When I began blogging several months ago, I approached each post as though it were a self-contained piece of work, like product on an assembly line. A better analogy might be that I wrote like every blog post were an English assignment from my college days and I sat at my laptop, fingers stretched and ready to tickle the keys, prepared to crank out another “A+” paper. (I maintained a pretty decent GPA during college). I did this, in part, because I wanted to use this blog to showcase my writing styles and talent for potential employers. This was to be my electronic portfolio. I wrote humor, editorials, articles on science and technology and a lot of other miscellaneous pieces.
I still write those kinds of posts, but I’ve found that lately I’m pulled towards just writing about myself and my own thoughts on life and allowing these posts to flow organically together. I think I’d forgotten that blogging originally started as electronic journals where folks shared their inner thoughts with no purpose other than to get their ideas out of their heads and into a physical space. Journaling has been around for a long time, but only with the invention of the internet did the concept of sharing these thoughts with the world become popular. It was a novel idea. I, with a click of a button, can get a glimpse inside the mind of a perfect stranger and experience their perspective.
Suddenly everyone was blogging and ordinary people were becoming famous for no other reason than the fact they were allowing the public full view of their private lives. The appeal was strong. We discovered quite quickly we are a race of voyeurs and exhibitionists. Websites with 24 hour cameras strategically placed in the homes of regular people popped up everywhere and we were off to the races — Look at me, I’m special!
I want people to read my work because I’ve made the very frightening decision to put myself out into the world, exposing my vulnerabilities as I try my luck at professional writing. Maybe my desire is rooted in some emotional need in Maslow’s hierarchy, but I don’t think of myself as an exhibitionist. I prefer my privacy and tend towards a hermit-like lifestyle. It’s strange then that I would select an occupation that requires such public scrutiny. Are all writers this confused and neurotic? If so, I’m well on my way to success (probably posthumously).
Now that I’m maintaining two blogs (The Well of Fiction is for my short stories — end of cheap plug), my focus on this one has been waning. Writing these posts has almost become an afterthought as my attention is primarily on all the fiction I’ve been exploring. I’m excited by the enjoyment I’m getting from my fiction and the positive responses I’ve gotten, but I’m reluctant to abandon this project because I still feel that I need a place to vent my ideas, perspectives and feelings. I’m sure I’ll still assemble those “fluff” pieces in hopes that one of the big blog sites finally decides I’m worthy of a paycheck, but I think I need this blog mostly for me. I’m grateful for everyone that chooses to follow my writing here and I hope I don’t disappoint, but at the end of the day, what I write here will be for me. I’ve heard so many bloggers say writing is cathartic and it’s true. Whatever this blog eventually becomes, it will always be my little place on the internet where I can get my ideas out of my head and put them someplace else and if others want to share that with me, that’s fine. We’re all extended family here, right?
I certainly hope you weren’t looking for something brilliant or insightful. This, like so many of my posts was just stream of consciousness. It’s a nice little stream though. Grab an inner tube and take a ride if you like. I have no idea where it goes, but that’s what makes it so much fun.
Be well my family. Take care of each other, brush your teeth, be nice and above all, make the most of every minute you have.