The Garden Dawdler by Rory

The week’s question are — I am taking my best guess here — about blogging. My only suggestion would be to suggest indefinite articles lack specificity. Maybe mention the subject and then move on to “it”?

And so, here are the questions of the week.

Do you think it* (a blog?) helps or hinders a writer from having a big ego?

I’m guessing from the rest of the questions that “it” is “blogging.” So I believe (but I could be wrong), that you are asking whether having a blog helps or hinders a writer from having a big ego, with a more subtle implication that “a big ego” is a “bad thing.”

Blogging with the help of The Duke

First, I don’t think having a strong ego is a bad thing, but big? Is big the same as strong? I don’t think you can be a writer in a public space without a strong ego. You will inevitably come in for some degree of criticism or at least disagreement. If you have a fragile ego, you will feel constantly assaulted by any response that isn’t supportive. Even neutrality can be seen as negative.

However, having a BIG ego, as in “inflated to the degree that you are a legend in your own mind” even when no one else is on the same page? They you are getting a bit Trumpish — and that is definitely not a good thing.

Over all, I think you need at least enough ego to deal with disagreements or criticism. If you can’t deal with it, don’t blog. Also don’t be a writer. I know many (maybe most) writers are over-senstive about their work. We probably are, but the price of publication it learning to deal with and accept that criticism will happen. Sometimes, you can learn from it.

Not all criticism is intended to hurt your feelings. Some is meant to call attention to something you failed to notice or is legitimate disagreement. And sometimes it’s your editor telling you to rewrite the manuscript which you really don’t want to do, but that’s the way the writing world rolls.

There’s also mean-spirited disagreement and trolls who think it’s funny to rile you up. You have to deal with those nasty people too. You can block a lot of negativity, but not everything.

You have to believe in yourself — and trust your editor.

How often do you read your blog content from an outsider’s perspective?

I try to read everything from an outsider’s viewpoint. Because I wrote professionally, I am pretty good at it, at least from the perspective of writing clear and understandable material. I also know if what I’m saying it likely to generate arguments, even occasionally anger to put those posts aside and decide to think about them for a while. Before posting them.

I view my blog as an allotment garden. How do you view yours?

It’s a way for me to express how I feel about life and other things — and show off photographs. I don’t have a single focus and never wanted one.

What’s the first book you ever remember reading way back when?

I have no idea. Not a clue.

Were you ever read to as a child, and by whom?

My mother read to me sometimes, but she also sang to me. I think I developed both a love for words and for music from that.

Where do you like to read? At home on the couch? Whilst travelling? In bed? Where?

All of the above.

What are the most significant barriers to your creativity?

Insufficient hours in the day.

Do you think blogging is essential, and if you do, why?

I don’t know. It’s important, at least to me. It was at some point essential. I know it is no longer essential and maybe, not even important.

There are many benefits to blogging; however, what are the three top downsides of blogging, in your opinion?

I always feel obliged to write or process photographs every day, no matter how I feel. Actually, that IS the only downside. Otherwise? It’s a hobby that lets me give my opinion — if I have an opinion — and I get to show off my pictures. Otherwise, they’d just sit on my hard drive getting old.

Categories: #Blogging, Anecdote, Q & A

Tags: , , ,

10 replies

  1. I am the same with this Marilyn 🙂 “It’s why I can’t just reblog stuff. I look at it and need to make it better. ” I am looking to always improve what l have written previously, sometimes in a matter of moments as l am never happy with what l write.

    You are right and l say this all the time to people, perfection isn’t possible, you can encounter perfect moments throughout your life, but it’s just not sustainable.

    I am contemplating writing next year, a book on gardening or allotmenteering and not from the usual approach and you are right, speciality books outsell fiction, l guess it’s because people are always looking to improve or chase the elusive perfection quest 🙂


  2. Hey Marilyn, interesting answers all – big or strong concerning ego is the same interpretation as l initially thought. It was aimed not specifically at blogging, but at writing in general, so you answered it correctly.

    As writers, we all need the confidence to project our thoughts, ideas, opinions and creative imaginations to the worldwide audience that reads from our blogs or other content from other platforms.

    Some writers l have found to be overly egotistical and think not on the level of humbleness in any way, shape, or form should l feel step down a rung or two. As you wrote, I admire levelheadedness regarding confidence but not an overly inflated attitude. But you are spot on. You do have to believe in yourself. It would help if you found a healthy equilibrium in your abilities, especially when it does come to criticism. I don’t mind beneficial critiques, but when l sense it is a cheap jibe, my hackles rise slightly.

    I always read my content from the blog side of life rather than the Reader, probably because l like you post a lot of images, so l need to make sure the balance is tight on formatting.

    I hear you for hours each day, never enough, and strangely enough, l am not even thinking of blogging with that, just life.

    Good answers all and always received with thanks.


    • My mother was the one who told me that I had to be number one in my list of “favorite people.” She said that her failure to do that had been very costly. She had learned the hard way if you don’t support yourself, respect yourself, believe in yourself, no one else will.

      I’m much more confident about my writing than my photography. But I spent a whole working lifetime writing professionally. I never stopped improving or learning. Nothing I write is ever perfect and whenever I open an older post, I have to rewrite it. It’s why I can’t just reblog stuff. I look at it and need to make it better.

      Perfection is not achievable. Not in writing, photography, cooking, gardening. I’m not sure that anything can be perfect, but most of us want to write that one perfect post or create that one perfect photo or painting or sculpture … or the best meal or recipe EVER. I think the drive for perfection is what keeps most of us working and keeps our work from getting boring. If you don’t want to do better, your professional life — or even you retired life — is going to get awfully dull.

      I LOVE what you do with gardens. That IS art. I was the editor of the Doubleday Garden Guild — all gardening books. Your work is better than what they showed and wrote about. You might consider a book, you know. You’ve been keeping photographic records plus written records. You might already have a book. Specialty books for stuff like gardening tend to sell better than most fiction.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. NO Dawdlin’! Times a wastin’!

    – my Blog is a mess
    – my Blog is an Artform. i failed Science.
    – Book? The Young Blackbird by Mum.
    – I read on the couch.
    – Barrier? Fear.
    – Only Love is essential.
    – 3 Drawbacks? … seeking perfection … ??

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I agree with your answers Marilyn, especially the first one.


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