Tuesday, December 06, 2005

So. I guess it's been almost six months since I started posting on this thing. What do I have to show for it? Eight posts. Are they good? Some of them are ok. Some of them are not so interesting. Am I supposed to be writing this for other people? No. But somehow I've changed my view of blogging over time.

I feel a duty to post, like an errand. I want to post things, but find (with the exception of the Body Worlds post) that I'm either (a) trying constantly not to offend people or (b) writing boring crap. Either way, I dont' feel like this project has been as successful as I wanted it to be. The ideology from the beginning was *supposed* to be blogging to write, blogging for myself, instead of trying to address the six people who actually read this thing.

I guess I figured that once I got over my fear of posting offensive or boring material, that I would become addicted to (or at least interested in) writing for the sake of writing. Yet I read blogs about everyday life (such as Waiter Rant or Clublife) and find that I'm clearly lacking some miraculous writing gene that makes ordinary experiences seem worthwhile. (I'm not the only one who thinks those two blogs are worthwhile, by the way - Waiter gets about 50 comments on every single post, and both authors have recently been granted publishing contracts.)

So. Do I have a filter that prevents me from writing for fear of what other people will think? Yes. Is that something that I should try to fix? That's what I'm struggling with right now. Part of me thinks that I shouldn't care, shouldn't compare myself to other people, blah blah blah. Stuff that I've heard and told myself a thousand times before. I've recently been reading a book (whose title I will not mention, mostly because I'm embarrassed to be reading it) whose main character is competitive to distraction. Although this main character is not only competitive but also manipulative, superficial, and stupid, I would hate to think that I'm anything, I mean *anything*, like this main character. And, unfortunately, the competitive edge that I read in her I empathised with. I shouldn't compare myself to those writers, but I do. So I feel like I should get over it and just write for the sake of writing; after all, that's why I started keeping this freaking blog in the first place. I'm *supposed* to be overcoming this fear of making people upset and getting *out there* more.

On the other hand, it's been six months. That seems like a long time. And although it is true that I've found the blog tremendously helpful sometimes (when I had to get stuff off my chest, such as in the previous two posts), it seems stupid to persist at something that you're really not warming to, especially after such a long trial period. OK, you could argue that six months isn't that long a trial, and that something as ingrained as my self-consciousness isn't going to disappear in six months. But I was hoping that in the world of internet anonymity, I would be able to overcome those fears, and so far I haven't.

So I'll keep writing, and I'll keep trying to push off the self-doubt and self-criticism that courses through me every time I sit at the keyboard. But who knows what will happen once that year comes through.


Blogger Ophelia15 said...

Ok, needing to comment here...
You said:
"...especially after such a long trial period. OK, you could argue that six months isn't that long a trial, and that something as ingrained as my self-consciousness isn't going to disappear in six months..."

My problem with this is that you cannot hope to change a habit if you are not consistent in your work to change it.
Now, I suppose you can argue that you have posted consistently... consistently rarely ;)
Now, as someone who does like to write for the sake of writing, I can say that you do need to learn at a point where to draw a line at trying not to offend. People choose to read things, they have a choice as to how they respond, true?
You have a choice as to what you write, and how you respond, true?

So what if you responded a certain way to some situation and wrote about it without thinking who might read it. If someone then reads it and is offended, well, they chose to take to heart what you wrote and respond in that way. You cannot change the way other people respond to the world around them. Thats life.

Anyway, I don't think you will likely get over that internal struggle to please others, most people have some of that, others have lots... but, you can try and curb its control on your thoughts and writing by writing more often (give yourself a schedule... yes, I know that sounds stupid, but its true, and it does work, it forces you to write, write more often, and counter the same feelings repeatedly)
Don't think that your life isn't interesting just because you don't have a flare for writing. Most people's lives would appear boring if you lived them, only some people have this great knack for taking the ordinary and making it shine, thats why they are writers, thats why we read books... to enhance the ordinary...
I write a blog, sometimes I write for people, sometimes I don't, depends on my mood. But I know not many people read what I write, but since the point is to just write and write what I'm thinking and feeling that shouldn't matter. A few people read, some people comment on my site, others e-mail me or call me about some things... whatever... if you expect it, you'll be dissapointed.
I like your blog, and though you may not find it interesting, and you think it makes your life seem boring, it seems interesting to me. Its not my life, I can, for that time, immerse myself into your life, which by the way, is much more interesting then mine (I have no life) Anything I read just teaches me more about you, how you think, work, play, ect. Thats the cool part.
And if you can't think of something to write about then find a quote you like, or a song and comment on it, why do you like it?
Or give yourself an assignment, write a story, a poem, a list of things... whatever, any of those get the process started and go from there.

Anyway, I wanted to leave you a shorter comment, but too bad for you, you will have to suffer through reading this whole thing. And if I offended you, well, I do apologize, because no one ever really wants to offend anyone (I don't think anyway) but I shouldn't have, because you can take whatever you want out of this and leave the rest, this is where you get to make your choice (I made mine by commenting)
I hope you continue to write, and even if its not in a "public" forum its good to express yourself freely so keep at it.

Now, on a completely different note, get your ass up here and visit me in the new year, ok? Its been too long since I saw you. Later babe!

3:29 p.m.  

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