Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Keeping it real: finding my voice in blogging

Throughout most of college and in some of my work experiences, I've spent a lot of time writing news and pr-related pieces. It worked well for my analytical, observer personality -- I'm not shy, but a wallflower often by choice. Some of my past writing was based in unbiased, dispassionate stone-cold facts; some of it, on the public relations side, was based on other people's quotes and events. But with the clamor of all these voices wanting to be heard through ink and online, the hardest voice to find in it all was my own.

Writing this blog has been one of the most rewarding yet challenging experiences I've ever had. I started it shortly after my undergraduate years so that I could still have a place to experiment with my personal writing and style. I had done opinion writing before, at school and at internships, but never really focused on what I, singular little me, thought.

It has not been easy. As much as I have written about photography advice, perhaps the hardest part of blogging for me is how to do reflective, personal writing. I have struggled with what I've wanted this blog to become, and I oscillate on what features to keep doing, what parts of my personality I want to funnel through. Can I be funny? Serious? Is this too weird/awkward/vain/morose to talk about? Should I consider using this as a career-building vehicle? How much of my life do I share and how much of it should be kept under wraps? These are things I think about every day when I write.

I know this is primarily a style blog, but I find personal writing inextricably linked to it. For me, it's impossible to write about my clothes without examining the life lived in them. As much as I sometimes would rather have the photos speak for themselves, I know that doing so, on a personal level, is allowing my fear of public speaking to come through.

Why am I writing this? I guess this is meant to be a thank you to all of you, for continuing to read this blog through the changes I've put it through over the last several months, through tone and aesthetics.

Sometimes it is easier for me to go back into observer mode and clam up whenever I blog. I still daily struggle with what my writing voice is, but I know that the practice of continued writing is further chipping away the banalities and trepidations and getting closer to me being more genuine. I don't really plan on anything new and shiny to add yet to this blog, except for the promise of trying to be more comfortable with sharing my voice here in this space.

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