Good morning. I’m very pleased to be included in this batch of Creative Pinellas Professional Artist grantees, although I must admit that I begin the grant period with a fair amount of unease. When informed that this grant has a blogging requirement I felt pangs of anxiety, followed by out-and-out dread. Consequently, I spent a couple of weeks in a bit of stew over these impending posts. As the deadline approached I started asking myself why I have this knee-jerk abhorrence of sharing my thoughts via the Internet.
I suppose I write fiction because I can hide inside of it and disguise my voice, my sentiments, my horrors, and my questions in make-believe worlds and characters. Writing fiction is a way for me to investigate our chaotic world and quiet the noise. Blogging is the antithesis of this because it, or any social media outlet for that matter, turns up the volume rather than quells the noise I desperately want to drown out. In my experience social media is not only counterproductive but also feels detrimental to my personal, professional and creative life.
At the risk of sounding crabby – I try in general never to share my thoughts on the Internet. Perhaps it’s poor impulse control, but I’m afraid that I’ll succumb to a fleeting need to spew something in a post that come morning I’ll regret, or that my mother will be offended by. I deleted my Facebook account a few years back and have been happier and more productive since. As a recovering Facebook junkie, I’m afraid that asking me to blog is like asking an alcoholic to have just one drink. Okay maybe that’s pushing it, but you get the point.
Another reason I don’t blog and such is that it’s a time suck. And since my time management skills aren’t my strongest attribute, I’d probably never write a lick of fiction if I blogged. I don’t think there is a writer among us who would argue the fact that – unless you’re Stephen King or working full time as writer – a common struggle is finding time in the day to write. Yes, I’m lousy at budgeting my time, but still I’d rather not spend those often scarce ‘writing hours’ invested in (or in my case obsessing over) the composition of a blog or Facebook post, that, if I’m lucky, three people might read. Furthermore in an attempt to post something pithy, I will inevitably end up pondering my own deep thoughts and thus psychoanalyze myself to death. Like I said, I’d rather write make-believe people – they’re much more interesting than I could ever be.
With all this said, I welcome you to follow me on this ‘blogging challenge’ over the coming months. I’m still dreading it, but I’ll give it my best.