Re-visiting Sullivan’s “Why I Blog”

My biggest challenge in academics is motivation and judgement. I too often find myself being lazy and fearful of judgement from professors and my peers for what I write on a page. No, I do genuinely enjoy, and I love the intellectual curiosity it provokes. What I don’t like is sitting in front of a computer to an open, lifeless, and boring word document staring into my eyes like a blinding light at the end of a dark tunnel.

My entire life I have always put off my writing to the last minute. The debate case in high school? I probably wrote the night before. The political science paper? I probably wrote the hours before. That article I wanted to write for fun? I wrote a paragraph and then got too lazy. Writing has always been a hassle for me. I don’t like writing, and I’m not sure why. I can articulate what I want to say – or so I think – but I don’t enjoy watching minutes converge into hours as I stare blankly at a screen awaiting the perfect Facebook or Gmail notification to distract me.

Blogging on the other hand feels different. I just let it happen. My thoughts and opinions, which are always subject to change, seem to flow in a more natural and organic process. I don’t struggle for words or ideas – although I certainly misuse plenty of words. I don’t hesitate; rather I just write, and write, and write. I don’t look back.

The difference between writing and blogging to me is who I do it for. I am having fun right now. I am challenging myself inside like a pac-man game searching for the right things to say, yet I am enjoying every point I eat along the way. I don’t have writer’s block when I blog. I even feel slightly more intellectual despite the informal writing style (not in an obnoxious way).

So, why take the minor? I want my words to mean something. I want to transfer the excitement and delicacy I have with blogging into my other modes of writing. My voice matters (to me) and I want the special signature to carry over to my other submissions.

Didion has a special way of taking a location or event and writing a sentence about it and allowing that to set a trajectory. I don’t work like that – or so I don’t think. I can certainly be inspired by my environment as such is true for any human, but I can’t see something or someone and let my sentence description turn into a plot line. Sorry, Victor. I still don’t know who you are.

I do, however, find myself motivated by the very same things as Orwell. I do like the reward of writing. I love seeing how and what other people respond. It is a slight ego boost, and I love pointing out the flaws in things.

But, above all, I want to share my thoughts and ideas. I am not afraid of the truth or my opinion, and I think that’s why blogging works for me. It’s the raw, honest, in-the-moment truth Sullivan seeks, and I love it. Blogging is more me exploring myself and my thoughts than anything else. It’s almost like the impulse Facebook statuses one makes just to get likes.

I want to be funny and witty, and let the world know what I think is wrong with it just like:

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If for no other reason, I blog to share my experiences. I want to share my story. I am not special nor do the events in my life differ significantly from others, but I do believe I see the world through a unique lens, and I want to share that with audiences willing to listen.

 

One thought to “Re-visiting Sullivan’s “Why I Blog””

  1. I, too, leave writing assignments until the last minute. It is inconceivable to me how people can turn in a rough draft of something and it is not the first draft they’ve written. I don’t think it is bad for our writing that we procrastinate. Sometimes, being under a time constraint is the only way you can get your thoughts onto the page in a clear way. Also, has being in the minor given you the opportunity to discover that you love the style of blogging? If so, don’t even question why you are in the minor, because it is clearly putting you on a path towards becoming a more developed writer.

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