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Bloggery

Walking on the Lake Macbride Trail Jan. 14, 2020.

I ordered a printed version of this blog through the end of last year. It’s the first step in changing the appearance.

The WordPress theme I use is free and serviceable. Maybe I’ve gotten used to it. I like the posts on the left and links on the right with a link to the about and reading list pages in the header. Clean and simple so readers can focus on the text. I want to change the photograph of the apple blossoms though.

Because of reduced personal cash flow I had gotten behind in making a paper archive. With a reasonable retirement income and a small amount from Mother’s estate I could get caught up. When the archive volumes arrive there will be about ten inches of blog books comprised of a few thousand pages on my shelf next to my hand-written journals.

I began blogging in 2007 after our daughter graduated from college. I didn’t understand it when I began but this writing would eventually take the place of journaling. Personal information is scrubbed off and each post was better proofed and edited than my hand-written diaries. It is a modern day instance of an English diary like those of Samuel Pepys who we studied in high school English class.

Blogging is among the most important things I do each day. My readership has grown, although for a long time I didn’t think I would find an audience. Everywhere I go in public I encounter people who are readers, indicating a reality of sorts. It is a gratifying feeling.

For the last ten years blogging has been a way to work through aspects of my life. Some things, like yesterday’s review of Thom Hartmann’s book, are specific and set in time. What is better has been the major topics about which I wrote in multiple posts, including the role of low-wage workers, challenges of a local food system, and trying to understand our national and local politics. Blogging is a formal way of writing that can yield a personal conclusion about life in society.

When we moved near the lake in 1993 I set up my desk about 20 feet from where my writing table is now. The desk is still there, although it is piled with stuff: old printers, boxes of documents and books, loose items — potential jetsam from a life weighed down by old artifacts. As my autobiographical work proceeds, the process includes going through every box and bag to re-purpose, recycle or discard everything I can bear to part with… after relevant stories have been extracted. I expect it to take a couple of years.

Other writers don’t keep a blog with so many posts as can be found here. To each their own. Blogging is a way to write that became primary. A place of my own where readers can stop by when something attracts their eye. It is a form of self-expression over which the author has uniform and almost complete control. Trying to make it worthwhile for readers creates an incentive to write better. Writing better has been my endgame.

I note from the clock on my computer it’s time to head upstairs, fix breakfast and get ready for a shift at the home, farm and auto supply store. During winter I want and need to get out of the house and into society. At the same time I’m tempted to call off work and persist in this bloggery through the day into nightfall. I won’t do that. I’m too much the product of an education in the 1950s and 1960s where I have a responsibility to social commitments. Still, I linger on a few more minutes in the glow of my desk lamp camped out on what remains of the Iowa prairie.

I have a sense today will be a good day. I can’t wait to find out.

2 replies on “Bloggery”

I appreciate your perspective on many topics, Paul. While I’ve not been blogging quite a long, it does become part of who you are, and (for myself anyway) when I don’t write on “writing days”, it feels like an opportunity missed.

Thank you for your daily words. I look forward to seeing them for years to come!

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