Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Day 296 of the 365 Days of Blogging

he author/publisher,
Dane F. Baylis




About nine and a half months ago, I started this blog with no real idea of what I was supposed to do. I was following some vague advice about developing a writer's platform. What exactly that was seemed to be a toss up, depending on who you asked. Never being one to be held back by a lack of knowledge, information, or guidance, I dove right in.
For a guy who started with little more than an e-mail account, boy, how things have changed! Today I have two e-mail accounts, this blog, a Facebook account, and a Twitter account. I have learned a good bit of arcane etiquette, including how to link to other people's pages, such as the first video of me reading one of my pieces that was posted to You Tube by Phil Taggart.
In the outside world, I have begun attending readings all over Southern California and signing up for every open mic available. I am getting ready for an appearance as a featured reader. This will be accompanied by the release of my first poetry chapbook, ever. I have joined and actively participate in the Ventura County Writer's Club, one of the oldest, continuous running clubs of its kind in the U.S. This weekend I'm attending my first, honest to god, WRITER'S CONFERENCE through that organization.
I have accepted an invitation to be an alternate host for a local poetry venue run by the above mentioned Phil Taggart of Askew Poetry Journal. I have started my own publishing imprint, Dane F. Baylis Publications, and have already had inquiries from other artists and writers about possible submissions. I have a concept for a second chapbook and am thinking in terms of a series to culminate in an actual book.
All of this because I took an honest look at the landscape and, instead of being intimidated by the barriers and difficulties I saw, simply chose what seemed to be the path of least resistance. So what if it tends to meander a bit. That's okay, not always knowing of the difficulties ahead, I mostly don't know what I'm not supposed to know and, consequently, can't scare myself out of the next step! This odd bit of reasoning allows me to take in the scenery and to better realize an old Buddhist teaching that, frequently, the summit is what we set out for, but the paths that crisscross the mountain are the true destination.
Do I have millions of visitors to my pages? Am I raking in a ton of money? Have I been able to leave my day-job behind? No. But I have made new friends and acquaintances, and reconnected with old ones. I have re-enforced something I learned a long time ago. I am the key to my dreams and it's not up to someone else to accomplish them. I have found that, if I truly follow my passion, there are innumerable individuals willing to help. Some will spread the word, some will help me find the way, and some will just be there at the right moments.
The Chinese Taoist philosopher and sage,Lao Tzu said, "The journey of ten thousand leagues begins with the ground you stand on." So where are you standing and what's your journey?
If you've been on this one with me for a while, thanks. If you're just discovering this page, stick around, it looks like it's going to get pretty interesting. If you are on your own course and need advice or encouragement, don't mind the gruff tone, I have rarely bitten anyone. (Well, the occasional sweet thing. But then only tenderly on the tenderest parts)....Just a little digression, and maybe a hint or two, from your Uncle Dane.
Meanwhile...live, love, write.
Want to follow or subscribe to this blog? There are gadgets for that on the right side of the
page. You can leave comments in the form below. I can be reached directly at dbaylis805@gmail.com . You can also find links to some of the sites I visit from time to time on the right. I'm also looking for submissions to the Your Work/Your Love page. Authors retain all rights.
Dane F. Baylis

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