Tag Archives: blogging

Trying something new by sticking to the old.

You can imbue all sorts of meaning into “Illuminated Past” as the title of a blog.

From time to time I’ve considered turning this into a more structured endeavor (see post here), but ultimately that starts to feel a little too much like work, and this is my playpen, not my paycheck. I threw a few categories up over the blog header so anyone wandering through and taking a gander can choose their poison (genealogists may be less interested in my rantings about TV and those who want to read self-absorbed posts about existence and identity might not have the faintest interest in my old dead family members – and then it’s all out there for those interested in reading general mental bric-a-brac).

This has pretty much been my lifelong writing/journaling strategy – write what I feel like when I feel like it.  I’ve hesitated to publicly claim my blog writing as I worry my slightly liberal leaning tendencies and/or rampant honesty might offend any potential future employers located in more conservative areas of the globe.

And as a human being my opinions are all subject to change over time. A post from 2010 might not accurately reflect my current 2014 attitudes.  You can learn and grow a lot in four years, but that old post will still be floating around the internet.  If someone lands on my 2010 post and reads it without noting the date they might judge my current self based on that.  I mean, it’s still me, but a younger less wise me (which is why my 10+ year old livejournal is all privacy blocked these days – I am no longer my 16 year old self, but it’s linked to my name and maybe someone would find my immature gushing over Legolas as a reason to not give me a job or be my adult friend?  I don’t know.  The world is full of judgy-mc-judgersons.).

On a personal level I’m proud to be myself at any age, but on a professional level I worry that written youthful folly might deter future potential job offers.  It’s silly really.  I’m a professional person at work and I don’t let any personal biases or opinions color the quality of what I do.  In this brave new internet era all I want is to continue to be myself in the online public in the same way I am myself in realtimes public, so I’m claiming Illuminated Past as my own.

It’s a space where I ask questions, where I muse about things, where I share stuff, and ultimately a place where I grow. (hearts and stars and rainbows sapfest time)  It’s all interests and all sides of me.  If you want to tag along put on your sweatpants and hop in – it’s like you’ve entered my living room and we’re gonna have a nice long chat over a cold beer.  Otherwise, ignore this and go find my LinkedIn profile or professional social media work and judge me as a workperson.  In this space, I’ve got my stretchpants on, Netflix is queued up, and I hear there’s a Dominos pizza on it’s way over.  Hope you like the Pacific Veggie.

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Why write? Why not?

I have to admit, I’m kind of disgusted with myself for ending a blog post with “Next up: running nutrition!  I’m doing a little research and crafting a meal game plan that I’ll share in another post.”  I apologize, not to any imaginary readers, so much as I apologize to myself.

I’m still running, running is awesome.  I sorta eat better, except for the pizza I wolfed down yesterday and today.  I’d be a(n anorexic) twig if I just stopped eating cheese, bread, and beer.  So tasty.

Two comments from people this past weekend fueled my desire to post here again.  I went on a 10 mile run with my half marathon buddy.  She admitted she builds her dream house as she runs, and I admitted I write blog posts as I run.  Blog posts that will never see the light of day, but that are bounced around in my head until they have very specific points to make.  My friend asked why I never recorded my brain blogs (<—- my phrase)?

I don’t know.  Half the time I’m so high off running endorphins that I forget everything I was dreaming up as I ran.  It’s a blur of lower minutes per mile averages, people (and butterfly!) watching, and parsing out that day’s weather.

Then, at a birthday BBQ on Saturday evening somehow I got to talking about how I’ve tried writing fiction several times over the past year, but my writing engine only turns over and never catches.  The people there were very encouraging about JUST FUCKING DO IT ALREADY.  But you know, without the f-bomb and without the caps.  My brain added those parts.

So far I’ve started a Western themed zombie story, a fantasy yarn about a woman with magical ocean powers, a mystical tale about death and people interred in mountains, and then there was the one about self-centered indulgences set amidst a post-apocalyptic world.

So, I have something about death (zombies, dead people buried in mountains, post-apocalyptic world).  My protagonists are mostly female (except for the Western zombie story, which was going to be multiple perspective).

I even downloaded a local wiki program to start building a fantasy world for the ocean powers/connected to water story.  I don’t even like the ocean that much.  It’s pretty to look at, but I prefer forests.

Then there are also maybe half a dozen documents with a few paragraphs or a few lines.  One quirky handful of paragraphs about a woman becoming involved in her uncle’s mysterious train station death is alllllllmost long enough to be on the story attempt list.

The only writing I’ve done in the past few years that I’ve actually liked is some short stream of consciousness diarrhea and poetry.  I sort of like my post-apocalyptic story, but that’s because I really needed to get that one out of my system when I wrote it.  And now I’m good.

Most of all, my urge to write again is being fueled by the intermittent melancholia of loneliness, and a realization that since I stopped writing lengthy research papers writing has slowly become more and more difficult.  I hate that thought even more than the thought of writing terrible stories with no middle or ending.  So I’ll keep turning the engine over and maybe something will catch.

Vroom.  Vroom.

Blogging is now a glossy magazine

I started a blog on Blogger in high school.  At the end of high school I swapped over to livejournal after accounts there were open for anyone to register (as opposed to register by invite only).

This year marks my 10 year anniversary of livejournal blogging.  In those ten years the face of blogging has dramatically changed.  Now bloggers promote lifestyles and create content and generate money on their writing.  Back in the day I turned to journaling online as a great creative exercise and stress release.  I made a couple online friends via livejournal.  Blogging was not a way to make money though, and now that it’s shifted I feel a bit lost as part of an earlier generation of bloggers.

Don’t get me wrong, I read several blogs religiously and really enjoy the great photos, stories, projects, and recipes that bloggers share.  It’s just a different culture.  Maybe blogging used to be like a zine, but now it’s like a glossy magazine?

Blogging used to be a primarily anonymous art form.  Nowadays the early stranger danger days of the internet have been replaced by the openness and greater honesty brought about (I think) by Facebook.  Before Facebook I was a username, but now I am my own name.  I’m not sure if the use of real names increases authenticity or just encourages individuals to more strongly brand themselves, but it has led me to a crossroads.

I’ve been revamping my online presence recently by cutting back on Facebook posting, hiding my old Twitter account, turning my old livejournal entries private, and creating a reworked online portfolio website.  Though I’m not sure what I want to do with this blog.

I’d partially like to go back to the old days of blogging, when I’d write about momentary bouts of depression, good days, and off-the-top-of-my-head thoughts.  But I’d also like to publicly claim this blog as my own, and to do that I feel it’d be necessary to more carefully curate the content that makes its way on here.

I think it’s time to say goodbye to purely stream of consciousness blogging/laying down bare words of vunerability, and time to say hello to a professional front and a curtains-open-only-when-appropriate blog.  This doesn’t mean that my blogging will be any less authentic than it was in the past.  Maybe it’ll even mean my posts will increase their depth of focus and thoughtfulness!

At any rate, it’s time to get back into the blogging game, and I think with this decision I can finally feel less frozen on this blog.  Here’s to starting again, even in a new culture (of sorts)!

Ch-ch-changes

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Reflections