Pussycat IV

So here I am, still writing on a website (four years today) and making it easy for old acquaintances to Google and quickly realise that I'm still an idiot so there's no need to get back in touch.

Writing on the internet is easy. Compare the life of an internet writer-type to that of an actor. The actor must go to auditions or to Blockbuster in order to check out the competition, feel inadequate and wonder if they should try and be someone else — internet writers just have to look at their blogroll. And they can do it without having to put on makeup or underpants.

Also consider the internet reader versus the movie-goer. Internet readers don't have to pay money and sit through what could be a rubbish film — they can scan the first few lines of a webpage and click away if it stinks.

It's also beautifully easy for everyone to interact. Readers can leave comments or zap emails and their words will wash over the writer, all sweet and warm like a strawberry being lowered into a pot of chocolate fondue. But if you want to communicate with an actor, you have to send a self-addressed envelope to a fan club, and who knows how long it will take for the form letter/head shot to get back to you? It's much harder to give feedback, unless you're really determined like that guy who tried to assassinate Reagan.

Blogging's been a struggle this past year without a job that supports the habit. But the urge to write never wavers; I think in paragraphs while sitting on the bus, lips moving slowly like a psychopath while testing lines of dialogue. This is followed by weeks of mental editing, so by the time I actually write anything down it is no longer relevant, timely or of any interest to anyone at all. When I actually manage to produce something, I feel an enormous, shuddering relief, like an old man on a toilet after a mighty Vindaloo.

I still treat like this blog like an embarrassing secret. I panic when friends discover it. For four years I've been "forgetting" to email mum the address. When I see it on my sister's screen my face burns with shame like a 13-year-old boy caught with a Playboy. Part of me still thinks it's insane that millions of people are all typing words into little boxes and sending them out into ether.

Still, you can't deny the good a blog can bring over the years. They open doors, they inspire and frustrate. They show you how big and small the world is. They lead you to friends you now couldn't be without, even someone to fall in love with. They improve your typing speed.

About Shauna Reid

Ahoy there! I’m Shauna, an author, copywriter and content mentor. I love telling stories about life and helping others to tell theirs.

Find out more about me and how we can work together – I’m now booking for January 2022.

31 thoughts on “Pussycat IV

  1. I love you, Shauna, and I love your blog. As you know it was one of my main inspirations for starting a blog, and shauny.org was my blog’s original home. You are awesome and your writing is awesome and you will always be my best bloggy friend ever. I can’t wait til you come to Seattle so I can give several crushing squeezes and sic Asshole on you.

  2. heh. they do indeed improve typing speed!

    i love wnp muchly – canberra stories that bring the husband’s hometown to life and edinburgh stories that remind me of the university years – all woven together so beautifully with just the right words.

    happy 4th birthday, and may there be many more great years ahead of you.

  3. i can confess, like a creaky old internet veteran with an html walking frame, that i’ve been reading wnp for many of those years. its greatest hits in that time have included discussions on mr shakey, bountiful boobalicious napping pillows and photocopying. and harry. who could forget harry.

    i love you shauny, and i’m man enough to say it.

  4. Congratulations Shauny, 4 years is great. I’ve only been reading for about 8 months now (and eventually realised there’s someone else that used to leave comments with the name Dee), but I love every word 🙂

  5. Seeing how you’re not in Xiamen for me to buy you a drink in congratulations, I’ll just have a drink on your behalf. And maybe two drinks, because you’re special. Hell, three, for the three times I’ve not been able to meet you. No, four, because your weblog is four today.

    So if I get pissed tonight it’s your fault.

  6. well done shauna, from another who thinks in paragraphs. you’ve inspired me too.

  7. Wow, isn’t that like 45 in blog years? 😉

    Well done – except for that bit where the quality of your content makes the rest of us look like the retarded hacks we are.

    (Know what you mean about the guilty secret thing – I was “out” about blogging in a big way back home, but over here have mostly shut the door on the closet once again. And my mother reads it, but the sky has yet to fall in … )

  8. I was going to make a comment based on ‘all sweet and warm like a strawberry being lowered into a pot of chocolate fondue ‘ , but I imagine it would sound perverted, so I’ll just say – Thank you for your 4 years worth of excellent posts.

  9. As a compulsive reader of all things blog, I can tell you that out of the hundreds I have read, yours is the most hilarious, refreshing, utterly un-selfconscious blog on the entire web. And one that never fails to make me fall of my chair laughing (speaking of which, the personal injury suits will soon be coming through. Hope you’ve saved up a pretty penny in Edinburgh).

  10. Without writing on the internet, you would never have had that box of Cadbury’s Milk Tray however many years ago it was 🙂

  11. I agree with Roxy. You’re an amazing writer, Miss Shauny, and I feel truly privileged to know you.

    Happy blogbirthday!

  12. Congratulations Shauny. You are a big reason I started doing this as well…there must be something about your freckled self that apeals to us out here in the Pacific Northwest.

    Tacoma, Seattles dirty little sister, love you also.

  13. I do love your blog. All that pre-writing thinking shows. You are a great read. Thanks and keep on going.

  14. You should be proud, it’s a great blog. And it’s really kind that you’ve made it public – reading your commentary definitely brightens my day. Thanks Shauny

  15. yeah so true shauny, but why havent you replied to my fuckin email?


  16. Happy Anniversary Shauny, and thanks for summing up the experience so eloquently. I hear you loud and clear.

  17. Congrats Shauny! Your blog was definitely one of the first to get me into the whole scene. Four years later and my interest hasn’t waivered.

    I can barely finish a sentence without my mind wandering, so that’s saying something.

  18. Shauny dear, you’re the best–best blogger, best webmistress, best hostess. You inspired me to do so many things, and I’m the most unmotivated slob ever to grace the face of yon planet. Yeh.

  19. Wow, 4 years, it doesn’t seem like more than 1461 days. I’m am as always in awe of your prose.

  20. I just tried a few other blogs, but yours really is the only one I can stand. So much whinging and pretentious crap out there – what a waste of space.

    So here’s to you, Shauny-baby! For what it’s worth: you’re the best in my book!

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