My friends know that I write. A few are regular readers. Occasionally, upon first acquaintance, strangers will mention they’ve stumbled over a thing or two I put up. The feeling is somewhere between discovering that you’re reading the same book as the person sitting beside you on the bus, and finding a wallet on the street with your picture folded lovingly inside it; gratifying, with the slightest hint of unease and latent obligation.
I have gained fame on par with a friendly panhandler with a long held spot, or, a compellingly scarred drug store clerk that denies the obvious question. There are several thousand people in the world who would technically be guilt of perjury if the claimed that they’d never heard of me. Though to most it would be a surprise. It is more of a pocket square than a banner, but I still wave it proudly over the void.
When I write there is likely someone reading. Numbers aside, it changes the act, transitioning from soliloquy to disclosure. There are consequence. Stakes. The difference between standing naked in front your bathroom mirror and sitting naked on your front porch.
A proper writer would be fueled by craft, but it has always been more of a suggestion than a calling, a hobby that guilt trips when neglected. The opportunity for public cleverness and sporadic praise allows my pride to overrule my indifference.
Thank you theoretical readers, you matter and are appreciated.