Well, folks, it’s clear that most[/all?] of the people who used to post regularly to this forum have walked away. Some will have become bored. Others will have felt insulted. Still others will have been angry. So be it. Yet most of you Dear Readers have not left. From this I conclude that, if nothing else, my writing continues to entertain.
In fact, an arch-enemy of a few years ago offered that while he couldn’t stand me as a person he found my threads and posts to be the most interesting reading on the site. I like them too – but that’s beside the point. What should be important to writers is writing. The importance of being read should be secondary. (In fact, I do a lot of writing for an audience of one particular person. Someday I may publish this material as “Letters To [fictitious name] but that is not a goal. My real purpose is simply to enjoy writing with the knowledge that at least one person is reading this particular kind of stuff.)
Now there is a certain Dear Reader of this forum who surely is snickering as he reads this, right Mister X?. I don’t want to give too many clues to his identity so I’ll simply say that he hangs around with certain developers He basks in their reflected glory and in this sense he is a groupie. Like most groupies he considers himself to be part of the band. However, the band members themselves don’t see it this way. Continuing the analogy, like most groupies he is tolerated - - used, in fact, for the band members’ pleasure - - but he is most certainly not a musician much less a creative one. I doubt that he’s ever created anything. In fact, I doubt that he’s ever had an original thought in his entire life.
So he will be completely mystified by this post, completely unable to understand that in general writers write for the sake of writing and not, as in his case, for the sake of being read. Let’s look further at this phenomenon . ..
In the not too terribly distant past a fellow simmer wrote a pair of articles for the front page of this site. The articles were well researched and beautifully written. As soon as the first one ran I got in touch with him that same day, complimented him on his work and then asked a technical question relating to his article that I had assumed he would be able to answer immediately. He replied that he had no time to answer my question because he was too busy writing his second feature article. Article two ran a short tme later, also thoroughly researched and well written - - and the author has not been heard from since.
I haven’t been in touch with him since he brushed me off but I strongly suspect that he stopped writing because he had been expecting a large positive response to his articles and was disappointed to find that there was hardly any response at all. Well, Georgie, most of my feature articles draw on the order of five responses. Ten is doing well, twenty quite rare, and only once have I drawn thirty or so responses. And while I’ve not written a feature article in something like two years, the lack of responses is not the reason.
And so, Georgie, if you happen to be reading this, the lesson you must draw from your experience is that writing must be its own reward. I loved your stuff and this ought to be sufficient for you to continue. Otherwise your pent up urge to write will never be satisfied.