“I love your honesty.”
I like that comment, and I have gotten it a couple times after I left some blood and guts on a post or two. When I read that type of comment, I think maybe, just maybe, I successfully reached a place in myself that is the most authentic part of me. The writer in me would like to go there more often.
One time a person commented on my “We’re Not in Kansas Anymore, Toto” post and told me that maybe I wasn’t being honest. That person had read around this blog and felt what I like to refer to as the undertow of a blog. The undertow, the part I didn’t know that I wrote, or perhaps left out, and the supporting pieces that often have their own unintended message. That person was very perceptive, and challenged a belief I have that isn’t set in stone.
Starrlife just wrote a post titled, Blogging is Not Journalism 2
about another blog author’s post titled Truth in Blogging...
“Does it matter if truth creeps into fiction or fiction creeps into truth?”
“I like blogs that have that authentic feel, that grain of truth that is universal and transcend this issue. I like to think I can perceive those blogs. Do I? Can you?”
I am guessing that many of us have different motives for blogging, but most of those motives likely have something to do with authenticity, honesty, or truth... all different birds indeed. We have something to say, something we believe to be true, and we want to share this truth in order to have some effect in our sphere of influence.
But what if something in your blog’s undertow tells a story that is different from the one you are intentionally writing? What if you hear “I love your honesty” and “I don’t quite believe you” after the same post? What if someone questions the truth of some of your personal claims? Can one be honest and authentic but perhaps blind to certain truths? And does it even matter what is personally true and what isn’t, so long as the writer is being genuine and having a positive impact?
Most of the time I don’t think it matters that a writer is rarely able to completely pull off Shakespeare's “To thine own self be true” advice on a personal blog. As long as you mystify me, rock me, make me think, or drown me in beauty... I am happy to have visited you.
But what if your undertow is beginning to separate a group of people that I am very plugged into and proud of? I guess I then become one of those commenters who asks you to dive into it and see where it takes you.
(I would love for this to be a conversation but no unsigned anons for this one please.)
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