Sunday, December 15, 2013

Pretending to Write

The Visible Woman...writes.

At some point after I retired I printed some business cards on the laser printer that had, below my name, "Pretending to Write, But Really Just Blogging." I was a pretty assiduous blogger for a while, too. Then it collapsed. At about the same time I started tweeting. I took a red pen to some of those cards and struck out 'write' and wrote 'blog.' And I struck out 'blogging' and wrote 'tweeting.' It was sad but true. I like looking back at my old journal/blog entries with their attempts at focus and, in some cases, incredible detail. The twitter archive and facebook timelines are fun in the same way. But it's harder to dig in and figure out just what was in your head and heart.

Now I tweet and tweet some more. I connect my tweets to facebook and they appear there, too. Occasionally I upload pictures to facebook directly. I share, I comment, I retweet. If I wasn't committed to Holidailies that's all I'd be doing.

Tweeting is interesting. I usually have something to say. I want to say it in one tweet breath of 140 characters. I type it out.'s too long. Sometimes by a lot. (See above.)

Then I edit.

And edit again and again and again and finally tweet and then it appears on facebook.

Along the way, articles, proper punctuation and spelled out conjunctions are sacrificed. You regret you didn't use one of the spare characters to put a comma between a couple of words. And then you say to yourself: how could anyone possibly care about this 'writing.' My English Textbook for my freshman year in college was called Writing with a Purpose. This sort of publishing was never anticipated! Of course, neither were blog entries of self-indulgent detail like this one. And what, after all, is the purpose?


Kim H. said...

I like Twitter, but I often fall down that rabbit hole and next thing I know, I've lost an hour. :)

Doris said...

You've reminded me why I have never gotten into Twitter. I'd be forever having to edit down my words to fit.

Doesn't being able to write so succinctly make you good as Sun journalist? The Sun is a UK newspaper known for it's screaming headlines and absolute twaddle (my opinion!) and simplistic writing style aimed at the masses. Nevertheless, there is something useful in the writing style that keeps things brief and not unnecessarily wordy.

Your blog entry from 2003 was actually interesting to read because it revealed a snapshot of you and your life at that time. What I did find curious was the rest of it - the food diary and more. Done in an arty way of the time.

My take on blogging is that as long as you enjoy the writing and it is satisfying at the time then great. I have found it very therapeutic at times; have re-read bits and bobs here and there; and have referred back to it in relation to health issues as a useful diary.

You can clearly see why I can't twitter!