Perfectly Imperfect & Simply Chaotic defines the imperfections in all of us that combine perfectly to create individuality. It’s about embracing chaos, simply to survive. The irony in the words defines me. For most of my life, I’ve attempted to conform; each attempt unsuccessful. As a gift to myself in celebration of turning forty, I give the little girl living within, life. With life comes freedom, and with freedom, her perfectly imperfect & simply chaotic spirit can finally soar.
I’ve always had words in my head that needed a home. To be honest, I’m a storyteller, an atypical blogger who is once again, unable to conform–fully. In April 2014, after a three-year hiatus from writing, I came back. As you can imagine, the ever-evolving industry is extremely different from what I used to know. <—–FYI, I’m using that term lightly.
Telling Stories is All I Know
I have never received a formal education in English, punctuation, spelling, rules, laws, grammar, content marketing, visual design, or anything else associated with this craft. What I know, I’ve learned from other writers, bloggers, scammers, forums, Twitter, failure, success, fear, and finally, confidence.
What I know, I’ve learned from other writers, bloggers, scammers, forums, Twitter, failure, success, fear, and finally, confidence.
I ultimately want to write about what I know, feel, think, hear, and see. I want to analyze the hell out of everything, and share my chaos with those who understand, want to learn, or completely disagree. I’m honest, unafraid, confrontational, compulsive, arrogant, and real. I speak without thinking, and type without breath.
Dear Internet Editors ( you know who you are, and so do we!),
Your proverbial red pen will undoubtedly run dry after a few blogs around here. If you’d like to brush up on your editing skills, by all means, this is a fantastic place to practice. Save the emails, comments, snickers, and tongue-in-cheek remarks — I may not understand the rules of grammar as they apply to the English language (or Korean, for that matter!) but I assure you I’m fluent in the rules of virtual kung-fu and I’m not afraid to attack.
This snippet of text originally came to life somewhere within the world of Reddit! A man, concerned about his girlfriend’s mental health reached out to the community for guidance.
Every one offered different advice based on their interpretation of this woman. Somewhere in his words (about 2,000 of them-poor guy), it became clear (to me, anyway), that her struggle was hardly related to deteriorating mental health.
The spiritual health of a person is so often overlooked. In my opinion, his girlfriend lost sight of her authentic self and purpose.
Which got me thinking… most of the other responders told him she was “losing that loving” feeling. The suggested he be more romantic, attentive, and helpful to her needs.
To me, I say hogwash!
Love, romance and everything else along the way, will never override the human spirit, and the innate desire to be needed, fulfilled, and, at peace.
Sometimes I wonder…. I can’t understand it, and I’ve said it before— I’m the hardest working broke chick I know. On the flip side-poverty has taught me: website design, visual design, content marketing, networking, WAY more about how GOOGLE operates than I should know, WAY more about nerdy shit then I should know, how to be a pimp and annoy everyone, how to properly index a site, how to rank a blog, how to beat F’book at their own game (just kidding, just kidding, don’t cyber-slap me Zuckerburg), how to spam like the brilliant Nigerian, and finally, patience. <—-oh wait, that’s the medication, not poverty.
Not sure if I’d rather have had knowledge or money to pay someone else to do all this…. I’ll let you know the verdict when I’m living large as a “Thousandaire” —-
Well played Facebook, and the geniuses who run the marketing department. This advertisement just showed up in my News Feed. Ironic? Hardly. I’ve spent the last few days creating blogs like a machine (no kids this weekend!), and what-do-ya-know? The crickets are back, and my posts are going unnoticed.
I guess I need to get with the program and:
Create Better Blogs For People to “Pretend” to Read
Start Writing During the Week Like Normal People
Wait Until Christmas Eve to Post My Next Masterpiece.
Right? I mean, it’s only the last week of summer… I can’t be the only loser protecting my skin from cancer by parking it on the couch. Right?
Keep scrolling…I’d like to answer Facebook’s question….
Dear Marketing Stalkers at Facebook,
Thanks for the cool ad today, obviously, you all are paying attention to my blog. Whoot! Whoot! And, looks like I’m not the only one working today either–the robots didn’t get the weekend off? Boo!
Anyway, to answer your question:
FACEBOOK: “Tired of Writing Great Articles that Nobody Reads?”
LOSER BLOGGER: “No! I’m not tired of creating hilarious blog posts for my MOM to read. She’s a HUGE fan. Personally, I think I’ll just grab a piece of scented stationary and a pen for the next blog. I’ll whip up some fancy paragraphs full of calligraphy and send the post directly to her mail box. It’ll be cool.”
Over the course of my history on Facebook, I have shared everything about my life. Here is one from the archives that has put a little pressure on me. In 2009, I had a goal— Oops! I had 4 years and 364 days to accomplish it but like always, I’ve procrastinated. 100 days to go….
A documentation of healing, humor and perspectives that define people
Walkabout was a term coined by the Australian Aborigines. It was a reference to a spiritual journey. Many Aborigines sought out spiritual teachings in the landscape of their land and home as a way of finding a “Sacred Belongingness”.
My dad, who thought he pioneered the term, used it to round up his buddies in an attempt to walk “about” the town looking for fun. Today my family and I use the term as a reference to walking “about” the town in search of people, places and things that are important to us as community members.
A few days after Christmas in 2007, my dad passed away suddenly in his home.
He lived in Patterson for 55 years: was an active member of the community and the owner of Patterson Glass. He spent his lunch hours watching The Andy Griffith Show and his evenings laughing with Spongebob Squarepants.
Although he dreamed of living on the beach he knew Patterson was home and he loved it.
After spending some time in Patterson, my eagerness to explore the outside world took over and I parted ways from his community and didn’t return until after his death.
I chose a walkabout that led me straight back to the landscape I had originated from.
So, I began my journey of the walkabout. A rather simple one that solely consisted of walking.
I walked every morning and most afternoons; eager to meet the community; eager to talk to anyone that would listen and eager to embrace and be embraced. It became a ritual of getting to know the people, the places and landscape of the town in an attempt to feel a sense of belonging. As it turned out the city I despised a decade ago would come to surprise me in many ways.
As I walked, I began to make peace. Peace with my dad, peace with the community and peace with the people. And, with peace came confidence; and with confidence came ambition; and with ambition came life and excitement.
The overall pleasantness of the community not only surprised me but also gave me hope.
Family and the pursuit of togetherness and belongingness are essential aspects of life to those who reside here.
I’m not really sure how it all happened but at the age of 31, and with very little effort, I became a freelance writer.
In 2006 I began writing 500-700 word articles that were keyword specific, Search Engine Optimized and rewrites. Each article required research, links, and unique content. I was working full-time as a poker dealer during the day but at night, I was living the glamorous life of a writer.
Let me back up, I can’t remember if I ever consciously thought about, or wanted to be a writer. I kept a journal consistently during high school and early into my 20s. As the years went on, my journal became a place for vulnerability and a sort of poetry.
I wanted to write songs but didn’t know how to play an instrument so that seemed impossible. I wrote words instead.
Sometimes I cut words out of magazines and arranged them to create “tragic” poetry—would be lyrics–if I only knew three guitar chords.
When the world shifted from ink pens to keyboards, I was SCREWED!
How the hell could computers not be a passing fancy? In high school I laughed at the typing class students (because I was so cool, being in the F.F.A and all) and swore, I would never learn to type (or sew—two decisions I grew to regret).
I went a very long time defending my high school stance and upholding the anti-typing vow.
The Beginning of My Freelance Career
I had giant balls in January, 2006 when I decided to submit a personal essay about being a new mother to a writing site. Imagine my surprise when two weeks later I received this email,
“Robin, I’d love to feature this story on my website as it is creative, humorous, and a fun read. I did edit the text quite a bit to adhere to the guidelines of writing for the Web, and to correct grammar and punctuation errors. I look forward to future submissions and strongly recommend a refresher in grammar.”
Holy crap! I was going to be famous!
Naturally, This is What I Did Next
I applied for writing jobs. Literally, thought I was on my way to a feature in Vogue.
I got my first gig within no time.
My “editor” sent five orders at a time. I didn’t choose the topic or negotiate word count or any details. The instructions for each article were simple. I didn’t know then but I know now-I was being primed for sweat-shop labor in the content mill industry.
This is what I received:
Topic to research (ex: Summer vacation in Paris, France-Things to do, places to stay, etc.)
Required keywords and density (ex: 15%)
Required word count (MIN 500/Maximum 1,000)
Deadline (ex: 24 hours)
Rate of pay
I spent hours perfecting each piece. I researched hostels, sightseeing, foreign travel tips, and fun ideas for the International traveler. I was bored to death and frustrated easily and considered myself to be a tortured writer like all the most famous ones before me.
I wrote a paragraph and then hastily deleted it-called it junk-in obvious imitation of the writer’s I envisioned in my head. I cured writers block with mundane tasks like preparing dinner and worked furiously into the wee hours of the morning.
I thought I was Tolstoy.
I was writing website content.
As a ghostwriter.
For a ghostwriter.
Outsourcing Writer Actually Taught Me How to Write
I had no concept that my “work”–expertly crafted with proper keyword density and links to destinations in Paris–would be credited to some chump writer who had perfectly executed the system of Capitalism.
I knew right away that I was doing something right when after the first 5-10 articles; I received no revision requests or notes about editing. I sucked at punctuation (still do) and was honest about appreciating constructive feedback. I was inundated with requests to write more and was on cloud nine every time she commented on my skill as a writer.
BAM! I was in….
I landed this gig after to replying to a job posting and WAS THRILLED to have “finally” made it into the world of writers.
I was being paid $1-$3 per article. HAHAHAHA…..
I didn’t know enough to bitch about it.
It didn’t take me long to see I was being “scammed” by another writer. I was so new and naive but extremely arrogant as well.
I refused to read articles that offered advice to new writers. I wanted to figure it all out myself. I didn’t want to spend hours researching the industry of writing.
I just wanted to write….and, meet Oprah.
After all, I was published online after my very FIRST submission. DUH! I was a natural.
Today, I am writing full-time, learning about punctuation, and developing a career that I’m proud of.
I’ve had to put the creative writing on-hold for the moment, but I’m not going to give up. I’ve still got some junk in the trunk that’s gonna need some editing, and a place to live.