eQuilt Universe

On Blogging, Part 2

Recently on Creature Comforts, Ez wrote “Things I’m Afraid to Tell You,” a discussion about life behind the blogging curtain.  Leave yourself some time, if you want to hop over there and read. One salient quote:

“However as time has gone on, and with the ever-expanding roster of blogs that are out there showcasing pretty thing after pretty thing, I’ve come to realize that all this beauty can actually have the opposite effect. The always-nice that we see on constant display everywhere we look (from blogs to magazines, etc) becomes frustrating because it doesn’t really look like how our life looks, right? Instead of visiting a blog and feeling inspired, we quite often leave feeling less than, and like our life can never really match up to what we see.

“As a long-time contributor to this trend of pretty-everything I should know better, but even I get sucked up in feeling like other bloggers are more successful, have better wardrobes, perfectly behaved children, gourmet meals pre-made weeks in advance…they host fabulous parties with every last detail glittered and festooned to perfection, take lavish vacations, sign book deals in their sleep and pose for photo shoots in their immaculately clean designer-decorated homes. Please can I at least get a raised hand if you’re feeling me on this.”

I’ve heard too many blogging friends say that they recently have come to a point where they hate blogging, that they just want to sew and walk away from the other part of having to put up photos and commentary on what they do at the sewing machine.

I graduated with an MFA in Writing, and this idea, that our private selves–or what we do when we create and spend time thinking about while move around our bits of cloth–can be in opposition to our public self, is not a new one.  Cezanne was famous for this, often packing up his paints and easel and leaving if he thought someone was watching him.  But even he participated in gallery shows, presenting his work for his audiences when he was finished with it.  The difference between us and Cezanne, is that blogs are DAILY (or at least WEEKLY) and are giant content sucking machines.  And usually that content comes from us.

And we all know you have to have generate content to blog.  And if you don’t have content, you have nothing to write.  And if you don’t write, then you don’t have a blog, which many quilters use as a tool to decrease the isolation as well as foster a conversation of sharing.

Bridging this innate tension between wanting to create privately, with sharing what you are doing with the public, is a constant.

I have one more post about this.


3 thoughts on “On Blogging, Part 2

  1. For me this is all a hobby, for fun. If any piece was not fun I would just not do it, for a while or forever. I am sad to think that others might feel or act differently.

  2. Hmm. I read the other one and wasn’t sure how to respond at the time. I still don’t. I like for people to comment and give me feedback, to interact and whatnot with other quilters. To have a place where all my sewing creativity can be catalogued and kept track of. A place to escape to when I need a diversion outside real life. BUT, then real life gets interesting and you no longer need that diversion… I find it hard sometimes because I feel a bit less creative when I know I’ve seen almost all there is to do out there, or that if I haven’t seen it that doesn’t mean it isn’t there, because it’s ALL BEEN DONE, or it seems that way. I figure if I have something to show, I’ll show it. If people comment on it I go check them out and comment on their stuff. Usually it’s the same crowd that’s always been commenting, so I tend to keep up with them. That’s the easiest way for me to blog. I hate opening a post with something like “not much sewing/blogging going on over here, I’m too busy living life” because that implies those who are rocking it in blogland aren’t… Which I like to think they are but they just have much better time management skills than me. Or magic powers. Or something. Hehe! To each their own, now I’m refilling my coffee cup and heading back to project gingham! Hope you’re having a lovely vacation 😀

  3. You know, this debate comes up every so often. And I have to admit, I just don’t get it! I read blogs for inspiration, plain and simple. I read blogs because I want to see beautiful, creative things. I don’t want to see bloggers’ messy houses, because I have my own, most of the time! If a blogger I admire completely screws up a quilt and makes a mess of it, I might want to see pictures of it, in order to learn from their mistakes (because, yes, everybody makes mistakes sometimes). But I wouldn’t want to read a blog that regularly features ugly and/or screwed-up projects, because I want to read blogs by skilled quilters, not by people who don’t know what they’re doing. What would be the point of reading a blog by somebody who’s terrible at the craft they’re blogging about?

    And I guess the key is that I don’t ever assume that all these beautiful pictures on somebody’s blog means that blogger’s life is perfect in every way. I have pretty quilt pictures on my blog, but you’ve never seen a picture of a gourmet meal on my blog, and you wanna know why? Because I don’t like cooking and I’m freaking terrible at it. : ) Does that mean I should post pictures of the latest frozen dinner I heated up for my poor kids? Seeing that might make a few people feel better about their own cooking abilities, but overall I doubt that type of post would appeal to most of my readers. LOL.

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