Monday, April 30, 2007

Blogs, Blogs, Blogs

I've been in California for the last week, so I have a lot of catching up to do. And I came home to like 500 blog posts to read in Bloglines. Perhaps not surprisingly, though, the blogs I think of as the most essential had comparatively very few new posts awaiting me. Both of these facts help to bring home something I've needed to realize about myself and blogs, and the net generally. I only have so much time. I need to recognize that fact, and act accordingly. So I will be making some changes in how I approach this blog, even if those changes may not be apparent to anyone who actually reads it (I may still post just as often--or as rarely). Some basic points, then: I am generally uninterested in book chatter, but I am very interested in actual discussion about literature. (Side note: I don't care in the least what non-blog people say about blogs.) The sheer quantity of book blogs that I "read" tires me, and too many of them engage more in the sort of chatter I have little interest in. Or they engage in actual discussion, yes, but of the kinds of books in which I have little interest, or the discussion is not of the sort that appeals to me. This is all by way of saying that, my time being limited, I'll have to curtail the amount of it I spend online--whether blogging or reading other blogs. Since I'd like to continue blogging, this means that my reading habits will have to change. (In part this is because, contra Ed, I find that the internet, while full of fantastic stuff, is indeed a great time-waster, that technology does indeed make it easier to not get things done, does help facilitate procrastination.)

The same holds with music, though since I rarely read any of the mp3 blogs, and spend very little time looking at the "music chatter" blogs, it's not as much of a problem. Most of the music blogs I frequent feature good, thoughtful writing about music.

The third big general Existence Machine topic has been, of course, politics. Naturally, I don't think I've posted anything explicitly about politics since I said I would be ramping up my blogging about the apparent run-up to an attack on Iran. This is because I just can't do it. I can't blog about current politics in anything resembling a timely manner. Those bloggers who do it and do it well amaze me. For example, I am in awe of the consistently excellent quality of the numerous posts that appear at Lenin's Tomb. One reason why I find myself unable to blog regularly about ongoing politics is that I tend to think in terms of longer pieces, but by the time I have a few minutes to scrape together to actually write something, the moment has passed, and the specific item is no longer "timely". Politics will not be disappearing from this blog, but I will make no attempt to be "on top" of things. Political posts that appear are likely to refer to news items or blog posts that are many weeks old, or else books. Again, this is really nothing new here, just more explicitly stated.

This has been a fairly pointless post. Happy blogging.



Blogger brandon said...

Richard, welcome back! Great to see some new posts here! I've been checking off and on for the past 10 days, haha...

I don't think this is a pointless post at all. As someone relatively new to being a blogger, it is good to have someone make their interests/anxieties about blogging explicit.

I think I am like you in that I value insight and good writing on blogs rather than up-to-the-minute obsessiveness. Too many bloggers use the organ of "the blog" as an excuse to write half-assedly because, well, they can, who is stopping them?

If I want up-to-the-minute news, etc. there are already places to go, what you do and some others is provide me with insight that I can't find anywhere else. Insight and thoughts specific to you. For me, this is more rewarding than constant updates or lists or rare mp3s...

April 30, 2007 9:33 PM  
Blogger Richard said...

Hi Brandon. Thanks for the comment. I appreciate it...

As for checking every ten days--man, I used to do that all the damn time, obsessively checking my favorite (even not so favorite; I may have been bored at work a little too often) blogs for updates, for some reason ignoring the feed services all the kids were talking about. Once I started my own blog, I was forced to try Bloglines. It makes things a lot easier. Of course, now I check it obsessively.... sigh.

May 01, 2007 7:21 PM  

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