tap tap tap

…is this thing on?

Summer at Dickinson House

More than nostalgia for the internet of 2003-2008, the connections, real friendships, inspiration, teaching I found there, I miss the way it was slow and relatively quiet. The people I knew had blogs and wrote in them about their lives, their work, their questions about their work, their process, in ways that felt intimate and honest, and the word ‘monetize’ didn’t even exist in our frame yet. (Do any of you remember those ‘ad-free blog’ buttons? I actually found that campaign kind of self-righteous and snooty, but I do miss blogs where I feel like the writer isn’t walking on eggshells—the eggshells of advertising money or readers’ approval.) I like and use Instagram, although I like and use it in ways that are different to how I liked and used Flickr (talk about an empty hallway these days). I don’t have apps on my phone besides Instagram in part because I don’t want to feel available, I don’t want to feel overrun by voices and images, all the time. I like it when I don’t open my computer for two days in a row. But somewhere along the way—in part maybe because so many people started making money from their blogs; in part because I started writing about hmmm writing and thinking, and less about making clothes and objects; in part because as I professionalized as a writer I came to fear writing in a blog as a potential ‘waste’ (!) of future-usable text (!); and in part because honestly it’s not as fun to do this when you feel you’re doing it in a void—I stopped writing here. Regularly. I mean I stopped seeing the blog as a form for finding things out myselfI miss it. I can’t make promises because I only break those but I would like to be back here more often, as part of an ordinary recording of my ordinary life. The weather. The garden. What I’m sewing. Whether I’m painting. What I’ve read lately. Etc. You know, the things we used to write to one another about. I’ll start now(-ish) but I’m thinking 2017 will be my little renaissance: try to rediscover how I used this space. Since it’s now and not then, though, I’m going to use this: #littlerenaissance. You come too, if you like, in whatever form you used to use and now miss.

(6) Comments

  1. I missed you and your observations and photos of your garden, your sewing, etc. I hope you DO resume making more frequent posts on this blog…..

  2. this makes me glad. it also puts a push behind similar thoughts i’ve been thinking/feeling, just wonder if i have it in me…

  3. i’m glad you wrote this, i found myself thinking similar things, reflecting on the good old days of blogging, for me ca 2005-2007 and from then on it became a different animal, the climate really changed and all became sort of more organized and ambitious. i decided myself to – in a way – set out to claim my blogular innocence again, just writing into the internet for no good reason or any ordinary good reason…like you say, your garden, what the cat did and which book was in the mail today and assorted random reflections… looking forward to what you will do with and in your little corner renaissance of the internet & do have a good autumn

  4. thank you for this. it’s nice to know you’re still out there. and yes, all you say here is recognizable to me. I want to reclaim a slowness of internet use and I’m hoping this is part of it. will watch for your writings, too. take care.

  5. well, one at a time, eh? I mean who knows how long I will keep this up. But I’m going to try in good faith to do it every so often, because of what I remember about how it made me feel and the community it facilitated.

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