Saturday, May 30, 2009

Well, ladies and gentlemen. I have finally done it. After a year of mass e-mails, which many of you have apparently enjoyed reading, I've caved to the pressure to start a blog.

I did not come by this decision easily, as I have always feared turning into the kind of blogger who posts uninteresting information about herself ad nauseam.

But. A few things recently led me to change my mind:

1. When I announced that I was moving to Seattle a month ago, my friend Elizabeth Daniel sent me a response suggesting I start a blog to record my experiences on the west coast. For those of you who don't know, Elizabeth is one of my oldest friends. She was also my housemate for two years in college. I think I speak for both of us when I say that that was not a well thought out choice. Only by the grace of God did we come out of the experience alive. But, despite our inability to live together peacefully, we have always had some pretty ridiculous times together and to this day remain great friends. Her random inside-joke text messages got me through a lot of crappy days this year. AND she's a creative writing MFA student right now--and a damn-good writer at that-- so when she told me, "I never thought I'd ask to hear you talk more, but I actually would like to hear more about it, so do the blog thing....I know if something insanely weird is going to happen, it's going to happen to you." I decided to listen. Hopefully she will hold up her end of the deal and leave copious "pithy comments" on my posts.

2. My computer got stolen. From church. (yep. the irony is not lost on me, either) Total bummer at first, but it actually turned out to be a pretty great thing, as my church's insurance covered me for a brand new Macbook, and I was given the opportunity to re-discover all of the joys of the Mac operating system (this is one of those moments where I'm choosing to restrain myself from rambling ad nauseum, but just know that I could talk for hours about the greatness of Mac). One of those joys being RSS feeds in mail. Now, when I go to check my e-mails, I also have a string of blogs that instantly update in my inbox. The downside: I am that sketchy friend who read your blog three minutes after you posted it. Nonetheless, this handy gadget has made me a pretty avid blog-reader, and following friends' blogs from far-off exotic places like Prague, Scandanavia, and Texas (exotic might be the wrong word for that one) helps me stay a part of their lives even though we are miles apart. Since I am now preparing to move very far away from a lot of people who I love, I think this could be a worthwhile venture.

3. Since August of this past year, I've worked at a desk. With a computer. And I have ADD. Therefore, I discover a lot of stupid websites, articles, songs, YouTube videos, etc. throughout the day. Highlights from this year include: the bacon explosion (thank you, New York Times), this video (thank you, David Bowie and Mick Jagger), and this website (thank you, America). Mostly, I pass these morsels along to Claire Moore via GChat. Now I can pass them along to THE WORLD. (evil laughter)

4. I'm reading The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion right now. It is hard to read, as it is her memoir about the year her husband suddenly died of a heart attack. But something that's kept me reading (other than the fact that we're doing the play at Studio and I have to lead discussions on it afterwards, so i really have no choice) are her insights on the mind and work of the writer. Didion's husband was also a writer, so her memories of him are tied to the craft they shared. The way she grieves his death, in a large way, is in writing it. Early in the book she says:
" I have been a writer my entire life. As a writer, even as a child, long before what I wrote ever began to be published, I developed a sense that meaning itself was resident in the rhythms of words and sentences and paragraphs, a technique for withholding whatever it was I thought or believed behind an increasingly impenetrable polish. The way I write is who I am, or have become."

I feel like that quote describes me pretty well. I, like Didion, am a writer. I have also been writing since a young age--writing stories, poems, keeping journals, etc. I know that my "polish," as she describes it, is quite a bit more penetrable than hers (if anything, I'm over-vulnerable in my written disclosures), but the idea that writers synthesize the world through syntax...I think she pretty much hits the nail on the head for me there.

Except I haven't been writing much lately. And I want to be.

So here it is. My place to share stories, pictures, quotes, things I find interesting. Hopefully you will find them interesting too. I will try to remember that I am writing for an audience, will try to be entertaining, relevant, insightful.. whatever it is that writers try to be when they write. And I hope that you, in turn, will please post back, comment, e-mail and keep me up to date on your lives as well.