I just wanted to blog something about blogging and more importantly how it can help alleviate the pain of loneliness and depression.
Avid readers of my work, thank you Trevor from Darlington, will have seen that I post something on WordPress most days, and much of it is serialisation of my novel “Here Am I Sitting in my Tin Can.” But while that’s of course fiction, it’s based on the realities of my travels and the absolute realities of my mental health. In other words, there’s a great deal of soul-searching in the novel that some would say is not always integral to the plot but is always important for me to put into words, subtly or otherwise.
I suppose the writing of that novel was catharsis, and there’s something comforting in the knowledge that people are reading it and their reaction is immediate, whereas reaction to a book on a shelf comes layered with dust. It’s easy I guess for a blogger to convince himself that getting ‘likes’ is a litmus test of his skills with the tools of his trade, but while ‘likes’ mean nothing in terms of pounds, shillings and pence as financial remuneration, they can mean much more to him than that; it’s almost like being in a club, and as a member of that club he feels a sense of belonging, he’s being sociable, familiar enough with his affiliates to convey the inner-most, often painful truths about himself. You can see what I mean by reading thebiscuitfactoryonline where amid the witty observations of everyday life there’s exploration and examination of personal pain, and https://futuredaze.blog/ where among the strokes of artistic integrity there’s colourful, candid and honest depiction of bereavement.
People like me who live with depression are often encouraged to ‘open up’ about our feelings (tomorrow I’m going to write a companion piece called Talking Matters) but people like me who are also writers spend much of their time alone, so finding comfort from talking is not always possible unless it’s talking to oneself (which I do often) or to a bottle of whisky or to chocolate (which I do too often). It strikes me, however, that when I blog, while the primary purpose is to entertain, I am also unburdening, subconsciously perhaps, some of the painful truth about myself, serialising the wheat and the chaff (no pun intended) of my life, and saying some of the things I might say about it if someone other than myself was there to say it to.
So in summary, while my depression is a constant battle and an interminable pain in the head and the backside to boot, I can find just as much pleasure and alleviation of that pain from WordPress – the moment I click ‘Publish’ and the moment one of my fellows ‘Likes’ me – than from a bottle of Jameson’s or a jar of Nutella.
NB. Other whiskies and chocolate spreads are available from your local store.