I think I've mentioned it before, but I love reading other good blogs.
I love seeing other points of view, reading about people's outlooks on the world, and feeling a little like you 'know' who they are--even though you usually don't (on my sidebar, with "I'm Just Sayin", and "threadless" --all written by people I do know, however.
One of the amazing things about bloggers you know is that you know their situation. You know what is going on in their lives, they know what is going on in yours (and can surmise things from your blog like nobody else). They can, for lack of a better term, navigate the narrative, so to speak.
Readers who don't know you can't do that.
Bloggers you don't know, but read, admire, and follow can't give you that either.
And it can be tough.
In my own blog, I try to carry a narrative, I sometimes link to other posts of my own when I think they might carry weight or give a reader more a glimpse inside my little world, my 'revolving door planet'.
I have what one might call 'themes'. For instance, in a nutshell, I can summarize this blog from its inception, April 2009, to now:
Started the blog as a bored singleton whose friends were all deeply entrenched in the world of engagements, marriages, husbands. I held down two jobs for twelve years and was feeling stymied by both.
I started writing as I was bored with journalling 'just for me'. I had volumes of journals from my twenties (I've kept them ALL) and I hadn't been journalling, or doing ANYTHING creative other than amazing scrapbooking for years.
Yes, I am an interior designer.
But, (truth time): My job is mostly numbers. Contracts. Budgets. Deadlines.
My desk is covered with papers, samples, files, folders.
One day I'll take a photo.
I warn you: It is appalling.
So, not much of a creative outlet.
I didn't write much in the beginning. I talked about the end of my sister's marriage in one post that year (when I look back at that post now, it was very vague. One reason for that is that I promised myself this blog was going to be about Me and my life--I didn't want to use it as a forum to muse and think about other people all the time.. I'd been doing that far too much).
I wrote about my then-boyfriend moving into my condo. I outlined my CN tower climb for charity in another post. I talked about my journalist neighbour and her fondness for putting me in print (in Toronto's most circulated paper).
Then December 2009 hit. A friend who I'd once been so close to died in an accident.
2010 ushered itself in. The year starting off in sluggish January, not showing its colours yet, nothing on the horizon as far as the eye could see. My narrative included my newfound hobby, running, something I hadn't been committed to in a long time, I wrote about wanting to write my memoir, and I talked about books I was reading. I grieved all winter for my now-lost friend. Spring came around. With it, my father's devestating cancer diagnosis and my then-boyfriend, the one I'd 'taken a chance on' had an affair with a co-worker at the restaurant we all worked at. I didn't find that out until AFTER he moved out. The chaos in my life fuelled my writing, it fuelled my reading, it fuelled my running. It fuelled ME. I lost about ten pounds that summer. I wrote about the 'break-up diet'.
I travelled. To see Mike, the man I was falling in love with long-distance-style. I wrote about driving on my own to Maine. About seeing New York City for the first time. The signs and the omens I experienced in 2010 were a recurring theme, too. My parents celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary (to be their last). I wrote a poem about it.
Now writing in itself had become my narrative.
Mike came to Canada. He met my parents.
I went back to Maine after Christmas, had the worst flu/cold of my life over New Years ringing in 2011. I look back at that as my body getting as strong as it could for the coming year which, in all of life's paradoxes, would be the hardest one of my life, with a strong, sweet ending, but getting there would take almost everything I had.
Spring 2011. My father's grim prognosis. Writing to keep myself sane, to keep myself getting out of bed; I look back at entries now and think, "Oh yes--written while I was on AUTOMATIC." There is no other way to describe it.
Through it all, the readers knew. They knew because I told them. I wrote with no veil between Reader and Writer. It's how I have to write.
Then I got engaged to Mike, we got married four months later, and I wrote about that; our happiness, our honeymoon, our sheer joy at being together. My sheer joy of remembering what it was joy felt like.
And life runs on and on and the days gallop by.
So when I read a blog, like reading a book, I want to know. I'm driven by a curiosity that I have to satiate.
And when it doesn't happen I apply the same scenario over and over again: I stop reading.