It’s been a long time since I blogged regularly.
Sometimes I go through phases of asking myself if I actually like to write, if I actually want to be a writer. When I tell people I study (studied) a Writing major at university, they say, “Oh, so you’re a writer?” And I hesitate before answering. I don’t consider myself a “writer” because I rarely make the time to write and when I actually do write, I don’t write fiction. Writing to me is a form of meditation. It’s a way for me to figure out what is going on with me, when my brain is in hyper-drive and berating me into such a state that all I can do is write about it, and find out what the problem actually is.
I remember writing in primary school. I think it began in Year 5 for me, though a love of reading had obviously come a lot earlier. I really liked English class, even though the teacher was a terrifying woman with grey hair and, for some reason, an unidentifiable bird-like quality. (Maybe it was the glasses.) I wrote about my only theme park experience when we learnt about writing “recounts”, and I “recounted” my Dad taking us three girls to Movie World even though he was really sick that day. When we wrote prose poetry, I wrote about sitting in the back of a 4WD driving through creeks and across open plains with a herd of brumbies running beside the car–obviously influenced by my love of Banjo Patterson and, like every young girl, my fascination with horses. When we had to adapt a myth into a poem, I wrote about Tane and Tawhiri, Maori deities of the forest and wind. In Year 6, I remember writing during free time, about dark rainforests and girls with horses. (Seriously, I blame Pony Pals and The Saddle Club.) My teacher once asked what I was doing and read my story while I stood at her desk, waiting nervously. She asked me if I would enter a writing competition, sponsored by a kind old man who would visit us weekly to help with our reading skills. Shyly, I told her I’d think about it and talk to my parents, but I don’t think I ever did. When she asked me again later, I told her that I didn’t want to.
I discovered the world of fan fiction in high school, through two older girls who became some of my closest friends. I read and wrote prolifically, belonging to an enthusiastic, tight-knit community that even had our own forum for sharing and critiquing our stories. Not long ago I trawled my email for all the stories we would swap back and forth, chapter by chapter, and printed the mostly-complete stories I found. One story I found was over 10,000 words long and not even halfway complete, which I’m still in awe of. 14 year old me was crazy creative! But, I guess high school happened. I became more involved with my real life than the fictional world, started to grow anxious about finishing school and going to university, and stopped giving myself the emotional space to sit and enjoy creating. However, I did keep and maintain blogs in my early years of school. I don’t think I allowed many people to know they existed, since it was more of a journalling process for me. Somewhere along the line I stopped updating, and now they simply sit in the dark, cobwebbed corners of the internet, merely bookmarked in my browser.
I have made and re-made blogs over the years. I have attempted to stage-manage this blog into a professional space, a potential portfolio for future employers. But I find it so limiting, so terrifying. What about the less-than-‘professional’ parts of myself, that like watching endless videos of Jimmy Fallon being hilariously adorable, or spills red wine while marathoning The Office (for the third or fourth time)? Those parts of me are so much more alive and vibrant than the part that aches to be the best at everything and is so scared of failing that it doesn’t even want to try. So that’s what this blog is now. I found the silliest, most whimsical blog theme I could so it will remind me that I shouldn’t take myself so seriously and that not every blog post needs to be a perfectly polished piece. (Also, the little snake that drops down on the left-hand side is so freaking cute.)
Over the past four years I have been on an incredible (and incredibly horrible) journey through university and towards myself. I’ve had so many ups and downs, and I haven’t even begun to process it all. I’m not a writer, but I write, I journal, I (attempt to) create poetry, and I blog. I’m constantly inspired by the people I meet and the things I read and hear, and I want to feel free to share those things.
So, here’s my space. I hope you like it here.