Michael Brown

The Paradise Wars and Clark Ransom Thrillers

Questions about the Voice of a Blog

Is it a valid reason to have a blog because you want to practice a voice directed to others instead of talking to yourself? How does a blog and a journal differ?  Knowing it’s public, there is a certain degree of censorship, but there can’t be too much.  Becoming too aware of what you’re saying removes personality, removes the reasons someone might be interested in listening to what you have to say.  There is also a heightened awareness of how language is being used.  That is a good thing.  I came to the idea of writing a blog because for years (approximately five, I’d guess) I’ve engaged in Julia Cameron’s practice of Morning Pages, faithfully so, pretty much every morning writing about 750 words free form and rapidly. Many of my ideas revealed themselves in this process, as did reminders to check on a credit card statement, get cash at the ATM that day, or buck up the courage to address a particularly annoying e-mail.

At some point, I realized that I was doing a lot of knowledge work, juxtaposing ideas to form possible solutions to problems everyone has.  But I never extended the idea to writing a blog, because I had already put blog in a box called “marketing efforts I will one day tackle when my novel is ready.”

It was struggling with the idea of voice for my novel, more specificially: the modern reader of novels seems to demand–at least according to craft books, writer’s magazines, other writer’s websites, the novel’s voice to be embodied by the characters engaged in the action.  The reader wants to be in the protagonists head, or the sidekick’s , or villains.  Authorial intrusion was passé as was a minor character carryng the narrative voice–such as Nick Carraway in Great Gatsby–yet my novel, spanning levels levels of manifestation (the Qabalah’s Sephirah, Buddhic planes, the pop-occult astral vs. physical) defied one character embodied in the action (or at least it as so far) being THE Voice for the novel.

So the only way I thought I could learn about voice’s possibility was to learn to take public stances via a blog.  To have the blog be about seeing what voice came up on its own whenever I flipped the switch that says “you are now on the air.”

Will that solve the problem of voice in my novel? I don’t know, but I still have a hunch that their is an intimate connection.

I apologize to those of you–if any of you out there are still reading this–if I stray into rather esoteric concerns, but this is me.  At times I’ll wake with memory of a funny incident that happened to me in Kansas at age 7, or my first comic excursion with contraception, but at other times I’ll be obsessed with the nature of abstraction and how Voice is the marriage between idea and substance.  In the beginning was the word . . .

What do others think about going public with a journal?

And if that going public is linked to self-promotion, is that acceptable? If a writer makes public his more private thoughts, does that make someone want to read his more formal works, i.e., novels, or not?

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