Saturday, September 15, 2012

Of Writing, Prospects and Pitfalls

The prospect of writing 20 posts in 30 days is turning out to be a very difficult challenge for me. I mean, there's still plenty of time left to do it, I'm not dangerously behind schedule yet, though I should be at the halfway point by now, which means I'm currently behind by two posts. But the idea of having to post something here everyday, or nearly everyday for the remainder of this month, is becoming quite a chore for me, simply because I don't feel I have much to say.

Lately, I've been feeling uninspired more often than not, haven't really had any brilliant ideas, or exceptional experiences, or eureka moments. I'm pretty much all tapped out, creatively, intellectually, intuitively, and other than my need to keep reading and exercising, have no master plans whatsoever, for either my life or this blog; which is something that is really necessary for me to have, or else, I've got nothing, no point to my existence, no purpose, no strength, no courage, nothing. I'm not a fan of nothingness, or of not knowing. Not a fan of Zen, either. Taoism only slightly, mostly in relation to health and longevity. It's like I'm just searching around in the dark, without a map, with no idea what I'm looking for or where I'm going, and I don't particularly like it.

The blog reflects this confused, bitter state of mind, where mediocrity is more often the norm, not the exception. With not much to say, or passion for saying it, writing is difficult. I mean, there's what I've posted, it's better than nothing, that is, if my goal is to post 20 posts, better to post 20 mediocre posts, than one exceptional one. But in the end, the exceptional post will be the only one that stands out, and survives the test of time; the mediocre ones are more likely to be deleted and easily forgotten. But then again, could be that if it weren't for those mediocre posts, the exceptional ones maybe would never have had the fuel they needed to get written. Fact is, if it weren't for this challenge I probably wouldn't have posted half of what I have. Same is true for most of the blog, the drive to keep it going, to keep posting even when I feel I haven't much to say, with the hope that with all the extra writing and thinking practice, it will eventually evolve into something better. What is the point? What is the harm? You may at times find yourself thinking that your blog is a waste of time, but whatever it is, it is still ultimately writing practice, and that's never a bad thing.

So I guess it's all good. You see, I look upon blogging perhaps differently than others. I'm not trying to create great posts every time, or to only publish polished essays, or to create this unique brand hoping to attract a large audience to it. I don't particularly want a large audience. I feel that my ability to write freely here, depends on keeping the audience small, ideally under 100 regular readers at the most, but even that's kind of pushing it. 100 readers, but not necessarily 100 commenters. I have mixed feelings about comments. I am more comfortable being read by a small audience that never comments, than I would be by a larger audience that never comments. On the one hand, it's nice to have some interaction with your readers, and to have some idea who is reading your blog. But then again, too many comments, like too many readers, might actually put me under too much pressure, making it more difficult to write. It's sort of a catch-22, I suppose.

I don't currently have 100 regular readers, though I sometimes have more than 100 unique visitors, most of which are not regular readers, more likely accidental passerby's never to be seen or heard from again. But the prospect of having 100 regular readers that never comment, might make me feel like I'm being stalked, being probed by the NSA or something. Yeah, I got the dirt, the esoteric secrets, the proof of aliens among us, and I'm one of them. Just kidding. No, I am not a paranoid schizophrenic, or a drug addict, beer is my only intoxicant, I don't even take Tylenol, but as the old cliche says, just because you're paranoid doesn't mean they really aren't out to get you. Not that I care, bring it on! I watch the watchers, whose to say YOU are not the one being probed, and lured into a trap? Just kidding. Don't mind me, I just have an overactive imagination, and a finely developed sense of humor. Blogging is my laboratory for exploring weird thoughts.

Yeah, I'm using this blog more so as a creative brainstorming journal, more along the lines of a diary of an aspiring polymath and creative genius (who in reality is a barely literate, undereducated fool; can't blame me for trying though), not some kind of magazine for mass consumption, or a business that doesn't make any money. To me, that is just foolish. A business that doesn't make any money (whataya, stupid?) and yet costs money to run, in terms of the time and energy needed to run it.

Which makes me wonder how some of these blogs, especially those that aren't making any money from it, how they are able to blog so prolifically, you know, not only publishing everyday, but several posts a day. How do they do it? And why do they do it? It's one thing to have a blog, and post a few times a week, quite another to make it the center of your life. Seems to me the only way a person could keep that up, is if they don't have much of a life away from their computer. Don't have a job, don't spend much time outside, have few hobbies or social outlets, just pretty much live on their computers 24/7. It's kind of pathetic actually, the one's that post around the clock, that feel the need to schedule posts in advance, like their on some time clock with an urgent deadline, and blogging as if their life depended on it. I wonder about the sanity of those doing so.

Well, for me, 20 posts in one month is not really overkill, but it's certainly not something I plan on continuing in the long term. It's way too much work, for nothing. I would rather do it naturally, effortlessly, because I have a real passion and enthusiasm for doing so, because I have something genuinely meaningful and interesting to say, not because I feel obligated to.

Though that being said, the whole idea of this challenge was to temporarily force myself to contribute more, with the idea that maybe by doing so it would stimulate something new and interesting, something that laziness and lack of ambition and of not having a clear objective, would prevent from ever seeing the light of day. Meaning, that sometimes when you think you've got nothing to say, the very act of forcing yourself to write something can stimulate words that you never even knew you had, powerful ideas that were always there lingering behind the surface, unseen, untouched, untapped, and completely unaware of.

Writing can sometimes draw these ideas out, is a way of summoning the creative muse, awakening the inner genie, stoking the creative flame of knowledge and introspection. Everyone has a lot more going on in the innermost depths of their hearts and minds, that often remains concealed in the shadows, never seeing the light of day. Untapped potentialities and possibilities, that the only way they are ever discovered, is by giving them a vehicle of expression, giving them a body from which to be seen, and a voice to be heard through the magic of the written word.

*This is post 8 of 20, part of my "20 posts in 30 days" challenge.