Thoughts from My Time Away from Writing

My time off from writing didn't technically look like this.

It’s been a while since I’ve written about anything, and while I’ve been itching to get back into the writing business, I face some uncertainty that I wanted to share with you.

I had so much fun writing about fantasy football when I started out a few years ago. It all started with a writing contest hosted by the great guys over at thefakefootball.com. I submitted an article on my top lottery tickets for the 2013 season, and even added fancy charts. While I didn’t win the contest, it opened the door for me to meet a lot of great people in the fantasy football community, including Regan Yant and Adam Rainbolt from the site that I’m currently affiliated with, fakepigskin.com.

For a while, the newness of everything was so exciting. I was thinking all day about article ideas, writing them up and even doing a podcast here and there. I was engaging on Twitter, and somehow built up a follow of 700 plus people that actually care about what I have to say. I even had an article pop up on the first page of Google when you searched “Michael Crabtree.”

As of a two years ago, whether it was the busyness of life (graduated pharmacy school and somehow got engaged) or maybe just a change in interests, I seemed to have lost the fire for writing I once had. Recently, I’ve had some time to reflect on what happened, and I’ve come to a conclusion that I’m not all that proud of.

I got caught up in what others perceived of me. One of the struggles that I face in real life creeped into my “online life.” Whether it was the number of clicks my articles got, the retweets, favorites, or followers on Twitter I had, I obsessed over numbers. If an article got lost in the noise (which often times it did), I would get discouraged. “No one wants to read or cares about what I have to say” is what I would tell myself.

Now I think, why did that even matter?

I’m not writing to make people like or respect me. I’m writing because it’s something that I enjoy doing, whether or not other people are reading it. If someone on the internet randomly comes across the thoughts that I have and is able to relate, hey, that’s the cherry on top. The main thing is that I have an outlet to put my thoughts to paper, and post it on a medium where there’s an opportunity for someone to come across it.

Only time will tell if I’m being naïve about this whole thing. Maybe I’m just telling myself that I don’t really care about what others thing about me, when in fact nothing has changed. In the end, I may just be putting too much pressure on myself to continue to enjoy writing. Maybe I’ll just have a Word document that I’ll save on my hard drive and share that with my kids or friends in 20 years.

But the key thing for me right now is that I’m approaching writing differently. I’m doing this for me and no one else. Whether I continue to write about sports at Fakepigskin or I expand my writing into non-sports related content, I just want to keep writing. I’m not really sure where this journey is going to take me, but thanks for taking the time to read, and I hope that one day we’ll able to look back on this day and say that this is when it all began.

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