I used write stuff down all the time. At university I would carry around several 1B5 books, a few were for general study-related note taking , but one was reserved expressly for ideas. I somehow managed to write something down in that book every day; usually at least a page or two. Then all of a sudden I stopped. I stopped because I had started a blog called Compliance Fiction. It was initially assessed as part of a postgraduate paper on digital media, and I suspected it may be a good replacement for my ideas book. Years later, I’ve got a full-time job, not much of a blog, and no notebook. Instead, I have twitter which I seem to manage to keep fairly up to date. But I feel I have neglected the people who are strange enough to find the urge to read my blog. I’m not giving them content as much as I used to and I feel some sort of explanation is in order. So here is a list of reasons why I don’t write blogs anymore
1) My spare time is not spent in front of a computer. The biggest difference between scribbling in a notebook and publishing a blog entry is you need to have a computer to do the later. A notebook is very portable, and you don’t have to worry about people stealing it. It doesn’t need to load up, and it doesn’t matter if it gets wet. So you can use it more often. While you’re having your lunch or while you’re waiting to meet someone for example. It’s simply not practical to have a computer with you all the time. And the spare time you have to write down ideas is not usually when you have a PC at hand. I could theoretically make posts from my phone, but the keypad is so small and the damn thing keeps auto-correcting my words. This may cease to be a reason when I get an iPad. I’ll just have to see how much I end up carrying that around with me.
2) I have twitter. So often, the thoughts I get, have already been very thoughtfully and diligently articulated by someone else. It is so simple to link a tweet to someone else’s article and use the remaining 140 characters to give your opinion. I can tweet articles as quickly as I can read them so I’m able to pass on so much more via twitter than I could ever hope to on a blog. By the time it comes to writing the entry, the moment has passed and I am no longer interested.
3) No one reads it. And I can’t be bothered going out and seeking an audience. The things I have to say don’t really have that much depth or significance anyway. Hence the by-line.
4) If anyone did read it, I probably wouldn’t be able to administer replies properly. I’m not interested in starting a conversation or having a debate. All I’m interested in is a repository for thoughts and ideas. It’s really catharsis more than anything else.
5) I don’t want people to know what I think. I know a lot of people they cross the political spectrum they cross the religious spectrum and they cross the intellectual spectrum. A lot of my friends and acquaintances have quite firmly held beliefs about things I disagree with. I’m not interested in being confrontational, so I just sort of keep my ideas inside these days.
Not having some form of expression for ideas is potentially very dangerous. So I might start writing more when I buy an iPad, or failing that, I may just go about with a 0.50c notebook like I used to.