I moved to Eugene back in April of 2007 for the sole purpose of attending the University of Oregon to get a degree in Journalism. It's not 6 years later and not only am I getting one degree in Journalism, I'm getting two, plus an additional one in English to boot. Of all the things I recall from my first years in the program, the one that sticks out the most was the first time I heard about blogging in my Writing for the Media course taught by Tom Wheeler. For some reason the concept of writing whatever you wanted to, but receiving the moniker of a journalist seemed far fetched. "Who were these people to think that they were doing any kind of service to the community?" I always thought. But here I am, six years later, an avid participant of a tool I originally despised. How did I get there you might ask? Well...
I have always been a stubborn writer. For years I tried to make a daily habit out of writing. It didn't really matter what the subject was. I just needed to put something down on paper, but for years I struggled. I made up excuses for not doing it.
Around 2010 I finally broke through the barrier and started up a blog. I mostly used it as a platform to show off the stories I had written for all of my classes, but nothing about it felt write. It seemed more like an online portfolio, as opposed to a habit. After about six months I stopped using that blog. I tried writing a few personal stories, but none of them felt good enough for what I was trying to accomplish. And when I say that, what I'm actually saying is that at the time I still didn't know what the hell I was doing.
It took several years of reading dozens of blogs to truly get an understanding of what its purpose is. I had always believed that everything posted needed to be some profound, poiniant piece of literature, but the reality is that a blog can be anything as long as it has a point. And in all honestly, that point doesn't even need to be really understood by the reader, as long as the author knows the reason why they're doing it.
In January of 2012 I started my first baseball blog. I had a lot of friends who doing some, as well as a few newspaper and magazine writers; however, the one common theme I saw in their work was that they were all trying to inject their "insight" into the minds of whoever would read it. Some of it was interesting, but the majority of it was incredibly useless to me. A lot of the writing was fantastic, but the content had no real voice to it. By that I mean it felt like the same recycled words I had been reading in newspapers and magazines all my life. Blogs are supposed to have a lot more personality to it.