April 13, 2004

I got a message today:
Have you stopped blogging? You've written some pretty good stuff; a shame if you've quit already.

Hope you'll be back in the mix soon.
Have I stopped blogging? It looks like it. Will it be permanent? I don't know. I am running ragged with a new faculty position, and my mindshare is elsewhere. So I am not really thinking of much to say that it makes sense to blog. I have started and stopped several times, so I can't say what the future holds. But my history suggests to me that I don't have the temperment to be a permanent blogger. This medium only really works for people who truly dedicate themselves to it.

Sometimes I think I wouldn't mind a group blog with enough contributors that I wouldn't feel pressured to write; but even then the time demands of reading and commenting on each other's stuff accumulate.

I have enjoyed doing this, but my experience has raised questions beyond whether my own commitment level is adequate. The immediacy of the medium has considerable costs and dangers as well as benefits. How many of our prayers are answered immediately? Are Jesus' disciples a discussion group? If so, doesn't Jesus rather often cut off their banter because they aren't getting anywhere? Is this tradition training us to be faithful to the apostolic tradition?

Someone claimed a while ago that if Jesus were alive today (and, er, he is) he would have a blog. Nope. I see the Athenian pundits of Acts 17:21 as the true bloggers.

I'm sure that part of the negativity in these words is late-semester fatigue, but I have doubts about the medium that go beyond burnout. Now I like reading the blogs I still frequent. I have loved getting to know new people through their writing. Their freshness and substance have made me (permanently, I hope) tired of those yahoos in big media I had learned to live with. However, the reading that has really been changing my life in the last twelve months, and the lives of my students, has come through books, not blogs.

That makes me think twice about whether to go back to spending so much of my reading and writing time in this medium.

Appeals from people like Camassia have brought me back to blogging before. I would welcome arguments about why I (and others) should rethink these thoughts. However, at this point I need convincing.

4:29 PM


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