Between this blog and the two food blogs, I’ve written 3,279,600 words over the 13 years that I have been blogging. And that’s a conservative estimate because I arrived at the total word count by multiplying the total number of posts by 600 which is kind of low because about 40 per cent of my blog posts are over 1,000 words long. And that doesn’t include the articles I wrote for about.com during the year and a half that I was the Southeast Asian Food “expert”.
The thing is, after churning out over three million words, I seem to have lost my ability to “write about anything” (as a friend once commented). Perhaps, it’s the result of focusing on the food blogs. One can only insert so much food porn-y words in every recipe. And, for most readers (“scanners” might be a more appropriate term because web readers these days merely scan rather than read in the real sense of the word), waxing poetic about the virtues of sugar over artificial sweeteners is the surest way to get them to leave.
In the same manner, writing passionately to convince people to be smart enough not to fall for every “scientific research” because most are paid for by entities that stand to benefit from pre-determined results is just getting “blank stares” from most readers.
The truth is, in an age when people respond more to clickbait-y titles, sound bytes and 40-second videos, writing seems to have lost its place in the world wide web where the meaning of “content is king” has been re-defined too much and too fast.
For people like me who use words to make people “see”, “hear” and even “feel”, that hurts. Believe me, the temptation to go with the bandwagon and re-package the blogs was tremendous. I even thought of a fake news web site (I went so far as to register a domain) which is truly fashionable these days. In the end, I couldn’t. Even if writing a fake news site can be considered writing at all, that’s stooping so low.
But I miss writing beyond making a list of ingredients and describing a cooking procedure.
I want to feel the exhilaration of watching drops of water fall while words form in my mind.
I’d like to be able to gaze at the sea and hear songs singing in my head.
I want to be able to write about a bat that got inside the house and make readers feel the terror that I felt.
I want to stare at a painting, feel it throb and beg to be understood, and be able to respond to its plea.
I want to go back to that path. I really do.
But how and where to find the motivation and the inspiration? Reacting to news articles and writing opinions about current events just don’t excite me anymore.
So, I looked elsewhere and WordPress’ The Daily Post seemsed like a good place to start. Looking forward to writing millions of words more.