Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Where Does a Year Go?

I just realized that January 26 was the one year anniversary of Fontinalis Rising.  I wish I would have planned some grand extravaganza to reward my readers- you all have been amazing.  When I started this last year I had no idea that I would get such an enthusiastic response- Thank YOU.

It's interesting to go back and see the beginnings of things- looking at my original post, it appears I've accomplished some goals, I have a few yet to meet, and have set others in the process.  I'll let you in on the real motivations here.

I've always been a writer at heart.  My teachers in school wanted me to pursue writing, I've journalized and written assorted short pieces for my own entertainment over the years, and I've always wanted to be an outdoors and travel writer.  My heroes and favorite authors are Tim Cahill, Randy Wayne White, Paul Theroux, Jon Krakauer, David Quammen, and Sebastian Junger.  I love adventure, travel, and all things outdoors.  I don't have the time or money to pursue all of my outdoor loves.  I'm passionate about kayaking, fly fishing, bow hunting and outdoor photography.  But over the years I've dabbled in skiing, backpacking, travel, horseback riding, climbing, scuba diving and free diving, mountain biking, bird watching, foraging, and the list goes on. I love all things outdoors, and it's only in recent years that I've started to cut back and limit myself to a small core of activities- kayaking, fly fishing, photography and bow hunting.  Part of this stems from running my own business for a number of years- I started adding up how much I was spending on gear versus the amount of time I spent in each activity and decided I had to narrow my interests.   The other factor is that I like to be good at what I do and not just be a tourist, and you know what they say about a jack of all trades.

I should add "writer" to the list above.  I've always aspired to be a writer.  Tim Cahill says that you can't teach writing- you are either a writer or not.  Some elements of style can be taught, but beyond that, it is a matter of disposition and soul.  I believe this.  For the first time in my life there are people who know me as a writer, and not by the other hats I've worn.  I have not always done this blog justice.  At times I've posted just to post, and I'll add another layer to the mix- this last year has probably been the worst of my life.  Call it a mid-life crisis if you will.  I'll spare you the details, everyone has their problems.  In some ways, blogging and writing has been an anchor, a life line to hold onto, an oasis of normalcy in what has been a chaotic year.  It makes the support of you, my readers, all that much more dear to me.  Your comments and encouragement have gotten me through a lot, kept me going even when I didn't want to.  I especially want to thank Cameron Mortenson, Mike Agneta, and Kirk Werner for their support early on, and for their willingness to share their blogging wisdom and technical knowledge.  I would also like to thank Rebecca and Joe at the Outdoor Blogger Network for running such a great organization.  I need to thank Tom Chandler of Trout Underground, Kent Klewien and Louis Cahill at Gink and Gasoline, and Ben Joseph Rioux at Up North Maine Fly Castings for promoting various pieces I've written.  For their friendship and all around encouragement I must thank Howard Levett at Windknots and Tangled Lines, Sanders of Up the Poudre, Brandon Robinson of One Bug is Fake, and The River Damsel- Emily Blankenship.  For inspiration- Erin Block at Mysteries Internal, Will King at The Riparian Corridor, and again Sanders, as well as Mike Sepelak at Mike's Gone Fishin' Again. In addition I must add Brian Kozminski, our recently deposed local TU chapter president, who has tirelessly and selflessly promoted my work- thanks man.

One of my greatest satisfactions, and one of my primary goals in blogging was to be published in a magazine.  I have to thank Charles Sam's at The Cedar Sweeper Magazine for publishing four of my articles in print so far, and Ben Smith at The Backcountry Journal, with more to come.

Okay, enough of the Oscar speech.  You want to know what's next.  I don't know- each year brings its own adventures.  I'll share as it unfolds.  All I can say, is thank you for your support-  I plan on building this site as time goes on.

Here's to another year.

ah, the end result

20 comments:

  1. This world of blogging takes us to many different places. And for the most part good places. Thanks for the kind words and encouragement you've shown me as well, it means a lot.

    Here's to another year.

    Cheers!

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  2. Indeed, to another year, and to the leaps and bounds you'll make as a writer. It's in you. Go for it.

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    1. Mike- thanks for weighing in, and I hope to live up to expectations.

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  3. in this world of mediocrity and the 'nothing really new here fly blogs'- your words are true. I believe you write what you feel, and in doing so inspire others to attempt to put feelings into words, I shall never be one of those 'writers'. I am glad we have connected and have shared time on the water, we need to hit the river more. When you look back at the past year, it has been pretty amazing, look forward to the next year, bring it on!!
    Tight Lines,
    Koz

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    1. We'll hit the water again soon, I promise.

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  4. Congrats to a hell of a year. You definitely have built a great site and reputation. Here's wishing you many more years ahead.

    Ben

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  5. Hell yeah! You're a writer. Keep on keeping' on. I'm looking forward to another year+ of reading...

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    1. Back at you, I'm really enjoying following your rod build.

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  6. I remember coming across your blog when it was new. I immediately put it on my blog list and never looked back. Congrats on the first year milestone, thanks for all of the great posts and I look forward to year number 2!

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    1. Thanks Kiwi- I think you're one of the first to ever leave a comment. Thanks for being so supportive.

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  7. You are one of a kind, FR! My year was filled with unexpected hurdles too! All you can do is push forward ..I must thank you for sparking my interest in brookies. It was your writings and pictures that put me on the trail last year to my first fontinalis! Looking forward to many more great FR adventures...

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    1. I'm glad you discovered the lure of the brook trout RD. I'll try to do even better this year.

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  8. Congrats on the success of your first year in blogging. FR is always on my must read list whenever I see a new post pop up in my feed reader. Looking forward to continued sips of Monday Morning coffee...

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    1. Thanks T!, I'll try to keep it coming. I'm in deep thought mode plotting where to steer next.

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  9. It's a nice thing to realize you love to write, especially when you're still young. When I found out, I was already a geezer, but I still have a few good years left. Congratulations and I look forward to many more years of reading your posts.

    Mark

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    1. Well, the flip side may be the wisdom and experience you bring to the table. I really appreciate your comments and the fact that you read my drivel. Cheers.

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  10. Congrats on the 1st year of FR. Having followed Fontinalis Rising from the beginning, It certainly feels like more than a year's worth of quality content. I'm looking forward to what the next year brings.

    Cheers.

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    1. Thanks Ivan. My next goal is to get a GoPro and give you a run for your money. You've got quite the head start, and you consistently catch better fish than me, so I don't know about that.

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