Writing For Myself

After posting Tim Nahumck’s post yesterday I went back to relisten to probably the most frequent piece of long-form audio in my library: The 2009 SXSW talk by Merlin Mann and John Gruber.

I wrote about it after my first listen a while back, and I still feel a lot of the same feelings as I did then, but I wanted to share it again because one thing I didn’t focus on enough in my original post was the sentiment Tim mentioned yesterday:

I started thinking of the why for my writing. And really, it comes down to what it started to be: I write for me, and me alone. What I have learned over my time of writing is that people seem to enjoy what I write for myself.

Gruber and Merlin say similar things on their talk, but I either didn’t completely comprehend it at the time, or it is just something that is hitting me especially hard this most relisten.

In my original post about this piece of audio I said:

After this, they talk about how you can’t, and probably shouldn’t, make everyone happy. Merlin says it best when he explains how he admires John because John’s voice and passion outweighs any obligation to make people happy. He doesn’t go out of his way to upset anyone but he also is steadfast to continue the path he feels is right. This is something I think I lack, and that I should be more assertive at times.

I like to think that over the past 2 years I have gained more confidence in my writing ability and have the assertiveness to say what I want to say without worrying about what others might think, this blog if for me first and others second.

What I really wish is that there were more talks like this about writing online. Every time I listen to this I look for more talks like this but there are so many crappy podcasts about blogging it is hard to find the cream that rises to the top.

One podcast that does scratch this itch for me is Dialog. The podcast will change topics each season but the first season, now complete, focused on writing and spoke with many different kinds of authors and writers to talk about their history with writing, writing process, and more.

Aside from this podcast, I am not sure where I can find more meaningful conversations about writing and blogging online. So if you are reading and know of something let me know on Twitter.

Jeff Perry @JeffPerry