Monday, December 31, 2007

License to Blog

Blogging: what is there about it that provides such an impetus? Who knew there were so many writers in the world? Do my words matter? A large majority of blogs are barely read. Is what I am doing here relevant to anyone?

Just today I was talking with a friend who is a printmaker and graphic artist about how good creative challenges can be. Contests for playwrights, photography competitions, haiku contests, etc. No matter how creative you are, a little jump start from an exterior direction can light a new fire. For me, blogging has been like that. I LOVE using mostly original artwork herein, and making the connection between whatever it is I want to say and whatever graphic I can provide. Often, I begin writing without really knowing where it will take me. I like jumping in. I like deciding whether a book I'm reading is one I want to write about. I enjoy revision. Joking around, I like to say I was born to blog! Maybe everyone feels that way?

I've been reading Emma by Jane Austen for book group and have decided she's not my favorite author. I can't seem to get into Emma's mannerly drawing room doings. Oddly, I fathomed some resemblance to the Seinfield tv show: not much happens in either world. Well, there is a lot of fuss over who's dating who. Both are microcosmic social comedies. They matter to somebody. They matter to readers or viewers who can relate to that milieu. But I like Seinfield better, perhaps only because I have connections to Manhattan and it is set in my century, or at least the one I was born into. Yet I am fascinated by the facts of Jane Austen's (short) life. She had no relationships with other writers, lived fairly simply, and remained a spinster. Many of her novels were published without her name on their covers. Clearly she had the major drive and passion required for serious art. Jane Austen was a woman ahead of her time.

I plan to continue with this blog, and keep it loosely related to my work as a public librarian and reader's advisor. I have only two or three years left till retirement. What else can I learn about web skills, libraries, books, authors, writing, art, etc. that might make for good content? How grateful I am to have this opportunity, this license to blog. Onward through the blogosphere!

Quotation: People need a false world because the real one is intolerable. It's the lesson of all literature since the Greeks. As T S Eliot put it, humankind can not stand very much reality. Hence we have religion, art, higher education. - Paul Fussell, Psychology Today, August 1998.


Deborah said...

My sentiments, too. Blogging forces me to write and hopefully to improve my skills (I did say hopefully.) I love to troll the Internet and find new blogs -- I enjoy reading them as much as writing my own.

Issa's Untidy Hut said...

I understand your feeling about Emma. One of Austen's more interesting innovations is having a character we don't like in the beginning, who we watch develop and change. Certainly, her world could not be more insular; it's almost like trying to relate to an alien world in science fiction. I ended up loving the book.

Blogging, I believe, puts us in touch with lost art of journaling, learning to talk to ourselves; when others respond, it's like a bonus and a validation. Don