"I don't think that being a strong person is about ignoring your emotions and fighting your feelings. Putting on a brave face doesn't mean you're a brave person. That's why everybody in my life knows everything that I'm going through. I can't hide anything from them. People need to realise that being open isn't the same as being weak."

- Taylor Swift

Monday, April 23, 2012

Blog on.

I actually don't know what I would do without my blog.

There's more to blogging than just posting whatever's in your head from time to time. People who do that lose interest in blogging pretty quickly. Sometimes people find out about my blog and start their own, before realizing it's not exactly twitter. A blog takes time, energy and commitment. You really have to love writing and be completely unafraid of who might be reading to blog.

I've always had a very clear purpose for my blog. I want people to know who I am, and what I can do. I don't feel like I have enough platforms in the real world; not enough chance to say that this is me, take it or leave it. When I write, I am much bolder and opinionated than in person. It got to the point where I was actually two distinct personalities; shy nerdy kid at school and reckless, angry Lady Renegade. I'm not so much like that anymore, but sometimes a pseudonym is very comforting. 

I'm still a big believer in uncensored writing, but now that I've become more and more aware of who exactly reads my blog I can't just word vomit and click publish. I do have a very good idea of who reads this, and sometimes I can even track a few distinct people - I have a few fancy gadgets and a bit of female intuition up my sleeve. When you spend five days a week locked in one place with lots of people who read your blog, you do have to be careful what you publish. I've always tried to maintain anonymity, even when I don't feel like people really deserve it. But, then again, I always have a message for people, and it's not always what they want to hear, but I have to make sure that my intentions are clear. I never butter up people just to save my own skin.

I spend a lot more time on this blog than people think - editing, researching, maintaning and doing admin stuff. I haven't really done a big image overhaul in a few years - I experimented a few days ago, but couldn't find anything I liked - but I do change details all the time. I also re-read everything all the time, just making sure that I don't have too many stupid errors or that I haven't written something that might be taken the wrong way. I've kind of intentionally left some of the really old stuff in that impossible to read navy blue on black because, frankly, it's embarassing reading what was going on in my head four years ago. But I don't have the heart to delete it. My next project, when I have time, is to properly archive my blog - I didn't realize it because I have a pretty fast computer, but apparently my blog has been known to crash slightly less reliable technology. Sorry. 

I've never really liked the idea of blogging by request, or sticking to a regular schedule. I literally blog whenever I feel like, whenever I have time, whenever I have something on my mind; some bloggers stick to a schedule, deliberately holding back posts so that they always have something to post on a regular basis. I...couldn't do that. There have been exceptions to my rules, though - Half of My Heart was actually written when I was far far away from my beloved blog and I posted (an abridged version, because I was in a very weird frame of mind) it over three days. I also don't really let anyone have much say in what I post; I'm not going to gush on and on about someone or other, and I don't really like the idea of any blog being used as shameless advertising space. Oh, and I hate to break it to you, but I'm not a crazy fangirl. The videos of Ryan were posted with permission, and only because I wanted to because I think he's crazy talented. 

When I first started my blog I was literally talking to a brick wall. Nobody read it but me and my mother. It's kind of lame, I suppose, posting stuff dutifully on a place that nobody ever visits, but I persevered. And I have had some REALLY COOL people visit my blog - Kirsty Murray, an author I had the privilege to meet at The Lit Centre; and some other bloggers like Genevieve Damascus from Mama Natural and Blur Ting (who I have met) from The day flew by so fast it was a blur.

I know I'd probably get more traffic if I were the kind of blogger who travelled everywhere and posted lots of heavily photoshopped pictures of me doing exotic things, meeting exotic people and eating exotic food. I've never posted a picture of myself because, quite frankly, I'm not very interesting, and I don't go to very interesting places or do very interesting things on a regular basis. And I suck at photoshop. But more than that, I'm a bit of a purist; I'm a blogger, not a photographer or a vlogger or a producer or anything.

I don't ever see myself saying 'enough now.' Blogging, even blogging on a blog with relatively slow traffic and a relatively small number of regular readers, is very, very rewarding. I have lots to say. I love that people take the time to hear me out.  

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