I remember being surprisingly impressed the first time I read Andrew Sullivan’s “Why I Blog.” I was under the impression that I was going to get very little out of this guy’s egotistical banter regarding why he blogs his other egotisitical banters. However, I took much more away from the piece than I originially expected.
Sullivan’s article does more than explain why he personally feels the need to blog; it offers a history of the practice, predicitons for where its going, and, most importantly, what makes it such a significant form of expression. “It is the spontaneous expression of instant thought,” Sullivan explains, a revolutionary means for a writer “to publish himself and reach—instantly—any reader on Earth.” Having my guard up at first to defend traditional writing, I was quickly persuaded that blogging is in fact a beneficial and worthwhile practice. Although the expression of pure thoughts and feelings, instant publication, and opportunity for others to crtique are all amenities blogging affords, Sullivan understands that blogging is just a different form of writing; each medium has its place.
I knew after completing Sullivan’s work what blogging was: a conversation of personal opinions that are scrutinized but hopefully impactful. I have enjoyed exploring and experimenting with blogging over the past few weeks, and am garnering a deeper understanding and respect for it. The most important message I took away from Sullivan’s work was his comparison of blogging to conventional writing. His analogy of jazz and formal music really stuck with me and motivated me to try my hand at writing. It also reveals the different modes of writing that exist, and seems to imply that a truly good writer, in today’s age, must exhibit proficiency across all genres. This discussion will aid me in repurposing an essay for project two.
I agree with the distinctions Sullivan drew between blogging and other mediums. It allows for a more honest submission, and possibly more concrete and accurate one due to the instant array of scrutiny a piece faces in the blogosphere. I have learned to adapt my style to fit blogging, which demonstrates a difference in the writing forms. I have grown accustomed to writing persuasively and academically, removed from the text. Blogging, a more conversational entity, invites practitioners to reveal more about themselves and their opinions than traditional writing permits.
That’s what I plan to do for the second essay. I am going to take a wordy political science research paper and morph it into a short story. The topic is about where voter preferences and party alignment come from. I’m thinking of creating a story that shows a child’s maturation into citizen who thinks and acts very similar to their parent(s), as well as their surrounding environment including school teachers. It should be interesting to adopt such a polar opposite tone and style. I am still confused at how I will incorporate my scientific evidence into the piece, which is something I will need to work on.