September 14, 2010
By Anonymous

I didn’t start blogging in hopes of having others read what I wrote, at least not intentionally.

When I first signed up for a pathetic little Xanga back in sixth grade, it was because quite a few of my friends – and some other peers of mine whom I hoped to befriend – had them as well. Basically, my brain put two and two together and decided that getting a blog was the cool thing to do. I distinctly remember being quite proud of my customized backgrounds (totally not stolen off of photobucket, of course) and obnoxious proclamations of a love for Hollister (never mind the fact that my body had never been embellished with any fabric seagulls, dated 1922 or otherwise.) Ah, the days of forwarding chain letter after stupid chain letter to get the word out about my blog (because wouldn’t you know it, my email siggy was a link to the aforementioned Xanga) seem so near now that I reminisce. In my naive little sixth grade mind, I was gradually shifting from just writing about my uneventful days to a faithful follower group of oh, about two or three, to achieving a status of fame! I’d be the next Kevin Sites before your very eyes. To put it simply, I did write while thinking that I had an audience to cater to. I may not have realized it nor allowed it to cross my mind, but blogging served a purpose for me, and that purpose was not just to express. I’m rather ashamed to admit it, but I blogged to impress, not to express.

Five years later, I find myself sitting here, and I don’t really know what I’m doing. I know I like to write, and I realize that writing is much more than an author’s method of putting up a show. However, in the back of my mind, I do believe that the art of forming inspirational phrases across the web whilst knowing that you have readers does have a nice feel to it. I honestly don’t think that i’m the only one who finds this to be exciting, either. Doesn’t it feel nice to have followers? Does your heart rate not quicken, at least a little bit, when you find that someone across the planet has pressed upon that unremarkable grey heart on the corner of your blog entry to leave a red one in its place? Or how about feedback, doesn’t your personal blog feel that much more meaningful when a 27-year-old college professor from a village below the Southern Hemisphere that you’ve never heard of and wouldn’t be able to locate on a map if you tried takes a bit of time out of his busy day to comment on your writing? Does it not feel good to realize that others love and appreciate your writing or photography as much as you enjoy producing it?

I probably sound stupid, or deranged, or perhaps a fair amount of both right now, and I realize it. I willingly admit that I am a lot more consumed with caring about what others think than I’d like to be, but aren’t we all? There’s no way in tarnation one can honestly proclaim that it’s easy to pretend that there are no lingering eyes waiting to read what you’ve written when you publish yourself on the internet. Of course, if you can, then I would like to present you with all the respect and honor my puny heart can possibly muster. And with even more respect (though I suppose that that wouldn’t be possible since I just sacrificed all of it), I ask that you teach me your ways. I simply can’t understand nor manage to master them; when you know that you have people watching what you produce, how do you push that knowledge out of your mind? After reaching and starting upon my sixth year of blogging, I have yet to unravel this mystery.

And although I do try and do a bit of both, sometimes I find that I still blog to impress, not express… such a fact really does sadden me.

The author's comments:
This was originally written for Tumblr, but that site lost its charm for me and now I've decided that it's time to move on.

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