Thursday, March 27, 2008

More thinking about this blog

The email notification of Lindsay's comment on my post Thinking about this blog still sits in my email inbox.

In partial:

I know what you mean about not always knowing what to write or having a given "format". Often I feel the same way because I want to get past the whole diary-blogging (though I still like to go back and see what I did/read/watched/etc). I'm interested to see what you come up with.

I haven't stuck with the format I created, though largely because last week was incredibly long. By the time this week finally rolled around, I was just out of the habit. I'd be lying if I said I felt a strong pull to go back to it, in its current(?) incarnation, but I'd be just as duplicitous if I claimed not to feel any pull at all toward a format of some sort (I notice, too, while typing that sentence, a kind of grating in my mind at the word "format". Interesting).

Either way, there was something missing. Some things, really. Poetry, philosophy, religion... I honestly don't generally care about the news. That's selfish and obscenely American, but a lot of it doesn't affect me, and I can't usually pretend to affect it; we're two ships passing in the day & night, I suppose. Sports, I love, but I can't pretend to have a lot of worth to add to that conversation, at least not regularly.

Thoreau, now he's a keeper. And, he brings me to my next point or rather Lindsay's: diary-blogging. I don't know if Thoreau would have blogged, so I won't pretend to know. What I do know is that blogging appeals to me in part as autobiography, especially in ways where bookmarking tools & sites fail: narrative (don't worry, del.icio.us, I'm not leaving you) . Seems to me there's a significant difference between knowing you can find a link, and knowing you can find the same link along with some of your thoughts from the day (or hour, or minute) you found it. History is important, even if it's only my life, and even if it's only important to me. That part of blogging is just for me, though I hope it occasionally amuses/interests others.

The format, I suppose, becomes the part of blogging that's just for everyone but me, or at least that's what it can become. And I think that's why I haven't rushed back to it. I still have the desire to shape what is essentially a hyper-journal (if you will) into something more... structured. What I don't have is the desire to manufacture that structure just now. My point, of course, is that the format will not be returning anytime soon; but I trust that any needed structure will become clear just as it becomes necessary.

The thing is, I'm not doing this for money, so I don't want it to feel like work, and a format feels like work. If you're doing something for free, you're either a slave or you don't think it's work; I know on which side of that fence I'd like to live.

What I hope you will see here is more poetry, more literature in general, more philosophy & religion -- though honestly, it's a lot of work to write thoughtfully on such deep topics, so don't expect high volume -- more focus on all of the things I think about regularly, as opposed to sound-bites and websites-of-the-minute. Expect those, too, but methinks Thoreau would be disappointed if such a journal as this contained little else.

That's all for now.

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