(its probably hiding in those Where’s Wally books I had as a child but never finished; curse you, Martin Handford!)
I like to think that I blog about things that happen to me in my life – the occasional tangent discussing books and music albums aside – which has led to a problem during this Summer Holiday, the first time I’ve ever had two months off from school, or any of my regular activities: my life isn’t that interesting.
I am doing things this summer – I try to run almost every day, read a hundred pages of a book a day, and watch about half a season of Game of Thrones instead of sleeping – but none of these things make for particularly good blogging topics, apart from episode reviews, which would be horribly out-dated and require more effort to make sophisticated than I’m bothered to put in, or analysis of my running times, which would, by definition, be so niche that my whole ‘write about anything’ aim would be ignored.
And so I’m presented with a common problem among content creators, whose creations are closely related to their real lives: does the art define the life, or does the life define the art? If I were to go bungee jumping, or ice skating, or even swimming, because these things are unusual for me, just so I could write a blog post about them, does that not prioritise the content of a blog few people read on the Internet over the free will and desire of my own life? Shouldn’t I do stuff because I want to, and draw those events together each afternoon to inspire a blog post? Probably, but there just aren’t many thing happening in my life to be drawn together into posts.
One solution would be to cut down on the number of posts, so if I have one good idea a week, I should post once, not wade through six days of turgid nonsense before writing that idea up. But this creates an amusing paradox, that instead of improving my blog in summer, where I have more time to devote to it, I would be undermining it, because I have too much time on my hands; I love idiocy, but that’s too much even for me.
And I’m not willing to narrow my opportunities to do stuff this summer just to entertain you slightly more effectively (sorry babe, its not you its me) – if I want to do a particularly dull, individual thing that no-one else would enjoy, I’m going to do it, dammit!
Alternatively, one could see this lack of inspiration as an incentive to lead a more interesting life, or at least a life more relatable for other people; if I have a choice between going to a theme park, or getting a haircut, I am more likely to be tempted by the former, considering that I want to write about my day that evening, and currently have no ideas to write about. But that has failed spectacularly, as I’ve only left the house this summer to run, apart from a single afternoon spent watching the Tour De France, and another spent watching some friends put on a gig; I suppose I’m too stupid for such subtleties to work on me.
But I’m happy with the life I’m living, even if I think it won’t make good blog material; I’ve always found the difficulty of blogging daily to come from the need for constant inspiration, not a lack of time or eagerness, and this blog has been through some pretty dull patches in the past, but you’ve still Liked and Commented on posts, especially the ones that I thought were crap.
I started this blog for myself, but that motivation isn’t as important as it used to be; people find my posts entertaining, whether it’s one person, or even five, and whether they read six months of posts, or they follow me after reading one piece, and I never hear from them again. I think I need to stop writing just for myself; ideas that I think suck will often be funny for other people – like this post, that I thought was a filler, but quite a few people enjoyed – and this is why daily blogging is awesome: it’s like cooking a meal to people consisting of every ingredient known to man, even some that I dislike myself, but there’ll always be someone who likes a bit of it.
And you know you’ve been watching a lot of MasterChef when your go-to metaphors involve pizza.