Writing can seem like a heavily one-sided conversation. The writer dwells in the dark with a keyboard, creating worlds and wonders in social isolation, publishing them with limited feedback outside of editorial review, only interacting with readers after the fact with public readings and signings, or the occasional guest appearance or podcast.
This model makes sense for a book, as it is a complete, stand-alone product, and the author can’t really be expected to follow every reader around, lurking just on the periphery of their day, ready to jump out and answer questions as they might arise.
But this model breaks down on a blog. I’m sitting right here, only distanced from you by an LCD, some wires, and some IP addresses. I can be expected to just answer questions. In fact, one of my favorite parts about blogging is reading and responding to the comments on my posts.The comments I got on my recent essay about my father legitimately warmed my heart, and helped me through an incredibly rough time. I have conversations with my wife about how to best respond to thoughtful, poignant feedback, and on more than one occasion, comments have given me ideas for new stories and essays.
Not only should I be expected to respond to comments, I actively want to.
So: Ask me anything. Seriously, anything, as long as it’s not vulgar or generally offensive.
Ask me about writing. Or beer. Or writing about beer.
Ask me about this site, or my day job, or what I dreamed about last night.
Ask me about grammar or photography or coffee or the State of Union. I’m game.
The only rule is that you only get to ask one (1) question. Post it in the comments below. I’ll pick my favorites, answer them as honestly as possible, and then link back to the blog of the person who asked the question.