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19 December 2006

On blogging, writing, why... Angie this is for you.

What keeps you blogging?

Are there times when it's more of a chore?

Any suggestions for a new blogger?

The answers are in here somewhere...

WARNING:  This is certainly not going to be for everyone... and you may click away NOW.  Almost a FREE WRITE w/ plenty of interruptions and some editing, revising, correcting (after all, i did work as a proofreader once)

in order to answer the question about what keeps me blogging, i have to go back to why i'm blogging in the first place.  like so many -- it looked like fun, like a caring community, and why wouldn't anyone want to be a part of it?  it was kind of like being at an auction -- raising the paddle and getting in on the bidding before even realizing what exactly you're bidding on.  i sure didn't think i had anything much to share, certainly no expertise or vast knowledge of technique in the world of knitting -- not like wendy; no oozing of creativity -- not like bonne marie, and i guess that's why i blogged for quite a long time before even throwing my name into the knitblogger webring -- even with the name "knitorious," i wasn't sure i'd focus enough on knitting to merit a spot on the ring and i sure didn't want to join up and then get kicked off because i wasn't holding up my end of the deal, so i just didn't join for a while.  there were many who didn't want to read about anything but knitting on a knitblog, either, and that just wasn't going to be me.  didn't want the pressure.  i wanted to be a part of it, though.  i'm not very eloquent or analytical or political... voices being heard... i hardly ever take a stand.  it's rarely black and white, all subject to change.  i'm wishy-washy

somehow i gained a small readership.  it starts by leaving comments on other people's blogs, starting a dialogue, finding things in common, sometimes linking to-and-fro.  way early on, there was a handful of blogs (relatively speaking) -- it wasn't difficult be become fairly well known and recognizable.  i'm proud to be in the class of norma and margene -- we all started blogging around the same time and each of us has the benefit of a few more years than many of the bloggers who inspired us.  and they, oh they inspired me...  it's the process, utah, zen, smith...  crapola, craptastic, tinctures, dandelions, so fanfuckingtastic is norma...  katy (those sweet kids), ann (irresistable), cara (so much to love about cara), stephanie...  stephanie has pretty much changed the world.  i'm such a dolt, still dumbfounded.  still can't quite explain it.

really, sometimes i don't know.  lately, i have been wondering why i continue.  at the very basic, gut-level, i blog almost everyday because i'm afraid that if i didn't, i'd stop altogether.  much of it is just the simple act of writing.  i'm actually writing and sometimes people even read it.

cara had that "my life, my blog" meme recently that i didn't do, but i should, except that i completely suck at impromptu answers to questions like "what was the best... this or that..." pretty much fucking anything... i just can't think of one best thing on the spot, or even 10 from which to pick a frickin' one.  it's all a jumble and mostly feelings and i don't take the time to think them through, sort them out, come up with something that has words to describe it.  but i do know that my childhood ambition was to be a mother.  i always, always, always wanted to be a mother.  not a writer...  that's my adult ambition.  that's harder because there are so many roadblocks -- most of them put in place by me, manufactured by me, and maybe only imaginary, but they're there.  and while writing is not the focus of my blog, i do have to actually write it and sometimes i write it better than others.  for the most part, i love to write it.  i especially like it when i find something that excites me and let 'er rip.  riff.  it feels so good (like this, this kind of feels good -- right now), though sometimes i think that i'm the only one taking the ride, hearing the music, like i might get just a little too carried away and, i have wondered, am i just humoring myself?  i'm not that funny or witty or wise.  or interesting.  am i?  what the fuck do i know?

so my childhood ambition has been realized -- if i had it to do again, i'd have been a mother more... mother TO more, too.  in regards to the adult ambition... i've signed up and am taking an online writing class, a workshop, a beginner's kind of thing.  i have another blog where i keep that stuff -- accessible.

you know, i have this wonderful, wonderful aunt (subject for another time) who said the words, "you should be a writer," to me once -- many years ago.  i can't tell you how often i think of her, those words.  she also says, "you can do anything you want to do" and has always told us that we're beautiful.  she lives life.  my grandma tried to encourage me, too.  when michael was in the hospital after the accident, i took the responsibility of writing almost-daily emails to keep family members updated (and take some of the pressure off my SIL) and i got so much wonderful feedback, just from a month of little emails, and another aunt even wrote to ask me if i'd ever considered making my living as a writer.

that kind of took the wind out of my sails a little.  i don't know that i've fully recovered from that yet, found my way back to wherever i was headed before that abrupt detour.  i wonder what would've happened next if that accident had never happened.  where was i going?  that was a catalyst for so many changes -- changes that might not sound like much to some, but they rocked my world over here.  personalities and people.  you'd think we'd have all come through it a little closer -- overall, not really.  in some cases, way far apart.  life changes, i get that, but holy shit.  i don't think you're ever prepared for how FAST it can change.

so, finally, i'm taking an actual class -- my hope is that i'll find some direction.  even if i don't actually "make my living" as a writer, i'd love to supplement my income by writing.  lord knows, we could really use that.  my reply to my aunt was that i'd love to make my living as a writer, but what in the world would i write about?

that's always been the problem.  what to write, what to draw, what to paint.

i've been so fortunate in that i've been able to meet some fantastic bloggers in some really fantastic places -- new york city, who'd have ever thunk it -- it still totally blows me away.  three times i've boarded airplanes and flown to meet fiber-loving friends i'd never have met -- never have gone -- if it weren't for blogging.  and it's me, but it's not me... on the blog.  there's a blog persona, just as there is a work persona and a family persona and i'm all about the persona... that's so scorpio... i should be a spy or a detective, something having to do with secrets and sleuthing.  sometimes it gets in the way.  i'm definitely more free and outgoing via keyboard, much more guarded in person.

there are still many people -- people who are close to me, who I see every day -- who don't know about the blog

I remember going to solon springs the summer between junior and senior year -- it was only supposed to be for the summer, but then dad invited me to stay and finish school there.  it was an irresistable opportunity to re-invent myself -- one that didn't appeal to sharon so much -- and i took it.  i know it hurt mom, and i completely broke the heart of my best friend at the time, and annie.  annie didn't trust me for a long time after that.  it's a wonderful life.  anyway, i remember thinking that i could be anyone i wanted to be -- and to be honest, there were things about "me" or at least things that i know people thought about me "back home" that i was more than happy to leave there.  start new.  my former classmates would have all peed their pants, seeing me in the running for homecoming queen right there in solon springs, but that's exactly what happened.  crazy.  i was still me, though, same hair, same face, same clothes, same mom and dad, same sisters and brother... different place.

what was the question?

yes there are times when it's a struggle.  it's not done in a bubble, that's for sure, and i am affected by what's going on in the rest of blogland -- at least that little part of it that i can keep tabs on -- it's so big now, and continuing to explode -- there's no way anyone can keep up with it all anymore.  and that leads to some self-doubt -- there are so many bloggers out there, so many who are so much better than me, why even bother?  better writers, better knitters, better crafters, better gardeners, better photographers, better mothers, wives, daughters, people.  who cares what i think or what i'm doing?

want to see the lights on the pergola this morning?

121906_0634

...to face unafraid, the plans that we made...  (we can do it, susan)

Comments

Fear is universal.

Never forget your fear. It drives you more than hopes and dreams combined.

Sometimes it lands you among great friends.

You are so real Vicki. I love you more.

I care about all of this. Thanks for being you.

That was...beautiful. :)

I care about what you think and do! Alot of what you said made me remember how and why I started too-many of the same things there. It IS a wonderful life! Maybe we're all just that nosey neighbor our moms told us never to talk to;)

That was lovely... I have always thought of your blog as well-written, it must be because, really, you are indeed a writer!

I love your writing. I really do. And you are pretty kick-ass too.

I don't know...I stop by to check on you every day and I haven't ever met you. Well...maybe in
Rhinebeck. That was such a blur.
Anyway, I care what you're doing.

You've taken my breath away with this, Vicki. And that must be why I come back every day. And would, still, if I had to whittle my blog cruising down to just a small few.

You said it all and more.. it is about community but also about the chance to unveil as much or little of our authentic self as we are comfortable any given day. "When you stop taking chances, you start growing old. You won't live any longer, but it will feel like it" - my fave U2 lines.

Yes, we CAN do it! Thanks for being who you are.

Bird by bird, Vicki ... bird by bird.

very eloquent...

Wow. Vicki, thank you for such a wonderful answer to my various questions. I think, no, I KNOW you touch us because you write about part of you that echos part of us. I *know* reinvention of self in high school because I shared a similar time in high school life. Wow. Thanks!

Never, never stop writing! We are about the same age and have such similiar lives except that I could never have children but I have sheep instead. Your blog gets read by me everyday.

there is always better, and prettier and funnier and wittier but there is only one you (even if it is an amalgum of different personas). When I get behind on my bloglines and time is short and I am just going to read a few -- yours is among the ones I choose.

As for reinventing, in aging I seem to have lost part of me and I want her back. I remember being a serious kid but serious adult -- way over rated. So with a little year end reflection I may have to reformulate -- new and improved. Damn scorpio life.

Vicki, that was a lovely post. You covered a lot of ground, and yet it really feels as if you cut straight to the heart of what blogging is. I can relate to a lot of your Scorpio persona thoughts, too. :) Thanks for sharing all of this.

Oh, wow, Vicki. Read 'till the end -- terrific. And the Scorpio thing -- well, I'm a dead-center (Oct.31) Scorpio so I so get that! You know, there is always "better" in any category; I'd bet you that even the most celebrated writers think that there are better writers -- follow your passion.

Wow. Reading your post really hit home - about how inspiring the people who write knit blogs are, and how in this community I feel like I've blossomed and how crazy it is that some of the people I'm closest to in "real life" have no idea about the blog or even realize the changes. I think it's wonderful you're pursuing a lifelong dream of writing and I don't think you need to have a grand message to write, I think you write and you find what you have to say.

Good luck with your class and I think the world is yours for the taking. :)

When can you get on a plane to Australia? Do apple frozen martinis suit? Methinks we have much to talk about and there's a porch for knitting. (Can you tell I loved this post?..)

keep on writing - a totally enjoyable read - thank you.
Joyous holidays to you.

Your blog was one of the very first I read when I discovered knitblogs. And as I recall, you were among the first (shoot...you may have *been* the first) to comment on my new baby blog. I was so honored and simply thrilled that you would take the time to comment.

You're a very special lady and your blog is one of my 'morning coffee and laptop' blog reads each day that you post. You have a lot to say and you speak it articulately.

Hope the holidays are merry and bright for you and that this blog will continue until you're done with it. (I know *we're* not done with it yet...!)

Oh, Vicki, we love you not just because you knit beautifully and take lovely photographs and write like a writer, but because you are caring and funny and interesting, but mostly because you are Real. Real people are not as easy to find as one might hope, so when we find one, we hang on tight. Blessing on you.

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