Author's Musing

What’s the point of blogging?

Dya know this blog goes all the way back to November 2009? It’s over eight years old.

Don’t expect to learn much in this non-post. It isn’t even a ‘Birthday Post’, which is why I had to put ‘over’ in the title. It just occurred to me it’s not far off a decade and I realised that the fact is petrifying, exhilarating, and just a downright mindscrew (I totally got that one from googling synonyms for the more obvious version that my mum would hate..) rolled into one.

The early days…

The author who started it was a 20-year-old with tendonitis in her ankle – looking for somewhere to scribble down all the stress that would otherwise have been expelled on the streets of Brighton whilst wearing Asics trainers.

The blog’s been on quite a journey.

It’s been a personal diary – used just as much for dissecting a sudden realisation that English Lit won’t save the world as for arbitrarily listing the training (or, exercise) I’d done on a given day, and on every day I’d not blogged.

When I was a journalist for a local paper, it was kind of an online CV showing off all the ‘exciting’ things I’d written about (such as planning permission, and my own personal favourite, Freddie Star rambling about missing a gig – oh and the missing chickens!).

After a year in the hell fire of local hackdom I slipped into marketing for a few years, frankly because it was a welcome break from the stress of having to determine if writing about a woman being attacked by her husband in her own home is in the public interest (IMO it’s not).

Once the writing itch started to really knock, it became a sort of compendium of listicles and very brief fitness features in the hope someone might give me a job (and they did!).

Everyone loves a holiday blog, right?

Now that I get to write about subjects I enjoy every day, all the posts that would otherwise end up on here, are work (yep – I get to do the thing I’d do as a hobby, for work now.. that reality took a while to set in) so have ended up on Evans Cycles’ blog, then Total Women’s Cycling, and now Cycling Weekly. Which means the blog has been reserved for personal holiday diaries, race reports and posts that I don’t feel fit the remit. There’s even been (probably misguided) poetry. 

The end result is that the blog has been a bit neglected. And yet I’ll always come back to it.

Writing down experiences, hypothetical questions, thoughts, concrete events – it’s just something that is natural to me, and there’s a bizarre feeling that if I didn’t do it I’d swell up like a giant Michelle shaped balloon, not quite capable of holding it all inside and perhaps popping at the very worst moment.

The twists and turns the blog has taken go a long way to showing how all of our life events come together to shape us as people. Without the tendonitis, that seems so awful at the time, I’d never have tried swimming and then triathlon, and ultimately bike racing. I would probably have chosen a trip to Singapore over a bike for my 21st birthday (those were the options). And had that been the case, this blog would probably have read very differently over the years.

There we go – full circle, without intention. I started this post to determine the ‘point’ of the blog – after eight years. And I’ve found it: it’s a documentation of a journey, and one I can learn from in years to come.

I am an NCTJ qualified journalist and copywriter with a year’s worth of experience as a local hack, and just under two years’ of experience working in the marketing department for a highstreet retailer. I currently work at Cycling Weekly, previous to this I was the editor at Total Women's Cycling. I do a little freelance writing alongside my job, and have written for Runner’s World, Triathlete’s World, Sussex Sport, Basingstoke Gazette newspaper, the Brighton Argus, Steve Hart Photography and 2LK Design. I blog to record the activities in my life which I don’t want to forget when I’m old and wrinkly (let’s hope the internet never melts down – but it seems safer than a notebook) – to let old friends and family know what I’m up to, and because I enjoy playing with words. I’m always looking for new projects – and you can email me should you ever need someone with an energetic passion for word doodling. Email: michelle.arthurs@gmail.com Twitter: @RideWriteRepeat Instagram: @RideWriteRepeat

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