Blogging is My Writing Candy

Heart for weaving blog posts. Photo by J. Chong 2015
Heart for weaving blog posts. Photo by J. Chong 2015

I’m not addicted to blogging.  I am such a lazy blogging sludge. I blog once, occasionally twice a month.

Scary Epiphany of Head Injury
Yet several months ago, I had a scary epiphany after I had a head injury from another cyclist crashing into me while on my bike in Vancouver. I could have lost my ability to blog, to write or make art, even if it’s my own lousy art.  Or even see my world with no shaky blurry vision.

Reliving Wishes For Global Pen Pals
More than ever before, I know why I’m far more motivated to blog compared to just writing:  I love marrying the written word with pictures, visuals and sharing with regular blog visitors.  Sharing and casual chat with blog commenters meets a fun fantasy I had as a teen:  I wanted to be pen pals with another kid in a far-flung, exotic country.  We would learn from sharing fragments of each other’s lives.

My kid dream was briefly fulfilled when a good high school friend in the same Canadian city where we both lived, moved with her family to Kobe, Japan for a year on her professor-father’s work sabbatical.  My dull, handwritten letters were eagerly exchanged for her more intriguing letters on Japanese pop-fashion, mannerisms and ancient temples.  My friend  also scribbled amusing cartoons to decorate her letters.  Just like modern day blog posts.

Japanese scroll painting of workers manufacturing some ammunition. Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto 2012. Photo by J. Chong
Japanese scroll painting of workers manufacturing some ammunition. Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto 2012. Photo by J. Chong
Contemporary Salish native art panel from British Columbia coast.  Museum of Anthropology, Vancouver BC 2012. Photo by J. Chong
Contemporary Salish native art panel from coast of British Columbia. Museum of Anthropology, Vancouver BC 2012. Photo by J. Chong

Necessary Drag of Business Writing
Though I did graduate with a university degree in English Literature, I never hankered to write novels, short  stories nor poetry to earn money.  After ploughing through literary canons of 18th century literature or Canadian and American literary gems, to me, writing full-time, to earn money, appeared tough in a very competitive global market.

Instead, I drastically scaled down to business writing — reports, plans, learning aids and notes illustrating Powerpoint slides and business workflow maps.  Business writing consumes less than 15% of my work in my full-time jobs.  A lot more time is spent on thinking, planning and client meetings, as necessary fodder for my business writing.

I know.  Not ripping exciting.  At least, I am writing for an audience –even if it’s parch-dry software instructions or a business model. And it helps put food on the table.

Traveller-prilgrim in Japanese painting. Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto 2012. Photo by J. Chong
Traveller-prilgrim in Japanese painting. Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto 2012. Photo by J. Chong

Blogware: Relief for Writer-Artist
Then blogging came along. Better than web site design. Neophytes like me, didn’t have to learn html coding if we wanted to throw up a pre-designed blog shell with a few personal tweaks. We could then redirect more sweat and time on writing longer, more meaningful pieces than a 140 character tweet. Tweets are just digital cheese crumbs to tease hopefully, herds of mice.

21st Century Pen Pals- Blog Commenters
It’s been gratifying to have some 21st  century blog pen pals who offer a thought or thumbs-up star.  We visit each others’ blogs like a fast coffee chat on the Internet highway.

Blogging is my writing candy.  Sometimes audience comments leads me to nibble on other blogs and learn from others.  Just like what distant pen pals do except a blog post gives a writer way more freedom and space to expound on a pet subject  with visuals.

My Readers: From Home Country to World Readers
My world wouldn’t crash into a black hole if I couldn’t blog.  But my writing world would be a lot less richer, less textured and more narrow without my blog readers chiming from across Canada, US, Thailand, Malaysia, India, Germany, Netherlands, Australia, New Zealand and UK.   There are some rare blogger-readers who seem to float around the world. Either they or a family member has a globe-trotting job. If I have missed your country, give a shout here on this blog.

greenlandembroidery
Embroidery from Greenland with Danish influences. Dated 1725. National Museum. Copenhagen, Denmark 2010. Photo by J.Chong

So please pop by in a few days.  Take a peek at readers’ gravater-blog links below.

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45 Comments Add yours

  1. PedalWORKS says:

    I like the Flag Counter.

    Nice post. 🙂

    Like

    1. Jean says:

      Thx for spinning by, Pedalworks. No doubt, you’re enjoying the cherry blossom tree bursts right now.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Love the pics you’ve chosen to go with this. (From not very exotic Scotland)

    Like

    1. Jean says:

      I had to think what type of photos would make “sense” for the post. I’m certain there are some exotic things in Scotland. Methinks there is some sort of unusual cow breed there. Haggis is pretty exotic to non-Scots! So is throwing that big huge log as a sport.

      Like

      1. Aye, nowt like tossing the caber.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. I enjoy blogging as I can share my stories and few pictures I have taken over the past years. It all started for me actually as an outlet from all the weirdness I experienced with my Chinese in-laws 🙂

    Like

    1. Jean says:

      You have a great blog, crazy! Yes, blogging is a wonderful, safe outlet 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  4. for me blogging was the only thing that made me feel ‘useful’ in the past two years – when I read I made someone laugh or that I helped anyone, it made me feel much better. without the ability of being someone else than a housewife trapped in her house (lack of driving skills) I felt like my life is pretty meaningless

    Like

    1. Jean says:

      It’s always a good thing to know of other people’s responses to your writing from far away. Probably has helped sharpen your writing skills. Do you think you’ll be blogging on completely different topics, now that you will have a job?

      Like

  5. Jean, I am so glad that your biking accident left you with all your faculties. I love visiting here at your blog. I never thought about how similar blogging is to having a pen pal(s), but you’re absolutely right!

    Sending positive thoughts of quick healing for you. ❤
    Diana xo

    Like

    1. Jean says:

      Yes, lucky, knock on wood here. Stuff that we take for granted a lot –ie. our brain. The info powerhouse for all our actions, thoughts and dreams. Thx for the good wishes, Diana. I’m grateful for your visits and comments.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Great post and pictures, Jean. I hope your head injury was not serious and heals quickly. I appreciate the way you put the value of blogging and life into context!

    Like

    1. Jean says:

      Good to see you here, Lisa. It’s been awhile. But you are busy with life. So I appreciate the drop-by here. Yes, blogging is important/useful but only up to a certain point.

      Like

  7. Sue Slaght says:

    What a fabulous term Jean, ‘writing candy.’ I hope you are progressing well in your recovery.

    Like

    1. Jean says:

      I am progressing, but it’s taken longer than expected. Now, if I quickly get back to normal sleeping patterns..

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Sue Slaght says:

        Glad to hear it’s heading in the right direction. Wishing you all the best

        Like

  8. livelytwist says:

    Hi Jean, I’m glad your injury wasn’t more serious. Like you, I had a penpal or two back in the day. Blogging is a lot more fun. Business writing can be a drag, blogging unleashes another side of our creativity.

    Do you sometimes find blogging to be work? I sometimes do?

    Like

    1. Jean says:

      Hi lively. Since I don’t blog often, I don’t find blogging “work”. I try to have a few posts ready for publishing so when life happens (like my injury), there is a blog post already in the hopper, waiting to be released to the world when I’m not up to writing anything. Nice for us to tap into blogging creativity, by creating and saving it for another sunny day.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Lani says:

    I really love the way you wrote this. So many great lines, I tweeted you, “Tweets are just digital cheese crumbs to tease hopefully, herds of mice.” and I like the pen pal analogy, too. Great writing, good stuff, sending you hugs from Thailand 😉

    Like

    1. Jean says:

      Glad you enjoyed it, Lani. Hugs to you, for our blog coffee chats. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  10. You are so modest! Lousy art? Dull hand-written letters? Don’t believe it Jean followers! Hope you are feeling better, and so glad your accident was a wakeup call and not a permanent derailment.

    Like

    1. Jean says:

      Aye, JBW my handwriting was and still is difficult to read –no matter how well I expressed myself. So, there are some benefits for computer typed letters for sloppy handwriters! Thanks for your good wishes. (By the way, may your daughter return to a permanently safer place to work after the island storm disaster.)

      Like

  11. Mabel Kwong says:

    “We visit each others’ blogs like a fast coffee chat on the Internet highway.” Love how you describe blogging and blog chatting, Jean. We can do that almost anytime we like. That’s the beauty of blogging and being a blogger – it’s all about flexibility and no pressure to write. We write when we like, when we feel like it, and when we’re ready to share a meaningful story or a part of our lives. I blog a bit more often than you, about three times a month but am thinking of doing it less if real life does not permit.

    Sorry to hear about your head accident/injury. That must have been scary, but sometimes it’s the scariest or most challenging of times that makes us thankful for what we have. Glad you are okay, and keep making art.

    Like

    1. Jean says:

      Three times per month is enough blogging since you write full posts vs. just a photography blog. No doubt, you will find a balance that will fluctuate over time, depending other things in life for you. But it is always good to capture the Muse and just write. Save it for release later on. I haven’t done the painting type of art in almost a year. Meanwhile I have piles of new empty canvasses.

      Like

      1. Mabel Kwong says:

        Piles of empty canvasses? Now you know you have something to do when you’re bored at home 🙂 Yes, when the Muse hits best to try to sit down and get into it – always a magical moment.

        Like

        1. Jean says:

          Nothing like being in our Zen zone when the magical Muse moment hits. Hope you get several of them, Mabel for your blog without enormous sweat.

          Liked by 1 person

  12. Jane Thorne says:

    I hope your head is feeling better now Jean? Blogging has brought richness in from the golden connections that come through this Global Village of ours. And I have heartfelt gratitude for the face to face friendships it has graced my life with. It has also given me the creative freedom to discover my ‘voice’ and writing style. And I found you. Xx

    Like

    1. Jean says:

      Am improving. I keep forgetting I am old enough to be someone’s grandma. 🙂 Agree that blogging has been another avenue for unleashing our creativity and making global connections, even if it’s just light chat. Hope you have a great remaining March and Easter, Jane. Perhaps you can blog abit more about Wales. It gets buried under England.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Jane Thorne says:

        I am glad your head is improving Jean. x I have moved from Wales to Cheshire and am looking to settle a bit further up north in Lancashire. I miss Wales and am going on an organised walk on the northern Welsh coastline at the end of March. Over Easter Mark and I are going exploring the North Yorkshire coast. I hope you have a lovely rest of March and Easter too. Hugs x

        Like

        1. Jean says:

          Ah, we never forget our roots, Jane. A close friend of mine from Canada, spent over 1 month in Wales. I think it was part of Rotary exchange. She learned lots and part of her roots are Welsh. Probably 3 generations back.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Jane Thorne says:

            There is something about Wales Jean that touches my heart. I am in Cheshire at the moment and Mark and I went to The Wirral the other Sunday and watched the sun set on the North Welsh hills. I just wanted to be back there, Who knows what the future holds, but right now I am moving towards the north Pennine moors of Lancashire. Xx

            Liked by 1 person

  13. “More than ever before, I know why I’m far more motivated to blog compared to just writing” Wonderful, wonderful, wonderful. Love how you were led to think through your blogging. You sound more focused aware than you did last year. =) Close calls sure bring our work and life into focus!

    Like

    1. Jean says:

      Not sure if more focus means I make more sense to readers 😀 now. But I’m trying to keep my blog posts from being an ambling walk through a thick forest. I did have an accident as a teenage pedestrian. I was struck down into the slushy snowy road, by a car cutting through a red light as soon as I stepped off the curb during winter. Fortunately the car was going slow enough that I was not thrown up onto the hood of the car. Ironically I was hit in front of a life insurance company building.

      Like

      1. ROAR!!!!!!! Sorry to be getting a kick out of this but…did you get the insurance? Ha ha ha (I know you didn’t, then).

        “focus means I make more sense to readers 😀 now.” It’s great when we make sense to ourselves. =) But no, you don’t confuse us ha ha ha.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Jean says:

          Life does sometimes have bizarre coincidences.

          Like

  14. You are the fine wine of blogging! I’m sorry you don’t post more often Jean…

    My intent when I started blogging was to post 3 or 4 times a week. Yeah right! Now I feel lucky if I get to post once a week. But I really do try because it’s an important outlet for me. In high school, felt like I should write but I was pretty awful (or so my teachers told me in a kind way) at the “traditional” forms of writing. So for most of my adult life I only did functional writing. When I started blogging I was determined to say what I had to say in my own way no matter all of the early negative messages. I’ve had a great time and never looked back! 🙂

    I do love the pen pal idea – I wanted a pen pal when I was young as well. Blogging is like having a slew of pen pals – you’re never without a buddy across the globe if you don’t want to be!

    Glad the mending continues…! Take care of that precious noggin’!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Jean says:

      You seem to have found your true writing calling in blogging. I like the spirit of your blog and may it continue to light fireworks. Great to see you here, aginggrace.

      Liked by 1 person

  15. uju says:

    Haha love the title of this post. I feel like blogging beats going to the shrink or just talking to yourself.

    Liking the pictures. Erm stealing them for my viewing pleasure too.

    You’re healed now? 🙂

    Like

    1. Jean says:

      Blogging can help sometimes in thinking through some abstract or complex problems with other people offering some thoughts. It’s up to us to decide how much we want to discuss about certain topics. If you wish to link to my photos, just a credit would be appreciated. It took awhile ploughing through my digital personal photos to land on photos that might suit! Gettin’ better each wk., uju.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. uju says:

        Of course you’ll be credited, thank you. Stay safe, Jean.

        Like

  16. thedumplingmama says:

    It’s so great your blogging has connected you to so many people (including me) around the world. I’m not surprised you were an English major, you write so well.

    Like

    1. Jean says:

      Not that many different people actually comment. Some followers just seem to hang on but not comment at all or maybe they’re bored yet have forgotten to unsubscribe. Appreciate your visit. Hope you get around to a new blog post in your busy life.

      Like

  17. Rita H. Azar says:

    Well, I’m glad I connected with you Jean through blogging. Even though i have been neglecting blogging lately I enjoy it so much. Love the fact that I can write and immediately publish.

    Like

  18. Love that Japanese scroll of depicting an ammunition plant. Blogging: ammunition for writers, as well as candy!

    Like

    1. Jean says:

      When wrote this blog post, I wondered what photos to choose. Happily it didn’t take long to remember some photos to pluck from my personal collection.

      Liked by 1 person

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