I had almost given up, but some crazy hair up the backsides of my readers managed to pull me back in.

As of last week I wrote the final, end of the show, no going back, sorry about all the mental retardation references, dead last entry for Newlywed. This was one of the blogs I was writing for the Houston Chronicle about my first year of marriage. Actually, it had turned into my first year-and-a-half of marriage and frankly it was getting old.

I can talk about my marriage. I have no problem talking about my marriage. I just can't talk about my marriage EXCLUSIVELY. For one thing, there are only so many newsworthy events happening at Casa del Tumlinson. For another, if I go on for too long I end up going to the "marriage fights" trump card because I've run out of other juicy material. No bueno.

I, by the way, speak not word of Spanish so for all I know I've just directed my readers to have at their pets with lustful abandon. Don't do that.

Anyway, I finished up with that blog last week and had prepared myself to walk away forever. It was good, I felt. It was right. Just. Whatever. Because frankly I do a lot of stuff for free and who needs that? I'm a writer, dang it... I should get PAID for writing!

But a funny thing happened. I got a slew of comments. More comments than I had ever gotten on any single entry for that blog! And more than I've gotten on every single entry of THIS blog combined. Sheesh. Write something, will ya?

So there I was facing a conundrum. I had just walked away from Newlywed because it wasn't professional enough to give me clips for my portfolio (I reasoned) and wasn't paying anything. In my mind, it was a purely professional move. I was trading in a bunch of free work for the extra time I could use to write something someone might actually BUY. Who needs a bunch of blogs, anyway? More than one and you're just showing off (I have four).

I figured I'd keep Making Movies and that would be my "clips" blog, something to use for getting free movie related stuff, interviewing celebrities (my Tim Russ interview rocked) and a chance to spew opinions about movies and directors and producers I love/hate. Also I would be able to use the clips in my portfolio.

But all of these comments? That changed everything. And on top of that I also got e-mails. And phone calls. And people coming up to me in person.

I'm not saying I was mobbed or anything but I suddenly had a readership coming out of the woodwork and crying foul that I'd walked away! Now it's true, the Chronicle blogs are mostly freebies. But other than money what is it that "pays" a writer? Readers!

I know writers who have worked their whole lives to get a readership. And I had one. Have one. Oh sure, no one reads THIS blog (it would seem). But over at the Chron, with their millions of dollars in crappy Beatnik style marketing campaigns, I had READERS! How could I turn my back on them?

So I didn't. Instead I changed the name of the blog and broadened the topic. Now it's called "Mental Floss," and the topic is "Life with J. Kevin Tumlinson."

If, for some reason, you find that my personal blog here is a little on the flimsy side then you might want to visit Mental Floss, because it's likely that's where I am. I'll keep this little guy for announcements about me and my work, that sort of thing. And I'll try to write something profound from time to time. But honestly, most of the juicy stuff will end up in Mental Floss. Because at heart I really am kind of a lazy SOB.

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Kevin Tumlinson is the author of numerous novels, novellas, and non-fiction books, and the host of the Wordslinger Podcast. Try three of his best books for free when you download his starter library at kevintumlinson.com/starterlibrary.


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