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Monday, December 13, 2004 

Pulling away: Part one

(N.B.: This started out as a comment in response to comments written by Joy, Ian and Dan to my last post. It kept getting longer, so I figured it deserved to be a post in its own right. Then it kept growing and I split it in two for readability.)

Dan made an excellent point when he wrote that a lack of comments on personal entries when the option is there can be disheartening. It's like being at a gathering of friends, opening up about something personal and then sitting there as nobody says anything.

I think that's what bothers me about the commenting function. It changes the nature of the forum. Without it, the blog is more of a one way thing. It's the secluded hilltop I can go to late at night when I want to hurl my rage at the heavens.

But with it, it's more of a conversation. And when you're the only one talking in a conversation, it doesn't feel right.

Granted, I'm saying this knowing full well that I rarely comment on anybody's blog. For much the same reason you cite Dan. Most of the time, I just don't know what to say.

I'm actually thinking about turning the feature off again.

Then I would be forced to write more for the sake of writing than communication. That might be the key.

When I write for the sake of writing, I'm writing whatever is in my head when I sit at the keyboard. I write and let you read over my shoulder.

But the comments change everything. They make this a forum for communication. When I sit down to write, I don't just open a vein and let flow. I think about what I want to tell you. I am writing to you.

And there's nothing wrong with that. It's just not what I want the blog for. I have email and MSN and the phone and my bloody mouth for when I want to communicate with people. My blog is to give me a writing outlet. While I welcome you all to it, I think the commenting feature is going to have to go. Feel free to email me about a post if you want. But otherwise, this will be one of the last personal entries that I allow comments on.

Which, oddly enough, brings me around to something Ian said about him being a compulsive writer.

I got about a sentence into this entry and thought, "well, just turn the bloody things off". So I'm glad to see you are. So far (after enabling comments by request of a few people) I've been able to not care about them. They're nice when I get them, but I don't mind if I don't. If that changes, I imagine they'll be gone.

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