This is really my first entry directed to you, World, though I’ve been cultivating this blog for almost a week now. So far, I’ve just posted what I’ve written in class and for homework, with the occasional introductory sentence. I’ve even posted some pictures and a link without the sparse introduction that might have been helpful. Why am I so slow to start?
I’ve never done this before. I’ve had the occasional journal, but it never lasts for longer than a year or so. Even then, the entries are far and few between. I used to get this constant feeing of being behind, since for some reason I had the idea that my reader needed to be caught up. Even though the reader was just me (and, I suppose, my mischievous sister, but that’s another story). Assign me academic papers, and I pound them out at a regular speed. I’m a one-page-per-hour person, give or take 15 minutes depending on the discipline and the subject. So now I’m blogging, and the format is completely foreign. It’s a little intimidating that this blog is open to everyone with internet access. It’s actually extremely intimidating. That’s quite a few people. The vast majority of those people will neither look for nor stumble upon this blog. But the fact remains that they could.
A one-sentence introduction: let’s see, if I write a page in an hour, and a sentence is two lines, it should take me approximately… 5 minutes. Probably not even that much, since this sentence doesn’t have to fit into a bunch of others and I don’t have to cite anything. On the blog, it hasn’t been that simple. What will people think of me? Of my writing? I haven’t posted a couple of class exercises because I don’t like them. Should I go right ahead and share them with the world anyway? Maybe professional writers? My parents? My classmates? People I’ve never met who have only my writing to judge? I’m working on it. Why should I share my “glorious failures?” And how, exactly, are they glorious? Ok, I have a ways to go. I’m STILL working on it.
But there is something much more important than how many people are reading and what they think that has, so far, kept me fettered. “Write of a time when you were alone,” I was prompted. I thought for about two minutes and came up with the time I’ve felt the most alone in my life. I felt so alone that I wept because of it. But I couldn’t say it. I can’t write it for the world to know, that aloneness was mine, IS mine, lives beyond high walls. I chose another time. If one person who doesn’t care reads about my loneliness, I feel like it could be devalued.
Maybe I can open myself up, for I am the only one responsible for me. But what if what I write has to do with someone else? What if I want to write about someone’s shortcomings, and blame that person for making me weep? We touched on it in class, and BG said we had to dig deep. I can dig deep when I know that the result and all that dirty byproduct are safely tucked away in a treasured notebook — paper and glue. Does the world get to see my dirty byproduct, and my deep self? Am I allowed to let the world know deep things about other people? I cannot be responsible for them. I’m still grappling with it.