I've never liked writing. Not when I was in high school or college or grad school. When I went back to school to start my graduate program, the first time I was faced with writing a 20-page paper was a real shocker. It had been almost 15 years since I had been on the student-side of school, and I was quite out of composition-practice. I sought advice from a friend who is an English teacher on how to go about this writing-thing, and he gave me some priceless advice, "Write drunk, revise sober."
I didn't take his advice literally, but a glass of wine did help to get those first difficult words out onto the paper (or computer screen). Sometimes getting started is the hardest part. Once the flow has begun, inertia takes over and the words just keep coming. Pen flowing over the paper. Fingers flowing over the keyboard.
In grad school, I wrote lots of papers (as an art student! What's up with that?), and each one was as difficult as the first. Oh, sure, I got used to the method of researching and writing, and the thoughts eventually flowed more profusely. But it was never easy to make myself sit down and actually write.
And now I write every day..... in, of all things, a blog.
My brother posted a picture of a "de-motivational poster" on his Facebook wall not long ago. It was entitled, "Blogging," and the quote said, "Never before have so many people with so little to say said so much to so few." Ha! My feelings exactly. Yet, here I am, writing every single night for at least an hour, sometimes two. Is it a diary? I hope not. Is it a journal? Not really. So what is a blog? I looked it up on dictionary.com.
A blog is "a web site containing the writer's own experiences, observations, opinions, etc., and often having images or links to other web sites." That sounds like what I am doing.
There is one type of writing that I have enjoyed doing -- travel-writing. Over ten years ago, I started writing and sketching when I traveled. I wrote so I wouldn't forget what I had done or seen or felt. I drew because that's what I do. At first, my travel journals were concise and less than descriptive. But the more I have traveled and the further I have gone, the lengthier my entries have become. I try to include my experiences, what I think about them, and how they make me feel. I have at least 10 books filled with my scrawls and sketches from my journeys. And those are from short trips.....
If I put together everything that I have written in this blog as my "Georgia journal," it would be a book. I've always said that I should write a book about my crazy life...... Looks like I have a good start.
But, seriously, I struggle some days with what to post. I want to remember who my audience is -- some I know, but some I don't. (The stats on my blog-posting site tell me where my posts are being read. I'm pretty sure that I don't know anyone in Germany or Denmark, but 10 of my posts were read there this week.) I guess that exploring cultural observations is interesting for people everywhere.
"The writer's own experiences, observations, and opinions...." with some humor and a little of the human condition thrown in -- (that last one is certainly relevant to everyone) -- that is what I am sharing.
I still can't believe that I blog.