Tuesday, October 16, 2007

why I blog

A long time ago, an internet blogger tagged me to list reasons why I blog. I didn't, because I thought it was obvious. But tonight someone else asked, after reading through my entire blog. So I guess it's not obvious.

I will quote from a book I just bought. It's for authors who want to write their first novel:



Why are you writing? There are hundreds of easier ways to make money. Thousands of better methods by which to self-actualize. Millions of less taxing ways to entertain oneself. You should write because you can't not write. You should write because some stray scrap of your soul is trying to manifest itself verbally. ... You should write because even though the process terrifies you, the absence of that process terrifies you more. Which is to say, you have to love it. Unconditional love, and often, unrequited. There is no guarantee it will love you back.

I've written almost every day since I was thirteen years old. In high school, I painstakingly wrote longhand in narrow-ruled journals with floral covers.

At fourteen, I decided my thirteen-year-old writing was so immature and poorly written, and I tried to burn the journals. It's actually pretty hard to burn a thick wad of paper. I finally just threw them into the trash. For the next year, I periodically suffered moments of horror when I imagined that a stranger would come upon them in a landfill and read my secrets.

I still write into electronic journals daily. When I go to a place without a computer (like Burning Man), I carry a paper journal.

Writing for an audience is different from writing for myself. It requires more thinking -- tweaking of sentence structure, endings, general flow.

Blogging = writing for an audience.

Occasionally on other blogs, the author will drop a mention of "my other more personal blog" or "some other blogs I write for myself", and I know they blog for the same reason as I do -- because we are compulsive writers.

15 comments:

In Want of Being Me said...

Nice. I can relate. I know I dish out crap many a times, Other times I am embarrassed by what I write, but I still do. I suppose it's just the compulsiveness :)

I'v blogrolled you. Hope it's ok :)

Anonymous said...

"It requires more thinking -- tweaking of sentence structure, endings, general flow."

I think that should be "and general flow". I'm also suspicious about using a dash to set off a list of items -- in fact, I'm not sure that list is properly introduced at all. Hopefully people with a greater command of usage (or a copy of Strunk & White) can comment.

Of course, when blogging, you might be taking a more relaxed, colloquial standard of language.

(I'm not doing this to point and laugh; it seemed appropriate for this post, and especially that sentence. Think of it as workshopping, if you will.)

Programmeuse said...

I find that the need to write is stronger when I have some type of upheaval in my life. Then writing is a welcome respite from my troubles. When things are going well I'm not nearly as inspired and lose tend to focus on something else.

ArC said...

I tried to burn the journals. It's actually pretty hard to burn a thick wad of paper.

Have you gotten better at this?

Anonymous said...

I'd blog too if I were ashamed of the shape of my eyes.

Niniane said...

re: ArC.

I have not kept in practice at burning papers. :) Have you?

Niniane said...

re: anonymous. Thank you for the workshopping. :)

ArC said...

I think I've been reasonably good at burnin' stuff for a good while, but I'll cop to not having practiced much lately.

(The theory is sound, though.)

John K. Lin said...

I was just rereading this blog entry. I really liked this quote in the book you are reading: "You should write because you can't not write."

It's sort of the same reason why I send out articles I read to people I think will find them interesting - I just cannot not do that...

Have you started writing your first novel? Any sneak peak into your idea?

pdofle said...

Where is the landfill for your journals of 13 years old....

I would pay big money to find them...

They may hold the details of why you you hate Asian men...

Did dad molest you?

Niniane said...

I do not hate Asian men.

ILN said...

Anonymous said...
I'd blog too if I were ashamed of the shape of my eyes.

WOWWWW...

What a Jackass...

Why do eyes matter?

First of all Niniane's eyes are beautiful...

2nd read her blog and know she has
a good heart..

3rd she has the cutest bum I ever seen..

Anonymous said...

linx 2 pix of niniane's ass plz kthx.

Anonymous said...

I am you big fan to read your blog every day

Anonymous said...

I will be your fan soon.