Facebook has ruined my blogging habit. But there’s more than that going on, of course. I find myself for the first time in years actually submitting my work for review by other publishers. Since self-publishing (without the stigma of its print predecessor) was what first lured me down the path that eventually led to a career in web development, this is a pretty major shift.
When I say that Facebook ruined my blogging habit, I mean it it more ways than one. Facebook, Twitter, and the whole social media phenomenon, made it easier to push out short blasts of speech — snippets that might have formerly gone into the stew of a whole blog post prior. But even more than that is the sense that the Intartubes are a much more crowded place than they used to be. It was easy to sound a barbaric yawp over the empty moorlands of the Web in 1995. The actual chances of it being heard by someone I knew in real life were pretty limited; I was lonely anyhow and needed to find kindred souls — and for some reason, while there were fewer souls on the Web back then, more of them were kindred. And finally, I was in my early 20s with a lot less to lose.
The older one gets, the more twisted and tangled and just… long one’s story becomes, the more one wishes to exercise some control over which portions of it are available to the general public.
All that leads up to less blogging in the public sphere and more writing on paper.
I feel as though I’ve finally begun to make some headway in my recovery as a writer as well. It’s been years in the making and it’s been a slow and unsteady process, but it’s happening. And I’m beginning to see how it dovetails with the other types of healing I’ve had to do. There’s a bit about that here (Facebook link). Perhaps more about that later. Many thanks to Ren Jender, Toni Amato, Jen Hemenway, and Debbie Shore for the parts they’ve all played in this ongoing journey. There are others, but those are the names that come to mind right now.
And it’s time to stop this particular bit of writing and move on to other things.
2 Replies to “Return of the Prodigal”
It’s nice to hear from you again!
Twitter has been similarly bad for my journaling (although I blame a lot of it on my friends’ decamping for Twitter.) I’ve tried not to get too involved in Facebook — it squicks me out in a number of ways. One of those ways is what you alluded to: it’s too closely tied to one’s real-world identity. I’m not in favor of anonymity, but pseudonyms make life interesting.
I am really glad to hear, though, that you’re writing more serious stuff.
> I’m not in favor of anonymity, but pseudonyms make life interesting.
Well said, snej. Perhaps that’s what I’m missing: the freedom of an online persona not so closely tied to one’s real-world life.
I’ve missed my LJ community, although I do have to say that the community I have on Facebook is in many ways more satisfying. It’s certainly more cohesive. That’s the other side of the double-edged sword, I suppose.