“Listen to your wise but less talented friends. You could be our ticket outta here!”
…was what one well-meaning friend said to entice me here. Buried within that invitation was a concept, and the concept was money. Write, and I could earn enough money to not only satisfy myself but others too.
I don’t have the faintest intention of making any money at all. What is the point of that? As soon as expression is monetarised the risk is surely that you become a whore to your potential readers. Perhaps the reason I like poetry is because it does not carry the slightest risk of being remunerated.
I have a day job for that. Providing a service that people want/need and are happy to pay for, and does not clash horribly with my sense of what is worthwhile (or at least not the way I go about it). It’s a bit of a old saw but broadly I agree that turning your passion into a job is never a good idea.
The other notion I have stumbled across is that Blogging Improves Lives. “Hey, since I started blogging I have got off my butt and done all sorts of interesting stuff because I needed something to write about”. This view troubles me no end. The concept that we choose to place ourselves in the world solely because we want others to be interested in us?
That encapsulates a fundamental dishonesty. Like a guy who takes up a new interest primarily to be more interesting to women and heighten his mating potential, when really all he has actually shown an interest in is mating. They are therefore, in reality, about as appealing as a cold spam fritter.
Motive matters, in the end.
Received wisdom also has it that I should be an avid consumer of the blogs of others and tell people how great their writing is just so they will return the favour. Sorry. Not only should you not trust me if I did that, but I shouldn’t trust you either.
Writing is fundamentally borked. It has no value at all if done for any reason other than itself. But without readership it is pissing in the wind.
As such, it is a perfect metaphor for all of our relationships with anything and anyone, the struggle to grasp the line of healthy personal boundary between where I end and you begin.
I Write the Blog
I write the blog
That no-one reads
And leak the words
That no-one heeds
I sweat the tears
Of anxious fears
To cry the Wolf
And drown the gulf
With fags and beers
To feel the flow