I didn’t get my blog post written last week. Now it is time to write a post for this week. I’m going to try to write last week’s post, this week’s post, and at least a first draft of next week’s post this afternoon. That is about three hours work and it is almost two o’clock as I start writing. I tend to work better under a deadline. The key is, I have to hold myself to that deadline. I gave the members of my weekly writing group the URL for my blog. Maybe that will help make me accountable for posting my entries on time.
I made a commitment to myself last December that I would post a blog post a week this year. Until last week, I managed to keep that commitment. I intend to do better starting today.
It’s not that I don’t know how to do something on a regular schedule like this. I write a minimum of 750 words a day in my journal. That is a place for me to record private thoughts and to develop ideas that may later become stories or essays in more public venues. I have written 750 words a day in my journal for 1449 consecutive days. Now I just need to make time to write a blog post every week.
I blog for several reasons. First, to practice writing in a public venue where other people can read what I’ve written. This tempers what you write. Some times, I find, it tempers it too much. I have opinions. I should not hesitate to say what I think. If someone disagrees with me, they are welcome to write what they think in their own blog. But there is the fact that I want people to read what I write and enjoy it. It is a difficult balance to hit, being honest about what you think and believe without being offensive about it.
Another reason I write is for practice writing on a deadline. It is obvious that I need more practice at that. The other benefit of practice is it helps you improve the quality of your writing. I write much better now than I did a year ago and much better than I did ten years ago. I’m to the point now where I’m concentrating more on improving the more abstract issues of plot and character than I am on the fundamental quality of my writing.
I also write to leave my mark on the world. In science there is a truism that if you don’t publish a result, it might as well not have happened. In the case of writing, if you don’t publish your writing, you have no proof you ever had those thoughts or even existed. It’s a flawed attempt at some sort of immortality but it is the best I can do right now.
I am beginning to doubt whether the Singularity will happen within my lifetime. I had such high hopes of achieving what I call function immortality, that is you live as long as you don’t destroy yourself in a catastrophic accident. Even then, if you have made a sufficiently detailed backup of your mind, you may potentially live again. You will have a discontinuity between the time you made the last backup and the time the backup is restored into a new body.
Such is the way my thoughts flow in this time of deadly pandemic. It can’t help but inspire thoughts of mortality and dreams of immortality. Besides, what else do I have to occupy my time while I am practicing self isolation? Stay well, wash your hands frequently, wear a mask if you have to go out and stay home if you don’t.