Sunday, April 10, 2005

Public vs. Private. Blogs, that is.

One of my readers asked (email) why I named this blog “Romantic Ramblings” when there’s nothing remotely romantic in any of it.

Good question.

One answer: I wanted to identify myself as a wannabe romance novelist, trying to get published, hence the “Romantic.”

I decided at the onset that this would be a “public” blog, not a “private” one. Meaning: I would identify myself, including providing links to a personal web page and an email address. After all, if I’m ever published I’ll have an author’s web site (with a link to buy my book, natch!) and I’ll be more of a public figure. So why not start now? That's why I get a lot of emails for comments instead of comments y'all can see.

I’ve got nothing to be ashamed of or embarrassed about, right? I’m listed in the phone book. You can Google me in Victoria, Texas, and get a Mapquest map to my house. (In fact, do that. Then come by some day and listen to my appliances and fixtures talk to each other!)

The upside of a public blog is that my family members (out of town, out of state, wherever) can tune in periodically and find out what’s happening in the Earle household. Likewise my friends from work, my boss, my agent, and anyone who knows me can check out my writing and life events. Cool, right?

Well... On the “dark” side, all this public disclosure (lack of anonymity) limits what I put on my blog. I’ve got to watch my language, because, for crying out loud, my almost-89-year-old MOTHER reads my blog! (Hi, Mom!) BTW, she’s still sharp as a tack; thank God, just not quite as mobile as she used to be.

If I think my boss is a jerk (I DON’T, Greg! HONEST!), I can’t say it here. If somebody at work is having an affair with a co-worker (not you, Doug! And not the one with Jennifer!), or if I have to investigate a juicy sexual harassment claim, I can’t talk about it here. Even though I know you’d all like to hear about it.

So I write about my toilet leaking, my golf game, and equally inane subjects. Instead of, say, an intimate discourse on a blogger’s introduction to her IUD. (OK, I KNOW you’re ALL going to want to read that one! Here’s the link: Beautiful Vibe )

That’s not what you’d put out for the entire world to see and then admit to your identity, right?

Sometimes I’m envious of you anonymous bloggers who have little data in your profile, no email address, and thus the freedom to talk trash, handle delicate or politically incorrect subjects, or share VERY personal thoughts or events with no real repercussions.

Hmmm. I may create a SECOND, anonymous blog someday and let it ALL hang out. If I do, I’ll pretend to have just “discovered” it and provide you with the link to it.

For now though, “Romantic” is all in the eye of the beholder.


Monica said...

I have recently discovered your blog and I'm enjoying it so personally, I think you're doing something right! I'm also keeping fingers crossed and prayers up that another Texan hits the published route because from your blog, I'd say you definitely have talent!

VikiBabbles said...

I've been considering doing the same thing. My husband occasionally reads my blog, and other members of my family, and some people in my neighborhood might happen upon it. There are a lot of things I don't say because of that.

It has everything to do with audience.