Thursday, October 21, 2010

The Best Reason to Keep Blogging

Everyone probably has their own answer to fit this superlative, and it's no secret that there are a ton of reasons to keep blogging. The social part is wonderful—when it's not a time suck or a stalling tactic of course. I've met a few people who have changed my life, literally, by helping me polish my manuscript for Evangeline.

I also like being held accountable: like, Holy Frijoles, there are actually folk out there who might notice I haven't been blogging! And those same people keep me motivated to write new stuff.

But more than anything, it's helped me find my voice. Blogging might not actually count as "writing" (it definitely shouldn't be added to your daily word-count, cheaters! ;D ), but I think there comes a point after you get out those first few thousand or so rusty words where you realize that it's YOU shining through the lines of text. It's YOUR voice your friends and minions, er, I mean followers, are attracted to, as if you were James Earl Jones reading Lolita (You CAN'T tell me you wouldn't buy THAT audio book, can you?).

I know now when I'm writing something that sounds authentically like me—something someone else would want to read—and when I'm writing something that would make an instruction manual writer yawn. I like that I can do a quick read-through before I click "publish post", and spot repeated words I've repeated. ;) When I take the time, that is. And a simple study of recent posts can also help identify crutch words to look for in my manuscripts.

Best of all, I've decided that I like being me, the original, unique person I've always been, but have been too shy, or afraid no one out there will get me. Now I'm free to be me, to share my special brand of weird with my adoring minions. Come and get it while it's hot!

What's your favorite reason to keep blogging?

26 comments:

Melissa said...

I love the community and support. I love the connections and friendships I've made and I love the wealth of knowledge and information.

As a procrastinator, I also say that I quite enjoy the time suck... until my other half kicks in and is like, dude? You are totally sucking at things right now!

Yat-Yee said...

James Earl Jones reading Lolita: priceless!

My reason for blogging is that it allows me to make connections with others doing the same thing. And writing blogposts sometimes leads me to do more thinking about a subject than I would otherwise.

Joanna St. James said...

I learn so much from other bloggers its so addictive

The Golden Eagle said...

I love learning from blogging, and other bloggers.

Shallee said...

Yay for finding your voice! :)

I love blogging because I love interacting with other writers. I love sharing my writing life, and having others share theirs with me. Blogging is awesome!

Krispy said...

I love the community / meeting new, cool peeps (like you!), and yeah, I'm with you on the accountability thing. Blogging helps me keep a better writing-related schedule too.

Plamena said...

Yay, you! I really enjoy your voice and your writing style : )

I'm thinking about starting a blog when I finish my first WiP.

But I read several blogs a day just to keep me connected. It almost feels like fellow writers are colleagues in the office.

P.S. So true about the first thousand rusty words!

Eric W. Trant said...

I've often wondered how many writers use the same voice on their blog as they do in their writing.

I'm not sure I use the same voice. It's a little different when I write, more casual.

But you're right about online posting. I found my voice back on usenet many years ago. It's funny to see how many people notice a strong voice over the drone of uncapitalized acronym-speaking posters.

- Eric

Jade said...

Definitely the other bloggers. I don't know how many times they've talked me back from the edge. (Okay, at least once a week.)

It's nice to connect with people that get you and your crazy dreams.

Indigo said...

Keeps me accountable and I love the reaction I get when people recognize my voice in my words. Not to mention stalking other writers, let me know insane is the way to go (winks). (Hugs)Indigo

L.T. Elliot said...

I'm surprised at what kind of voice I've discovered through blogging. I didn't know I liked to talk so personally about stuff.

Great post, Tere!

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

My favorite reason is meeting interesting people who talk about writing, like yourself.
But I was also surprised to find my rusty sense of humor pops up. I'd almost forgotten I had that in my voice until I started blogging. It's kind of like discovering myself again while discovering others.

Theresa Milstein said...

Blogging definitely helped me find my voice. And forced me to be merciless with cutting words, paragraphs.

I wrote a post about the benefits of blogging a couple of weeks ago:

http://theresamilstein.blogspot.com/2010/10/break-or-break-up.html

Ted Cross said...

"I also like being held accountable: like, Holy Frijoles, there are actually folk out there who might notice I haven't been blogging!"

I wondered about this myself, but when I actually did stop blogging for awhile, no one noticed. It's probably just me, though.

Jen Daiker said...

All the love I receive! Every day people stop in to share their thoughts, their love and their stories! I adore it, it never gets old!

It also helps me finish stories, get inspiration when needed! Keep on blogging!

BTW I now follow you, before I wasn't, but I fixed it :)

Sara McClung ♥ said...

Great post :)

I think I blog mostly to keep my connection to the community. Plus I like having a place to gather my thoughts and keep track of my own journey! OH, and I love love love getting to read about my blog friends' success stories :)

Sara Tribble said...

Oh, I like this! I know, blogging can be such a pleasure and yet sometimes a pain because I hate not having internet like before and the library doesn't revolve around my work schedule--haha!

I have to say the positive reads keep me going. I love how everyone shares their doubts/joys of writing and day to day lives. It's magical to see so many people connect over something so little like a blog page.

On the other hand, loved how you mentioned voice! Your the 3rd person who's mentioned it through my catch up reads! It's nice since I was reflecting on my own writing voice today.

Talli Roland said...

I'm with Melissa - I like the communuity, and bloggers are SO supportive. I've had so much help and great tips from people I know only through blogs - almost more than people I know in 'real life'! And that's saying something.

Missed Periods said...

I have really enjoyed the community too. I have always been kind of suspicious about the impersonality of technology, but now I appreciate how it actually brings people together.

Shannon O'Donnell said...

Tere, I didn't recognize you at all! I think we get so used to seeing the same avatar all the time, that change is a bit jarring. I love your new pic!!

Blogging...the relationships and encouragement and support from other bloggers is what keeps me going. I've grown too close to all of you to leave! :-)

Elana Johnson said...

I keep blogging because I like the relationships and friendships I have. And, uh, I totally count it as writing. ;-)

Shannon said...

For me, it's the friendships I've made, the encouragement from the community, and the knowledge that I'm not in this alone.

Tess said...

All really wonderful reasons. And, by chance, I just sat third row back in Driving Miss Daisy in NY where James Earl Jones blade Hob (the driver). He was so close I could almost touch him and all I kept thinking was, "That's Darth Vader!"

Laura Pauling said...

I started blogging to have some kind of web presence but have gained so much more from it through community and cheering on other writers! Congrats on signing with an agent!

Stina Lindenblatt said...

I started blogging for the same reasons as most--web presence. But the support and friendships are what keeps me going.

I had a nightmare last night that I went back to work as a drug rep. While I was waiting to talk to a physician, all I could think about was how I should be checking the blogs (because I was posting today). I was really sad that I couldn't do it. ;)

foldingfields said...

There definitely is something about you. ;)
I'm blogging because it keeps me thinking about writing--even when I don't want to anymore and it's always encouraging to meet other writers going through the same things.