the wonderful world of veena.

08 May 2012

the pressure to blog / blogging as a catharsis.

I have had this blog now for nearly a year and a half, and in that time I have written approximately 200 posts. That comes down to one post roughly every three days.

There have been some months where I've actually had different things about which to write, and then there have been other months where I feel as though I write the same things over and over, particularly about how busy school is or how much longer it is until I'm back in Bangalore [26 days, in case anyone is counting!]. At times I feel the pressure to write something for the sake of writing something because it's been four days and all the blogs I read have been updated so mine should be, too. And I know that's irrational. But I feel a responsibility. If there are people out there willing to take the time to read the things I write, I should take the time to write something thoughtful. Right? So then I spend time agonizing over what I should write about on here. Do people really care about my course load? Or the Razorbacks? Or the books I'm reading? Surely someone does. Yes? Perhaps? Maybe.

And then there's the simple fact that it's cathartic. Sitting down to write something - anything - is such a great release. It gives me a chance to have some time to myself to reflect over what's been going on in my life, what is upcoming, and what maybe needs to be rethought. I've always enjoyed writing; when I was in middle and high school, I filled journals cover-to-cover with such random thoughts that I can do nothing but reread them and laugh at how silly I used to be. But that was my release. Unleashing words onto a page - and now onto a computer screen - is a way for me to break free of whatever might be holding me back. Some people paint, some people watch tv, some people shop. I write.

What I have to keep reminding myself is that I write for myself. I keep thinking I should write what people want to read, but then I remember that I started this blog for me, and that if I try to cater to other people, it'll lose the identity of being mine.

Take my previous post about my top 11 reasons for visiting India, for example. Yes, I think all of those are extremely valid reasons for visiting India, and if someone plans a trip because of that [I highly doubt it, but crazier things have happened], that would be awesome. But that post was mostly a fun opportunity for me to remember all the reasons I'm excited about being back in just a few weeks and an excuse to go through all my pictures and reminisce.

So I guess it comes down to me reminding myself, when that pressure to write a new post starts to build, that I should not write just for the sake of writing, but rather when I actually have something to say. Not only will this continue to be a catharsis for me, but it will also then remain interesting for the crazy people who continue to read the things I write.

So while my posts may become infrequent over the coming months, particularly while I am traveling and without regular access to internet, I'm hoping that they become more interesting, both for myself and for you, whomever and wherever you are.


  1. Veena, I saw your previous post in your Facebook link and after reading it, immediately added you to my Google Reader. :) As a long-time blogger (who has known periods of intense production but who is currently *not even close* to cranking out a post every three days with any regularity), I utterly relate to everything you have written here. I've gotten to the point where I just re-post years-old entries if it's been a few too many days (or a week) and I haven't been inspired to write anything new.

    But that's kind of ridiculous, and only reflects the pressure I put on myself to "entertain." I also have gotten into the bad habit of writing entries but then not publishing them, in fear of no one wanting to read them. And that's also ridiculous, because as you so aptly point out, the process of writing is first and foremost about the needs of the writer.

    So thank you for this! You have vocalized so much good here. I hope you enjoy the next few months, and whenever you write and whatever you write, it will be awesome. :)

    1. Becky, thank you so much for your kind words! I have been meaning to reply to your comment for ages, but these last few weeks seem to have run away from me. It's so refreshing to hear my thoughts validated by a friend and fellow blogger and to know I'm not the only one who faces these insecurities :)

      I downloaded your book and have been cracking up in the moments I have had to read it. I love your writing style and cannot wait for future publications!

      Until then, always remember to write for yourself first and for others second. It'll keep you honest.