Yep, this is my 500th blog post. Okay, some of them were written by other people, but I have written posts for other blogs too so it balances out...kind of.
My blog has evolved since November 27th 2008, varying from occasional posts to daily posts to the current three times a week, but one thing has remained the same: my bad typing. I still type 'slef' instead of 'self' and 'ahve' instead of 'have', errors which I correct before posting...mostly. What is more, I still have trouble with the apostrophe as I keep hitting the semi-colon key instead. Can you imagine how much tippex I'd use on a typewriter?
Other things have changed too. My writing has improved as has my use of language and knowledge of the writing process, with which I've been able get myself published in reputable, semi-reputable and, now liquidated, magazines both online and offline. I also have two self-published books available on Amazon, formed a publishing co-operative and write two regular columns, for Christian Writer and WritingRaw.
One thing hasn't changed: I still don't earn any money from writing. Ah well, my time will come.
In my personal life there have been a lot of changes too, some good some bad, from all of which I've learnt about myself. Separation, divorce, homelessness, sofa surfing, suicide, new friends (online and offline), contentment (mostly) and an inner strength I'd forgotten about. It's that last reason why a recent picture I posted on a Friday Fun blog struck home.
I have three boys and although the marriage they were born into no longer exists, I can say with my hand on my heart I did my best to keep the family together then and now. My moral guide keeps me (almost) on the straight and narrow and bitterness has been kept to a minimum. There are days when I cannot believe how positive I can be.
If I sat down with that child now, we'd both be relatively happy.
So what next? In short, no idea. Not having a time machine or the gift of prophecy I don't know whether I will get run over by a bus tomorrow or be discovered for the literary genius I am...I wish.
All I can promise that child is that I will continue to be the best father possible, improve my writing, (eventually) get paid for it and develop deeper friendships with those I know and with people I haven't yet met. That, and keep every Friday post for some fun and philosophy.
To that child I would give the following advice: Enjoy life as best you can. Be kind, be generous, give the benefit of the doubt where it's due, but always fight when you are presented with no other realistic choice. And NEVER give up on who you are. You're special and wonderful, even if no one you love tells you that.
Have a great day.