Writing and Blogging

The internet and blogs in particular are an interesting phenomenon. They have most people writing more: emails, status updates, comments, etc. This writing may not be complete sentences or even complete words, but it’s still writing.

When I was growing up, I don’t think I wrote on a regular basis. Oh, there were the times I tried to keep a diary or a journal, but they were short-lived and far between. I wrote letters, mostly in the summer, to my parents from summer camp and to friends from wherever I was to wherever they were. And thank you notes to grandparents and other relatives. Apart from that and assignments for school, I wrote very little.

I resisted the blog phenomenon. When I started this blog nearly two years ago, I decided it was going to have a theme; I was not going to just blather about my ingrown toenails and that I needed to buy cat food. I found that I regularly read blogs that had a focus, like
Television Without Pity (www.televisionwithoutpity.com) and Go Fug Yourself (http://gofugyourself.celebuzz.com/). These had the added benefit of being snarky and funny, something I don’t guarantee in my entries. (And you can see my resistance in the paltry number of entries so far!)

But think about it! So many people writing their lives and sending it into cyberspace for almost anyone to read, sharing very personal information, issues they might not talk about directly to family or friends. There’s a safety in writing it to the faceless public; even if this public judges us, we won’t know, so we won’t care.

And those people close to us, the ones we struggle with and complain about, we write about them, share information they wouldn’t want going outside the family. No, they may never read it, it may never get back to them, but is it really safe? Is it really fair?

What is it about writing and sharing that seems easier these days than writing and keep, as in a journal? Why is it that we are okay with writing (and not revising, me included) and posting, with all our various errors that we haven’t checked for, yet we are shy about seeking help with writing for school or professional writing?

Once again, this entry seems to have ended in a different place than it began. There are no clear answers; personally, I think more writing is good, but I’m not crazy about the texting shortcuts creeping into non-texting writing. As for the blogging, again, writing’s great, but I wonder about the great laundry room in cyberspace.