Over the last few months I experimented with writing under an assumed name - not for the first time. While it was fun to contemplate the idea of writing about subjects I might otherwise avoid, the reality proved to be somewhat different. I wouldn't say I grew fearful of emptying the unfiltered contents of my head - more that I grew tired of choosing "who to be" when sharing something with the wider world.
Going back to writing under my own name means either re-titling my existing blog, or starting something entirely new. It would mean telling everybody that follows my writing (both of you) that I'm moving AGAIN. I can imagine your eyes rolling, believe me. There is also the decision of where to set a new blog up - should I remain at Wordpress, where I have written for years, or should I do something different? I have been sitting on the fence over the whole "blogging platform debate" for years. It's not really a debate of course, because I'm the only one debating it. I've tried out just about every popular platform out there - Blogger, Wordpress, Ghost, Drupal, Joomla, Squarespace, LiveJournal, and quite a few platforms that don't even exist any more - Yahoo 360, Vox, MySpace, Posterous.
I'm moving the blog to Squarespace.
It resided at Squarespace once before - several years ago. Because there is a cost associated with Squarespace, I will admit to agonising for quite some time over the justification for spending money on a blog - but then something occurred to me. I don't really have a hobby as such - in many ways writing has become my hobby. In order to divorce myself from the mayhem that generally surrounds me from day to day, I sit at a keyboard and empty my head (through spectacularly heavy filters) onto the public internet. I suppose in some ways paying for the privilege to pollute the internet with my words is forcing me to re-evaluate what I do as "writing" instead of "blogging" - to perhaps try a little harder, and make the posts worth something - both to myself, and to others. I'm not sure I will, but it's a lofty goal.
I've decided on a pretty straightforward method to help fund the Squarespace account - I'm going to stop buying wine and chocolate. Perhaps once a week I pick up a bottle of wine and a bag of cookies from the supermarket on my way home from work, while supposedly picking up food for dinner. Stopping those impulse purchase will not only save far in excess of the hosting fees, but also stop my backside from forming it's own gravity. Honestly - if I didn't cycle to work, I hate to think how unfit I might be.
So - if you're reading these words, you're among the first to see the new blog. It's still in limbo at the time of writing because it takes domain transfers time to happen - the site may well vanish for several hours over the coming days as the final pieces of the jigsaw fall into place. It feels good though - to be back writing as "me" - not hiding, and covering my tracks. If you're wondering what on earth I have been writing over the last few months, feel free to scroll back through the posts, or visit the archive page. I'm working on an easy way for people to subscribe too - so watch this space.
Oh - and thankyou for reading :)