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[personal profile] cjwatson
[personal profile] liv asked me for "something that you've learned or discovered about yourself that surprised you", which is quite a tricky one and it looks as though I'm going to answer it at a bit of a tangent.

Given that this has landed in the middle of a month of posting every day, I think perhaps the best, or at least the most meta, answer to this is that I've been (re)discovering that I actually enjoy blogging. This is another case of the "boiling a frog" thing that has been on my mind lately; for the last couple of years I've been thinking of myself as somebody who just wasn't inclined to write very much, but today I went back and had a look at my early years on LJ and, oh look, there I am posting at least a little bit a few times a month.

Part of this has of course just been lack of time: as I've got older I've gained more commitments, and things that are less important or urgent get crowded out. I think a lot of it has been that writing things for more-or-less public consumption requires a certain kind of editing energy, though, and a lot of that energy has been going towards work things. Things I write on my technical blog have a habit of ending up on tech news sites a fair proportion of the time these days, for instance, which is kind of weird. And as things like Twitter became more common, I tended to siphon off little things I'd previously have said on a proper blog to there. In fact [personal profile] liv's post about communication media a wee while ago went through some of these issues, and was one of the things that reminded me (as I was starting to figure out how to dig myself out of a general slump) that the DW/LJ communities were ones I actually did miss and wanted to be involved in again.

I do still find keeping up with comment streams difficult and confusing, especially ones on anyone else's journal. As somebody who grew up with Usenet I'm kind of predisposed to agree with the "LiveJournal should be news" notion from years back, and I should probably remember to set up lj2news again to cross-post my stuff to chiark.journals. Of course that's a differently limited audience.

There are various other things that have surprised me in one way or another over the last few years, of course; the above is just the one that's easiest to write about just now. I've sort of self-defined as emotionally stable for a long time, and it genuinely surprised me when I realised that that general slump I mentioned was a thing that happened to me. At work I've been discovering (again?) that actually I do have limits on the amount I can take on and that I don't have to wrap up my self-esteem in how much I'm contributing. More cheerfully, when [livejournal.com profile] ghoti got interested in watching Gaelic football and hurling, I discovered that I actually wasn't completely uninterested in watching team sports, I just wanted them to have an engaging ruleset, fast-moving play, and a scoreline that's granular enough that it doesn't look like the winner is a matter of luck.

This post is part of my December days series. Please prompt me!

September 2017


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