Monday, July 16, 2007

On (Blog) Writing

Donna recently posed an excellent question: is blogging writing? As a blogger since 2004, I'd say yes. But it's not the same compared to what it is traditionally known as writing.

The reason why I blog has a lot to do with not being able to express myself efficiently for a long time. Putting my feelings up in an online space is different than writing them down on paper, but I don't treat this as a lesser form of expression. Sure, it sucks to be lumped in with what Donna put best as "the smiley-laced, ungrammatical and indifferently-punctuated Xangas maintained by a certain demographic." Still, I can't let certain people's ill feelings towards poorly-worded scribbles speak for everyone. Hence why I speak up.

A lot of what fuels my desire to write blog posts (as well as books, record reviews, et al) comes from being in a lot of situations where I was frequently interrupted and my opinions were made light of. People telling me "nobody cares about that stuff" was another one. It felt like I could think all I wanted to, but I could only do such in some dark corner where not too many people would hear or see me.

As melodramatic as that sounds, it seemed like the only thing I could really do. If I wanted to share my enjoyment of NOFX's music in an e-mail discussion list, I'd have to deal with a few jerks that spoiled the whole thing by pretending to be more deadpan than Fat Mike. If I wanted to share my enjoyment of MxPx's music also in an e-mail list, I'd have to deal with super-defensive people constantly quoting scripture. These situations were not conducive to an environment of free expression. Don't believe for a second talking about punk rock is all about being free. A certain number of vocal people want to reinforce boundaries and frankly, it sucks.

Blogging allows me to say what I want, when I want. Sure, I could benefit from an editor check over stuff, but I'm not making anybody pay to read this site. This is me, warts and all, trying to say and share something. Blogs may get a bum rap from its worst writers, but thankfully not all blogs (and bloggers) are alike.

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