It'd be a lie to say that this blog wasn't, at least partially, created out of quarantine necessity. With work drying up as people started to work from home, my own schedule opened up just when I may have needed it to most. I've also been really lucky, even with most of my clients I still have a couple keeping me busy and from going insane alone in my apartment.
Not everyone has been as lucky as I have, and I recognize that too. Not everyone is working, not everyone can leave their homes as frequently. One of my friends and clients has a myriad of underlying conditions that puts her at particular risk, so I've been running errands for her in addition to walking her dogs (a job that is really a privilege because her dogs are amazing). She also hasn't left her complex since March when the world started to shut down.
In an effort to protect her, I haven't really been able to do other things, either. Which, let's be honest, isn't that big of a sacrifice at this point because there aren't really other things to do.
So that's how this blog was -- finally -- able to come to fruition. I've been talking about it and planning and working on it in some form or another for almost a year. Talking out concepts, figuring out what I would want to write. I've been writing about Liverpool for so long, in a more news-type capacity, that I knew I wanted to move away from that a little bit - but still write about the club. I wrote a few pieces for the RedsBet blog and was able to stretch my legs a bit. Not that I have never been able to write, essentially, whatever I wanted for the Offside, because I was definitely given that chance. I was also so new to writing consistently about something I'd only ever discussed with friends in the bar that it took a lot to get me to venture outside of the "covering the day's news" stories.
Then December 2019 happened and the California bill AB5, that limited the ways that a freelancer could work before being classified as an employee. Most corporations, rather do what the bill intended and make their independent contractors actual employees, did the opposite and fired their independent contractors. Vox sent me an email on December 16th, my birthday no less, saying that as of March 31 my contract would be terminated because of this new bill. Sorry and thanks for all the words.
I'd been trying to figure out a way to write for myself before that email came - how to grow my own skills and career and find my own voice. Have a space for myself. I wanted to have this thing done by then, too, so I had a new place to tell people to follow me to. The thing is I've also always struggled with ADHD-type symptoms and habits so doing something this big myself was quite the undertaking and surprisingly harder than it maybe would've been for a neurotypical person.
The craziest part of Covid-19 and the ensuing quarantine is that it kind of puts all those weird mental habits into a washer with a hammer. You're doing the things you'd normally do but there's something distinctly wrong happening too. I was able to go to work, even start a yoga routine and maintain it for the most part, but I was still dealing with crippling indecision and hyperfocus on the things I didn't need to be focusing on (hello, doomscrolling!).
I finally got the wherewithal to find a psychiatrist to treat it, to start the process of finding a medication to help me out. Two weeks onto that medication, I was finally able to focus and bring this blog to life. 4 months after buying the domain and starting the building.
And not every post will be like this ramble of how it came to be. Liverpool stuff will be Mondays, usually to talk about the happenings of the weekend - and now that the Premier League is coming back (despite the cancellation of the FA Women's Super League) I'll have more to talk about on that end. Wednesdays will be for life stuff. Life in Los Angeles, like this. Fridays will be fiction, short form or excerpts or poetry either by me or someone else, or maybe some recommended fiction.
It's a new space, but I'm ready to start building and I hope you'll hang out with me while it happens. Maybe have some pizza, physical distance, and a couple drinks. We'll be here for a while.