Apparently the typical blog lasts for 100 posts which, assuming maybe thrice-weekly posting, is about the shelf-life of a commercially-produced stroopwafel. Admittedly I’ve let this space get a little stale over the last month or so, but I intend to push it past the mean expiration date. Because for me, blogging, like a syrup-filled dough sandwich, is a treacly life-sweetner.
Firstly, it has encouraged me to try new things. Obviously not in a Hannah Horvath-ian get sex-punched in the chest/sleep with the boss for the story kind of way, but I might (for example) have chickened out of improv if it hadn’t been a slow week with little else to write about. I also have an amazing blind date story itching to be written up into a pivotal romcom scene; after all my hypocritical whinging and an interesting plot twist, I ended up going on this college date exchange because I thought it could make for a good tale.
Secondly, it has made me more open to sharing my thoughts and work. One of my close friends gave me this book when I told her about my blog, and it’s one that I keep returning to when I stress about the seeming insignificance of my posts or their unpolished clunkiness.
Building on the idea that the key to developing (and being recognised for) creativity work is process, not product (or genius); that it is more important to be open and generous with your endeavours than toil away privately until you can release some perfect end-product, it couldn’t be more apposite.
I particularly love this quote: “We’re all terrified of being revealed as amateurs, but in fact, today it is the amateur – the enthusiast who pursues her work in the spirit of love (in French, the word means “lover”), regardless of the potential for fame, money, or career – who often has the advantage over the professional…Amateurs are not afraid to make mistakes or look ridiculous in public. They’re in love, so they don’t hesitate to do work that others think of as silly or just plain stupid.”
As someone who, at the age of 11, asked my Mum to step out of the school hall when it came time for my flute solo because I couldn’t bear the thought of being seen as an imperfect performer, and who gets super squeamish whenever anyone reads aloud a card I’ve written, it’s a big step for me to put myself and my words out there. But writing is what I love to do, so it’s worth it.
While only my closest friends and family know about this blog, at least I’m moving beyond the meekness of Isabelle Carré in Romantics Anonymous; the silent chocolatier who pretends to be a reclusive monk because the thought of anyone knowing that she’s responsible for the factory’s winsome combination of cacao solids and sugar is just TOO MUCH.
Whatever confectionery analogy I employ…it’s good to be able to share my thoughts.