On the Solipsism of Joy


(QUILL Writing) Makes blog writing look like a walk in the park. (Image sourced from Google.)

One of the many things I’ve had to learn over the 14 plus months of running this blog is the art of forgetting that I have an audience.

This intentional amnesia is key to my literary productivity (what of it I’ve managed to achieve, at any rate). If I continuously agonized (like I used to do) about my readers’ inclinations, preferences, sensibilities and tastes, I’d end up writing once a week rather than once a day.

(Because let’s face it: the things I write about most naturally are not the things that constitute light and easy reading. I’ve been accused of being difficult and of being depressing, and on more than a few occasions, of being simultaneously difficult and depressing. Fortunately, hearing this feedback time and again has not occurred to me as either difficult or depressing. And, yes, I’ve gone on writing happily about other difficult and depressing things.)

All of which reveals my views about blog writing (and about writing in general): 

1. The writer’s foremost reader is herself.

2. The process of writing is an end in itself.

3. Having an audience made up of people other than oneself is best considered a pleasurable if unpredictable bonus.

4. Having an appreciative audience made up of people other than one’s mother is best considered a delightful if unreliable bonus.

5. Predictable and reliable bonuses are best,even if they are slightly less pleasurable and delightful—hence the importance of Views #1 and #2.

In short: do the things that make you happy from the sheer act of doing them. Even if they involve writing about difficult and depressing things.

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