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  • Jan Flynn

I Don’t Say This Enough

You read what I write, and that means everything to me

It’s not my style to get all sappy and maudlin — no, that’s a lie. Getting sappy and maudlin is absolutely my style, but I mostly try to squelch that impulse. It’s embarrassing.

But if there is ever a time for sentiment, the beginning of a new year has its hand in the air. So this is me, trying to convey my deep appreciation to you.

Because you read my stuff.

It’s hard to tell you how much that means to me.

I’m a one-trick pony

I don’t paint. I don’t sculpt. I don’t do crafts, because the result is always something I immediately want to consign to the trash. I can’t sew to save my life and my one foray into knitting had me swearing like a sailor and my husband pleading with me to Put. The. Needles. Down.

The point is, my mode of expression is writing. And the problem with writing is that you can’t hang it on a wall for someone to enjoy as they walk by. You can’t drape it over a sofa or take hot pans out of the oven with it. You can’t wear it around your neck and hope someone notices.

Writing wants to be read. It asks someone to invest their time and attention — commodities that nobody has enough of. And for which there is intense competition.

I don’t take your investment lightly

Sometimes I write goofy stuff. Sometimes what I write is sad or angry or wry, or an examination of some quirky aspect of life I’ve either finally noticed or just discovered.

Whatever it is, I write it from the heart. And I hope it’s useful in some way to whoever reads it, as entertainment, or information, or a shared experience, or a handy distraction while you’re sitting in a waiting room.

I just want you to know that no matter why you read my writing — or even how you feel about it — I am very grateful that you gave it your precious time and your valuable attention.

This New Year’s, whether you followed me on Medium (that goes triple if you subscribed) or on Substack, or you read my blog, or you’ve listened to any of my Here’s A Thought blogcast episodes over the past year, I am enormously grateful.

You’ve kept me going through some of life’s more challenging and bewildering passages. Maybe you’ve left a comment, in which you’ve laughed with me, or grown misty-eyed with me, or argued with me. Some of you have done me the great honor of sharing my work with others.

Thank you, now and always

And may 2024, whatever it has in store for the world — and I suspect we’d all better buckle up because it’s likely to be a wild ride — bring you everything you need and enough of what you want. May you find courage when you need it, and joy when you least expect it. May you always find time for delight.

And may whatever it is in which you invest your time and attention — work, art, other people, democracy, and whatever you read — be worth your while.

Happy New Year.

Photo by Howie R on Unsplash


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