I’m not someone who was known for literary skills. My worst grade in college while seeking my engineering degree was in my “Into to Lit” class. This was not due to a failure to comprehend Hamlet (which I was reading for the second time), but because of grammatical mistakes and general poor essay writing. Still, despite that history, I am choosing to start writing…publicly.
It’s not you, it’s me
While I can think of some grandiose reasons for starting a blog, my top reason is more personal than public. I want to sort my thoughts out. In the past I’ve occasionally done personal journaling and by translating my thoughts to sentences, I’ve come to understand myself better. Still, while it was relaxing and informative, I often lacked the motivation to write for myself. It didn’t seem to matter enough.
In contrast, a public post can impact the way another person thinks. Writing after all is a form of communication. It also requires a lot more thought and effort. Let’s be honest. While I try not to place my worth in other’s thoughts, I don’t want to look stupid. Even more significantly, if I address topics discussing religion (which basically spans all of life’s subjects) I want to honor my creator.
But I have no goals for how often I’ll get thoughts into words. I’m not promising a weekly update or even a monthly one. I’m planning on writing as life comes so if you need more content to consume you’ll have to look to the rest of the internet. I think there’s enough that you can find something to interest you.
Sharing is Caring
When I look at the works online that I have found enlightening, many have been blog posts that someone wrote in a personal manner about a topic that they they cared about. The internet has clearly made the sharing of ideas much more accessible. I don’t consider myself a philosopher but if some idea or tip if beneficial to someone then I am glad to share.
Communication breaks down barriers
There is a lot of power in communication. That’s why oppressive governments fight to limit communication. But beyond political upheaval, a simple article can save you hours of work or motivate you to try something new. Learning to understand someone/something you didn’t before can break down walls. I believe that everyone has something to share and I want to promote the exchange of ideas. Communication wouldn’t be nearly as impactful if it was only one-sided. That’s why “Web 2.0” was such a big deal. It brought a social, two-way communication to the previously static webpage.
While social networks like Facebook have become the go-to place to share ideas, I have found that comment threads have historically been poor places for sharing full formed ideas. I avoid commenting on controversial material on Facebook because it seems that people do not really understand an opposing view simply through a series of comments. A blog does not solve all of these communication problems, but they do encourage people to listen more before responding. I’d like to be a part of some of the conversations that our nation and generation is having in a meaningful way and I want to encourage others to do the same.
What will I write?
Good question. I haven’t quite figured out what yet. I have a few ideas on the drawing table but they are varied to say the least. As a warning, my posts could span anything from technology, to social issues. One post may be a editorial on the actions of people while the next could be a technical explanation of how to use a piece of software. I recognize that there are very few people who would be interested in articles from both ends of that spectrum so I won’t feel bad if you don’t read. I don’t want to waste you time so feel free to pick and choose.
I realize that many of my friends and relatives may never have heard of medium.com before but I have been drawn in by it’s unique style. I don’t deny my love of trying new technology or even reject the “early adopter” label, but Medium’s focus on quality design, ease of use, and promoting communication sold me on the platform.
Medium allows anyone with an account to post under their own name. You don’t need to start your own individual blog site. If you’d like to do that you can set up a “publication” but my aim it just to share what I find significant. Medium is like a community of writers. Articles are suggested based off of your preferences. If you like a writer, you can follow them, but articles aren’t locked in independent personal blogs.
Opportunities for feedback
Most uniquely, Medium has the ability for readers to comment on individual lines of a post. Their philosophy is that comments make more sense in context than at the bottom of the page. If you have a general response, you can still write your own post at the bottom of the page. It’s all up to you and it’s designed to be easy.
Let me be clear, I want to hear feedback. Even if you completely disagree with me, I’d like to hear why. As I share my perspective with you, I want to learn yours. I could be completely missing a whole viewpoint so please enligten me! If your feedback is as simple as noting a simple spelling mistake (of which there will be plenty), please write me a quick note. You can mark the note as private so only I see it and I’ll correct the issue as soon as I can. Or if you want to shar with others, that would be fantastic. There is a spot for you to explain why you are recommending an article on Medium so that others can see what you appreciated.
As a professional web developer, I appreciate the design of the Medium website. They make clear typeography a priority so posts are easy to read. They’ve made an easy text editor that is minimal but powerful. They designed their website with mobile viewing as a priority so posts can be read anywhere. They are even doing their part to avoid forcing you to have to remember a new password. Those types of design decisions make me feel that I’m making my writing accessible to those that want to read it.
Now that I’ve gone through the lengths of explaining why I’ve chosen to write I probably should get moving. I hope I can share something interesting with the world but I also hope to understand myself better. Please give your feedback and follow me to get notified when I make my next post.
Originally published on Medium