Part of the reason I’ve written so little here this year is because I’m being read by the people around me. That’s quite unusual.
When I first started blogging (or ‘journalling’, as I preferred it) almost 10 years ago, it fulfilled a very different purpose. It was my first close community and I wrote my heart out. It encouraged me to be open and raw in a way I cannot imagine happening again.
Part of the reason I could write so openly those years ago was because it was a readership I could manage – a small audience of friends that I rarely saw. It was a valuable means of communication that didn’t infringe upon my local company. My family know nothing of my journalling, and even when living with two friends in London, I made every effort to shield this site from them. It felt like a responsibility to do so.
Now, however, Writing Privacy crops up in conversation with peers and friends that I see several times a week – fiercely intelligent people who think critically and unforgivingly. I’m hesitant to think how differently I am judged on some of things I write about at this stage of life than I would have been several years ago.
Blogging, to me, is essential. But while I’m proud of my writing to the sight of strangers, I can be ashamed of it to the sight of friends. How often I believe that they deserve better from me, and that I don’t know how to deliver.
The message behind all this, I think, is that any sense of embarrassment or awkwardness will make the writing shy away. So I encourage any readers, few yet faithful, to engage carefully. For sure, I’ll talk to you about my writing, but probably not in public. Why not engage with me here and drop me a comment? I’m always grateful, even when the remarks are challenging.
The secular nature of this space sometimes feels intensified by its lack of outside voices. It’s mostly just trackbacks – echoes of the past, digitally stapled together. Here and now, I just have to adapt to change and address it as well as possible.
Let the rest of 2012 sparkle for you, like sequins in a spotlight.