I have now discovered something more intimidating than a blank sheet of paper.
Yes, a blank spot on a blog.
After all, how incredibly self-serving is a blog anyway? I've seen some that will come back to haunt the owners in years to come (or at least I hope they do) and I really would like to avoid that kind of albatross. Although, in a few years, the internet will be so full of garbage that even my silly blog will have ceased to have even the tiniest bit of relevance. As if it has any relevance now!
During my 11 years as a newspaper editor, I managed to stay pretty neutral and relatively obscure as a person. Of course, some of the readers I offended during that time would argue the point. But, other than my newspaper columns, I thought I did fairly well with objectivity. Of course, given the fact that I am actually human, it's impossible to be totally successful in that regard.
I was always shocked when someone would remark on or quote one of my columns. Those were more personal than the articles I wrote and I think I really believed no one saw them. I embarrassed my family in them, abused my friends and tortured my pets. Fortunately, the animals didn't have a clue. But people remembered the columns for some reason.
The main thing I miss about newspaper work is that feeling of being in the loop, of knowing what's going on everywhere at almost every moment. Now it seems as if I have blinders on and have no concept of what's going on around me. I avoid national news to a large extent because I'm tired of people trying to scare me to death. I don't seek out regional news because it's still usually too far away to affect me. But I miss good old community news. And there just doesn't seem to be a source for it anymore.
So, not that it really relates to this train of thought, I've decided to take up writing again. I'm working toward developing a free-lance career and, while I won't know any more about local news, I might get to feel like I'm in a loop again. A loop of some sort. So, hang on and we'll see how that goes.