Long time readers and friends (hmmm, that may be redundant) know that I have always harboured not-so-secret dreams of being a “real” writer.
You might argue that I already am a writer in that my day job (in that other life that still lurks outside of maternity leave) since a large part of my job comprises stringing words together in a way that is meaningful. It’s rarely creative, though — at least, not in the conventional sense.
You might have more success in arguing that through blog, I have come closer to earning the title of “writer.” I write regularly for an audience, often with at least a certain amount of craft and attention to style, voice and narrative. In accepting paid advertising and other compensation, I’ve even been remunerated for my writing. All very nice, and all writerly sorts of things to do. But somewhere in my head, I’ve always felt I wouldn’t be an official “writer” until someone commissioned an article and published it, and was even kind enough to pay me for my efforts.
That day has finally come.
Remember last summer, when the nice folks over at Smuggler’s Notch offered us a free weekend getaway at the resort, all for the simple effort of blogging it? Well, my contact there sent me an e-mail just after Lucas was born saying congratulations on the new baby, and oh, by the way, would you be interested in writing an article for our resort magazine? I was barely a month postpartum, hormonal and sleep deprived. I couldn’t write a coherent grocery list, let alone be creative and wordy enough to write an actual essay. Of course I said yes.
The theme was “taking a walk on the wild side” and the idea the editor wanted to pursue was adventures with your kids. I took my original blog post on our canoe trip from hell and polished it up a bit to turn it into a freestanding article (click on the link that says “Family Adventure: Who Needs Wildlife When You’ve Got Kids” near the bottom of the page.) In re-reading it, there are a few things I would change, but it’s not bad for a first try, especially one written when I considered it a good day to get my teeth brushed by dinner time.
The resort magazine has a circulation of about 17,000, so it has the potential to be read by quite a few eyeballs. And of course, I stuck the blog address in my byline.
My first published article. One more item to check off on my life-long to-do list. I’m so proud of me!!