December 2016 calendar

Metablog – December 2016

I started the last day of the year furiously typing out notes for a blog post on my phone, the harsh backlight of the display illuminating a maniacal grin and some significant bags under my eyes as the clock ticked on past 1:05am. ‘This is who I am’, I thought. Although I knew I’d be tired in the morning and have a fitful sleep from staring at my phone last thing before pulling the covers up and tucking myself in, it felt good. Ideas were coming to me, and I was taking the time to react to them. I felt passionate about what I could do with what I was typing out. Finally, I felt as though it were all coming back.

December is a peculiar month. In many ways, I feel the same in December as I do in August – it’s a good month to take off, if you can; Christmas and new year disrupts many of our lives, no matter whether it forms part of our celebrations or not, and this can manifest itself in a bizarre combination of both activity and inactivity on an incredible scale. After the Portsmouth and Southsea Consortium’s Etsy Made Local market, I found myself (trying to) enjoy the latter. I had nothing to do, and with no one with whom to do it, I thought I was in for a month of mind-numbing boredom that would leave me fatigued with indolence and, horrified, eager for the return to a routine that January would bring. Luckily, this turned out to not be the case.

My birthday, and the seasonal festivities, passed in the company of family and friends. As always, I forgot there is an upper limit to how many biscuits one can eat in an evening, and was reminded that there is some kind of supreme deity, thanks to the discovery of a cheese-filled – the cheese was inside the sausage – bratwurst at the local ‘German’ Christmas market that answered many of my prayers. I joined in with the lamentations over what an absolute steaming dog shit of a year 2016 was, for the most part, and hoped that 2017 wouldn’t be as fucking brutal, that 2016 wasn’t a prologue to something much worse. Hmm.

Anyway. In between and around the celebrations, and from what felt like nowhere, I became eager to design, make and write – and did so. Without pressures, without an audience, without selling, the ideas came back to me and I put hook and needles to yarn, and pen and pencil to paper, and made the thoughts and feelings inside me into something tangible. I felt comfortable with my own ideas and opinions, and exploring without fear of making a mistake, and the ones I did make became part of the process, encouraging me to do better next time – encouraging me to make sure there were a next time. I am able, willing and eager to do – and do more.

The small, intermittent results of this have been private, but they have served to prove I have something to make, something to put down on a page. I should think I can build on this to resume publishing posts I don’t mind being public; and I am desperate for the commitment, motivation, stamina – whatever – necessary to make this happen. I keep trying to find inspiration online, from those writers I read and respect, or simply something someone says in passing; however, the more I do this, the more the following thought keeps coming to mind: ‘motivational quotes aren’t the answer’, meaning that all of this has to come from within. I know this. Anything I change about this blog and my relationship with it has to start (and, eventually, end) with me. But, having not been able to find it for over a year now, I don’t know where to look that I haven’t already done so.

Also, and this is something of which I’m absolutely certain now: I don’t intend to write for an audience when I write on this blog, going forward, but I recognise that there may be instances in which I’ll feel compelled to do so; these types of post, if and when they pop up, would be the exception rather than the rule. I’ve always thought of this blog as my space, and I guess I’ve always set that against what I’ve always been told ‘should be’ the purpose of a blog – speaking contemporarily, of course, and making the distinction between this, and a diary or journal. I’ve always struggled with this, but now feel, if not certain, more secure about what I want being the right thing for me – and I hope that makes sense to other people, because I can’t think of another way to explain it.

And, finally, in ‘looking forward’ news: When I started writing these metablog posts, I intended for them to be a reflection on my progress with this blog; however, it’s noticeable that they now reflect my attitudes towards my own creativity and creative practices, and both my personal and professional experiences with these. I think, therefore, it’s more appropriate for these to appear on The Five to Nine, since I started that project specifically to explore and interrogate creativity and creative practices. So, with this in mind, this will be the last metablog post on my personal blog. Future reflections on its progress will appear in metablog posts over on The Five to Nine, where appropriate.

Well. I think that’s about it. If you’ll excuse me, I’m off to break the resolutions I never made.

The cheese was inside the sausage. Inside it. Beautiful. Fucking genius.