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Friday, December 16, 2005

Blogging and Writing

I've been blogging a little over two months now, and it seems a good time to stop and take stock of this new world that I've joined. One thing I love about the blogosphere is that it's such a dynamic world. This is a world that is changing constantly, moving alongside the static internet and the offline world with its own rules, ideas, insights, opinion-makers and landscape. I feel like I'm part of a vast library that is being written as I type this. It's a library in which the texts are all connected and alive like neurons in a brain. It's also a library in which the small stories of people's lives unfold alongside the big ones that make history, connecting and interacting in fascinating ways, either through posts or blogrolls. When I think about this, I feel lucky to be a part of it, though still a newcomer.

I also enjoy reading the daily posts on my favorite blogs. I love discovering the treasures and unknown musings of some fantastic writers and unknown thinkers, publishing their insights in this most perfect DIY medium. That do-it-yourself aspect is my favorite part. Anyone can publish and find an audience, albeit in most cases a small one. Filmmakers and musicians have been putting their work out independently for years, now writers can as well.

I love knowing that sometimes something I've written has moved a fellow blogger to comment or respond through email. That's a great feeling. As is looking at the site stats and seeing regular readers, known only as familiar strings of IP address numbers, emerge in places where I don't know anyone. For a writer, finding readers is a profound and moving experience. So to you who tune in regularly, thank you. You make my day.

I learn quite a bit by reading things that I wouldn't have found on the static web. I'm learning about life, about writing, about the internet, about HTML and CSS, about politics, about everything.

And writing everyday, I learn about myself too.

That's the best part: Writing on a daily basis again, even when it's just quick posts has been great for me. I generally haven't done it for years. I tended to set aside large blocks of time - a few hours a week, a summer vacation, a weekend day. But I never maintained that all important constant practice that is so essential. It feels like part of me is waking up again and that's a nice feeling. I find myself more motivated than ever to either submit or self-publish that second novel that's sitting on the hard drive, to get past page one of the third one that's half-written in my head and in notes and outlines in my drawer.

And so, running the risk of laying it on a bit thick, I throw some Thoreau that comes to mind whenever I think about embarking on new adventures such as the beginnings of this blog and the start of new projects: "Only that day dawns to which we are awake. There is more day to dawn. The sun is but a morning star."

So there it is. This experiment that I started in part as a way to give myself something to think about other than my dog who passed away a few months ago has gone from being just an experiment to being a regular part of my life, somewhere between a hobby and a way to work on my work.

And now, I promise no more blogging about blogging for awhile.

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Blogger Thomas Siefert said...

I too have found blogging to be my little soapbox on wich I stand and share my thoughts. If people want to stop and listen it's great, if not, well.. who cares.

9:25 AM  
Blogger Jessica said...

Nothing wrong with a little self-referentiality.

8:29 PM  
Blogger James said...

Thomas, yes indeed.

Jessica, thanks. Sometimes it must be done.

6:19 AM  

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