~AbanDoned X-preSsionz | Exploring Hypertext Journaling~ by Carla

Breaking the silence.

FADE IN...The past few weeks had been very hectic and left me sufficiently breathless || XpreSsionless. I had crawled into my corpse. Tired and weary from some of the "stuff" which comprise life, I could not find it in me before now to write. The words would not come; that is not to say the words were not there. They were there, but in a specifically scatalogical way and I had not the urge nor inclination to sit down to formulate them into something coherent. So, I had given myself wholly over to the situation which on some reflection, seemed to suggest the concept and essence of the title of this weblog. However, I had hopes that the muse would soon appear.

So now, here I am, resisting the urge to type a bunch of fonts into words to prove to myself that I am indeed writing an entry into this weblog again. I pause between keystrokes to ask myself the point of it all. I have no straight answers so for now it's just baby steps again for me. Perhaps I'll continue posting entries here...FADE OUT.

RE: Best British Blog Award

Did some googling earlier and found AbanDoned X-preSsionx been linked to via { Plasticbag.org } with reference to a comment I made regarding the recent debate on The Guardian's Best British Blog Award between Tom Coates, of { Plasticbag } and Simon Walden, of { The Guardian }.

Although it is now old news, I wanted to ammend something I said in my comment with regards to linking. My comment which follows below was based on my agreement with Tom Coates that any competition between bloggers and their blogs is indeed a "bloody stupid idea" as he contends, and which he explains thus:

"If weblogs are valuable at all, they are so because they give people a place to talk about whatever they want, however they want. Your weblog could be an intimate, personal space to get advice about your burgeoning sexuality, a frequently updated news feed about software development, or a soapbox to declare your extreme political views. The thing that unites all these people, however, is a certain authenticity of voice - these are real people talking openly about the things that matter to them."

My own two cents, posted August 5th 2002 reads as follows:

For the past five years or so, as I read the various journals, diaries or now commonly called "blogs" I would encounter on the internet, I could hear and identify with the true, unfiltered voices of the various writers who wrote from the heart.

What I found within many of the entries was a totally uncut style of writing--writing which was personal, direct, bold, raw. These writers didn't seem to care much about whether they had "hits" or not to their pages. To them, writing was a means of expression, and they wrote to their heart's content.. Audience or not, they wrote what they felt.

The subject matter varied from the philosophical to the mundane. The more mundane, the more interested I became and I began to feel a certain sense of "knowing" the writer on a personal level. Many a time I found myself aghast at some of the personal details these writers exposed about their lives--drug use, fighting sicknesses such as Cancer or AIDS or their revelations of family issues or other domestic crises.

Often, the writers tried in earnest to convey bravery in a matter of fact tone, but fear spoke volumes instead. To the unsuspecting reader of a random journal entry, there was no apology given, yet, there was an unspoken agreement that if one didn't like the writing one could always leave. Often however, the various sites were sprinkled with things such as a favorite dish, color, book, video, game, a piece of clothing and what not.

Most importantly however, ratings did not seem to be utmost on their minds. They did not beg or advertise that people leave comments or feedback. Times have changed.

The trend is now commonly called "blogging." I have come across really good blogs. Unlike the diaries and journal of the past, these have a certain feel, sound and look of "newness" to them-- an air of freshness. The designs are more eye-catching and they involve you and compel you to read on. The tone is still very serious, direct and matter-of-factly although terminology--hooch, hoe, bitch, etc.-- sometimes slip in. Additionally, biographical notes identifying the writer usually appears in the menu now.

The writings while they are still variously about about what one does, see, hear and how one feels; about sex, boyfriends, brothers, sisters, mothers, fathes, buddies or spouses, these days reveal a sense of distress, loneliness--the "blues"-- and are often either scarcastic, sentimental, bitter, boastful or naive.

Above all, many are warehouses for links. Don't have anything to say? populate the space with links to this and that friends' blog, but reader beware, for the next link you click on might lead to another blog with less to say and steeped in links.

In recent weeks a blogger's contest ensued on blogger.com for charity--a noble cause. Now, with this competition the Best British Blog Award, I can only expect that bloggers will be fighting between themselves-- what I have to say is better than what you have to say! or I am the best! and in so doing, will be defeating the whole purpose of the "medium" as you put it, as one of personal space and freedom of expression.

Admittedly, such a competition might at best, raise the profile of the various entrants; at worst, it will and I can't say this any better than you Tom: "undermine authenticity."

Blogs are not meant for competition purposes for just what is really being judged? The writing style or the content? or is it the design, or the substance of the person's life conveyed in the blog? I ask a similar question to Tom's, is the self-exposed detail that one person shares about his or her life more or less important than another's?
It eludes me as to how the various blogs will be judged and under what criteria. Perhaps it is my ignorance that stands in the way of supporting such a contest and if it is, educate me, give me thy knowledge.

Peace!

My ammendment to this matter is as I have said, with regards to linking, for having started my own blog, I have come across so many other really interesting ones that I felt it neccessary to provide links for others to visit and read what another person has to say. Of that, I am indeed guilty and I apologize. Still, I stick by my stance that blogging should be left out of competitions because of their very personal nature, regardless of this public sphere that they inhabit. As Tom Coates puts it: "Weblogs are not (just) written to entertain audiences, but are also spaces where people can talk openly about their lives. Asking people to compete in self-revelation, to play up to the cameras, seems wrong to me!"

Newbies like me

1. Another note to my newbie (like me)blog friends: If you haven't already, and you want to put your blog on the globe, then Globe of Blogs » is the place to do it

2. Written in PHP to create weblogs,
Pivot » is a free tool which you can check out if you're up to it.

3. According to Ageless » "We're sending the message that the personal, creative side of the web is diverse and ageless and if each of you personal website builders out there will openly share your date of birth with us, we'll be on our way to proving it!" Submit your site if you dare. You can also send your friends a waycool postcard by going Here »

4. Want more global exposure? The Pepy's Project »
will make sure you get it. Go there and submit your site.

5. Blogging meets the personals? Well how about that! If you're interested in another weblog community and also want to meet the person of your dreams, check out
Xanga »
, serving up the best of both worlds, I think.

While you're at it, beware the trackers. Have a look see at { Ghosts of Zanadu } at { Disenchanted } to get an idea of how your surfing habits and lifestyle can be tracked on the Web.

Well that's all for now, happy Blogventures!

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