Saturday, February 21, 2009

Thoughts on blogging

To blog or not to blog, that is the question.

Regardless of how silly it is to hijack Shakespeare's quotes, I thought I would tackle the question of "Why blog?".

I blog because...

(1) I want to keep in touch with far-away family and friends, at least that's originally why I started. So that's why I post things like the kids' performances or travelogues (or what my husband calls "laundrylists") along the lines of "here's what we did on our vacation...". Therefore, dear reader, PLEASE just skip them if you find them lengthy or plain boring. The fact that very few members of my family/friends circle actually get around to reading my blog turns out not to matter that much. They know about it and can check what I'm up to, but nobody is obligated to read it! Blogging, for me, is much more about the process of creative writing than about being read.

(2) I've been surprised about how much I'm making new friends through blogging -- fellow bloggers out there in blog-land, and we enjoy reading each other's blogs... It's fun! Before I started blogging, I would have thought of cyber-friendships as somehow not being "real" -- but I'm starting to see that this is just as real -- in a way, it's similar to having old-fashioned pen pals.

(3) I like to reflect on what goes on in the world around me. My more reflective posts are, conveniently enough, listed under the label "Reflections". Strangely enough, it sometimes surprises me how much the mere act of writing about something can help clarify things that were until recently still muddled in my brain. I've also been self-disclosing more on my blog, something that does not come easily to me.

(4) this one is a direct outgrowth of (2) and (3): I like to think, and I like to have diverse intellectual discussions. By this I mean that I'm always questioning, analyzing, wanting to learn more about something --- and where I live I don't get much of a chance to have serious discussions with many inquisitive thinkers. Boy, do I miss living in a university town -- most people here fit more into the military/conservative category (maybe I exaggerate). My husband, the Prof, is great to talk to, and I long to "converse" with a variety of other people, and blogging is a great way to do that.

(5) I like to stay in touch with life & people from the Outside (that's what we Alaskans call the rest of the world). For example, I've discovered a whole community of expat Americans who live in Germany, and I love reading about their impressions of life in Germany. It's all about perspectives -- looking in from the outside -- it's like when you've gone on a trip and return home, and you get to look at your own life through different lenses.


PattyP said...

I've been completely surprised at the satisfaction I've found in both blogging and FB. Six months ago, I would've scorned the idea that I get involved in time for such things...until I did it.:)

Anonymous said...

Whatever the reason, I am glad you blog! That said, I especially liked justification # (2) for obvious reasons!!!

honeypiehorse said...

I'm so glad you blog, and you were one of my earliest commentors. You're kind of my sanity check when I write about the Germans! BTW you don't have a follow me link, what's up with that?

Megatonlove said...

This is so well put! I enjoy your blog so much, it's encouraged me to start my own.

Naturelady said...

New & old friends: Thank you!
And I did add the "Follow me" link -- when I started I didn't think anybody would want to (and it sounded like such a groupie thing...)