This is one of those blog-linkup things, wherein I've been nominated by another blogger (thank you Rachiebee) to write a blogpost about why I write. And at the end I'll nominate two more bloggers to do the same. If you follow the trail back you find some quite interesting blogs. First in the virtual breadcrumb trail is Rachiebee - her blog really is true to its description of being a picnic of thoughts. When I read Rachel's blog it's like she's right there in the room with me, as it's written exactly how she talks, which is to say in a bubbling stream of consciousness, full of delight and wonder at life. I love listening to Rachel talk, mostly because I'm sort of quite introverted and don't do chatter, but I'm very happy to listen to someone who likes to give voice to all their thoughts. And I could listen to Rachel all day.
Why do I write?
I write, I think mostly, to make sense of, and make fun of, my world. At age thirty, I found myself in charge of a small human being, and very much not in charge of the thoughts and feelings that accompanied that new role. My first blog posts were timid, a testing of the waters. I kept my blog secret for quite a while, before sharing it with my mum. Buoyed by her encouragement, I pressed on, finding a voice and style that suited me. My blog posts often, but not always, use some combination of humour, some research, and some pithy reflection on the whole subject. I like the discipline of a blog post, of having to get my ideas out there in 1000 words, to bring everything together in a neat, organised and thoughtful way, and having to find some pictures which neatly illustrate what I'm saying. And secretly, I quite like watching my blog stats, and seeing how many people stumble on my blog every day. It's not many, but hey, at least it's being read by someone. And maybe, just maybe, my sons will one day read my blog and gain a new appreciation of the young woman who was their mother (and why she so frequently lost her shizz with them).
How does my writing differ from others in its genre?
My blog is most definitely a "mummy blog" (or a "mommy blog" if you're in North America), though there is a part of me that feels quite uncomfortable about that label. There are many different types of mummy blogs. I would say that one point of difference in mine is that I make a point, usually, of not blogging directly about my kids. Usually I use something about their development or recent behaviour as a jumping off point for a post - but I try not to prattle on about the clever thing they did today. Some stories are too good not to share, but for the most part I use them to mull over some aspect of the broader context or relevant research.
How does my writing process work?
It's pretty stop/start. If I have an idea for a post, I try and get it down as soon as possible, with some notes on what I was thinking. Then, when I have time to come back to it, I will write a bit more. At any one time I have around 4-5 pieces I am actively working on, and I have another 30 or so draft posts in various states of completion, some of which will never see the light of day. When one is getting near to completion, I'll often stay up late feverishly working on it, reading it, rereading it, adding photos, and checking it. Even once a blog post is finished, I'll often leave it overnight before I post it, just to be sure I'm happy with it. My time alone is minimal, so I write when, and where, I can. Today I'm writing this post from the waiting room at the doctor's surgery, where I'm waiting to be seen for what I suspect is tonsillitis. Writing is better than reading those germ-laden and outdated mags anyway, and it is a welcome distraction from people-watching. The waiting room is crowded and there's a young woman across from me sobbing into her hands while her friend rubs her back. I'm trying not to stare and hoping she gets seen by a doctor really soon, since we all know it's bad when you can't hold it together in front of 30 people in the waiting room.
What am I working on?
Urgh, too much. Lately I'm working on balancing motherhood with working, and trying not to lose my shit with my kids because of the sleep deprivation. Did I mention that I'm really tired? I'm working on getting more sleep.
I am struggling with this, first because I don't have many blogger friends, and second because I don't like to force this self-expose of bloggery on the ones I do know. However, if you're looking for some interesting reads, I recommend Tui Mamaki's blog on her adventures in Bulgaria - her writing is lush, like her gorgeous singing, or this new blog by another mama - she has an original and irreverent approach to healthy food. Blog on!