I noted recently that I hadn't been getting as many comments as I normally get. This led me down a path of reflection - about why I write, and in particular, why I blog.
I have always turned to writing first as a means of expressing myself. It really is a part of my everyday life, especially with my obsessive use of email. Through writing, I am able to process things in a way that I wouldn't be able to without it. Writing, for me, ultimately leads to clarity.
I have always kept a journal, starting from the time I was very young. I have written stories and poems and plays and novels. In 2006 or so, I opened up a MySpace account, and that's when I began blogging (sporadically) - but for the most part, I was still keeping an actual journal filled with actual handwriting. When I started my current job in late 2006, I began writing journal entries in a Word document - all of a sudden, I didn't have as much time to handwrite journal entries. In 2007, I moved over to blogger after seeing one of my professor's blogs, and thus, my love of and addiction to blogging was born. (I do still have an actual journal, but I rarely write in it.)
I think blogging is a wonderful thing, and I have met so many awesome people who are putting themselves out there on a daily basis just as I am. I've often wondered why we seem to have this need to tell our stories in such a public forum, and I think it's probably because this is an option that is available to us that simply hasn't been available to those who have come before us. We are a culture of voyeurs and exhibitionists, it seems. And I don't see this as necessarily a bad thing. After all, blogging is writing - and many, many people are blogging, which means that many, many people are writing. This also means that many, many people are reading. People are wholeheartedly engaging in two things that I used to see as dying arts - writing and reading. It's thrilling, really.
I blog because in doing so, I am part of an extraordinary moment in time when everyone (or quite a few people, I should say) has the opportunity to make their voices be heard. Being a blogger has changed my life in many ways; it has opened me up to the world and the people in it in a new and exciting way. It seems a bit silly of me to have been worried about not getting the same amount of comments I was using to getting, but I suppose part of being a blogger is getting used to having that audience.
That said, I don't think I am not a person who is destined to have a huge following in anything I do. There will always be someone flashier, smarter, funnier, or more talented than me. I used to want to be that John Lennon type who would change the world in some huge way, but no, that's not me. I'll go about my business, changing the world in my own little ways. I am okay with being a quiet revolutionary.
I do see blogging as a very trendy thing to do right now, which is why everyone and their mom has a blog - but it is one trend that isn't stupid or senseless. All trends do seem to come to an end, but blogging may very well stand the test of time.
Whatever the case, no matter what the future of blogging may be, I know that I'll still be writing. Because before I was anything else, I was a writer.