Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Blogging Blues

Why is blogging SO hard sometimes? I'm no Dooce or @Neilochka - nor would I want to be (what they & bloggers like them do is a full time job and frankly, I'm just not that clever y'all) - but I'd like to offer up something a tad more interesting or inspiring than just pictures of Dexy, or some sad sack whiny wah wah wah about how I miss my parents, or the occasional cryptic post about my single motherhood & dating travails, or my life altering experience/s at a PAX workshop.

Which brings me to the Skitch screen shot of my Twitter account page.

I know a LOT of people that don't "get" Twitter. But then I don't get their love for Facebook either, so I guess we're even. It's cool. To each their own right? For me though, Twitter is the perfect social media site to express myself on. I can go there whenever I want. Or not at all. And I totally don't feel like a bad slacker if I avoid it for a few hours, or GASP! a few days. 

That's not the case with my blog however. I feel all kinds of bad if I avoid posting here, and I don't know why because this kind of writing isn't really my forté any more anyway (P.S. I used to love writing once; have kept journals since I was 9, majored in History and minor in English Lit and Communications at UofA, edited ginormous NIH/CDC research grant applications for my PhD/MD/MPH bosses at the Az Cancer Center and College of Medicine, and of course I adore the very craft of books/poems/plays, etc.).

So what the hell happened? Why do the short bursts of thought, aka streams of consciousness, that one can engage in on Twitter (no matter how lame the content by the way) work better for my mommy-addled brain?

I have all kinds of great ideas for posts. Well, maybe not all kinds, but some. Problem is, I can never retain the ideas long enough to get them from my brain to here, or to even maintain the energy required to get excited about them either. Poof! They're gone in a flash. Or I'm off to something else more pressing, like wiping Dexy's butt. Woohoo.

I have no idea where I'm going with this. I know, I talk too much. Guess I just wanted to share it with you. I need some kind of an outlet for creative expression. Peace and quiet would be nice too. And some colder fall-like weather. And maybe a pony. Ooooh, look! Something shiny. Wait. What?

I digress. I find myself longing for said creative outlet. Craving it. Will go nutso without it. I get stressed and all cranky-pantsed when I haven't had so much as a smidge of creative or intellectual or book-ish in my day-to-day. Just ask anyone who knows me. Especially Dexy's daddy. He's practically an expert on my supreme cranky-pantsness.

I used to draw/paint. Now I do photography (quite poorly btw - compared to some of you amazing bloggers out there in BloggerLand). I used to play music. Now I fawn over musicians and cool radio stations like KEXP. I used to read 3 to 4 books at a time, consuming them within a few hours, or at most, a few days. Now I read e-books on my iPhone Kindle app - in the dark, while my kid is sleeping. I go to art museums, book signings and the occasional concert - when I can manage the $12 - $15 an hour babysitting fees (yes, you read that right you non-single parents you!). I check out other(better) bloggers from the comfort of my couch or home office. 

And of course, I tweet. Like a mad woman.

What can I say? It works for me.

So, I hope you'll keep coming here. All 40 (41)* of you. Or, you could cruise on over to Twitter and say howdy. You'll certainly have a better chance of catching me in real time. Goodness knows, I'm a lot more succinct there. I have to be. It's 140 characters (or less). Or else.

--------------------------

*Psssst. I have over 2,000 followers on Twitter & more than 34,000 tweets. See? I'm WAY more prolific there. Or I work harder on it there, or something.

16 comments:

Everything Coastal said...

very cute, and very honest! Keep it up, and go out and enjoy Alki today -

Caron

Cheryl said...

Thanks Caron, it's a little too hot for me to be at Alki today (upper 80's). But it's not a bad idea for sunset time. There are fires over the Olympics right now, which is making for some great light and smokey sunsets.

Thanks for the comment!

Joan Stewart Smith said...

I don't have a blog, but I also wrote a journal for most of my life. I understand how you feel. Sometimes we just get tired of listening to ourselves. I recommend you just leave it alone for awhile and only write when you are inspired to do so. Even Anne Frank did not write every day.

HIP_M0M said...

I completely feel you. Yesterday someone asked me if I was "blogging my entire pregnancy journey" and I felt guilty saying that I've been writing less since I found out I was having a baby.

For me, I like Twitter because there's a sense of instant gratification with "real time" and responses. I love comments on my site but for some reason, it's just different.

I too, wish I could finish my novel (that I started YEARS ago) or finish a book (I'm currently in the middle of several great ones) that doesn't have illustrations.

The great thing about writing is that it comes and goes like waves. We'll be ready for them if we keep our eyes open.

*hugs*

Neil said...

If we are all honest, none of this is JUST about being creative. We want to communicate our creativity -- or bare our souls -- to others, so we feel less isolated and more appreciated in the world. And Twitter is a better vehicle for the second part. I spend way more time on Twitter than blogging nowadays. I can talk to more people, and receive more immediate gratification. Blogging used to be so fresh and new. Now it feels slow and clunky, even to comment. It takes so long, and only one person usually reads the comment, the writer.

However, that intimacy is also important. In the real world, we all think nostalgically about the days when we were going clubbing every day and going on dates on weekends, but when push comes to shove, almost everyone settles down with one person.

I feel the same way about blogging. When I blog, I am writing for a smaller group, sometimes even one person. When I am commenting, I am writing to YOU. Sometimes a comment can jump start an email conversation or a chat. If I were you, I would experiment staying off Twitter for a few days, and see if it inspires you to be creative again on your blog. Consider it a romantic evening at home rather than a group date.

Cheryl said...

Joan, blog or no blog... you are a creative inspiration to me (for so many reasons)!

Sondra, I hear ya mama. Especially wrt to books without illustrations. LOL. Having young kids makes it exceptionally hard to blog. Also? I'm not as much of a drama/chaos whore as I used to be. Somehow, there just seems to be LESS and LESS stuff I want to share about my private life, or Dexy's, or my family, here in such a public and permanent forum.

Awwwwww Neil, you stopped by blog. I <3 you! Also? You're totally right about leaving Twitter for a few days. I do feel inspired to write here more when I do that. But I still enjoy Twitter more, so it's always a fleeting idea. And I'm okay with that.

Brahm (alfred lives here) said...

Really interesting post.

I have been blogging for just one year (Yesterday!) and not yet on twitter - not sure how or why to do it, totally worred will suck up more of my time.... thoughts?

Cheryl said...

Hi Brahm (thanks for stopping by!)...

I've been blogging since 2003 in various formats (MySpace, LiveJournal and here), and have been on Twitter since early 2008.

I can't really tell you WHY to use it (the HOW is easy - there are several books and on-line tutorials available), since that's really dependent on you and what you might want/need from using it.

Other than the "community" aspect of twitter (which I love), I also really like the "real time" aspect about it. Like Niel says in the comments here, that is far more gratifying than waiting for an occasional blog comment, where I really can't even interact w/ the person who made the comment in a super meaningful way, at least not within seconds/minutes/hours.

All I can say is TRY IT. Maybe you'll like it. And if you don't, no harm, no foul.

;-)

Thanks again for saying hi!

redmenace said...

Delighted to find your blog, Cheryl! I completely understand your sentiments. I always feel bad if I don't post or I let writer's block get in the way. I went to hear a professional blogger turned book author speak last night. It was totally inspiring. I asked her what to do when she didn't feel like writing. She told me that she wrote anyway. She said she didn't necessarily publish it, but the exercise itself on a daily basis made the words come more easily. xoxoxoxo

Cheryl said...

Wow Robin, THANK YOU for stopping by. I'm such a huge fan of your blog. This is just a little something silly I do to stay sane. ;-)

Kirk Mastin said...

I totally feel you on the Twitter vs. Facebook thing. Twitter is so easy - I can post the essence of a thought without having to commit to making an elaborate blog post or Facebook update. I am getting better though - my wife Robin is very good about prodding me to stay up to date with all my social media :)

Nice blog btw!

Cheryl said...

Hi Kirk, thanks for stopping by. Love your photography (and Robin's blog too)!

Kirk Mastin said...

I totally feel you on the Twitter vs. Facebook thing. Twitter is so easy - I can post the essence of a thought without having to commit to making an elaborate blog post or Facebook update. I am getting better though - my wife Robin is very good about prodding me to stay up to date with all my social media :)

Nice blog btw!

Neil said...

If we are all honest, none of this is JUST about being creative. We want to communicate our creativity -- or bare our souls -- to others, so we feel less isolated and more appreciated in the world. And Twitter is a better vehicle for the second part. I spend way more time on Twitter than blogging nowadays. I can talk to more people, and receive more immediate gratification. Blogging used to be so fresh and new. Now it feels slow and clunky, even to comment. It takes so long, and only one person usually reads the comment, the writer.

However, that intimacy is also important. In the real world, we all think nostalgically about the days when we were going clubbing every day and going on dates on weekends, but when push comes to shove, almost everyone settles down with one person.

I feel the same way about blogging. When I blog, I am writing for a smaller group, sometimes even one person. When I am commenting, I am writing to YOU. Sometimes a comment can jump start an email conversation or a chat. If I were you, I would experiment staying off Twitter for a few days, and see if it inspires you to be creative again on your blog. Consider it a romantic evening at home rather than a group date.

Cheryl said...

Hi Brahm (thanks for stopping by!)...

I've been blogging since 2003 in various formats (MySpace, LiveJournal and here), and have been on Twitter since early 2008.

I can't really tell you WHY to use it (the HOW is easy - there are several books and on-line tutorials available), since that's really dependent on you and what you might want/need from using it.

Other than the "community" aspect of twitter (which I love), I also really like the "real time" aspect about it. Like Niel says in the comments here, that is far more gratifying than waiting for an occasional blog comment, where I really can't even interact w/ the person who made the comment in a super meaningful way, at least not within seconds/minutes/hours.

All I can say is TRY IT. Maybe you'll like it. And if you don't, no harm, no foul.

;-)

Thanks again for saying hi!

Everything Coastal said...

very cute, and very honest! Keep it up, and go out and enjoy Alki today -

Caron