Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Q&A #7

I'm almost done with the questions. Only two left. Next time I'll do Jocelyn's question on my favourite teacher but today I'll go for Rachel.

Rachel over at Lessons Learned asked:

"My question for you: I've only recently discovered your blog, so I don't know you much at all. Why did you start blogging in the first place, and what has changed since then, causing your funk?"

Well, first off, lets start with the funk. The funk was caused by November. November means one thing: winter is almost here. It's dark, it's grey and it depresses the hell out of me. At that point in the year the whole idea of doing anything other than sitting on the couch eating peanut M&Ms or Turtles (the chocolate variety - evil though I may be I don't go around making turtle soup) is more than I can deal with. As you'll learn Rachel, I hate winter. I loathe winter with a vengence and unfortunately, being in Canada I can't move to anywhere southern to get away from it. Thus the funk. Besides, this blogging thing is cyclic, at least for me. There are always periods when I can't find anything to say - and so I use the handy "ask me" format to get me out of my periods of inspirationlessness.

As for why I started in the first place, I discovered the medium after reading Danny Gregory's book "Everyday Matters". At the end of the book there was a link to his website/blog. I loved it. Through his blogroll I discovered other blogs and through those still others both good and bad and I really liked the concept. And I figured, hey, I can do that.

So I wandered around the net and ended up in a place called Open Diary (how cheesy is that name? The place was sort of cheesy too). And eventually, wandering around the blogosphere I found Blogger. And Wordpress and others, but I'm to cheap to pay for blogging so, Blogger it was and remains.

I've been keeping a journal since I was 12 and I love to write, so the whole blogging thing is, I think, sort of an extension of that. Not that my blog is anything like my journal. I decided early on to not be too personal on my blog - I don't want to write about what I ate for dinner or the colour of my new PJs any more than anyone wants to read it. And lets face it, it's not like my personal life is all that scintillating.

As to why I blog? It's grown on me. I find I'm filling journals much more quickly since I began blogging. I like the comments, I like reading the other blogs and I really like the aspect that most detractors of blogging hate: the minutae of other people's lives; even if you aren't blogging about the colour of your pyjamas, a lot of your life comes through. It's all in the details. Besides, it helps me realize I'm not the only one with a terribly average life.

I notice much more of the world around me since I started blogging. I'm constantly thinking, "There's a blog in that". I think that's the most noticeable effect that blogging has had on me, this observation of what's going on around me. Granted, it's the idiocy that mostly makes it into here, because, hell, I'm me and snarkiness is who I am. Is life without snark even worth living? There's a question...


furiousBall said...

Funk is something you just gotta get out one way or another. Blogging lends itself so well to defunktification, which is the best word I've made up.

ticknart said...

"I'm constantly thinking, 'There's a blog in that'."

Is that all you do, or do you find yourself writing the blog post in your head. That's what I do. Most of them never end up in the blog, though.

Voyager said...

I'm glad I'm not the only one in a November funk. And a blogger's block. Reading your blog helps!

pj said...

November crushed my mood too. I want to hibernate. It's been a real struggle to work and 'be' creative. Blah.

On blogging, there are folks out there who think bloggers are full of themselves. But I do it for all the reasons you stated in your posting (only more so with visuals). You said it well.

Also, interesting how your idea of "personal" is to talk about one's meals or sleeping atire. I talk about that stuff to be "impersonal" or to keep things somewhat superficial.

Good post, jazz.

Maddy said...

Excellent post that I can really relate to. I sort of fell into blogging too and then it just grows from there.

geewits said...

I'm just the opposite weather-wise, because I live in the other extreme. When it is 100 degrees every day, all I can do is sit on the couch and drink beer. When November rolls around, I find I can move again without sweating from every pore on my body. Then I begin my winter activity phase. Plus I love Christmas, so I'll be an annoying, productive, cheerful person until January. I'll try to send some your way!

ivan@creativewriting.ca said...

Blog on!

The OE said...

Secret agents are leery of too many questions because they only lead to too many dangerous answers

Dumdad said...

What you say about blogging and why you do it applies to me. Damn, now I can't write that as a post!

Incidentally, you write "there's a blog in that" when in fact you mean a "blog post" or "post." No, I'm not being picky it's just because I also always say "I think I'll write a blog about that" and my 13-year-old son immediately corrects me, saying "post!"

P.S. I hate winter too.

pissed off patricia said...

Everyone in the dreary parts come on down to Florida. Today it will be in the low 80's. Most of the day has been sunny so far. You can wear your shorts and go barefoot.

The first thing I ever wrote on the net was a letter to Buzzflash explaining how I felt the night before when my friend came over to tell me he would be sent to Iraq at the beginning of the war. I cried all that night and wrote my letter the next morning. The folks at Buzzflash wrote me back and asked if I would mind if they featured my letter on their site. Of course I didn't mind and some time after that I got the writing bug. Still loving it too.

Franki said...

Blogging allows me to feel like I'm being social, but I don't have to brush my teeth!

Thanks for coming by!

Mike D. said...

I like blogging because it is easier than writing in a journal book.....not many people read it, but that's okay, I do it for me so I can look back and remember, even though some days I would like to forget....

Jazz said...

Furiousball - Defunktification. I like that...

Ticknart - I write the post in my head, I change a word or sentence until it's perfect and then it disappears into the ether that is my brain forever.

Voyager - Ask us to ask you...

PJ - Yeah the colour of my pjs might not be personal, but it sure as hell isn't interesting. I'm just not the type of blogger to spread my life out for all to see. It would be just too embarassing. As we say in French: On se garde une petite gène - in other words, discretion is good.

Maddy - Yeah, it grows on you. Or not. Same as journaling I suppose.

Geewits - Productive, cheerful and annoying until January? Ha, well I'll grinch you down. So there.

Ivan - I will

OE - Ah, but secret agents must learn to field the questions in a convincing way... Read my answers and weep.

Dumdad - Stole it right out from under you didn't I? And I know it's a post and I know a blog is the whole thing. And I knew it when I re-read the post and I was too lazy to change it. And, grammar and word whore that I am, I am embarassed beyond belief. Mea culpa... But at least I don't say My bad!

POP - I'm on my way!

Franki - Unfortunately, since I don't have a computer at home, my teeth must be brushed.

Mike - I do both - but they serve totally different purposes. Like Franki says, Blogging lets me feel social... or something.

Rachel said...

Great post!

I started blogging becasue I needed something to do with myself during the bouts of downtime at work.

I loathe winter too, and could never move to Canada because of that (even though I adore Montreal).

In Idaho, I dreamt of moving to Arizona, and now I find myself in Connecticut. I'm still trying to figure that one out.

Kwach said...

Just the other night we were talking about how much we're we like making witty, smart, talented blogging friends without the angst and stress of actually meeting people ... not to mention the part about having to put on real clothes.

It's a weird combination of sociability/isolation that suits us to a "t" here in rural, libertarian Southern Illinois.