When I was in graduate school, one of my advisors would often send back my poems with two words scrawled in the margins: “Who cares?”
It was harsh, to be sure, but for an untried writer like myself, it was necessary to hear. The poems that received this curt dismissal were missing an initiating event, a reason for being, a spark that would engage a reader. The mere fact of words on a page isn’t enough, my advisor was saying, nor is the simple desire to write a poem. A poem needs to justify its existence. Without that justification . . . well, who cares?
Over the past few months I’ve received a handful of emails asking when I’m planning on blogging again. The thing is, I wasn’t planning on not blogging. It just kind of sputtered out on its own. I could have filled this space with occasional photographs of what I’m knitting, but if I did, it would have been just that: filler. The standard I’ve applied to this blog is the same standard my advisor applied to my graduate school writing. If I don’t have something interesting to say, I’m not going to waste my time (and yours) just making noise.
The truth is, I pretty much feel like I’ve shot my wad where interesting knitting topics are concerned. The gender stuff is covered; the Buddhist-like detachment required to rip out an entire sweater has been explored. I’ve already blogged about my deep and abiding hatred of cuteness, and how that squares (or doesn’t) with knitting baby items. And I’ve told you all about how much fun it is to be married to another knitter.
Does that mean this space is going to be silent? Well, probably not. I just submitted a pattern to knitty for the fall issue, and if it appears, you can bet I’ll be engaging in some more shameless self-promotion on this site. And if more of my fiction gets published, like my story “Daisy” just did, then I’ll certainly be announcing it here.
And if you have some kind of crazy angle on knitting that you want me to blog about, I’m always up for a good suggestion.
PS: Thank you everyone who checked out my entry in the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award contest! I didn’t win, but I did get to find out that I’m part of an awesome community of fellow writers and readers. Thanks for the support!