This week, my friend and colleague Laura Pasquini – inspired by an Innovative Educator blog posting on the topic – asked, What Prompts You To Blog?. As I followed the trail of Laura’s question back to it’s source, I began reflecting on why I have chosen to write in this public forum when it is really hard for me to imagine that anyone else would be interested in my musings. Among the 20 Ways to Get Ideas for Writing Blog Posts offered by Lisa Nielson in the Innovative Educator post are things like #1 “Someone asks me a question. Rather than just share the answer with them, I share it with the world as others may have that question too” and #5 “Someone asks me for advice. I figure this might help others too so I write a blog post…” I am very new to this, and perhaps in time I will feel this way, but for now at least, some of the other suggestions feel more comfortable to me, such as #6 “Someone asks me a question and I don’t know the answer. I learn by writing a blog post” and #20 “Someone asks my opinion on something. I know how I feel, but sometimes I’m not sure why, so I write to solidify my thoughts.”
This last perhaps resonates the most with me. I have put a great many words on paper in my half century of life – many of them ending up for public consumption – but I have always written for me, about things that interest, intrigue, or sometimes perplex me. I have kept diaries (at 10), Journals (in my 30s), written long letters to friends and family far away (before email came along!), always chose the essay option over the short-answer or multiple-choice options, enjoyed exploring thesis questions and creating portfolios, developed a self-exploratory website (when that was new platform), and have a Narrative of our Family History continually in progress. Writing has always served as a way for me to organize, reflect upon, and clarify my thoughts.
It was considering the possibility that the concept of “digital immigrant” had created a false construct that I had allowed to inhibit my creativity that prompted me to begin blogging. As I think about it now, this does not surprise me, as considering the possibilities – musing on the whys and wherefores – has always been what I have chosen to write about. We shall see what this platform inspires, and perhaps there will be surprises ahead, but my expectation would be a continuation of this lifelong pattern.