Let’s Talk About WordPress Blogging
Time has performed its magic beautifully, yet again. Honestly, I feel a bit sheepish about the two–now password protected–posts from last week. I password protected them (the password is under the Password page) because they contain what I would call filth. Want to read filth? Want to re-read filth? Like Regis Philbin of not-so-old, you have to be sure of your final answer. A password is the only way I know how to make sure you’re sure. But read it if you’d like.
At the end of this post I’m going to paste my “Why A Log?” page to remind myself what I’m even doing with this blog, and also to remind some of you what a blog is for. But first, let’s talk plainly about WordPress blogs.
WordPress is a business that makes money off of blogs (among other things I’m sure). Blog is simply the shorthand for web log; that is to say that many websites contain fixed data on their homepages, whereas web logs operate more like an ol’ timey captain’s log. It is just content upon content upon content. Honestly, though, a blog is a diary.
There’s this idea out there in the ether that some blogs become very popular and make folks money. But that’s not really true or if it is, it is not statistically relevant. It’s certainly not true of free or $20/year WordPress blogs like mine and yours. We’re just a sub-culture of folks who like to write. Some folks stick to fiction, some to poetry, some to rants. A lot of us understand that writing is very therapeutic. But what those of us persistent bloggers really know is that we really don’t need other people to read it. It feels wonderful when we can tell that some stranger out there has read it, and even better when they like what we wrote. But we write for ourselves. The reason I publish anything and everything online for anyone to read is because I am constantly amazed to discover the smallest nuances of feeling and human experience, the most private thoughts I’ve ever had are always shared by at least one person–even if that person is just another blogger. And that means that I’m not alone, which then means the two of us are not alone and on and on. And there’s something comforting about that.
A friend of mine (and one of you that floored me with your concern over my family matters) strongly cautioned me about publishing filth after reading the last two posts because of the fact that I may have to someday answer for my blog’s content. If the world has taught me anything it is that character assassination cannot be defended. If it wasn’t my blog it’d be something else. I’m not about defensive living. Tried that once, failed miserably. Keeping things inside is by far the worse solution (or so my upbringing taught me–along with nearly every divorcee ever) and we’re talking about the written word.
Different than listening, reading is active. Don’t ever want to read the “c” word again? Encourage my ex to behave reasonably. Kidding. If you don’t want to read it again, then don’t read these blog posts. But before you quit entirely, give me another five or so posts to share what I’ve learned from trying really hard at blogging. (Tomorrow is the transcript of my best man toast for my brother, then an explanation of my sense of humor–and why you should adopt it. Then you can expect some mildly depressing posts about WordPress blogs/likes/followers etc.) Exciting, I know.
Okay. Thank you for reading.
Why A Log?
In The Autobiography of Mark Twain, Twain quotes John Hay regarding the imperative to write an autobiography. Hay says,
And he will tell the truth in spite of himself, for his facts and his fictions will work loyally together for the protection of the reader: each fact and each fiction will be a dab of paint, each will fall in its right place, and together they will paint his portrait; not the portrait he thinks they are painting, but his real portrait, the inside of him, the soul of him, his character (223).
Aircrews recognize that an aircraft doesn’t crash in compartments. Free time in Iraq allowed me to see that flying is a tremendous–I’d say flawless–metaphor for life. (You can check out the metaphor in the beginning of this post.) In short, in life, as with flying, the only way we get where we want to go–the future–is with each other.
By following Captain’s Log, you’ll receive posts that take less than 2-minutes to read Monday through Friday. They might be creative writings, satirical news stories, “How To” guides, letters I wish I wrote, humorous pieces, book/movie reviews or other types which are more difficult to classify. The intent of all the posts is to reveal life.
Like Hay said above, the most important thing you’ll find, if you look closely, is me. And in finding me, you might just find you.
The only way to get there is together.
Twain, Mark, Harriet Elinor. Smith, and Benjamin Griffin. Autobiography of Mark Twain. Vol. 1. Berkeley: University of California, 2010. Print.
A good post, Pete, and I completely understood what might be construed as “filth” was a product of frustration and anger. Vulgar yes, but understandable. Yes, it might come back to haunt you, but I’ve read worse. And I am sure, since you are a bright guy with a quirky sense of humor, that you fully understood what might, but might not, come from those posts. Your readers wouldn’t be your followers if they did not care about how you felt and how you were dealing with life. So I didn’t comment (I think) because you are an adult and entitled to your views, no matter the words you use to express them. I think the difference between that and ‘filth” is honest emotion.
Just my POV.
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Until we stumble into Utopia, we must slip, from time to time, in the grime of a less than perfect life. Who can criticize your filth while mired in their own cess pit?
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I totally agree; that one what person expresses, someone else can relate. That’s what makes the writing community so special. We all share with our words, some vulgar, some sweet. In the end we are all just people looking for our ‘tribe’.