Tuesday, January 01, 2019

New Year, Old Blog or Here I Go Again

Yet again I return to this blog after a long gap. In fact I see that I only wrote three posts last year when I had meant to write monthly. I do not want to castigate myself for this however but instead want to look at ways in which I can go forward into the new year.

This blog has had several different strands. First and foremost it has been a way of continuing to write my spiritual autobiography - a project I have been engaged in for many years. I am looking at different approaches and hope that I can share some of that work here.

I have also used this blog to share my passion for Quaker history - and especially for the eighteenth century and particular Quaker characters - with others. The Quaker alphabet structure helped me with that but it also limited my choice of subject, although without it I only managed one Quaker history post last year so something needs to be done.

As well as writing here I have other outlets for my thoughts. I write a diary, also irregularly, in a series of A5 blank books using a rollerball pen. This is just for my consumption but sometimes what I write in my diary can feed into what I write here and in fact for the last few weeks I have been considering with pen and paper how I can continue this blog.

There is something else that I do regularly elsewhere. As well as reading and writing the visual arts are also important to me. I am a devoted fan of Pinterest and use my 'boards' to collect images for my eighteenth century research but I have created many others for art that I love. Some are devoted to a particular artist - for example Eric Ravilious, Emily Carr, Felix Vallotton and Giovanni Boldini - while others cover subjects that attract me - trees, the sea, windows, landscapes, abstraction and still life to name but a few.

Eric Ravilious. Cuckmere Haven 1939

Nearly two years ago I decided to share some of this art on Facebook as an antidote to all the doom and gloom about the world appearing there. So every day, usually when I first open up my computer, I share a piece of art from my Pinterest boards. At first I wrote a bit about the chosen image from my perspective but after a while I decided to leave each image open to whatever interpretation my friends wanted to give it. I now just give the title, the name and nationality of the artist and the date it was made if I can find it. I think this is right for Facebook but for a while now I have been wondering about finding a way to expand this description, to give more background or to explain why it appeals to me. So I have decided to add this to my possible subjects for this blog.

So I am expanding my subject matter but realistically I know that actually sitting down to write is likely to remain a problem for me! I need a prompt but I also need to be flexible. Aiming to write once a month, as I did last year, is obviously not enough but weekly writing feels like too much pressure, so in 2019 I will aim to post something every two weeks and allow myself to do more if I can. I will also set a reminder on my phone for every other Sunday and see how that works!

Blogging is a personal thing for me but, unlike my diary, this blog is written for an audience. I welcome dialogue and hope that I will hear from some of my readers in 2019 - if only to act as another sort of prompt!

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