Category Archives: Blogging

Writing in a Hurry

Summer invited me over for paella and sangria tonight and I went gladly. A few days ago she sent me a link for a couple of requests for submissions that she thought would interest me. She does so periodically. Once, a year or so ago, I actually sent off a piece and it was accepted and published. Remembering that, I decided to try it again. In the space between reading student papers and waiting for my daughter to wake up, I wrote a query and emailed it off. In the bio, I wrote that I was an “occasional writer,” and explained myself away by saying that I am the single mother of a teenage daughter. Single mothers will understand — single fathers too.

But is that really my excuse? I always have an excuse for not writing. I’m a single mother. I’m working full-time. I have other things going on. Right now it’s summer. I should have time to write. I teach two classes instead of three, four days a week instead of five. Why is it hard to drum up 500 words for my blog during a time that should be more expansive? Today I plunged back into my retrospective, was interrupted three times, and realized that if I wanted to publish it, I needed to hit publish. So I did.

Tonight, slightly buzzed on sangria after a brisk walk home from Summer’s house in perfect night-time weather (finally the evenings have cooled down after last night’s dramatic thunderstorm), I rearead today’s blog entry. Typos, awkward sentences, moments when I could have said what I wanted to say more subtly, or more clearly. I berated myself, and then gave up. I recognize the cycle. I get good about writing regularly, get on a roll, and then get pulled aside. Then I beat myself up, and try again, and fail again.

Summer has nine months off — a time of bliss, I think. She has the summer, right now, and then a quarter’s sabbatical, and then a quarter of unpaid leave subsidized by a large artist’s award she won last year. She has been going to writer’s retreat after writer’s retreat, and last week, she received two acceptance notices for pieces she has written.

“Do I dare tell you?” she speculated, when she was over for an afternoon with her writing. She had a “piece-within-a-piece” she was contemplating for publication. I’d offered to help her read it and make suggestions about cutting. She’d taken me up on the offer.

“Tell me,” I said.

“OK.” She thrust her glass at me. “Promise you won’t be mad?”

“Why would I be?” I pour her wine. I know what she’s going to tell me, that she’s been accepted again.

“Will you be happy for me? Or jealous?” she asks.

“You know I don’t get jealous.”

She tsks and shakes her heads and sips her wine. “OK,” she says and she tells me.

I’m happy for her. I tell her congratulations. I don’t tell her that I appreciate the way she sends me links of places she thinks might like my writing. I know she knows I appreciate her thinking of me, and that she doesn’t like flattery/praise. It does make me happy to know that even though I write only rarely, in bursts here on this blog, and almost never in any other capacity, that she believes in me somehow, enought to send me a link here and a link there, to say, on occasion, “You really just need to send your writing out over and over again. Just get into the routine. Just do it.”

So today I wrote a query letter, and cut-and-pasted an old entry to it, and sent it out. If Summer says, “Do it,” I might as well try.

And I think of how lucky I am. I have several friends who encourage me. My blog friends, and two real-life friends, R.C. and Summer. If I don’t send writing out, it’s my fault. Mostly I don’t have time to write, let alone revise and edit and polish. Today’s ham-fisted attempt at an unfinished retrospective, published in the split-second before Zeke came downstairs in a grumpy mood — “Mooooooommmmm,” she wailed from upstairs, and I finished my sentence and hit publish before she rounded the corner because I knew I was in for a long conversation — is an example of why I rarely fully finish anything I write.

“In a couple of years,” I tell Summer, “she’ll be in college, and I’ll have a lot more time. In the meantime, I don’t mind being available. Those years go fast.”

Summer, childless, nods. She never protests or condemns. She has her own challenges when it comes to writing. And I have mine. Zeke, 15, sensitive and kind and sweet. Happy in general, but tormented at times by the frustrations of being a teenager in a world of doubt and difficulty. We argue sometimes, but mostly we just live in a kind of gentle, easy orbit. Her friends come in and out, in and out, and hang out and leave and come back, and I’d rather have them here than elsewhere, so my computer is commandered for MySpace sessions, and I cook baked potatoes and pasta, and I don’t write.

Still, Summer’s links, today’s writing sessions, the cool night air blowing throw the house after last night’s dramatic thunderstorm — all these feel like nods from the fates. I’ll try to write, when I can, and if I can’t find the time, I’ll try to just accept it.

Thinking about….

  • The woman in Idaho who may have shot three of her kids (killing one) and killed herself, perhaps because she suffered from post-partum depression
  • Original sin and Catholicism and Augustine and Huston Smith
  • Addressing religion in the composition classroom
  • Reposting my depression experience from Blog-City here for a couple of people who have said they’d be interested in (re)reading it.
  • My wonderful Victorian and 20th century lit class, and how much fun it’s been.
  • My new treadmill
  • Why I haven’t finished revising my Esperanca story (lack of time!). But I am thinking about it, and will get back to it.
  • Pseudonyms versus real names (for the Esperanca story)
  • The German Shepherd who saved me from rape and worse, many years ago
  • I’ve forgotten. There are other things, too, all bouncing around in my head, demanding attention.

“There will be time, there will be time, to prepare the blogs to address the blogs that you love to read.” OK, badly bowdlerized, and it’s not exactly parallel (I doubt Eliot would approve), but still….

Writing freely, giving hope

I didn’t blog much for a while, but more recently I’ve been back into it. I like the sense of writing to an audience, and now that I’ve shaken off some people that I just wasn’t comfortable sharing with, I feel more relaxed about it again. Still, I admire Diana and Loren who write under their real names. I actually started a work-blog about being a writing teacher under my real name, and wrote about five entries, but found myself drawn to the more personal writing I could do here without feeling exposed.

The worry about being exposed started about a year ago, when a friend told a friend about my blog. Then the second friend told a whole bunch of friends and colleagues of mine, and suddenly everything I wrote was under scrutiny. And then I couldn’t write any more. I just froze every time I sat down at the keyboard. I was afraid I’d misspell something, or use a period wrong, and be judged, or that my more personal entries would become the stuff of local gossip. I knew my hard-core atheist reader would be scoffing at my more mystical entries, that my writing friend would be disgusted that I was wasting my time blogging, that my nosy colleague from work would probably tell my ex-husband, who’s a friend of hers, about the blog. And I just didn’t want any of it. Every time I sat down to write, I heard their voices in my mind criticizing, scoffing, laughing. Even though I knew what they thought really didn’t matter, I just couldn’t write freely.

I spent much time deliberating whether or not I wanted to continue blogging. Many times I was a mere second away from writing my farewell post. In the end, I decided to start over, here on WordPress, although initially my decision to move was driven because Blog-City was being so slow and glitchy. I had opened a Members-Only site on BC which wouldn’t work, thus stymieing my efforts to write without being scrutinized. I also didn’t like all the orange in the administration area. So I tried out WordPress, liked it, and then realized that I might be able to move without my colleagues following me.

For a while, I checked the stats religiously, making sure that my nemesis readers hadn’t made the jump. Then I stopped checking at all, because I wanted to write without worrying about readers. And then more recently I started checking again, just out of interest, and I was surprised to discover a few days ago that a few people from other parts of the world, Australia, England, different parts of the U.S., had been checking back on BC periodically. There they were, a string of people who dropped in over and over again to see if I was posting. I don’t think any of them ever commented while I was writing on BC, but clearly they must have been reading–and still are. So I took a chance. I put a little notice on my BC site telling those persistent visitors that I’m here on WordPress. In three weeks, my BC membership expires (BC charges a fee, unlike WordPress), and before that date comes I will delete the blog altogether.

It’s been interesting, though, looking at stats. Apparently a lot of dogs get Rymadil poisoning. The most-read pages on my WordPress site are those describing Sadie’s illness and recovery. I hope those readers searching for information will realize their beloved pets can survive even huge doses of Rymadil with the right care.

On Blog-City, many readers came to my site by way of searches like “How to kill yourself,” which made me quite uncomfortable! On WordPress, they seek information on Johnny Got his Gun and the Grapes of Wrath, on the Cathedral of the Assumption in Louisville, and on Kuan Yin, on breast cancer and breast pain, on akathisia and tardive dyskinesia and twitches in dogs. I find it fun to see what brings people to the site, and to wonder if they’ll return after their initial encounter.

Whether they do or not, I hope they find what they see to be helpful.

Gifts and Resolutions

The last few days have bought me gifts that lift me a little, that strengthen me. I am filled always with deep-seated ambiguities: A desire to write battles with the conviction that I am — if not a terrible writer — at least little better than average. My journey into blogworld intensifies the latter conviction. So much beautiful writing, so many electronic pages of print in which the words disappear to be replaced by place and person, by delight and despair, by images that curl up in the corners of my mind like sleeping cats and awaken hours later, calling me back to admire them. And then I think, Dale wrote this, Paula did, Stella, Old Girl of the North Country, Loren, Patry, my very first blog-friend, Diana and many others, too numerous to name. They share their writing and photography and art with the world, and they say what I would say, but so much better. And I hesitate to write, sure I can never match up.

Stop fishing for compliments, my mother would say, but such is not my intention. I just want to say what ails me on those days I don’t write (apart from being too busy, too tired, too caught up in life, apart from having to make a choice between reading and blogging, or taking my daughter to a movie and writing). I am critical, deeply so, of everything I write.

But in the last few days, three moments of grace have dropped into my life. First, Esperanca loved her book. It’s not finished, really, because the story got too big to be captured in one volume, so I planned a sequel — or two or three. “Write the rest,” Esperanca said two nights ago. “Please!” So I will.

Second, I got an email from Patry of Simply Wait, asking for entry into the private area of my long-abandoned Blog-City blog. Patry’s been dealing with health issues the past few months, and I’ve followed her journey as she has blogged about it, amazed at the precise beauty of each entry, and the grace with which she withstands challenges. I have prayed for her every night, too, sent om manis as I do to all those who struggle, a silent well-wisher. Her email request to gain access to Blog-City lit up my day. I have admired her writing since I first started blogging, and that she asked to enter the site, to read my work, warmed me thoroughly.

And third, Dale of Mole commented a couple of blog entries ago, asking me where he could get a copy of Esperanca’s book. He’d looked on Lulu.com, he said, and couldn’t find it. I have a long list of blogs I read regularly, that I subscribe to on Bloglines. Dale doesn’t do Bloglines, so I get Blogarithm’s “Blogmail” instead, just for Dale, so that as soon as he updates, I can read him. I always want to comment, as with Patry, but find myself frozen too often because others have said what I might say better, and you can only leave so many (0)s on one person’s site!

His request for Esperanca’s book carried me through several days of delight — OK, is still carrying me! Someone who isn’t related to me — hmmmm, that doesn’t work, given that those who ARE related to me have no interest in my writing — let’s see, someone who isn’t obligated to me in some way actually went looking for my little children’s book, willing to spend money on it, and then asked me where to get it when he couldn’t find it. That’s amazing. Inspiring. Delightful. The best Christmas gift ever.

And so I decided on some New Year’s Resolutions. First, I’m going to keep working on the series. I have fun with it, and Esperanca likes it, and maybe others will too. Second, and perhaps more significantly, I’m going to release Esperanca’s book so people can find it and maybe even buy it. And third, I’m going to (try to) stop harassing myself about how terrible my writing is.

Before I release Esperanca’s book, though, I need to do just a little work with it. I was rushing to get it ready for her for Christmas, and I “published” it (just three copies) with some typos and a couple of confusing spots. I’m going to go back and fix those up. Last night I reread and fixed the first four chapters, and my goal is to work on it every day till it’s done, then open up the link on Lulu so that people can actually check it out and perhaps buy it if they want. (Thank you, Dale!)

Working on the book taught me something about myself as a writer. The first few chapters, written in Ireland three years ago, had to be significantly revamped to incorporate Esperanca as the hero of the story. The major revisions made the writing feel clunky to me. Too many glitches. The next few were written sporadically, often weeks or months apart. The last half of the book (or thereabouts) was written between September and December, on a fairly regular schedule most days, even if it was only 15 or 20 minutes a day. And the last half is way smoother. Once I got into the groove, the words flowed more fluently. Clearly I need a routine, discipline, and a goal. And that’s my final resolution: To work every day on writing, one way or another. To accept the gift given to me by recent quiet readers of my blog who have asked for entry to my password-protected posts, and by all those who read and comment, or read and don’t comment, and by two of my favorite bloggers, Patry and Dale. Thank you.

Facebook

My sister in Ireland asked me to subscribe to Facebook a few weeks (months?) ago, so I did. It’s a strange place. When I signed in, it asked if I wanted it to find my friends. I said yes, and a list of people popped up. All but one I knew in some way or another. It brought home how everything we do is connected via the internet if we’re online at all. I suppose it pulled names out of my email address book in order to connect me with people all over the word whom I’d emailed at some point or another.

So I added my “friends,” and pretty soon my friends and sisters were sending me things: pink ribbons and hugs, astrology charts and video invitations. Today I got a “Funwall” message from my sister, so I clicked on the link and found myself at a page that was asking me to draw something. I drew a ridiculous stick figure of me looking frantic, with a pile of papers as tall as me to my side. Well, that’s what it was supposed to be, but I’m not known for my artistic talent, especially drawing right-handed (I’m left-handed) on the trackpad of a MacBook. It was really more of a scribbled mess that will remind people that I should have been locked up in the loony bin in Dundrum years ago (For any Irish readers out there!) rather than let free to impose my “art” on the world. Still it was sort of fun. But I meant to send it to Leah, not to everyone in my “friends” list, which I did by accident (a problem of Facebook seems to be that it defaults to sending things out to everyone rather than easily letting you pick which friends to release your hugs or thrown snowballs or hideous art or whatever to. Or maybe I’m just Facebook-incompetent.)

I don’t have much time, so I don’t visit it often — only when Leah or a couple of my friends send me things to look at (Which is more and more often). But I do wonder at how the internet and public forums like Facebook and Myspace (and blogs) are transforming the way we interact. My daughter’s Myspace seems to be a forum for vindictive venting about minor feuds between friends, which then develops into transnational warfare. I don’t think my daughter participates (she is open about sharing what she’s doing on her MySpace account and shows me her profile, photos and blogs on a regular basis), but she does tell me of how public her friends’ fights have become. A small disagreement is broadcast on MySpace. Everyone’s “friends” find out and post multiple public bulletins about the fight. Pretty soon people take sides, championing one or the other of those in the original fight, and then petty side fights break out on all sides. Such jockeying for position in high school happened in the past, of course, but on a much smaller and more personal level. Now someone who has never actually met the original fighting pair, and may even live across the country, is choosing who to back, posting bulletins, directing friends to spam the non-favored one, and so on. And the argument, that in the old days might have lasted a day or two, stretches out for weeks, permanently captured and witnessed by hundreds of people, maybe more, across the state.

Which, weirdly enough, weirds me out about blogging! But I have to get ready for work, so I can’t say why just now….  Next post, I guess.

Synchronicity and no reason to whine

I got a surprise email today, from StellaPlainAndTall, asking for access to the private area of the Blog-City blog that I abandoned when it wouldn’t accept comments or let me give people permission to access the members-only area. I had just discovered her blog about two weeks ago, through another blogger on whose site I sometimes lurk, and I admire her for her grace in hard times — a kind of grace I wish I could emulate. And then, bingo, there she is (well, symbolically, OK, all you literalists) in my email, asking for permission to read my blog. I directed her here — Hi Stella — and then got all shivery about writing again. I’ve been so sporadic, so disinterested, though I still read my favorite blogs most days. I wonder sometimes why I quit something I really enjoyed. Lack of time, lack of cohesion in my mind, desire to read. These things all. Yes.

Also the opiate of happiness at times, and in contrast, the despair that still threatens — though never as destructively as two years ago during the antidepressant fiasco. Still, I don’t wish to depress people. When darkness looms, I dive into books, escaping through the words of others. Why are my whinings worthy of airing in an open forum?

There are decisions I must make. I line up the pros and cons and move them around constantly. Next week I have an appointment with a genetics counselor in Big City. I saw her with my mother eight years ago. At the time she said, “Don’t ignore any symptoms.” What she meant was, “You’re primed for cancer. Catch it early.” When I didn’t ignore symptoms, my primary doctor became frustrated and stopped responding. Now I have a new doctor, not senile, and much nicer. (No, he isn’t the type to prescribe strong anti-psychotic antidepressants for a 13-year-old with headaches, which is what my former doctor tried to do!)

I’ve been to the doctor only twice in the past two years (odd for someone on cancer watch for the past 11 years of her life, used to blood tests and chest x-rays and ultrasounds etc at regular intervals). The last time I went only because I needed asthma medication for the Azores. The time before because I hadn’t had a pap smear in three years.

These days I do my best to ignore all symptoms. When I have a smokers’-cough coughing, wheezing asthma attack and people say “Can’t the doctors do something about that?” I tell them “no” and change the subject. I’ve never smoked, but sometimes I sound like I’ve smoked two packs a day for a lifetime. And there’s really nothing the doctors can do. “You have asthma and bronchitis,” they say. “Use your inhaler.”

But still, last month, when I went in for asthma medicine, my new physician suggested the genetics counselor. It’s almost time for me to consider an oopherectomy. I had melanoma at 31, breast cancer at 34. My female relatives have a discouraging habit of dying relatively young of breast and ovarian cancer (at least my mother was reborn as a heron!). So the genetics counselor thinks I ought to have my ovaries out. (Or so she suggested eight years ago.) And now I have to decide. But god, no ovaries, and no HRT either — unless they have some alternative? How can I face precipitous menopause when I’m such a whiny bitch anyway? Wouldn’t it be better to risk dying of ovarian cancer?

Truth is I’ve been in a study for the past eight years for women at high risk for ovarian cancer. Ultrasound every year. Blood draw every three or four months. (Cough cough, the last blood draw was over a year ago and my CA125 markers were elevated and I was supposed to go in again for another blood draw to eliminate ovarian cancer and did I? No siree.) The study nurse is on my case. I want to go. But driving three hours and working and being a single parent to a teenager and trying to care for my dad long-distance now that my sister is mother to a newborn… well. It does wear one down. Some days I can hardly move. Yesterday, when breathing was a challenge because of the cruddy air, and I was tired, and I had to advise at work and film Zeke diving so her coach could point out her good dives, and my dog had to go to the vet for cheet grass in her ear and I had to get an affidavit notarized at the bank because someone charged two airline tickets to Dubai on my credit card and now the card is canceled and Citibank is investigating fraud, and then I lost the affidavit (before eventually finding it again) and Nada is stressing stressing stressing over not having a job… and I was just tired. Wanted it all to stop. And I’m not even working officially yet. Yep. How is there time for being pre-emptive about health, I want to know? How?

OK, you got it. The whine. Fecking whinging, as the Irish would say. I’m a whinger. Oh, and did I tell you the love lease on my horse didn’t work out and I had to quick-quick find him another home and that — God knows — was stressful, because I prefer to pretend he doesn’t exist. Thinking about him brings a veritable fountains of salty water to my environs. How did it come to this?

So there you have it. Total lack of grace. A blubbering whingeing whiner. And in the midst of all the whining, yet still that marvellous trip to the Azores. Who gets to experience something like that? And in doing so, who has the right to whine?

So I haven’t written much. Things are either too easy, or too dang hard. Nothing in between. And I know I lack grace. So I just swallow the dark-cloud words, take the dogs for a walk, and read the blogs of people like Stella, who give me something to aim for. Thank you, Stella. And please don’t stop writing!

Quiet

These days I’m calm, not pushed to blog. I admit I write in part for comments, for the sense of community evoked by reading comments on one’s words. When the comments disappear, part of my desire to make my writing public disappears too. I find myself taking joy in writing into the eternal dust, words that whirl away, unread, unremarked, simply because I like to write them. When I blog, a cautious demon sits on my shoulder whispering tsk tsk, and I backspace and erase. In my journal, I just write. The words flow out, and I don’t revise, review, worry. There’s freedom in it, and I’ve been glorifying in that freedom.

I’ve also been reading. I’m enjoying The Pope’s Children: Ireland’s New Elite, which describes and explains the Celtic Tiger’s impact on the Ireland I no longer know. I’ve been reading about Teresa of Avila, my patron saint, and also reading Reading Lolita in Tehran. I read several books at a time, for some reason, depending on my mood. Do I want to know more about Ireland or Iran? About literature or mysticism? About economics or fanatics? I dip into, then set aside, whatever I’m reading, but always return to it. In the end, I always finish.

There’s summer work, a stack of papers to be finished by Monday’s 101 class. There’s my sister’s house to get ready for her baby, due in a month, breech. There’s my father’s deck. I’m his official deck gardener now, and my mother’s beloved roses are flourishing after their bout with blackspot. If only my sister and my father didn’t live three hours away. Visiting three out of four weekends a month drains the bank account and the energy. But taking the time, honoring family, feels right.

Mum’s favorite rose

Zeke too demands time and attention. If I take stock from a year ago, I realize how far we both have come, our ability to live in the same space in harmony and contentment. Not that we don’t occasionally argue, as any 14-year-old argues with her mother. But we always come to an understanding. She is happy as long as she can be with me, have her friends around, be free to sleep in and follow her own schedule. We go hiking or swimming, go to the occasional movie, and I spend countless hours ferrying kids from place to place. In return, she shares with me her music, tells me her life, and draws me into her world. She includes me in her conversation with her friends, turns to me for advice, and assumes (knows), that I respect and love her. After the challenges of a year ago, I know how right I was to sell my horse and focus on her, to show her that I loved her enough to give up what she perceived I loved more than her.

I feel as though I’m summing something up in preparation for moving on, but I’m not really. It’s not that I don’t plan to blog any more, just that my life is cycling into a reading space right now, and I like it. It’s where I want to be. I’ll update when the mood strikes me. Maybe I’ll get back into daily writing one day soon. In the meantime, I just want to touch base with anyone who might still be reading, if anyone has hung on after all this time. If you have, thank you for your persistence.

Nothing happens

Nobody comes. Nobody goes.

(Can anyone identify the above quote? Or why I might be writing it?)

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Just don’t: On blogging and writing

“Just don’t,” my friend Summer said, “stop writing fiction. Don’t lose your focus on fiction just because you’re writing that blog of yours.” Something like that. Something that hovered on the edge of disparagement about blogging, or about my blogging in particular. “Your fiction is so much better,” she said. “You should concentrate on that.” We’d been sharing our fiction, as we do periodically, an activity I treasure. I like her insights. I hope she finds what I say helpful to her in some way, although I always feel a little like the shopkeeper who’s gotten herself into a bookclub run by professional literary theorists. After all, Summer is published, is a graduate of the Iowa Writer’s Workshop, knows people who are published and known. So I’m not sure if my comments on her writing are useful, though I push away the doubt and make myself be honest. And so here she is, essentially telling me to knock off blogging—and I don’t know if it’s because my blogging is just bad, or because she really does think my fiction is decent and doesn’t want me to drop it.

I wrote a short short story a couple of weeks ago, in that compulsive, stricken way that is my writing modus operandi. I see something, hear something, and emotion engulfs me, commanding me. It feels like rage, or betrayal, like hunger or repressed desire. I can’t focus till I write it, this thing that invades me. So I wrote the story, set it aside, mentioned in on my blog, and Summer said, “Let’s meet.”

We did. And after she’d read it, after she’d said her piece about what I wrote in the story, she told me to stop blogging. Not a command. Not really. But something that has held me in shaken silence since then.

The thing is, I write fiction. The thing is, I fill electronic diaries with my darting relentless hunger to express. It’s all crap really, brain explosions without structure or meaning. But maybe, somewhere in those convoluted streams of words, hides something worthwhile, something someone might care about. Look at Virginia Woolf, at Sylvia Plath, at countless others whose musings have held value. Their published diaries were edited, were riven of dead and meandering and empty words so that only what shone was collected. In the end we look at them and say, “Wow, what insight, what clarity!” But surely reams of less beautiful, less rigorously thoughtful words were cut away by someone, somewhere, and dumped in the archives where only dedicated scholars would see them. The writers and poets that I care about have always written diaries that in their edited form have meaning for an audience far larger than themselves. (And no, I’m not comparing myself to Woolf or Plath in terms of quality, just in the sense that we share writing in common). Since their time, since they journaled in private, the main thing that has changed is the internet, the advent of blogs, a space where diaries can be “published” instantly. So the question is, what is wrong with writing on a public blog as opposed to in a private diary?

For me, both the fiction and the “diarying” fulfill something I need. Over the past year my writing on the blog has shifted focus depending on my mood, on my desire-of-the-moment. It’s been a place to vent, to dump all my frustration and rage. It’s been a place to explore that horrible spring two years ago, when everything crashed in on me. It’s been a place to track my moods, my family inheritance of depression (as if cancer weren’t enough!). It’s been a place to try to find some discipline: I will write every day. I will write every day. And the evidence will be the calendar on the blog, every day highlighted and “clickable.” Of course most of that mood-tracking and discipline-writing was vapid and meaningless to anyone other than me, and perhaps that’s what Summer sees, the days when I wrote as though in some sort of schoolgirl journal: “Today I ate eggs, and blinked when the boy who likes me looked at me.” But weren’t there days when the classic writers whose diaries we read for inspiration also wrote vapid and meaningless words? Didn’t those words function for them in some way, a way of clearing the wreckage in their heads, or of jumpstarting an idea, or of simply breaking out of silence?

What about you? How does blogging function for you?