As a child, I loved writing stories. I used to take notepads with me on car trips (even five minute drives to the store) and jot down narratives and day dreams. Although these scribbles paved the way for embarrassing discoveries in recent years, such as forgotten stories of my childhood spiciness recorded by yours truly, they serve as gentle reminders of my long lost friend: my voice. My written elementary school memories and my fictional short stories- written “just because”- were put through somewhat of a “refining” process. But has my voice really been “refined,” or has it been so edited that it is nearly lost in the rules and regulations of the academic classroom, weaving in and out of the maze of grammar and guidelines?
After years of essays in specific formats, projects about a restrictive list of approved topics, and teacher instructions to write with minimal description, I find that my only written expression is flowing from my hand to reach a grade or a grant. I have very little time for myself. In other words, I have very little time to allow my deepest thoughts to escape my engineering-focused mind. I am so accustomed to double (and triple) checking every piece of my writing; I must ensure that my knowledge is relayed in the most direct and concise manner. I very much value the importance of rules and regulations in scientific writing; yet I have forgotten to find the time to value other forms of expression. I am at risk for losing connection with evolving methods of communication, and connection with my very own voice.
In Scott Rosenburg’s “How Blogs Changed Everything,” he refers to the ability of bloggers to control their voices. I previously feared that blogs could lead to an undesired, uncontrollable discussion over my personal thoughts, and thus public embarrassment. I realized as I read this post from Rosenburg, however, that I am in control of this content and my role in a general discussion.
I understand that blogging has become a popular method for remaining connected in academic institutions. As a hopeful future professor, I know I must become familiar with blogging in a way that could help me better connect with others (especially future students). Rosenburg reflects on the technological growth of the telephone, and how something that once caused such paranoia among people desiring privacy now serves as a comfort we take for granted. This comparison eased my anxiety of public sharing, and sparked the question of what will be “new” when communication through blogging becomes second-nature.
Seth Godin and Tom Peters’ discussion on blogging mentions the humility involved with creating and sharing a post. The importance of blogging is not only placed in the audience’s reception of a blogger’s thoughts, but rather in the process of creative thought formulation. It is this very process of creativity that I feel I have stifled over the course of my educational pursuits, and I am convinced blogging can help me rediscover this creative voice.