Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Happy Blogiversary

Yesterday marked the fourth birthday of this blog. It was the Easter holidays of 2004, and I was sitting in my room bored out of my mind. Mucking about on my computer, I suddenly thought, why not start a blog for fun? It’s no contest when the alternative is hitting the books to prepare for the coming term. I had been reading blogs for a while by then – I was stunned when revisiting my archives to see that I already knew of the 'emerging church' from the very moment this blog was borne – and my other friends had blogs so it seemed like a natural way to connect. Who knew I would last this long? It seemed as if things were grinding to a halt in 2006, when I had a really busy year, but I dug in my heels and pressed on.

Interestingly, in my very first post I had chewed over 5 possible reasons for blogging and concluded that my own motivation was probably a combination of these:

1. To "document my life", i.e chronicling, journaling day-to-day stuff.
2. As commentary, i.e if I have an opinion, the whole world should know about it!
3. As catharsis, i.e pretending to be the innocent martyr. :-p
4. To force thinking by writing.
5. To build community.

I’ve always thought of my blogging as rather piecemeal, even after all these years. It was very interesting to look over my first year of blogging especially and see all my half-formed thoughts and the things I was grappling with. Things can change a lot in 4 years! I was also quite surprised to note that my posts were more personal than I thought they would be. My writing was less detached and more stream-of-consciousness. I had a more playful streak as well. (Haha, and probably more pretentious too). That was also the summer Uncle Jason and others perished in the helicopter accident and I’m glad that my memories of it were captured on this very blog. I know that in the past year especially, I’ve probably not been as personal in tone, as I’ve been much more essayistic in style and less of a chronicler. It’s quite hard to get the balance right since a general rule of blogging is to avoid the "Today I took my cat to the vet" syndrome, yet, as Gordon Cheng put it very well recently: "I suppose minutiae are interesting if you’re interested in the person whose minutiae they are." But then again, and this is certainly not the first time I’ve said it, getting the right pitch for an unseen audience (I honestly have no idea who many of my readers are) has never been easy.

Of course, I break other rules of blogging as well, such as the endless verbiage of some of my posts and the failure to find a particular niche. Although having said that, interestingly, as I look back, certain themes can be easily detected over the past four years. Books and films figure quite a bit, but that’s not a surprise. My sports-nut persona is present. But there was certainly much more featured poetry and stuff on current affairs than I thought. Reflections on "Christian" things are all there obviously. Just as often, however, there are things which I initially want to blog about but after more thought, I realise it’s better to hold yer horses. I’m sure some of you have also probably spotted patterns that I missed.

One thing I admit to is that I sometimes wish more people would comment, especially my friends. That's 'cause I just selfishly want to feel looooved. :-p Sometimes a post does surprise you, like my post on homosexuality. I didn’t actually spent ages writing that one; just sat down in front of the computer and let the words flow. So I was surprised, shouldn’t have been really, that it attracted attention.

Anyway, happy blogiversary to myself!

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Blogger pearlie said...

I enjoyed reading this post. Four years is an achievement, that is about the average number of years one stays in employment with one company in MY :) or less with the younger generation.

I was not very informed, and though I had heard about blogs, I did not quite check it out until2006, when a collegue of mine showed me hers.

My reasons for blogging developed through time (like most of my other reasons! haha) - amazing you had yours right from the very first post.

It has come to for many a good discipline to keep and it certainly charts significant times our lives that we can look back to.

I sometimes don't care but break blogging rules with the excuse that "it is my blog and I can do what I like" :) but not all the time. Our readers are one of the reason we are "forced" in our thinking to quality writing anyway.

Happy bloggerversary!

2:45 am  

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