I was at the NSW Writers Center last night talking about Memoirs and blogging. I’m still basking in the glory of that. Let me have it. I won’t let it go to my head.
I might have defended blogging.
Not people hiding behind electronic devices.
Not people writing a public personal journal.
So much more than that.
But you know it’s kind of the fact that it’s so misunderstood that makes it interesting.
If everyone understood blogging, you’d lose your whole subculture.
So I’m ok with people thinking it’s socially deficient people with computers.
Because it’s like a secret that only a few people know.
People will hate you. Because you are an authentic person.
People will judge you for the misguided things you write at midnight that you really should have thought through a bit better.
And people will love you for saying the things in their head, that makes them feel so much less lonely.
It’s the first time I’ve been quoted back to me. Quite the experience.
I was quoted as saying ‘I don’t do dignity. I don’t do silence. I do real. I do fallible’
I was asked to expand on that.
Life is undignified. Or at least I think it should be. I think that people should have enough passion to be undignified. I think that people should never share what they aren’t comfortable with. But I think if you have a voice, you’ll should use it. You should raise that voice. And you should raise some hell.
Silence rarely achieves anything. Silence is complicity. Silence won’t land you in any hot water. And no one will hate you. And no one will disagree with you. But that is the beginning of a mediocrity I can’t endure. Or I choose not to.
I was asked about writing my way through depression. What did I hold back? What did I share? What didn’t I share.
And the answer was, everything. There are certain things that I would never say out loud or write about, because it’s too deeply horrifying to me, but I wrote about that. I didn’t hold back. I let it all sit out there. So it was outside of myself. For a time.
There has been a debate recently as to whether blogging exacerbates mental illness. It’s still something I find deeply offensive. There is no other way of saying that. When I was lying on my kitchen floor sobbing my heart out and thinking of the sweet release of death nothing could have made it better or worse. The disease of my mind was not exacerbated by social media or blogging or anything else.
Some people stick with you no matter what. Some days my best entertainment was finding out how many people I could freak out on Twitter. And I lost the majority of my readership in my depression. But not the people who really matter, which is all I care about.
The beauty of blogging is you find the people you were always meant to know. The people who get your jokes. The people who connect with the stories you’d be almost afraid to say out loud. The people who make a bad day fun. The people who you can meet in person and pick up as if you’ve been next door neighbours for ten years.
I’ve said before that as far as blogging goes, I don’t explain the meaning of my song anymore. But, for certain people I never have to.