Monday, October 25, 2010

Compelling content?

Dear You,

Someone just tweeted an article about 'how to write compelling content' or somesuch. It's 4.49am. I'm annoyed. Why aren't I working on the book. I have no compelling content for my blog, I'm afraid!! I'm not compelling content. I'm sitting here in a massive cardigan. It's freezing. I'm just struggling with my craft and getting up and going to sleep and trying to stay on top of my cleaning and do some half decent parenting and trying not to kill all the losers in my life while trying to show love to the people who do actually care. I feel like an alien today. I wonder sometimes what this place is, where I've arrived? This culture, these times... they are so odd. In an earlier post, I said 'weird and pale in the guts' and thats exactly how it feels.

On the one hand, amazing things can be accomplished via technological advancements! Art, ideas and information can be disseminated instantly. Like-minded people can link thoughts all around the world. All of this is tremendously powerful but, on the flipside, I feel we are becoming more and more 'virtual' in our outlook, and there's pressure to become 'compelling content'. I'm an artist, so I sink or swim on whether or not I can attract attention to myself and thusly to my product. How healthy is that? Twitter, again, can be a powerful resource but it's also a 140-characters-or-less shouting contest. I go periods without feeling the earth. Where is earth in virtual world? Everyone has an online avatar, a collection of witty soundbites and flattering pictures, and we're all trying to prove what 'compelling content' we are as individuals, :-)ing our faces off at each other. LOLing to the point of throwing up. How can it not make real life seem less exciting in comparison? Everyone's tweeting every move and uploading pictures and unless that happens, it's almost like the event didn't happen. Does it give anyone else a sense of vertigo?

Life on FB is like the smell of popcorn - the smell of popcorn in theatres is how they get you! It never tastes as good as the smell! I feel like I'm Lost in Space sometimes... So many choices and so many bells and whistles everyones got commitmentphobia and attention deficit disorder. So much choice about all the things that don't matter. You can watch anything right now, know anything, google anything! But your government isn't listening to you, you can't remember the last time you had sex and you don't have a partner because 'you're not ready' and/or 'they're not ready' and we're all waiting for this magical day when we'll be perfectly aligned and Oprah-ed up (self-help is another post!!!) and we're all hurtling full-speed toward death with no awareness of our own extinction.

I am going to die. You are going to die. We are all going to die. I don't how much of that time I want to waste waiting for the red PINGs on FB or more followers on twitter. I want to throw my heart into life. I want to love. I want to cook and eat and dance and do 'it' loads and write things not cynically designed to be 'compelling content' but things that are beautiful and hard and elevate me while I'm writing them and wring me dry of all pretense and transport readers to a place of deep feeling and experience. I want to really BE here!!!

Gosh, but I AM already here.

I'm right here, in a massive cardigan that itches a bit. Speaking to you really early in the morning, via a medium I love/hate. And you'll know about this because I've synched my blog to twitter and FB.

Gosh, isn't it all so bloody complicated? Contradiction, thy name is wo/man!!

[throws resigned hands in air]

Love, passion and purity,



Kervin Giovanni Desir said...

"... we're all hurdling full-speed towards death with no awareness of our own extinction."
Everything you say has remnants of the ole way of doing things, no offense but i think it's admirable that one would choose to go against the grain and against people's obvious gravitation to all the "compelling content" floating around in this imaginary sphere but it appears that you rather skinny deep into the depths of consciousness--Who we are, minus all the distraction that consume us as we attempt to play off this virtual rendition we have become so fond of.(ie facebook, twitter,myspace)

I once read this essay by Henry James called "the art of fiction",I and it speaks to me like you did in this piece. There are certain dimensions of this written art form that isn't an exact science and is really a mere articulation of your heartbeat (well,that's what my naivety has lead me to believe). Only few really dive that deep.

Keep articulating you heartbeat.

Cheers!/LouisaHRReid said...

Gemma - you are so right. Thanks for putting it down in such an eloquent way.
(you came to talk where I teach once - a girl's school in Cambridge) - do you remember?

Unknown said...

Wow... I've only just seen these! Thanks Kervin. What an inspiring comment... makes me want to return to the internal ponderings I am to rather than the rants I've felt poked into writing lately!

And Louisa! Of course I remember! Thanks so much for visiting :-)