If you blog, prepare to make friends, frenemies and enemies. You will make some people laugh,
some people cry, some people look over their shoulder, some people will re-examine everything they thought was true and some people will just read themselves into anything and everything you write.
No one told me this when I first started to blog. Few months into blogging I made one terrible mistake, I was red flagged by an Indian blogging group (name withheld) because what I thought wouldn’t reach most of the ‘extremist/orthodox’ Indian readers/bloggers got it on their computer screen and sure as hell they didn’t like what I wrote! (You see that’s how famous my blog is hihi). Right then I realized blogging is a high-risk behavior and it’s powerful. Way more so than speech because it’s more permanent. The written word can be read and re-read over and over for sometimes as long as centuries. That’s a lot of power. Lesson learned: Choose your words wisely!
When I consider some of the more controversial bloggers out there, you know who they are, the ones whose blogs get shut down periodically because of perceived political incorrectness on the part of a society that wasn’t there when the topic of the blog was written, but feels obligated to shut them out in this somewhat materialistic, morally twisted, modern world. So what went wrong?
I suspect most of them were telling the truth. And some people can’t handle the truth. But let’s consider where most bloggers get their material:
Their life experiences
Encounters with others
Things they observe
Just a few examples, but some really relevant ones.
Most bloggers get their ideas from everyday life, experiences and the people in it. Bearing in mind what I said earlier, most people will read themselves into everything written on some level, even subconsciously. It will make them think of how it might apply to them, or how they can apply it to others. And it often does. It would be something in Med. School we called “Medical Student Syndrome” which will simply mean, ‘A med student tends to diagnose himself with every disease he reads about’.
Be prepared. You WILL offend some. It can’t be helped. There are all kinds of egos involved on both sides. No one is ever going to agree with everything you write. Ever!! Because, deep down, they hope you aren’t writing about them, but they also hope you are. It appeals to their sense of belonging. I wrote a post about me missing home titled ‘I miss you’ (here) after reading the first paragraph (not the whole post, I guess) someone unbelievable accused me of still missing my ex-girlfriend (heaven knows I DON’T) and writing a post to let her know how much I miss her. Phewww.. It took me some days to rectify (?)/ calm the brawling situation. Another lesson learned: Never write something which could mean two different things!
I’ve been guilty of murdering the English Language. I’ve played with and played up with it. I’ve manipulated it in ways to make it almost unrecognizable. I’ve taken a word and deliberately misspelled it. I’ve been grammatically incorrect. I’ve coined phrases and offered a somewhat unique point of view. I’ve done it in the dead of night, and I’ve done it my way, my way on the highway.
But don’t worry, I know all this. I will run with it. I will make you laugh. I will make you cry, but I will never quit blogging until I said so,
or ever bore you. I promise!
..and for those about to blog.. I salute you!
(Jorhat, 13th December, 2013)