Telling stories

There was a time when I told everyone else’s stories.

It was my job to ask other people questions about their goals, projects, successes and failures. In time, one tiny little thing became clear: no one was ever asking me about my story.

That was mostly OK with me. Sometimes, I thought, I really didn’t have much to tell. I led a boring life, reporting on the experiences of others, a dayto-day historian, if you will.

It extended into my personal life, though. I would dominate conversations with questions, plugging people to tell me about who they are, what they’ve done. Of course, my ‘victim’ was either exhausted by my interview or wasn’t really interested in my story. I maybe even sought out — and dated — people who just didn’t care.

Then I started to blog. At times, I didn’t know what to write about. I became forced — by my own hand — to deal with the experiences that convinced me my story had no value.

And yet I continued to write for others. I thought I could make some extra cash on the side, doing some freelance copy writing for small business websites. I was pouring my brain power into my full-time job, which awarded me a promotion (and more responsibility) in the spring, and going home at night, trying to remember to get my extra work done, walk the dog, get to the gym, eat and, oh yeah, sleep.

Last week, I was contacted to write for a site in B.C. It was easy work, really … a handful of lines for a landing page and an About Me page. I’d probably cash in a few hundred bucks for a couple hours work.

By yesterday, I realized I still hadn’t contacted the client for information and direction. I felt the (added) stress immediately. I’m already trying to hold together a life in three different cities, travelling to Toronto on business once a month and trying to squeeze in visits to My American in Spokane.

Life could be worse, I suppose, but something on the plate had to get eliminated. I took a long, hard look at life (OK, OK, I made  a knee-jerk decision while I was peeing) and chose my extra-curricular business. The job that pays full time, the boyfriend, the dog and my health — both physical and mental — take priority over some funny money that pays for shoes.

So I’ve closed up shop on That Angela as a freelance writing business. I’ll take projects from friends and family, especially if they’re on topics that interest me (like fashion and sports, because I’m bipolar like that), but the will, inclination and energy to nurture a fledgling entrepreneurial venture just aren’t in me.

Instead, I’ll spend more time focusing on my story, which you’ll find buried in these pages — whether it’s Exploring, Life and Other Stuff, Music, Photography or my newest interest, Social TV.

I sure hope you think my story has value.

Because I do, even though I still find my life a little boring and humdrum.

And I always invite you to tell me your story in the comments section.

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