Graphic artist Kat Nemec didn’t originally intend to write a blog. A few years ago, she took her college age son on a cross country trip to the West Coast to help him relocate there. Along the way she chronicled their journey on Facebook with twice daily photos and posts. She posted frequently to keep her daughter updated on their journey as she felt mom guilt that her daughter was missing out on the experience. Facebook readers liked her posts so much that they encouraged her to keep writing and start a blog. One of her Facebook followers was writing coach Wendy Fried who owns Pleasantville-based Wordcraft. She strongly encouraged Nemec to start a blog and suggested the Swoon name as Nemec frequently used that word or signed off her posts with it.
Nemec describes herself as an over-sharer who uses a lot of adjectives and prefers stream of consciousness writing. Topics covered include childhood memories, her parents love affair and the joy of cooking. She is not afraid though to tackle more difficult subjects such as talking about sex with your kids, 9/11, and even her family’s experience with the Armenian genocide.
“I’m not a writer,” claims Nemec but after reading her refreshingly honest posts you may feel differently. “People are savvy and they will respond to something that is truthful and comes from the heart.” Nemec isn’t interested in amassing a huge number of followers, monetizing her blog or cross-promoting products. She writes her blog as a creative pursuit. “I’m not doing this for fame or fortune. When you do something creative for yourself the need for approval goes away and the best stuff is going to come out.”
Before starting her blog in February 2020, she read books on the subject that suggested she had to write 2-3 posts per week with no dry spots. It didn’t work with her schedule initially. When COVID hit though the timing proved to be fortuitous as a lot of her workload decreased and she was able to write more frequently. “If I don’t feel it, I’m not writing it,” explains Nemec. For example, this past October and November she was depressed about the upcoming holidays and not being able to be with her son. “We are a big holiday family. Writing at that time just wasn’t in my bandwidth.”
As someone who works in a creative field, Nemec encourages others who want to start a creative pursuit to do it for themselves. “If people respond and like it, then that is just the cherry on top,” she says.
From Kat’s Swooning: “T-Rex and Kong”
“Pleasantville is about 30 miles north of Manhattan. More suburb than vacation destination, people fleeing the city due to the pandemic drive right past our exit while heading upstate. We do have one new family since lockdown…a family of dinosaurs. First, it was just one lone T-Rex, checking things out for the rest of the clan, he* ran through the neighborhood feeling out his welcome. We did not tell him to go back to where he came from, we embraced his uniqueness. After a few weeks, the rest of the family showed up. They are a healthy group…some days they run together, other times they take a solitary stroll. Their presence brings joy and laughter during this time of ever growing fog and confusion. T-Rex sightings posted in real time on FB update us when they are out and about…they are on Romer Avenue, they just turned onto Bedford Road…quick go look! The family made an appearance at the farmers market and at the teacher appreciation day drive by at the elementary school. They remind me of one Halloween during elementary school…when I was kidnapped by the Son of Kong….
People who are willing to be ridiculous…are gifts to the universe. I would like to imagine, years from now, someone will be writing their memories of being a child during “The Pandemic of 2020”. There was no school, no parties, no trips to the pool, no playdates, and no grandparent hugs… but there was a T-Rex, who jogged through town, spreading so so so…very much joy.”
Read more from Kat at www.swooning.me