First, am I still being faithful to my original intent in creating this on-line 'writer's and reader's notebook'?Well, there it is--my 100th posting. Personally, I'm proud of myself, and I'm proud of what ProSe has become over the past 26 months that I have been blogging. This is the dawn of a new phase for me as an on-line writer, as a reader, and for ProSe, and I am hopeful that my next 100 postings will continue to show the growth in my writing, reading and critical thinking. I also want all of you to know just how inspiring you have been, and continue to be, to me. I have made some wonderful new friends, and found many, many of you that share many of the same interests that I do. As I move forward into the future I am very much enjoying the ride, and hope that some of you will continue to join me. Cheers!
Yeah, I generally think I am. I started ProSe because I wanted a place to journal about and discuss the great literature that I was reading. If anything, I think that through my own use of this blog, and my interactions with other book-bloggers and readers, I have actually become a better writer, reader, and much more adept at critical thinking. So, in retrospect, whilst the blog has matured, so have I as a reader and a thinker. Those are very good things.
Secondly, what could (should) I do to improve the overall quality of ProSe, and my own personal on-line blogging experience?
At first blush, the obvious answer is to participate more consistently week-in, and week out. When I look at my record of posts, it is a record of fits-and-starts. I'll be really active for a few weeks, even a few months, and then I'll kind of go on an extended 'vacation' for two or three months. I think I need to become a more disciplined writer and actually make the extra effort to maintain my on-line 'writer's journal,' i.e., this blog. Hey, I don't ever stop reading great books for weeks or months on end, so why stop writing about them? As I said above, maintaining ProSe has made me a more complete writer and reader.
I think another area in which I can improve is to make more of an effort to link subjects, topics, and discussions that I feature on ProSe with similar topics and discussions that I encounter among all of the rest of you. It never ceases but to fascinate me when I encounter postings from other bloggers that are reading, or have just read, the same books that I am reading or just finished. It is so cool to be able to read your experiences while still mulling over my own. So, I think making more of an effort to bring your pertinent thoughts and observations into the discussion and connecting them with my own can only continue to make me a better reader and critical thinker. Also, I would be remiss in not pointing out that it has been through my interactions with all of my fellow book-bloggers that I have been regularly turned on to some really terrific books over the past couple of years. Thank you, my friends!
Thirdly, and this is a rhetorical question, why is it that postings about poetry are almost universally ignored?
Now, I am sure that this a gross over-generalization, but it seems to me that 99.99% of all the postings associated with literature that I am encountering on-line are about fiction and non-fiction books, and virtually nothing is being posted about poetry. As most of you are aware, poetry is probably my favorite literary art-form, followed by fiction. Part of my rationale for creating ProSe was to give me a forum to post and discuss some of my favorite poets and their works. I am always somewhat amused though at just how little attention these poetry postings of mine receive. I think there are only two conclusions that I can draw from this: (1) I am a terrible presenter and that my scribblings about poets and poetry are about as boring as watching paint dry; or (2) poetry is just not something that most readers are interested in these days. Let me qualify that last observation by saying that I am most certainly not casting any aspersions, nor am I being judgmental. It is what it is. Rest assured, I plan to continue postings here that involve and feature poets and poetry, as it is a very near and dear art form to me.
Finally, I would like to invite all of you to grade ProSe and my performance as a blogger. Are there particular things you'd like to see me change, or include?
P.S. The photograph I've included with this posting is one I took at dawn on the shores of beautiful Lake McDonald in Glacier National Park in northwestern Montana. I spent a lovely morning there with my wife and oldest daughter a few years back, and looking at it always brings back such great memories. Please feel free to 'click' on it for a much larger view.