I am really bloody sick of not enjoying this. All sorts of stupid stuff has been getting on my tits for months and months leading to this blog becoming a steaming pit of neglect. Examples:
- All the nasty weirdoes who came out of the woodwork post-Bloggie
- The server being pounded so hard by comment spammers that no real people could leave comments
- Templates and design that were slick and sweet in 2002 now bloated and buggy behind the scenes
- The discovery that a whole bunch of people read this site that I didn’t realise read this site (hello Mothership and 5 billion of your friends!)
- My virtual life being totally outed at work via a large national newspaper and some unfortunate Googling
- Just being sick of the sound of my own typing, really.
My policy has always been never to blog about blogging and to only write if I have something to say, thus hopefully avoiding sounding like a wanker. But this has backfired on me, because now I worry so much about who and how many are reading and that what I want to say is too rubbish/unfunny/personal/Boring Married Person that I’ve reached the point where I am not writing anything at all.
And since I didn’t want anyone to know I was worried about this, I’ve been sulking and skulking and letting the discontent grow. This blog is like that really messy spare room in your house, crammed with old magazines and boardgames and boxes of funny-smelling clothes that don’t quite fit; the room you know you should do something about but you just shut the door and go watch telly instead.
At this point folk may be wondering, who cares? This is just a blog, you indulgent little twat, and there are people floating around in New Orleans who have real worries. But please just allow me this one moment of contemplation, I haven’t done it much in the past five years.
Blogging for me has never been about Blogging in the traditional sense. Some people fuss over site stats and blogroll politics and inter-blog fights and Technorati rankings and awards. For me the blog just happens to be the medium that came along that let me write the stupid stories. Ever since I was a horrible ginger child I’ve been compelled to write down stuff that happens and share it with people. I grew up and decided the best way to pursue that was with a journalism degree, but of course got a rude shock when I discovered you had to use facts and talk to people and not make shit up when you’re a journalist. So after three miserable years of that, the only writing I did was to invent jobs for my dole form. Then one day in 2000 I found Heather Champ’s site, and wondered what that little Blogger logo was at the bottom of the page. So I signed up and discovered I could write something, press a button then POW, it was out there for the world to see! It was much easier publishing process than the old days, where I would have to write words on bits of paper and ask mum to borrow the stapler so I could staple it all into a book then harrass her, “Read my book! Read my book! Please please please!”. So the whole blogging thing gave me such a rush I actually shivered.
That’s what blogging is about for me, the rush. Yes I have been lucky to gather some readers and that bloody Bloggie and whatnot, but very selfishly I just did it because writing gives me the horn. I love being mid-entry, when there’s just bunches of random sentences all over the page and I have to figure out how to string them all together. Sometimes it’s all formed perfectly in my head and I’m purely transcribing; sometimes I wrestle with it for days, even weeks. Either way, once I hit publish and the little blob of text appears, I just grin to myself and go hee hee hee hee and feel like I’ve smoked something really good.
By now you’re thinking I’m a complete wanker, or you may be disturbed knowing that some silly little story that takes you ten seconds to read is something that leaves me wildly excited like I just saw sexy Ed from Radiohead wearing nowt but a figleaf. But I just wanted to let you know why this blog is important to me so you can understand why I am so bummed that I feel bummed about it lately.
I’m not saying I am some brilliant precious writer type, just simply I like doing it and I feel lost when I’m not. I get frustrated and cranky and hump cushions. This blog is my treasured little place to store funny stuff that happens, so I can remember it or maybe use it for something later on. Yet for the reasons described earlier, I’ve just let it slide and it is making me batty.
Last week I read Rebecca’s Blood interview with the most excellent Dooce. This here bit (my italics) was real a smack in the chops:
“Some days I feel my website writing itself, and those days are so much easier than the days when I sit there grasping for one word or one sentence that will not come out, and I’m like, BOTH ENDS ARE STOPPED UP. I find that the more I write the easier it is to write the next time, and the longer I wait in between posts the more stopped up I become.
Thanks Doctor Heather. The solution is clear, just bloody write. I’m tired of feeling self-conscious and apathetic. I’m tired of pretending I don’t care, and most of all I’m tired of editing the life out of stories or being too afraid to write them in the first place.
To start with, this blog needs a spring clean. I might find it more inviting if the house is in order. I can’t keep waiting for the Fairy Blogmother to come along so I’m getting off my arse and do the geeky crap I’ve been putting off for years. I am tidying up the archives. I am sorting five years of images into folders instead one giant puddle. I am moving to a new server. I am upgrading my Movable Type thingy. I hope to get this all done before we leave for Oz in two weeks time, though that may be a little optismistic.
But when I get back up from Down Under, I am going to try and forget about all the people watching and just learn to enjoy this shit again.