THE REAL QUESTION

I felt like apologizing today when I was trying to do some blogging and I realized I had to stop because I needed to make dinner. It occurred to me that there’s something wrong when I feel like “life” is taking up my blogging time.

Tomorrow I’ll have to interrupt my busy blogging schedule with an actual face-to-face visit with my shrink.

It has been difficult to tell recently where blogging stops (or starts) and when life is not the intruder, but you know, LIFE. So the question really is, does life intrude on blogging or does blogging intrude on life? Or maybe there is no difference?

Think about that for a minute or two. What’s your real answer?



Categories: Anecdote, Blogging, Humor, Life

Tags: , , ,

49 replies

  1. Goodness …. there are certainly days when I feel like this ….
    Thank you for starting this conversation ….

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    • It was just a thought because I was trying to get something put together to post, but I couldn’t find a battery, a card went bad, and then there was dinner … and I realized dinner was going to mean I’d have to do everything after dinner. I got tired thinking about it. So, before I forgot about it, i sat down today to write. If I hadn’t, the idea would have skittered off 🙂

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  2. I think the lockdown ruined me. Being inside ALL the time, writing and photography WERE reality because absolutely nothing else was going on, unless you count cooking and cleaning (which I don’t count, which is probably why my house has more dust than furniture).

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  3. Great thought-provoking post, Marilyn. You have a huge number of followers IIRC, on the order of 14 or 15k. I imagine that adds to whatever “pressure” you may feel to blog frequently? That and the fact that writing is in your DNA after all these years? Me, I’ve contemplated shutting down my blog for the past year and took a long break from writing or reading any blogs. My morning routine used to be – first thing every day – check the main internet news sites to make sure we aren’t bombing anyone and nobody is bombing us. That started with 9-11, so almost 20 years of Reuters, NPR, and CNN online. ( I do not own an TV but used to subscribe to 10+ paper newspapers back in the day to get the various regional slants on stories from around the US.) Now my mornings begin with reading all the blogs in my reader. It takes a couple of hours but is so much healthier than what passes for the news these days. In terms of my own blogging, usually twice a week, tops. A few years ago I participated in one of those post daily for a month – it about killed me. It takes me hours to write and edit a post? However do you do it Marilyn?? You consistently turn our high-quality posts on a wide variety of topics. Best, Babsje

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    • I find myself wishing I could shut it down, but then, what would I do? I’m going to write because I need to write, but feeling that daily push that I need to do something for tomorrow …

      It’s 7:30pm. I haven’t written anything. I’ve processed a pile of photos, but I haven’t written anything but comments. I’m also very slow to publish. I edit, re-edit, then re read it, then often let it lie as a draft and reread it to see if I still like it. I write like a pro which is great except it’s really unnecessary for much of what I write. I can’t help it. It really IS DNA. I write as if everything is going to a printer to be bound and published. Forty-five years of writing for a living formed habits I seem unable to break.

      I don’t know how I do it either. I’ve tried NOT writing anything, but by the middle of the day, I start to feel like something is missing — maybe a post? I actually can’t remember NOT writing. It’s a lifetime habit.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I understand entirely! It’s as though you can’t NOT write. It’s a conundrum. As one of your followers, I’m happy to see your posts, and appreciate your many photos. How does that saying go “perfection is the enemy of the good”? It can be a trap for those who are highly intelligent like you. Perhaps adjusting to “good enough” can be good enough and give you more breathing room? Or maybe tinker with a schedule so that two days a week your posts are photo-focused and two days opinion pieces on climate or philosophy or politics and the other 3 participation in various challenges? But you’ve already considered similar and I bet adhering to a schedule will feel like a ball and chains. Good luck however you proceed. I vote for “good enough” and not perfection. There’s no Pulitzer Prize for blogging that I’m aware of. You are your own best and harshest critic??

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        • Garry totally rejected scheduling the day channel 7 told him to go home and stay there. He lived on a minute to minute schedule from youth to age and now, about the only schedule he follows is to make sure dinnertime for Duke the dog is after four, but before six. I’ve fallen into the same pattern of essentially not dealing with anything that isn’t happening now — more or less.

          The result? I’m ALWAYS late and I was NEVER late before.

          Liked by 1 person

          • That’s my kind of schedule! Basically it’s a non-schedule. Since I stopped my day job last November, I often lose track of the days of the week. And those Monday holidays? I’m usually not on top of them either. And no more morning alarm clock unless for doctor appointments. It’s a sort of a luxury to not have to keep pace with everything else according to days of the week or the calendar. I can understand what you mean by saying that you are feeling like you’re late for things – that’s a drag. Good luck working beyond that!

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  4. I couldn’t last one day w/o reading a ‘real book’. And your post is the main rfor me not to have a blog. Many posts of the few bloggers I follow, make me think long and hard, search for a more profound understanding, or read more on a certain theme.
    I value good honest news and my choice of newspapers’ readings, both online and in print are faithful friends for me. Making up my own opinion is being helped by not having a TV.

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    • I read real books when I have no choice, but it isn’t my first choice or even my second or third. My eyes are trying to leave home without me. I think I have permanent eye strain.

      Lately the news in the U.S. has been so awful, I read a paragraph and I have to stop. It’s depressing and worse, it’s actually frightening. What ARE they doing to our country and WHY?

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  5. I had hardly written anything this week and today as well as doing one of Cee’s challenges I did two posts for the doll blog. Without old dolls from the Op Shop to fix it’s been harder to find new topics so when I got an idea today I was determined not to leave the computer until I got it done. The time I usually start to cook came and went and I was getting hungry but did not stop to make dinner until I was finished. Sometimes I feel life gets in the way of blogging but not today.

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    • I spent all day yesterday planning to write something and in the end, I didn’t. I processed a ton of photographs. It’s October, so there will be a lot more pictures to come until fall ends. I get distracted. I think it’s one of the perils of aging. I start to do something, someone asks me a question or I remember I need to water the plants or feed the birds and by the time I’m done, I’ve forgotten what I was originally doing.

      If someone else made dinner around here, I might get more accomplished, but these days, the distraction factor is very high and my focus rate is VERY low.

      Liked by 1 person

    • It all blends together, you know? The writing, the photography, the processing and somewhere in there, there’s a doctor appointment or a trip to the grocery — and of course, flowers, birds, squirrels, and chipmunks out back. I have all my cameras — each with a different lens on it — on what was once a dining room table. Now it’s Marilyn’s photo table. Three big Olympus cameras, two containers of CD cards, the random battery because each camera takes a slightly different battery. This week alone, I’ve spend at least 24 hours trying to find a charger for Garry’s Leica batteries or one of my batteries. Why can’t they make them standard?

      Do I REALLY need 1000 pictures of chrysanthemums? Or 500 more squirrels and who knows how many more birds?

      But in the end, what else would I do with myself if I DIDN’T do this stuff? I write, I take pictures, and I’m beginning to draw again after a long time or not doing it. I’m going to learn to draw birds. If that works out, I’ll try squirrels next.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. So I see my blogging today as an extension of my life, but the rest of my life often takes me away from writing. Since I’ve started writing poetry I’ve been using the notes app in my iPhone to write the poems. Since my phone is always with me I always have the ability to write down my thoughts.

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    • I don’t go anywhere much and I’m not all that great with writing on the phone. My fingers aren’t the right shape. I think younger people were born with pointed fingers or at least pointed thumbs. I try to write down at least the ideas I’ve got before they fly away. I think that’s probably as good as it will get for me.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. No matter how its penned . . . there is interference! Claudia

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    • The two parts of my life – blogging and everything else – are so intertwined I’m not sure it’s possible for me to separate them. I was wondering where one stops and the other begins or maybe there isn’t any real difference 😀

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  8. I believe you explained it to me before. Writers have to write. It is what we do.

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    • Writing has always gotten in my way. Blogging at least means that someone besides me might actually read it 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • Your comment illicited a giggle! How many times have I told myself that it doesn’t matter whether anyone read my poem, or anything I write. And yet, I relish the conversations & community blogging affords. I guess one of the reasons the only writing I do these days is in the Blogosphere.

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        • I always ask people — if you don’t care, why publish? I actually think the whole need to write pretty much requires reading by others. We put our thoughts on the computer or paper but if no one reads it, it feels a bit futile.

          At this point, I don’t care how many people read what I write, but I love — as you do — the engagement. That matters a lot.

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          • I suspect it is a case of lowering one’s expectations so we won’t get too disappointed. Which is kinda sad, if you think about it, and possibly a self-fulfilling prophecy.

            Anyhoo, I completely agree with you – the beauty of blogging is the community building from the interactions we share! Hurray BlogFriends! Hurray Marilyn, for bringing engaging us in this question!

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  9. I FIND MYSELF READING OTHER PEOPLE’S BLOGS AND DOING VERY LITTLE BLOGGING MYSELF. OUTSIDE OF RESPONDING TO OTHERS. I DO HAVE ACTIVITIES I COULD TALK ABOUT, BUT I NEVER THINK THEY ARE THAT IMPORTANT OR THAT OTHERS MIGHT BE INTERESTED. FOR INSTANCE, I JUST FINISHED CO=WRITING A CHILDREN’S BOOK FOR UN WITH A LADY WHO IS ON HER WAY TO NEPAL TO WORK WITH ELEPHANTS. I ALSO JUST MET WITH A GROUP, INCLUDING HIS DAUGHTER, AS A MEMORIUM FOR EDWARD ALBERT, JR. TO DISCUSS HIS LIFE AND WORK IN TV AND MOVIES. THESE WERE IMPORTANT TO ME, BUT I’M NOT SURE THEY WOULD INTEREST OTHER PEOPLE.

    Liked by 1 person

    • They would definitely be of interest to others. They would not be of interest to everyone, because we all have different insights and perspectives. They would be of interest to some and that is what we are striving for.

      Liked by 1 person

    • That sounds REALLY interesting! I’d love to hear about it!

      Liked by 1 person

      • MARILYN: THE BOOK IS THE FIRST IN A SERIES ABOUT THE LAND, SEA, AND AIR FOR THE UNITED NATIONS. MY CO-AUTHOR HAS JUST MOVED TO NEPAL TO WORK WITH ELEPHANTS AND TO TEACH A GROUP OF NATIVE CHILDREN HOW TO COMMUNICATE WITH ANIMALS. SHE AND I ARE ANIMAL COMMUNICATORS. A GROUP OF PEOPLE WHO ARE FANS OF EDWARD ALBERT, JR. WHO DIED ALMOST 15 YEARS AGO, AND HIS DAUGHTER MEET TO DISCUSS HIS LIFE AND FILM. I’M THE ONLY ONE WHO KNEW HIM FROM THE TIME HE WAS 13 YEARS OLD WHEN I WENT TO WORK FOR HIS PARENTS, MARGO AND EDDIE ALBERT AS THEIR ASSISTANT GIRL FRIDAY. EDWARD AND I WERE FRIENDS UNTIL HIS DEATH. WE STILL SAW EACH OTHER ON SPECIAL OCCASIONS AND WERE PLANNING ON WRITING A BOOK TOGETHER ABOUT HIS DAD. EDWARD DID FAR TOO YOUNG.

        Liked by 1 person

  10. I’m like that with my photos. I can’t stop taking photos for my blog or stop taking them for anything. I have to remember if I lost my camera or internet I’d go back to my journals. It’s a blogging thing and I love it.

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  11. Irish writer Brendan Behan once described himself as “a drinker with a writing problem”!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Blogging has become a “natural” piece of my existence. I’ve only been on here nearly two years. I try to post once a week. And when life is so busy I can’t blog, or more importantly, read others like yours, it feels strange. I’m not into social media, although I’ve had to use IG in many ways to help my own growth as a wannabe author. It’s in this space I feel connected to the “real” in the world.

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    • I think the whole COVID thing made life on the internet much more real than it was before. Because I worked in tech most of my working life — at least since the early 1980s full time and partially before that — using a computer has been easy. I sort of slid into it while I was in Israel and I remember, after I got my first job as part of development group thinking “THIS is an improvement.” No more white-out. No more correction tape. Not more carbon copies. Once I got my own computer, I never even thought about going back to typewriters. My wrists thanked me, too.

      Liked by 1 person

  13. I know how you feel Marilyn! My head is always blogging but I never seem to find enough time to sit and do anything. Life gets in the way. I’m not one of these bloggers who can just dash off a post from a phone or iPad, I need my computer

    Liked by 2 people

    • I always took a laptop and later a tablet with the detachable keyboard on trips, but I could not use them for blogging. I need the desktop computer for writing,

      Liked by 1 person

    • I can’t dash off ANY writing and I can’t even imagine really writing on a phone or even an iPad. I NEED a keyboard — full size, please. The other big problem is it takes me a long time to write anything I care about.

      When I started blogging, I wrote very short pieces and I got better “stats” because everyone loves short pieces. But I can’t seem to write those little short blurbs anymore. Life has gotten too complicated for quickie writing.

      So if I want a short piece, it will be mostly pictures and maybe a couple of paragraphs. Anything more requires more time, often much more time. Especially true when I need pictures to go with the story and have to take amd process them before publishing.

      Also, though I’m a fast writer, I’m a VERY slow editor. That’s the way I’ve always been, not just now. This may have something to do with being a terrible proofreader and having to read things many times to find most (but never all) of the typos😂

      Liked by 1 person

      • I also get more views and likes on short pieces. I tried hard yesterday to do a post on my iPad but there is a glitch in the app that I can’t access my photos, wasted about an hour. Keep calm and keep trying 😀

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      • I can’t blog anywhere else but on my computer either. I even find it challenging to read posts on my mobile because I can’t respond properly. Typos drive me crazy, and I can’t seem to catch them unless I am on the computer.

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    • I get great ideas and promptly forget them — unless I write them down. I try to at least put down a headline and a sentence or two which will jiggle that idea out of my brain, but life seems to fly by at supersonic speeds. Yesterday was a year ago and tomorrow has probably happened but I didn’t notice (yet). I have NO idea how come it’s October. Where did September or for that matter, July and August, go?

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