Cynthia's Stuff

January 31, 2013

Why Do I Blog? Oh, right, I don’t really blog any more!

Filed under: Uncategorized — LibraryCynthia @ 2:12 pm

I just read a new blog post from Andy over at Agnostic Maybe, one of my favorite library related blogs.  Andy is smart, funny, cute, and always has something thought provoking to say.  I like that.  In his latest post, he discusses why he blogs, which is a response to this bringyournoise post, which is in response to this post.   The question of why a person blogs is, I suspect, a highly individualized question.

In my case, I began to blog with Library Garden because the folks who ran it were THE movers and shakers in NJ on-line library people.  I was honored to have the chance to speak about being a new librarian and wanted to get my name out there in hopes of maybe getting a job as a librarian.  That didn’t work–I managed to find a Library Associate position, but it never helped with landing that much coveted full-time Librarian job with benefits.  I learned much from my fellow bloggers and from the experience.

I also blogged on a personal, non-public blog just to keep track of some stuff, to share stuff with my close friends and family, and to work out some other stuff.  That blog has long since died and been deleted (as best as that is possible).  It was a vanity project and I killed it quickly.  It never did what I wanted it to do.  Next up, this blog.  And as you can see, I don’t really blog. Back-to-blogging

So, instead of answering the question why do I blog, I will tell the reasons I no longer blog.

Ok, there is really only one main reason:  time.  It takes a long time to write, edit, re-write, and re-edit a blog post.  If you don’t put the time in, it shows in the writing and the presentation.  That said, there are a few smaller, but more compelling reasons I no longer blog.

First, I am learning that people not knowing who I am or what I think is also a good thing, maybe even better than being known.  The quest for fame is fickle, hard, and compromising on many levels.  The process takes a great deal of effort and the payoff, at least for me, is just not worth it.  I can be anonymous and still be relevant.  Even more important, it is much easier to be effective when people don’t think they “know” you.  Trust me, I am just beginning to get this concept.

Similarly, I am realizing that I am better served to spend more time listening and less time talking (or writing).  Yes, I still have stuff to say and opinions about loads of stuff–anyone who has sat in a meeting with me knows I still have opinions, especially about the uselessness of meetings!  However, publishing those thoughts doesn’t really help me to grow or learn.  Right now, I am more focused on self-improvement than on helping others (outside of work of course, I love helping others and that is why I became a librarian).  I think that personal growth is best served by less professional blogging and more professional reading and much more personal reading.

Finally, I kind of stopped blogging because I thought the blog was dead as a form.  Back in the day, I subscribed to many blogs, especially those on knitting and library related topics.  I learned so much and found reading blogs helpful, fun, and a good way to spend my break time.  Then it stopped.  I hardly read blogs on any subjects.  Because I moved on, I thought that the medium had had its day.

In the last three months or so, as I begin to settle into my first full-time Librarian gig (with benefits and a living wage), I find myself once again reading blogs.  It is far more scattered than before–there is not a single blog that I read regularly.  Instead, I have a variety of topics that I cruise the web looking for education, insight, and inspiration.  Intersetingly, those topics are nearly ALL for pleasure and not for professional reasons.  That is a complete reversal of how it used to be.

Andy is the only library blog I read regularly and that is because he writes well, has something to say, and doesn’t shy away from controversy.  Plus, he is not mean–I am completly done with the mean blogger.  It is just too damn easy to rip things apart.  I read a few other library related blogs still, but it is far more a one-off kind of thing.  If the topic they wrote about is of interest, I will dip in.  I have become one of those, if you don’t get me with the headline, you won’t get me.

The question:  Why I Blog? and the many posts I have now read in response to it has had an odd effect.  It makes me want to blog more.  I do miss having a creative writing outlet.  I also miss having a chance to get off Facebook and Pinterest and actually create something.  I miss taking the time to really think about something I want to say and find a good way of saying it.  I am much better at this in writing than I am in person.

One blogger who posted about why they blog noted that starting a blog is the easy part.  It is committing to blogging that is hard.  That is really true–sometimes I forget I even have a blog until I want to make a comment on something.  Then it is vague and unformed desire, which is lost with the first shiny object.  Instead, I am going to try and blog once a month in 2013.  (like the way I managed to meet my goal even before I made the commitment–slick Cyn).  That is not terribly ambitious and I should be able to do it.  I promise, I won’t write another post about why I post (or don’t).

Cynthia

March 29, 2012

Finished Project

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , — LibraryCynthia @ 5:57 pm

At the beginning of this year, I set three knitting goals for myself:  finish a project a month; use my stash yarn so that I have a smaller stash by year end; and complete some of the UFO’s in my knitting bags.  And in this my first quarterly report of 2012, I am happy to report I have met all three. I’ve set other goals for 2012, but this post will focus on my knitting life and how it effects my entire life.

First, an inventory:  In January, I finished up a clutch purse project that had been kicking around for a few years.  I don’t know why I didn’t finish it–it’s even made of metallic yarn, so shiny object distraction simply is not a valid excuse!  I think it is because I didn’t really like the finished product that was being created.  Regardless, it was in my knitting bag and used up stash yarn, so January was a winner.  

Lace shawl, hand knit, made of Bamboo.

In February, I used up a bunch of stash yarn to knit a small lace shawl (see photo).  It was beautiful==too small for what I had intended, but it makes a great scarf.  The drape is spectacular.  I hope to use bamboo again.  A coffee cup cozy for a departing co-worker (see photo) was the March project.  The yarn in all of these projects came from my stash.

It feels good to complete these tasks and to meet these goals. Concrete success is always satisfying. Plus I feel in love with the process of knitting again.  What a fantastic added bonus!  By forcing myself to complete one project before I could start another, I was able to relax and remember how great it was to simply be knitting.

The March project was small–really small. I’ve been busy doing many things where I am unable to knit.  Either it would be rude to the people around me, or I actually am unable to knit.  For example, I went to NC by car and I was the passenger, but I could not knit.  I get car sick when I try.  Some of the stuff I suppose I could have knit through.  Perhaps John Waters at the State Theatre in Easton, PA. I’m sure he wouldn’t have cared. My seat mates wouldn’t have known.  I know many knitters who absolutely would have knit through the entire show.  I just couldn’t do it.

Coffee cozy in March

I just learned to love knitting again, I didn’t want to force it for productivity sake.  Plus, had I knit, I would not have given Mr. Waters–or the knitting–the attention they both deserve.  Lately this has been a recurring theme for me–if I am doing XYZ, while I ABC than neither are getting all of me and I don’t get all of it.  I have begun to believe that multitasking is simply doing more than one thing at less than your best.

Sure, you can have Facebook up and get work done, but both are less enjoyable and less well played when you do.  I do believe that multitasking is possible and, at times, even necessary.  However, knitting is supposed to be a pleasure for me.  Why was I always trying to squeeze it in?

I do this with my reading too–I have a few minutes here, I will read a few pages.  I need to get to page 130 by Friday, etc. That’s no way to read, especially if you are reading for pleasure.  There are so many books I have read in the past year or so where I only remember the broad outline of the plot.  These were good books that kept me hooked in, but by cramming it in where-ever and when-ever I could, I lost the detail and nuance that make reading so great.

So I’m setting another goal for the next three months–focus on the task at hand and nothing else.  I won’t be able to meet that goal at all times–at times, you have no choice but to multitask.  I just want to try.  I want to be here now–always here now.  I’ll let you know how I do.

October 6, 2011

Welcome To My World

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , , , — LibraryCynthia @ 2:16 pm

Ok, so I am finally doing it–I am starting my own BLOG……

Yes, I know, the blog is dead, the blog is dead….long-live the blog!

I keep hearing the days of the traditional blog being influential, or even remotely relevant, are long gone. To that I say, bull!

I still read blogs. Many people I know still read blogs.  Plus, with Facebook now so hard to see or be seen, Google+ being yet another thing to learn, and Twitter being done by loads of people in my biz (Librarian), I think the old-fashioned blog might actually be the best way for me to express myself.  It certainly is the only way to do so with any depth.

I will of course link to the blog via all of these ‘new media’ options–I’m LibraryCynthia (I have answers!) on all three platforms.  I still believe that social media is the best way to let people know about the blog and the topic.

So welcome. Nothing will be off-limits, but mostly I will discuss books, knitting, libraries, and politics (in my world, those things are all intimately related).  While I hope that library professionals stop by often, this is NOT a professional blog.  This is my thoughts, my questions, and my soap-box.  Hopefully it will be funny and informative and interesting enough to generate comments and regular readers.

Please come back often. I hope to post weekly at the start–mostly on Thursdays.

Thanks for watching…

Cynthia

I knit. I read. I talk.

The Silver is the New Black Theme Blog at WordPress.com.

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