On my daily run between Market Square and Founder's Park it hit me - the Writer's Spectrum. Writers dwell on a plane that lies somewhere between Dragnet's "Just the facts, Ma'am." and the insightful, introspective musings of the countless poets, novelists and philosophers we studied in high-school.
This all came about after a conversation with a friend of mine who is a screenwriter. As a copywriter, I am mesmerized at how someone can take a simple plot-line and blow it up with enough plot twists, character flaws, and details that it captures my attention for over two hours.
My job is the exact opposite. I take boundless amounts of information and form it into the most compact and concise sentences possible.
I even created a graph for you to explain my point (horray!):
Maybe you notice the fundamental problem with the spectrum. Bloggers are everywhere. With every other type of writer, our product is narrow and concrete. Copy is copy. A Speech is a speech. A book is a book.
But with blogs - they can be whatever the writer wants it to be. There are blogs that are to the point and dare I say damn near close to journalism. On the other hand, some blogs are nothing more than the dribbling swill of some schizophrenic college student trying to be "deep."
In marketing terms, this means we bloggers have a pretty serious branding issue. Non-bloggers see us as simply egotistical writers who have nothing better to do than post a journal online (well, maybe they have a point).
I blog because I am a writer.
I blog because it is a way to grow my business and get new clients.
I blog because I feel I have something interesting to say (and since I have dedicated readers who tell me I'm interesting, that gives me motivation to keep posting).
I blog because I'm a dork and have nothing better to do with my time (semi-true. Dork, yes. But I could definitely find other things to do with my time - like sleep).
I blog because it gives me a sense of community. I've met some crazy, funny, wonderful, quality people because of this blog and I love it!
I blog because I hate watching my local news. It's always "So-and-so shot so-and-so at the corner of so-and-so." That can get depressing - so I get my news from blogs.
But these are just the reasons I blog. Every blogger has a different motive and since the product is so varied it's difficult to define.
Maybe one day we'll be able to accurately define where blogging is on the writer's spectrum. But for now - we'll just keep blogging and hope somebody someday can make sense of it all.