How many people who write blogs let or want anyone close to them to read their blogs. Now, if it’s a professional blog and not necessarily a personal blog, that might be a different story, but my guess is that many people don’t want anyone close to them or who knows them to read what they put out here. That’s what it is like for me.
At one time in my blog life, I wrote nearly every day, wrote about what happened to be on my mind for the day. Writing daily was an exercise, an effort to build my creative muscle, a joy derived simply by reading what came out of my head. At that point, while writing a blog was in its infancy, I wanted to share those thoughts with everyone and that included people I know. What better what to create dialogues that I might not have a chance to spark, do that every day? Not only that, but a blog allowed me to share as much of my own opinion as possible, something I don’t always do in a typical face to face conversation, especially a group conversation.
There were times a blog would blow up, when the comments and conversation regarding a certain blog became heated, when I would feel like I needed to defend my position. Usually that came when I wrote something about my faith or related to that faith. I spent a brief period of my life as a Christian church pastor, after all, my college education focused on the bible, and a part of me still wanted to preach. I still do feel that tug, evidenced as I sit in church, a sermon forming in my head as I listen to the sermon. Those times of blog conflict taught me a lot about myself, helped me to ‘mature’ (a process that will be constant until the day I die).
This may seem strange to say now, but when I started blogging I was not consciously aware of the social aspect of blogging. I did like the thought that someone out there might read what I wrote, would say something about, help me to become a better writer. In those days, blogging was more of a social media platform than it is now. Facebook and the other social media platforms were not really popular yet. That social aspect was something I was not really prepared for. I was naive.
It was that social aspect that my now ex wife didn’t like. When she finally read my blog, something I encouraged her to do, wanted her to do, her reaction was extreme to the point where it almost destroyed our marriage. She didn’t like the thoughts that came out of my mind and told me so, but she also didn’t like that other people read those thoughts, commented and followed my blog. Even though I didn’t think of it the way she did, she thought I was being unfaithful in some form.
That day, the day she started checking my blog, is when my writing changed. I quit telling people about my blog. When Facebook came around, I shared my blog posts there for a while, then realized that some people I did not want to read my thoughts… could. My ex and I shared a FB page, so her sisters could access those thoughts. It’s difficult to communicate the judgement they are capable of.
Not only did my style of writing change, at least when it came to my blog, but the frequency of writing changed. She was jealous of my time, didn’t like that I would immerse myself into my PC or journal for an hour in the evening, convinced that I was somehow unfaithful and my writing was the cause. I took to writing early in the morning, wrote less on my blog, more on fiction, especially short stories. Some of those stories weren’t too bad, at least I think so, but then I learned something else about creativity — it’s personal. Sharing something personal isn’t as easy as one thinks.
I remember the day that my creepy boss discovered my blog a few years ago, on a seemingly random Google search. He oozed into my office, the stench of manipulation preceding him, and I vowed to be even more careful. This blog became less personal (yes, it is). Prior to my divorce, I really needed to let my soul out, and I created a totally anonymous blog for that purpose. It’s one I will never let anyone who even remotely knows me read. A friend who I know only through sharing that blog, told me they are amazed that I dare to share what I share. It’s intensely personal, but it works for more, and I like that people can read it, benefit from what I share. Strange, but true.
I remember the day when I read a portion of a NaNoWriMo novel that I was writing to a group of friends. One of those friends had asked me to write her into the story, so I did. She was a power walker, my novel was an apocalyptic story where demons were in a battle to take over, and my protagonist rescued her. After she resisted, he shoved her out of the moving car, where the hordes took her over. It was funny, believe it or not, and those I read it to laughed… but I hated it. I will never share my writing that way again.
I wonder, do you share your blog?