Are Personal Blogs New-Fangled Journals? ~ Gatherings from Ireland # 240

Do you ever wonder about the people behind personal blogs? I certainly do!  And one question that  creeps into my curious head is whether their posts are all sanitized and edited with the real version in a journal that they’ve stashed away in a lock-up somewhere.

I have to say I adore ‘real’  journals, especially ones with rich parchment-like paper that beg for a fountain pen and and thoughts, emotions, happenings that matter to the writer.

Yes, there’s great freedom in blogging but can one, or does one want to, wear one’s heart on one’s blog?  I reckon personal blogs need heart and many of them have a helluva lot of it.

But I also think that lots of people need to be able to spill their whole heart out onto a page that will be as unconditionally loving and discreet as one’s faithful, empathetic dog who has witnessed and absorbed every mood swing imaginable.

Can a personal blog ever serve his/her master/mistress like a private journal? Are private journals becoming  things of the past as personal blogs, either anonymous or otherwise, wrench open every conceivable topic  and lay them bare in all their rawness?

Author: socialbridge

I am a sociologist and writer from Ireland. I have worked as a social researcher for 30 years and have had a lifelong passion for writing. My main research interests relate to health care and sense of place.

16 thoughts on “Are Personal Blogs New-Fangled Journals? ~ Gatherings from Ireland # 240”

  1. If there is any reason for a thought to be remembered either by yourself or someone else, write it down. But, we don’t–not all of them. And those private thoughts that if discovered by others might make us uncomfortable or blush? It’s a brave soul, or a foolish one who’d write it out even in a hidden notebook, much less published on the internet.

    But if it is to be eventually or hopefully shared, keep it in draft form where you can find it. A draft in the clouds of cyberspace doesn’t smear or fade, and three years from now, the personal advantage for me keeping it in the weblog draft form is threefold:

    1.) It’s already there. And though some editing might be needed, I don’t have to retype everything;
    2.) It can be kept private until I wish it to be available to the public,
    3.) I won’t have to attempt to translate my own terrible penmanship. I can’t make out a grocery list I’ve written by the time I get to the store even on the same day.

  2. Ah yes, real journals. I love the gorgeous ones like that last photo. I have personal journals, yes, filled with random thoughts and of course hand written in pen. I too love to find ‘real ‘ journals for their stark truthfulness. But, my blog posts are always what I choose to share. Thoughts are edited for clarity. A journal is simply a personal flowing of ideas and life but a post-able piece of writing takes work.

    1. Hi Wendy, thanks for sharing your thoughts. I’m glad to here that you’re a journal person too!
      I agree that blog posts take the kind of work that you mention but I would suggest that journal writing is work of a different order ~ maybe harder in the sense that it requires an honesty that can be very draining at all sorts of levels?

  3. Oh my goodness, you`re reminding me about my chronic journaling habit from when I was about twelve and on, intermittently, to my twenties. I can`t imagine having a handwritten journal now. For a start, my handwriting is utterly illegible, and I much prefer to type, anyhow. I do love a beautiful notebook and beautiful writing paper, though.

    1. RH, interesting how you can’t imagine having a handwritten journal now ~ when I can’t imagine being without one! What good is a beautiful notebook if one doesn’t write in it?
      I see handwriting raising its head again here, as in Van’s post. Was it always an issue or has it deteriorated with age or perhaps lack of practice?


  4. I loved this post.. It got me thinking so much I did a post on it (and duly credited you!). I have a personal blog and I do share quite a lot. More than I ever planned to. However you are right my real life unedited is on the pages of the diary I have been writing for the past twenty six years.

    1. Hi Carmel. Thanks for writing. I wonder is journal-keeping very much associated with adolescence? If so, I’ve not moved on from there! I suppose the question is whether or not you would have shared your journals like you would your blog.
      The other side of this, of course, is how many people have ‘private’ blogs. I wonder does anyone know?

      1. To answer that question, I would never have shared my handwritten journals with anyone. They were my innermost thoughts and dreams and for my eyes only! And while I do blog about family among other things, I am very careful about what I write. I want to make sure that I never share anything that could cause upset or offence to my family now or in the future. As for private blogs, thats a good question? I have no idea. What a clever way to have an online journal I suppose, Set it to private and type away!

  5. Greetings from the professor! Hmm, no truer words or should the professor say thoughts than found in this blog. Thoughts are at least private unless willingly divulged. Quite interesting….

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