Blogging: the anti-Yoga

Blogging feels heavy lately*.

The unspoken expectation of snark, controversy and condescension permeates blogs and the act of blogging. The genre matters not. What gets read is hot button topics, snide commentary and kabob point humor.

It’s not that I can’t do any of this. It just makes me feel like a karma polluter.

My gig at Care2 is case in point. Posts that aren’t tinder worthy of the forest fire kind don’t get read. If a blogger’s posts don’t garner hits they won’t prosper – bonus wise or in the eyes of their editors.

I am double-whammied at Care2 because I believe that the current trend in education reform is even more revolutionary than Obama’s piddlin’ health care bill. I think it should be covered more extensively.

Readers don’t care. They want edu-fluff. They want to be outraged by preschoolers forced to cut their hair (the kid in question had hair longer than Dee’s and the parents weren’t pulling it back – because he was a boy and hair ties are “girly”) or by kids being punished for writing on school property or equally local “who really cares in the larger scheme of things” TMZ stuff.

I write about issues. I don’t want comments to devolve into flaming based on personal issues – which happens there a lot. How can behaving badly in the comment box further a cause? Really.

But even here or at 50 Something, I feel a premium is being placed on my ability to write cute and clever and that substance is of lesser value.

A little cute is going a long ways with me these days. Even my Facebook status updates make me feel unworthy of the ability to string words together because they are so … typical … of what we do in the ‘sphere.

The medium has(d) so much potential for good, but the traces being left are so banal. Banality being the deepest root of what is deemed “evil”, am I a positive or a negative?

I have to give a workshop this weekend about the Internet as a tool for writers. I don’t know what to tell them. Everyone sells, and what they are selling is mostly meaningless and for the purpose of acquiring … what?  Just acquiring it appears.

I have work to do. Later.

*I wrote this to put up this morning, but changed my mind until I finished reading chapter two of the Sutras this afternoon. Ahhh, Patanjali.  I am not in turmoil, but I feel a change of direction/motivation/inspiration that is difficult to express. Perhaps it is time to do something. Or perhaps I am doing it? Or maybe it is catching up with me or I with it. I am still quite a base person as evidenced by my glee over this, but I find that I hesitate to share things like this and isn’t that the nature of social media and the web?

9 thoughts on “Blogging: the anti-Yoga

  1. blogging is an odd medium. an endless array of purposes and issues at work. when you add the ‘for profit/pay’ factor, it starts to mimic the circus of main stream media ‘info-tainment’, and flames pay the rent.

    as powerful as the medium could be? i still find myself using the internet mostly for mind-numbing vegetation. i consider myself to be of slightly above average intelligence, and i still don’t really dive into anything of substance out here.

    so i surf. stay connected to my imaginary friends. play safely on facebook, by posting non-substantive status updates, and track family and friends. look at eye candy via several photoblogs. for me? any endeavor that requires full use of my brain still needs a book…

  2. You have expressed in words what I have been feeling, though hadn’t yet gotten to a point where I’ve been wholly despondent over this issue. Its just been a sense of “what am I really contributing?” I have been lucky with my blog, but probably due to a lack of traffic, I have yet to have one snide comment. I am sure I am due.

    Its all in the balance I suppose, trying to align meaningful thoughts with a world focused on sound bites. Or another translation: authenticity vs. reality. I think we often mistake one for the other.

    I have been lucky that I have had the freedom to write authentically without having to worry about the bottom line. Kind of takes us back to yesterday’s comments with regards to expectations and attachments. When there is no expectation of a reward, authenticity is more likely to occur. At least I like to think so.

    1. This is not a bottom line blog, but the two I write for are money generating and I get paid by one of the sites. It throws a curve at me that I didn’t expect would make me uncomfortable.

      I like the expectation and attachment theory.

  3. I too have learned that if I wanted to, I could manipulate readers to be more engaged. This is easily done by writing about extreme experiences on my journey. And while I do have days that are more dramatic, I choose to not use this as a tool to pull people in. I prefer to write from where I truly find myself each day.

    One of my frustrations is that I initially began writing for other gay widow(er)s that might not have access to the support they needed. And while I initially found some interest in a couple of gay focused news blogs, I have seen that they continue to promote all the same fluff that we see all over the net. I often look at what gets promoted, and see that it is often just compilations of from other news sources. There is not a lot of actual writing going on, and if there is, it has to be flashy, sexy and controvertial.

    Good for you for speaking your mind. This is what writing/blogging should be. Real dialogue.

  4. I stick to what I have to say on my blogs, write when I have time, don’t when I’m busy.

    I have a few faithful followers on my writing blog, and blogging is a good way of tracking what I do sometimes. Not selling, yet.

    I hear you on what sells in the media.

  5. hot button topics, snide commentary and kabob point humor.

    I’m not very good at those, so I don’t worry too much about polluting the karma stream. But that leaves Dear Diary and touchy-feely stuff, and I’m not being pushed or pulled to write either of those genres right now. So… I don’t have much to say about anything these days.

    1. A lot of what goes on blogging, tweeting and on FB seems opposed to where I am heading in a way that doesn’t quite make sense yet.

      I think you probably have things to say that are neither diaryesque or touchy feely.

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