Welcome and Guest Blogging

Main Posts — Tags: , , — comelybankingcrisis @ 1:01 pm

Hi there! This is just a quick post to say hello and welcome to any friend who may have popped over from Blackwatertown today. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, I’ve guest blogged about boats, horses, family and Pavarotti on the great Blackwatertown. Go over and have a look, if not for my humble offering then for the host of other guest writers, not to mention Paul, the main blogger and editor.

Take care!


Dear me

Uncategorized — Tags: , , — comelybankingcrisis @ 3:20 pm

Dear, dear, dear, dear me.

Killian, what is going on here? Not good enough, not good enough! Fallow might be a good idea in agriculture, but in blogging it’s plain lazy.

I never thought I would write this, but it has come to the point when I don’t even want to log into my blogging account for fear of becoming truely mindful of how long it’s been since my last post and how many readers have rightfully fecked off.

Commitment is what I need. Perseverence, descipline, application.

As many a middle-of-the-road blogger would ask, what do you think?

Sing me out Deep Pruple!


The things filling my bandwidth

This blog has taken quite the hit recently. Its author recently logged in and was more than a little shocked to realise that there were no posts at all uploaded during February. That has been the result of two things. The first is that I currently have two jobs, one of which is copy-writing. So basically, I more or less blog for the better part of my living now, hence reluctance to also do it as a hobby. I suppose I must get used to the new configuration of my work/life balance and find a space in there to do what I love.

The second reason is I’ve been seeing a lot less art, reading a lot less, and watching a lot more of this type of thing:

Writer’s Block creeps in

Writer's Block

You know the scenario.  I’m supposed to write something as though it has just flowed out from my synapses onto the page like proverbially gold-plated ink, and as easily and energetically as young mountain water babbling through a brook.  I have to be casually erudite, whimsically articulate and oh, so relevant.  I have to make you laugh, or at least smile, but also cause your brow to furrow in profound ponderance.

“Oh, I was just slurping a capp and having a quick leaf through the London Review of Books and thought I’d spin this little tidbit off in an articulate jiffy, but now I’ve got to go meet an unknown but paradoxically important intellectual friend,” is how the subtext of my copy should read.  “I’m, like, a fountain of whimsical, brilliant ideas!  And I’ve heard of lots of stuff, especially stuff that hasn’t happened yet!”

But in reality I’m tired, a bit worried about money, daunted by the economy, dreading the depths of winter and I can’t even think of a CD to put on (I’m old school) never mind think of an engaging subject to write about and a way to start it.

Do you recognise the scenario?  As I consider myself a writer, albeit an amateur or at most aspiring one, I ponder writer’s block a lot and thought I might as well share some of the ways in which I deal with it.

My favourite strategy is to get out a pen and notebook and choose to brainstorm ideas instead of write when I’m faced with the Block.  You might think that this is the last thing to do when your creative well seems to have dried up, but you’d be surprised how many new ideas come out when you’re temporarily freed from the shackles of whatever it is that’s ground to a halt.  But I admit it: this is procrastination to some extent.  What’s more it’s often the case that you need to complete and submit something in the very near future without time to take a break, without the time to sit around brainstorming.

My father, who was at one time a writer, and who may well enter the fray again I suspect, always advised me to “just start writing.” That is cast iron advice and there’s no arguing with it.  Writing is the main aim after all.  But I believe I could be forgiven for claiming that this instruction is a little short on detail.  Another technique I have adopted is to stand up from the computer and make a cup of tea, pace the room, and say aloud in free, informal language what I want to write, as simply as I can.  Then I just write what I said.  This invariably results in appalling writing to start with, but at least you have something down to tinker with and embellish.

My final piece of advice for avoiding writer’s block is to write about writer’s block.  This tends to be a one-use-only ticket!  The best strategy of all, though, is to give yourself a break, relax, go to the cinema, watch a DVD.  If it’s evening you could even go to the pub.  Take it from me the problem will disappear!  For a while…

Do any of you have other suggestions?

To Blog or not to Blog, to Save the Planet and Other Such Clichés

There’s been a lot of talk recently about diaries.  The BBC gave us a whole season on the subject, with illuminating programming which revisited the diary of Anne Frank, Roger Casement’s terrifically scandalous ‘Black Diaries’ and the undeniably fascinating journals of Kenneth Williams (pictured), among many others. 

Whether the concern is historical, such as with The Diaries of Tennessee Williams on Radio 4, or espousing the merits of writing one’s own and tips for so doing, exemplified in the Dear Diary series, the message is pretty clear: we like diaries and we should all write one.

And then there are blogs – the public, showy-offy version.  To say that blogs are de rigueur these days is so obviously an understatement that I needn’t even bother listing off recent examples; there are too many anyway.   I’ll take it that you’re convinced. 

But aside from settling on what’s worth reading, we quickly reach a problem when confronted by the plethora of blogs now online – a neurotic and especially modern problem.  What value is there in setting up yet another one, taking up that little bit more space, making the internet one blog more cluttered than it was before?  Surely one could adequately fulfil one’s sacred duty to the improvement of the internet simply by abstaining from the whole business, just as one might help the environment by laying off the beef or staying at home more (in the cold with the lights off, of course)?  Simply put, is the best kind of blog these days one that is never started?

Well, aside from the obvious ‘just make it a good blog’ solution to this conundrum, I’m going by the principle given to me by the Beeb at the license fee-payers’ expense: that it’s good to write a diary, and by that I understand blogs too. 

Anyone (read: me) who’s concerned that blogging has become clichéd and that we are overexposed to the habit should wonder whether all of those ladies and gentlemen of yore who gave us all the great diaries spent a lot of time worrying about such issues when they were writing.  I suggest that they didn’t.  Nor should we.  And besides, those yore-folk were too busy worrying about wars, God, untreatable diseases and the illegality of homosexuality. 

And as a final word in this little ode to the blog, I correct myself:  blogs might well be public and ‘showy-offy’, but there is no reason to suppose that diaries are any less so.  I grew up reading other people’s widely published diaries, for God’s sake.  So, thanks Leither Magazine for setting up this timely blogging service which I now benefit from.

And so I begin yet another one, but this one doesn’t waste paper; instead, they have a big engine in California or somewhere that powers hundreds of computers.  Oh Hell, we can’t win!  At least they’re more efficient with home heating over there!

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