Tuesday, July 26, 2011

The "I" problem

I have read posts about blogging before.  I didn't do it to be meta.  I did it to see what I should do with my posts, should I feel like reaching an actual audience, or in case I had a reason for people to be drawn to my posts about writing (say, like publication).

The most often repeated piece of advice about blogging is to avoid talking about oneself too often. "Don't say 'I' more than 10 times in your post," they exhort.  It's egotistic and self-involved, and you'll bore people.

Maybe I am boring you.  But at least I'm not preaching to you.  Which is exactly what it feels like I'm doing if I'm moving beyond sharing my own experiences.

I feel I'm coming from a place more of humility if I'm saying, "this is what I deal with, and this is what works," versus, "this is what you should do."  The way I'm phrasing it, I figure, people can take it as advice, or as an interesting anecdote, or as commiseration.

Besides, who am I to tell people what works?  I can vomit back all the things I've learned in writing classes, or from my writing group, or from what I've read about writing.  But you can take those classes, join your own writing group, read those books, all on your own.  You don't need the filter of my perception sullying that experience.

And so, I hope you're reading these posts in the spirit I intend them:  as one wannabe writer's perspective on the issues and/or solutions I run into while writing.  You can take it as advice if you find anything useful.  You can take it as entertainment, on whatever level you find me amusing.  You can take it as commiseration, and I welcome and will respond to all comments (except spam, which will be deleted).

There are certainly writers who know enough about the craft, the process, the whole publication thing, to be able to dispense advice.  I wouldn't dare presume to place myself on their level.


  1. I think you are doing fine with blogging!

    Blogging is an art form in itself, and it can take a little getting used to. I don't think saying 'I' too much takes away from blog posts. As long as what you are saying things that are interesting, using I just means you are writing in that first person which appeals to a lot of people.

  2. Thanks.

    Like I said above, apparently it marks me as a "newbie." But I put some thought into it, and decided I'd rather have a humble, "this is my experience" sort of tone than, "this is how it's done."

  3. Meh - I'm not a noob at blogging, but I use 'I' a lot in my blogs.

    I think a 'this is my experience' approach is a good one! Just keep blogging :D