April 13, 2008 § 4 Comments

Does shutting down your blog make you a traitor?  Or does keeping one make you a traitor to yourself?

I can’t even tell you how much I identify with Sarah Hepola’s article, This is My Last Entry: Why I Shut Down My Blog.

She writes:

And then, somewhere between the bedsheets and 6 a.m., I realized something: Blogging wasn’t helping me write; it was keeping me from it.

I had come to this realization before, but the moment would pass, and I would find myself percolating with small, quotidian stories that I wanted to share: This funny thing happened on the subway; you’ll never believe what so-and-so said. Not revelations by any means, but I live alone, and blogging was a way to vent the daily ups and downs that might otherwise be told to the cat. Also, I couldn’t help but notice—even the cat couldn’t help but notice—the growing number of successful bloggers-turned-novelists. They were sexy, dishy women with pseudonyms, Wonkette and Opinionista, like they were dispatching from behind enemy lines. I was starting to feel like the only one left in the blogosphere without a book deal.

Yep, that’s how I’ve been feeling in a nutshell …despite the fact that none have my blogs have been even remotely successful enough to consider the possibility that I deserve a book deal… but yes.

Blogging used to help me write.  I would take my short blog entries and expand them, turning them into articles for my school paper, The Hoot.  But then, one day, that stopped working.  Maybe it was because my blogging was getting worse and worse, and coincidentally, I was blogging about blogging more and more.  (Case in point: this post.)

My recent vacation from the blogosphere has made me even less interested in it.

I may not be ready to “shut down” any of my blogs, but the temptation is there.


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§ 4 Responses to Traitor-hood

  • Cliff Burns says:

    I use my blog as a promotional tool and a forum to vent some of my wrath re: moron editors and agents and the problems facing contemporary writers. It augments my regular writing–and when I’m not working on a novel or story, I’m STILL blogging, keeping up the daily practice of writing and building up those creative muscles. But NOTHING will ever replace the joy of composing fiction. My blog has become my exclusive publishing venue, I no longer submit work anywhere. And it’s been a Godsend in that respect…

  • Bill says:

    I think that blogging is like a daily workout and just as I don’t go to the gym every day (although I should), I don’t blog every day, either (although I should.)

    The interesting thing about blogging is just this: comments. As a blogger, over time, you develop connections with other people who, surprisingly, are quite interested in what you heard in the subway, or that the cat barfed on the floor. I think it’s similar to the phenomena of CB radios, chat rooms and cocktail parties. Blogging opens a venue to meet interesting people and people who are interested in you for whatever reason.

    Whether you blog daily or randomly, at least you’re out there with your own voice and I think there’s something immensely human about that.

  • Leah says:

    Yes, I suppose I can see the attraction of self-publishing Cliff, and it can be great to meet people (and simultaneously be amazed that anyone is interested in your mundane life) but I think the problem arises when you put too much of yourself into a blog, and get too little back.

    For instance, if you pour yourself into a post, and don’t get a single comment. Or if you invest serious mental energy into producing quality content day after day, and your hit counter stays unbelievably low. Or if you comment and comment on those “celebrity” bloggers’ sites and they still don’t know you exist…

    Sometimes I wonder if there’s too much at stake for my fragile ego. In the blogging world, only the popular bloggers seem to be making connections and enjoying those conversations, while the rest of us are pouring ourselves into an empty void.

    That sounds more depressing than I meant it to be, hehe.

  • miss a says:

    I’m with Bill. Sometimes it’s the release of getting info out into the universe via a blog that makes it worthwhile, and sometimes it’s knowing that others in the blogosphere are there in one of the most simplest and least selfish ways.

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