I think that at a certain point of one’s blogging life, one starts to look back at one’s entries and wonder how much they’ve deviated from one’s original direction. Most of the time, one starts off either writing with a public reader audience in mind, or one’s own personal thoughts. Blogs can posit themselves anywhere on the spectrum between private and public. The most private blogs are ones where the blogger writes about his personal life and opinions and reflections of what goes on around him. The most public blogs are probably the ones you read most, which become an informative column rather than a personal take on life. Sometimes a blog’s initial idea is very different from its result. A blog originally designed to record personal thoughts may evolve into a magazine with ardent followers. And the other way around happens too, though perhaps more rarely. Blogs like mine.
I started off writing in a more general sense, thinking that the activity of blogging and sharing my thoughts with the world is something fun to get into. Along the way, though, I started incorporating more aspects of my own life into it, and it becomes less accessible to a stranger who stumbles onto this blog for the first time. I don’t believe anybody has ever done that except shifty advertisers, but if they did they probably would’ve dismissed it and gone away anyway. I don’t apply tags to my entries. Maybe private blogs suit me better.
Because ultimately, the greatest beneficiary of this blog is me. I feel shy and embarrassed at the thought of someone else reading it, and yet, as my friend puts it, “why put it up on the internet if you don’t want people to see it?” A private blog is a very conflicted entity, an oxymoron even. But I think it is an exercise in self-expression. You don’t know if anyone out there is reading it. You write with an assumption that it is possible, and yet you reassure yourself that nobody would be able to find it. It gives you greater boldness and pluck, to write with the pretense of being read. You get to experience what it must be like to be in the limelight, to have your thoughts actually appreciated and treasured.
Blogging has also given me practical benefits. Writing and thinking about the things I see help me remember them better. The necessity to fill my blog with something new everyday forces me to take another look at things I wouldn’t have bothered to glance at before. And in the process, I find that there really is an unlimited number of things we can write and talk about the world. Even if we’re not as eloquent as celebrity bloggers, and nobody cares about what we think, the world constantly gives us material that they may not know about. The world overloads us with information, and our natural instinct is to brush them off to focus on the more important stuff that apply to us. In fact, maybe I can make an analogy here. Nobody cares about our blogs, and in the same vein nobody cares about the unimportant things in life that pass us by. But if we look closely at these minute actors, they may be jewels accidentally discarded, just like our blogs.
I think I shall be more personal in my blog. After all, I’m my biggest fan. And whatever I think is worthy of recording for posterity, even if it is just a means to preserve my thoughts long after my time may have passed.