I can’t wait to be discovered…

One time, after I'd purchased a long-desired but too expensive golf skort, I took off the tags, donned the garment, and then discovered a $20 in the zippered pocket. The $20 was discovered by the right person, me.
A few days after I’d purchased a long-desired but too expensive golf skort, I took off the tags, donned the garment to wear, and then discovered a $20 in the zippered pocket. That was a nice discovery, so nice, I shot a photo. 🙂 I’m not sure why I didn’t find a photo of myself to insert here. Hmmm…

Ask me what my life goal is, and I’ll tell you, “I want to write a book that will change the world.”

Tall order, especially for a girl who has never truly started, certainly never written a book of any sort, let alone one that would change the world. I’ve got what it takes: experience writing for newspapers, experience teaching English, experience in marketing, experience living — and a passion to write and to make a difference. What I lack is time (despite that extra hour I referred to yesterday) and that world-changing idea.

Years ago as a teacher, when I started using blogging with my students, I realized that I was just a bit jealous of these juniors and seniors. Why? Because they had to write in response to my blog prompts and essay assignments. I had to write those blog prompts and essay assignments (and quizzes and tests and lesson plans), but that wasn’t quite the same thing. In the papers and blog post responses I expected my students to answer, I required reflection and contemplation, the stuff on which writers and poets feast.

I got to see my students’ less-than-enthusiastic perspective, too, when I went back to school to get my master’s degree. The online classes required loads of reading and writing — and though it was reflective and contemplative, it, in general, wasn’t poetic or deep or the stuff that changes lives. But it was during grad school that a friend encouraged me to blog — and so I began.

I loved it. I found in personal blogging that opportunity to be reflective on life, to contemplate life’s big questions, to view my life with humor and thankfulness (and complaining, which is so engaging). Blogging, I thought, would be a perfect opportunity to write, to perfect my writing, to explore the options for my ultimate goal — writing that book that would change the world.

But underlying all that was my rarely expressed goal for blogging: I can’t wait to be discovered.

I thought someone would stumble across my blog, become intrigued, follow me, read me, see my potential, and offer me the opportunity of a lifetime: a writing career? a contract to write a book? a desire to turn my blog musings into a book? a television interview? fame? fortune?

I couldn’t wait to be discovered.

Early in my personal blogging career, I wrote about the “hoodie” in relation to Trayvon Martin — garnered more than 60 reads in a day — and thought my day to be discovered had come. A good year or two after that disappointment, I discovered I was an old fogie with my early to bed, early to rise ways and laughed with delight at the numbers who responded to that post. I hit the jackpot with the story of my marriage to a widower and his four children, the most reads I ever had in a day until I got featured in Freshly Pressed for the sorrows represented by a missing afghan, my mother’s afghan that I had let go only to find it haunting my dreams.  (Best comment ever from that: “I am an Afghan.” My response: “LOL. I will try not to dream about you.” OK, you’d have to read the original post to understand, but it still makes me laugh.)

The long and short of blogging is this: I can write long, I can write short. I can write deep, I can write shallow. I can write what I think is penetrating and amazing, and I can write what I think is ridiculous. I can write about timely issues or the past. And I am usually wrong about what will attract the most readers — or what I think will change their lives.

Personal blogging is more about changing my life — or recording my life lessons — than changing the world. It is certainly not about being discovered. It may be a side effect, but from what I’ve found, it’s 15 minutes of fame or less. Maybe 1.5 or 15 days of fame. Or less, much less.

A couple of days ago, after I’d started the NaBloPoMo challenge, I was walking with some colleagues at lunch and told them. They asked the customary questions — “What do you blog about?” “How often do you blog?” “Who reads your blog?” and, of course, “Why?”

“I was hoping to be discovered,” I admitted. “But now I realize that I am going to have to more assertive if I want that.”

That thought made me rethink my “I can’t wait to be discovered” idea — and it reminded me of Pastor Jim McCarty, who started the church I attend. He used to have the congregation practice a certain exercise, changing the emphasis of words in Scripture to help us better understand.

For instance, he might have had us repeat Psalm 136:3 in this manner, emphasizing a different word or phrase. It was enlightening:

Give thanks to the Lord of lords:
His love endures forever.

Give thanks to the Lord of lords:
His love endures forever.

Give thanks to the Lord of lords:
His love endures forever.

Give thanks to the Lord of lords:
His love endures forever.

Give thanks to the Lord of lords:
His love endures forever.

Give thanks to the Lord of lords:
His love endures forever.

Changing the emphasis helped us to see different aspects of the same sentence. I could see the action I should do: give. I could see what I should give: thanks. I could see to whom I should give thanks: the Lord of lords. I could see why: His love, etc.

When considering Pastor’s Jim’s technique, I realized I had always emphasized “wait”: I can’t wait to be discovered. Yes, I am putting myself out there, but I am passively waiting to be discovered.  If I am being assertive, I would change that emphasis: I can’t wait to be discovered. If I want to be discovered, I need to assert myself.

Discover me! I am Sara Dagen, and I want to write a book that will change the world.

(Actually, I need some advice on asserting myself as a writer. Got any?)

NaBloPoMo_1115_465x287_THEME

4 thoughts on “I can’t wait to be discovered…

  1. I’ve been following you since last years NaBloPoMo. You are well on your way. Everything I read about becoming successful is to just write. You are clearly doing that. I find we are similar in our desires. Problem is I chickened out and don’t blog any more. But I miss it. I thought all through October that I would do NaBloPoMo this month….but I didn’t. You are out there doing it. That is the first and hardest step. Just keep writing.

    Liked by 1 person

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