I wrote "this is a test" while I was building this website, thinking that it was a placeholder for learning how to build blog entries. But as I think through it a little more, I am realizing that it is a more-than-suitable name for my first ACTUAL blog entry, since it kind of encapsulates the fact that the entire idea of this blog is a bit of a real-world experiment.
A little backstory: when I lived in Seattle, I started up a record store called Tyrannosaurus Records. The point of the store was to generate a viable sense of excitement in the community (Renton, a suburb) about music - and not only music as an abstract idea, but also generate excitement and love for the people creating music. I saw, and was insanely lucky enough to work with, so many talented independent artists - some of them were looking for fame and a record deal, some of them just wanted to get their work out there. Every day, that community of artists inspired me and made me realize that I was doing exactly what I should have been.
While the store is no longer around, I still have the same sense of wonder about what is possible when artists collaborate and are able to have a space for their ideas. And so, this is a test.
Can I build a functional website? I have no idea - I've never done it before. So far so good, I guess, but this could spiral out of control at any given moment.
Can I create enough content to get it on its feet? A worthwhile question. Don't be surprised if some of the articles are re-printed from websites and blogs that are long-since defunct. I'll do my best to let you know if anything is getting recycled, and I'll try to only repurpose the really really good shit.
Can I generate any interest? That's a Pandora's Box of mixed emotions. I am the kind of writer (and person) who loves getting my thoughts out and loves having people react to them...but really sucks at marketing myself. If you're reading this right now, then maybe I've done right by at least some small part of this thing.
Can I convince people to join me? So, back to the record store: what I'd love is to help give voice to other writers as well. I spent a lot of time at various points in my life reaching out to publications and trying to get printed. I never heard back from any of them. I understand that there is a method to the game, and that people are able to make it happen for themselves every day. But, I don't really want to learn a new game. I'd rather just grab the bull by the horns and make my own way. (That probably reads like I'm some maverick type, but it's more a statement of pragmatism than anything.)
All these uncertainties, and while they're all exceedingly important, I'm only really concerned about one thing: will you read it?
All I want is to engage with an audience. You want to go all "slings and arrows" in the comments, more power to you. You want to join my fanclub, I'm down. You want to get your own work printed here, let's talk. To that goal of engagement, I will do my best to put content here that is unique, thought-provoking, and fun to read, either adding value to the conversation or starting a whole new one.
Let's make words matter. Let's re-focus on engagement for its own sake. Let's share our opinions.
I'm beyond excited about the possibilities here - let's see what happens...