Why I write
I recently came across this short piece on blogging by Robin Rendle, which deeply resonated with me. The two most impactful excerpts below.
Blog your heart! Blog about something you’ve learned, blog about something you’re interested in. Blog about cameras or HTML or that one browser bug you’ve noticed this morning or blog about the sky above you right this very second. How many clouds are up there? Blog about your annoying kids and your fucked up relationship and blog about that terrifying time when you went to the beach with some people you weren’t really friends with and you got drunk and then it got real dark and you didn’t have a tent so you slept on a sand dune all night long…
There will be lonely, barren years of no one looking at your work. There will be blog posts that you adore that no one reads and there’ll be blog posts you spit out in ten minutes that take the internet by storm. How do you get started though? Well, screw the research! A blog post can anything, a half-thought like this one or a grandiose essay with a million footnotes.
My little corner of the Internet started as a way to highlight the best of what I read. I write to share thoughts on interesting topics and aim to get feedback to sharpen my thinking and expand my frame of reference. I’ve gone through fits and starts over the last five years. I’ve experimented with new formats. I’ve simultaneously loved and hated writing because I am not a natural writer.
Nothing taunts me quite like the blinking cursor on a blank page. Writing demands I find my voice. Develop my own opinion. Week to week, this proves more challenging than I care to admit. To do it properly, I need to clear my physical and mental space of attention temptations — chirping tweets, notification vibrations, the deluge of people and tasks requesting my attention. These blocks of alone time, with nothing to occupy me beyond trying to make sense of the world, are both meditative and exhausting. Especially when the output feels as exciting as the ingredients listed on the back of a maple syrup bottle.
Yet, despite the seemingly stuck keyboard and often tragically spotless monitor screen, I find myself drawn to the power of processing the world through writing.
Hitting publish regularly has been vital to feeding my Life Serendipity Machine. Readers of my work have become friends. Writing has led me to job opportunities. Subscribers have invested in my funds. Putting fingers to keys and clicking publish has opened new doors, both literal and figurative, and I am grateful for it.
Writing, and importantly receiving feedback on my writing, allows me to expand my worldview, casting light on parts of life’s puzzle that I had previously been blind to. It offers the chance to discover insights far beyond the reach of any conversation, creating a feedback loop I can leverage on a global scale.
But perhaps most importantly, writing is my chance to exhale. To rid the mind of clouds of noise, to see the world more clearly and fully. And hopefully provide others with that same clarity.
And I highly encourage you to do the same.
So, as per Robin Rendle, “I say again to ye: just blog!”
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