Thursday, November 02, 2006

Digital Life

Realizing that I've made no attempts to disguise who I am online, and that this blog is the first thing that pops up when one googles my name, I guess at some point I should make a preëmptive post that might help keep current or future employers (or potential freelance clients) assured that this blog is far from my indicative of my work product. I use odd twists of (multiple) language, make misspellings and grammatical errors, overuse diacritical marks, use the occasional bit of 733t, and generally make a poor example of myself as a editor/writer.

There're a couple of reasons for this, the biggest of which is that I've always seen this blog as an attempt to get words out of me. First as a way of processing (to use a Psych 101ism) our whole run through the world of infertility and ART; later as a way to help keep the grand'rents and other friends and family up to date about Celeste and Quinn. It's also proved handy as a way to store recipes, figure out how quickly my headlights keep burning out (replaced them again last Saturday; it seems 2003 Hyundai Elantras have a problem), and to basically act as a diary, remembering what was important on any given day or what I did or was interested in.

A long while ago, I read the memoir Jeb and Dash: A Diary of Gay Life, 1918–1945 and one passage really stuck with me (and of course I can't find the book, much less the exact quote, at the moment). The gist of it was that Jeb, an editor for the government, noted that his work as an editor made it more difficult for him to write.

[UPDATE: Okay, I found the quote: page 204, the entry for 28 September 1932. It's not quite how I remembered it, but it still fits. Jeb Alexander, the memoirist, references a letter his friend Lansing Tower sends him. Tower had been in San Francisco working on a new Anarchist newspaper, Man!, and "He said one of the worst things for a writer is reading and criticizing the manuscripts of others — and I realize that in my own case."]

Over the years, I've found that very true: Both because the editing work has kept me from having time to do some of the (work) writing I'd like to do, and because it is so easy for doubts about commas and clauses to disrupt the ability of the words to get out of the head. (It took me about five tries to get that last sentence on screen, and I'm still not completely happy with it.)

So, if you've landed on this page because you were googling for an editor or writer or for me, please be assured that while I hope my writing is entertaining and/or interesting, "Lifechanges ... Delayed" is, first and foremost, a personal blog ... and I'm often rushing to finish my thoughts because someone is waking up from a nap.
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mc said...

Really interesting, Carter. I feel the same way about my blog -- that it's not representative of my paid writing at all, and that sometimes editing/writing professionally makes blogging that much harder. I sort of like that my blog is sloppy and colloquial... and that it's anonymous (although anyone in the tiny little Maine media world who stumbled upon it could probably figure out my name in very short order).

T. Carter said...

"Sloppy and colloquial" — I like that, it fits how I feel well. I'm still not sure if non-anonymous vs. anonymous was/is the right choice for me, but I didn't think of that back in 2003 and so here it all is ...