Blogging: Public Journals?

It seems that there’s nothing that gets talked about more in blogs than the art of blogging.  What to say, how to say it, how to get ideas on writing a blog entry, editing a blog, creating a blog, finding a blog’s purpose and, the list goes on and on.  It seems as though bloggers can spend more time in figuring out how to blog than in actual blogging.

But, what then, is a blog really?

When I first started into the idea of blogging, I had to question what the difference was between a blog, a diary and a journal.

A blog appears to be defined as a Web Log or a web sourced journal.

A diary, is thought of as a teenaged or tween form of keeping track of what happened during their days but, still thought of as a form of journalling.

A journal is considered a way of keeping thoughts, quotes, ideas, personal stories or anything else that the writer wishes to keep for the future.

“A journal is a tool for self-discovery, an aid to concentration, a mirror for the soul, a place to generate and capture ideas, a safety valve for the emotions, a training ground for the writer, and a good friend and confident.”

Ron Klug

I recently cleared off a book shelf and found some old journals that I’d kept.  Taking a cup of tea out into the back patio during the beautiful almost summer like weather we’ve been having, I started to read through them.  Much to my chagrin and shock, I realized that my so-called journals were really nothing more than rant books.  They were akin to demonic possessed diaries that laid bare my rather nasty feelings towards any number of people in my life during those times.

If one has ever seen the movie, Bridget Jones’ Diary, one can relate to the horrors of someone possibly finding these vicious diatribes somewhere down the road and gasping in horror at what it was that I was really thinking at that time.  The entries certainly don’t paint me as a loving, caring person nor, as 3 dimensional.  The fact that I really never wrote in those books unless I was hurt, angry and bitter over something or another, didn’t help matters any.  I never wrote about the good feelings or my happier days.  Those stayed unwritten.  Afterall, they were to be enjoyed and never needed writing down but, sadly, the less than wonderful was not only there in black and white but, brutally written from the gut during those moments of pure anger, hurt and bitterness.

When I looked back at it all now, of course, it’s all ancient history and I couldn’t help but wonder why I’d written all of this down and kept it.  It’s not like any of it was doing anyone, especially me, any good to have it hanging around where someone could one day have read it.  At those points in time, they were simply raw emotions doing the writing as I attempted to vent some of the venom I felt coursing through my veins.  They were anger and hurt transformed into words but, nothing more.  So, why did I feel the need to keep them back then?  Why not just write it out, rip it up and get rid of it?  Why keep it so that others might eventually stumble upon them?

While blogging, it’s crossed my mind that most of us who blog, feel that we have something to share with others that may be of interest to someone else other than ourselves.  Could it be that deep down inside of us, we are Journal Exhibitionists?  Are we simply writing web based journals for all to see?  Is anything that we have to say, really that awe inspiring that we think it’s even worthy of anyone else reading what we have to say?

Personally, I think that blogging, journaling and diary writing is a form of art.  We may present our pieces as abstracts, fine art or simply expressions of ourselves.  What we write about may not be anyone’s cup of tea or it may be everyone’s.  We never know until we’ve written it and let others read it.  However, one thing is for sure.  We want others to read what we’re thinking or we wouldn’t be writing it on the world-wide web.

So, I’ve burned my old temper tantrum files, tossed the keys to the old diaries and here I am, with the rest of the bloggers, now writing out in the open for all to read, minus the temper tantrums, for the most part.

There are, of course, times when I will use a simple scrap of paper to write and vent out my anger but, I now destroy it shortly afterwards with a short, self-created ceremony where I release that negativity into either ashes with a match or the large and powerful shredder that sits under my desk.

Either that, or I write it out in a computerized diary (times have advanced), under password protection, instead of those flimsy key-locks that take the snip of a pair of cutting pliers to break the words free to be read.

May no one ever figure out my password.

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