift*
"Liking and sharing" has been quite the responsibility of the original Finch readers. It has been a considerable undertaking since the sharing burden is solely theirs. Nonetheless, a select group of my true blues (generously & impressively) increased my readership exponentially in one year. In one swift moving year, my "likes" on the Finch page twinkle like a stars in an endless navy sky. I've always wanted to write those words - navy sky - because my daughter said it and I thought it was a lovely and honest description. *Another gift*
But here's what really happened in this tumultuous September Finch birthday month. I got real gifts that I could open in private messages and emails. I'll share some with you.
From "C" - You are a very gifted and special person! Thank you for sharing of yourself.
From "M"- I identify with so much of what you wrote. You are not alone. How can I help?
From "H" - You tell much truth in your writings and your transparency is to be applauded. It meets people in truth and we have learned as adults to shy away from truth and the vulnerability that comes with it....Press on - because everyone is struggling and not everyone has the courage to be vulnerable and transparent in their struggles.
(By the way, I love being called transparent. A lot of people find offense in that word because it gives the indication that there is no depth or foundation - but to me, it means I am moving closer to authenticity and realness.)
And to J & C: you two have liked and shared more Finch posts than any other and because of you, I have followers I've never met who are your friends.
So there you have it: Frantic Finch turned one - with no birthday announcement - no cake - no party and no email blast to Finch Friends. Which reminds me - if any of my readers would enjoy receiving monthly emails from me and a personalized birthday wish then please email firstname.lastname@example.org and let me know you'd like a newsletter and tell me your birth date. (Just the month and day, the year is not necessary.)
Happy Birthday Frantic Finch. I hope you have many, many more.