I’ve been using Open Office quite successfully thanks to the suggestion of butchcountry67 and I have not lost a post since starting to use it. I find it quite user friendly and easy to navigate and transfer from it to my blog on WordPress. Speaking of blogging I wanted to think about something here…What are the things that allow me to blog and exist online with the least amount of stress?
It’s true I have an internet persona that I created years back and have run with ever since, being my MainelyButch identity. Sure, it’s easy to find out who I am with all of today’s technology and the fact that my blog and other sites all are connected to About Me and Gravatar. I don’t try to hide or worry about anyone knowing my real identity anymore…it just doesn’t matter to me or bother me. I’m not ignorant to the fact that with the internet there is no privacy anymore.
I do have some basic rules that I live by online that help me to navigate cyberspace without too much stress. Because I am a blogger I have to have these rules.
I don’t claim to be an expert in anything. But I know a little about many things. I’ve had almost 53 years of experience and I’ve seen the world from quite a good vantage point in my opinion. I have had a good and unusual life. I may not be college educated, but I’ve got a Masters degree in street smarts. I’ve seen the good and bad in my world.
My blogs are written solely from my perspective, and are full of my opinions and views…some of which have drastically changed over time. I started online about 6 years ago now doing Youtube videos and having conversations via that venue. Then I started online blogging. I found a world of great writers on WordPress, and other blogging sites and knew it was a good way to write and interact.
I have made some good friends along the way because of my online presence. I like that and think it’s great that I have been able to meet and interact with individuals both like minded and opposite minded, through the internet. I’ve made friends all around the world and I hold these friendships in high regard. I’ve met people who have sparked change in me, changed my opinions, given me different views and who have engaged me in conversations that were both interesting and altering. I’m sure I have garnered my share of haters too, which is fine, I have a rule about just smiling and ignoring them. Occasionally I do have to engage to defend a topic opinion, or to site my sources for information, that I do not mind at all.
I love to write. It’s a vent, a release of my thoughts into the atmosphere. Like most writers, I do it for the love of the written word. Since I was old enough to write I have done it. As a youngster I wrote little stories and poems. As I have aged my writing has taken on more of a life of it’s own. I’ve written prompted essays on various topics – those are some of my favorite writings. I love to delve into a topic, especially controversial ones, and do the research, study the topic, form an opinion and write about it. I love writing prompts to do with specific topics, and I like it when my readers ask quesitons that make me think about a specific issue and generate my view in words.
Part of blogging, a part that I am working on diligently is helping to boost other great bloggers with my own blogs. Often this means incorporating links to their blogs, something I have figured out how to do and do with as much frequency as possible. This is important to the sharing of great writing with as many people as possible who are interested. I also incorporate links to my sources on some pieces, so if any reader wants to read more about a topic from a different writer they have that opportunity through the links on my blog. I’m learning how to make my page better and more interesting. Perhpas one day I will upgrade my WordPress blog to something more substantial, but until then I am quite happy with the presentation it currently has online.
Is it strange having your life exposed in your blogs?
I made the conscious decision not to hide who I am in my writing. I’ve been completely honest about my journey in my writing. I haven’t shied away from the hard stuff, like my HIV status or my journey in gender identity. I’ve written extensively about being Butch and how that has taken me through life. The part that is strange is when I meet someone that I am interested in and they find out I have blogs/vlogs and then they assume they know a lot about me. They do know quite a bit, but there are things that I don’t write about and haven’t written about that I keep pretty private.
I’m actually fairly shy. I know that putting oneself out on the internet as I have doesn’t belie being shy, but in all actuality I am. The slight anonymity of the internet can give one a false sense of security and make one a little bit more brave. I also believe that as I have gotten a bit older that I’ve shed some of my shyness and basic fear of people. I’m better than I used to be, but still I have my moments where I cringe in shyness and become tongue tied for the spoken word. I’m much better in written word, and far less shy.
What is your goal in blogging on the internet?
My goal with my blogs is to first use them as my own personal venting mechanism. Secondly I want to tell my story so that others like me know they aren’t alone in this world. My experience as growing up Butch, and my experience with living with HIV, as well as many of my other experiences may strike a cord with someone out there who is facing some of the same issues. Perhaps through reading my writing they will find some information or nugget of hope that they’re not alone. There are also other Butch bloggers who I like to promote for this reason as well. I think that Butches are under counted in today’s world. People either don’t see us or think that we are all disappearing into the Trans* world, which just isn’t true for all of us. People assume we want to be men, another untruth. I hope by living as an openly Butch lesbian that I can show the world that we exist and we are viable entities living great and interesting lives, and that we face a number of challenges that we just get stronger to face.
There are also other HIV positive bloggers which I should promote more. With that topic I hope to prevent just one more person from making the same mistake I made and becoming infected. I also like to show people that you can lead a positive life and have normal lives and successful relationships despite living with this long-term condition. The fact that it’s become a treatable chronic condition now, and is less likely to result in early death, is a huge bonus. Research and medical advancement is to thank for this, as well as the grace of God.
My final reason for blogging is to one day compile a book of my experiences. So these essays I do on WordPress may one day all be part of a book, which would be awesome. I’ve been published in several venues and while I’m not looking to get famous, I would like to see my writing in print and have my stories available to anyone who wishes to read them. It’s been a life-long goal of mine. I am not sure why I am not pursuing it more diligently at this point, perhaps that is something that I can bring into the New Year 2015…my publishing goal.
In closing this blog I want to thank all of my readers. It’s refreshing and motivating to know that people are interested in what I might have to say, and that you read my writing. I want to thank the many other bloggers that inspire me every day. I open my WordPress Reader and peruse your blogs every day a few times a day, and I always am impressed, motivated and inspired to keep up the pace and to keep on writing myself down. Thank you.