Someone asked me recently why I have a blog. My reply went something along the lines of: these days, if you’re a writer you have to. To not have a blog would be like omitting to put your trousers on before you walk down the street. Of course a surprising number of writers don’t even have a website which, to continue the analogy, is like never leaving the house, with or without trousers.
So, to blog or not to blog isn’t really the question. To blog frequently is important, nota bene Laurie Graham, who has just allowed two weeks to slip by, because otherwise readers lose interest or presume you’re dead. But another important factor is the length of a post. I know people whose posts are novella-length. It’s a presumptuous attitude. Do they think we have all day? Generally, people who like the format follow several blogs. They need to be able to read them on the fly, while the kettle’s boiling, not get bogged down in something the length of a car rental contract. Whether their content is light or serious they must be a quick read.
Apart from my professional obligation to have a platform (yes, dear reader, that’s what it’s called) I have another reason for blogging. It’s a place where I can say what I want when I want and no-one can interfere with it. I speak as a writer who just had a wrecking ball taken to a perfectly good piece of journalism. There are many things I’m no good at – too long a list for a blog – but I do know how to knock out an 1800 word feature. Why must they fiddle? Why don’t they take their blue pencil and stick it where the sun don’t shine?
This blog is going dark again while a take a short holiday. I hesitate to call it a well-earned rest. That is for others to judge. But I do need to enter the Cone of Silence for a few days. No emails. No offers of toe nail fungus laser treatment. Just the sound of seagulls, crashing waves and, no doubt, a distant voice whining, ‘Hellfire, Lindy, they don’t even have Wi-Fi in this joint.’