I’ve been having a strange itch lately. It’s something that’s been difficult to scratch at, because for one thing I didn’t even know what the itch was and for another thing I didn’t know how to cure it. I’ve since found out that that itch was the itch to create, or more specifically, the itch to write. Let’s backpedal for a minute, I spend most of my summer days out of college consuming. I’ve been consuming and consuming, eating food, going on vacation and playing video games, all the while I’ve been having this strange itch to make something, I’ve a head full of stuff that I want to get out. Someone who does only consume is a nobody, a prisoner of their consumption. I don’t want to be a prisoner, I want to cure this itch.
Now to the second bit, the writing. My roommate in college, as well as a friend of mine, regarding academics, both despise writing papers. However, they both enjoy solving math problems, or at least they heavily prefer mathematical work to writing. I’m the exact opposite. I would much prefer to write a paper over several days than do a coding assignment that I’m likely going to cram into the few hours before it’s due. Writing a paper, in my experience, has an element of freedom to it. I have a large repository of ideas to choose from and put into words, free to arrange how I like as long as they’re coherent. Meanwhile, an equation requires precision, and a program demands proper syntax. I’m often driven to the edge with frustration as I wrestle with the numbers and protocols of execution. It really just doesn’t click with me.
Another thing that led me to discover my penchant for writing was an article in WIRED that discusses the creator and the creation of Tumblr. The young entrepreneur David Karp’s reason for creating the site, according to the magazine, was the fact that traditional blogging sites, such as this one, have a format for creating posts with a large text box (like the one I’m writing in right now), that “gave him pause”. “Gave him pause”? I did a virtual double-take as I read the article, somewhat taken aback by the notion that a text box is enough to drive someone to invent (or popularize, I’m not quite sure of his pioneer-status) a way of blogging without having to, well, write stuff. This really put things in my perspective, as it lead me to realize that a lot of people in the world just don’t like writing and prefer to express themselves differently. And it thereby made me realize that I like writing.
So now I knew that I have this itch (both figuratively and literally, accursed mosquitoes) that I have the cure for, but the next question was how to do I apply the cure? Where and how do I write, for writing’s sake? This ended up being a difficult question to answer. Facebook and Twitter were not enough to sate my needs, as they’re sites built for small, simple messages. I dabbled in fanfiction for a while, and enjoyed a limited success. It’s alright, but I felt that my fundamental writing ability needed a bit of honing before I could get into the groove of conceiving arcs and dialogue, I still slip up on simple grammar. This is what brought me back to that Tumblr article, and blogging in general. What better way to write for the sake of writing than making a blog? Something that struck me as nice about blogging is the personal nature of blogs. It gives you your own space to design, your own sphere to rant, to talk. It’s one of the few places in existence where you actually can make the world revolve around you. I like that. In a world of compromise, it’s nice to have a happy place. It’s okay to be selfish sometimes, within reason. So I took a gander at what people thought about different blogging sites, looking for the one to suit me, and here I am. This is where I will talk about whatever I wanna talk about, and this is where I will create.
…That was me having a moment, now I will go eat some humble pie.