Sunday 8 November 2009
Today, between segments of a very long bicycle ride and a delicious greasy brunch with my dear hubby, I finished Wilkie Collins' The Moonstone. It was action-packed, full of confusion and misdirection and red herrings, and it was well-written to boot. Most enjoyable. But I want to write about something else right now. Please bear with me.
I've mentioned before that I began this blog simply to discover how many books I read on average per year. It quickly turned into something I enjoyed for its own sake, primarily because it gave me an opportunity to write about books in an entirely casual, and therefore pleasurable, way in direct contradistinction to the "professional" writing I was doing for my dissertation.
Blogging about books was a vacation, a relief, but also a reminder of what got me so far in the study of literature to begin with. Not that anything I've ever written here would have ever functioned as even a good undergraduate essay, of course; it was simply that writing about books in this way reminded me of a simpler time during which I had a much simpler relationship with literature - and it helped sustain me until it was all over.
Now, I've been done with school for almost a year. For some time after completing what I hope will be my final university degree, I think my blogging became, overall, quite a lot better than it had been. I had more time and brain for engaging with what I was reading and for considering what I might say about it. I've even, in the last 6+ months, had some Thoughts along the way. Things were looking good.
And things continue to improve, in one sense. I feel fantastic. I feel free of any lingering anxieties, fatigues, etc associated with my unhappy times in academe. I feel recovered from it. I feel like a normal person (!!), and many people I know who have been done with grad school much longer than I have unfortunately cannot say the same. I feel lucky and blessed and given to playing in the fall leaves like someone either very spiritually free or a bit slow. I feel good.
The thing is, the better I feel, the harder I'm finding it to blog. I struggle more with every post and am less satisfied with the results every time (except maybe for my Curious/Creepy posts, but I am the kind of hopeless nerd who laughs at her own jokes). I'm certainly not finding it difficult to read; indeed, all I want to do is read incredibly long novels (hence the Victorian novels of late, gawd luv 'em); yet, when it comes time to post about them, I find myself longing simply to start another novel, immediately.
So, what I'm hoping for with this confession, I suppose, is some perspective and advice. If you blog, how do you maintain your interest and energy in the activity? If you've felt like this, how have you gotten past it? I like my blog. I worked hard to make it this darned purrty. But I'm losing stamina right now. So please, share. I'm all ears - interweb-ally speaking.