Finding my voice

When you write for a living, a weird thing can happen to your written voice. It becomes so malleable, smooshed into a house style to fit and be accepted that when you sit down to write for yourself, on your own terms, about whatever the hell you want to, the voice can take a while to get itself out. There’s a stutter, a whimper, a whisper. It’s so unsure of itself. What does it stand for? What is it trying to say? What’s the most natural way to say it?

Well, I’m not sure if that happens to all writers but it happens to me. Regularly. So regularly infact that there are large chunks of time represented as blanks in this blog’s more than three year history. Blanks where I am sitting somewhere stressing out about my blog’s direction, my inability to do justice to the ideas in my head and then the subsequent avoidance. There have been times that I have felt my voice ring out loud and clear on these pages as I share something close and dear to me or something personal and frightening. And just as I do, as I open up and let my readers get a real feel for me, I freak myself out and bolt that voice away lest it get too loud and lead me closer to where I actually want to be. It’s an act of self-sabotage of that I’m sure.

I’m not writing this from a place of revelation, I am still a little unsure of what I’m doing here. But I know I want to be here all the same. And for me, that’s good enough. Sometimes, I feel like I have to have something really big to say to write here, but the big things tend to scare the voice away. The voice doesn’t feel like it can do the big things justice somedays, or that others can say these things better than it can. So maybe I’ll stick to the little things again for awhile, to see if I can tease it out from it’s word cave. And at the moment, it’s the little things that are giving me the most joy. Little steps on wooden floors, little face kisses and an arm casually slung around my shoulder and little heart leaps from a place of numbness. The little things are the things of real life, of little chats with people in my neighbourhood, of laughs with friends, of making loud noises during fireworks, nailing a yoga pose that a few weeks ago sent me toppling and of that morning coffee feeling as it warms my hand.

And if that is all, then that is all.


Learning to blog in tune

Blog posts are alot like songs, some are instant hits – catchy, with a hook that has you nodding your head in agreement and even murmuring along as you read – and some are slow burners, infiltrating your mind long after you’ve clicked the off button on your computer.

And sometimes a good one does both of these at once, allowing you an emotional release – to laugh, cry, question, get angry, forgive and hope – that stays with you for days. And that’s just the blogger.

What happens when you hit the publish button is anyone’s guess, you may inspire a similar release in others or you may just be hosting a pity party that has readers racing for the back button, leaving you with a sagging party hat and a party whistle lying limply at your lips.

It’s with these thoughts in mind that I think back to the blogging year that was and choose my favourite blog post I wrote in 2010, as part of the Nuffnang Christmas Blogger Challenge. Continue reading