Friday, February 13, 2015

Does Posterity Matter in Blogging?


Here's a question that I've been struggling with lately. Should I go into the archive of A Splash of Ink and take down some of my earlier posts?

I have been writing on A Splash of Ink for almost four years. I started blogging seriously when I was 14 and in grade nine. Since the beginning of this blog I have read hundreds of books, studied English in a higher academic setting, started working at the library, learned to drive, graduated high school and figured out my core values and beliefs. Now, I'm nineteen and after taking time off to work, I made it to my first year of university.

I think it goes without saying that I have matured (I hope, haha). With maturity comes new insights and new ideas. Sometimes these new ideas conflict with old ideas. When I look at my archives, I see old ideas woven throughout my blog posts. I want my blog to be a reflection of me, and those old posts aren't my opinions anymore.

And sometimes when I look at my archive, I just want to give my younger self a good kick in the rear end, and tell myself to smarten up. Frankly, I find 2011 me annoying -sometimes. Maybe, I'm being self-critical, but some posts are written with a tone that is, well, immature and a bit cocky.

On coming to this realization, my first instinct was to go through A Splash of Ink and purge the archives of those particularly annoying posts. However, I didn't, and I don't think I will.

Those posts don't reflect my opinions today, but they reflect a part of me. Those posts reflect who I was four years ago, and who I was three years ago, and who I was two years ago, and who I was last year, even who I was last week. They show the slow change in how I've thought about literature and life. There's something beautiful about being able to see that kind of growth and longevity.

I could enjoy reviewing that growth in private, but I want to be able to share that with other people. I want my sub-par archives to be an encouragement to other bloggers who are just beginning. It is true what they say, to be a better writer you must write. Even if the writing is a little bit shaky to begin with.

I will no longer feel embarrassed about those early days of blogging. I will keep those posts for the sake of posterity. I want the "future generations" of me to be able to see where I started.

What about you? Are you embarrassed about your blog archives or old writing? Have you deleted posts before? Let me know all your thoughts in the comments!

Reading: Gone by Michael Grant
Listening: Sleeping at Last
Watching: Gilmore Girls

12 comments:

  1. I haven't even been blogging for that long yet (about 10 months), but I still am a little bit embarrassed about some of my old posts. Still, I don't think I'll ever delete my old posts, because, like you said, they are a reflection of me, and I want to keep that reflection in place. I've gone through the archives of many blogs, and I almost always see significant improvement and maturity in the posts, but that's okay because I understand that people grow, and I shouldn't judge them completely off of old posts.I know it definitely inspires me, too. I used to rip pages out of my notebooks when I was little because I would write something and then be embarrassed over it. However, my notebooks started looking very sad and thin, and I missed that old writing, so I stopped soon enough. Even though I may never unearth my old writing and it might not be good, it's still nice to read over it and see how far I've come. My verdict: don't ever delete your old writing.

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    1. I applaud anyone who gets past the three month mark. The first stretch of blogging is the hardest, because very few people are reading your blog. So good on you for that!

      Also, the story about your notebook makes me sad, haha. I have some old journals and I LOVE reading about my old struggles and seeing that growth. I'm glad that you've since gotten over that habit.

      Thanks for you nice, long comment!

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  2. I totally feel the same way! My archives felt so...flat. I felt like I blogged in a totally bland tone. I'm not fond of my archives. BUT. Like you said, it's still part of me right?! I think anyone who's deluded enough to peek into my archives will know that my opinions and thoughts will have changed. XD

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    1. I'm always really curious when I look at my stats to see how many page views those old posts get. I just HOPE those "deluded" (haha) people who read archives do realize that my thoughts have changed. Occasionally, I go back and put a link in an old post to something new that I've posted that addresses the same issue. But mostly, I just leave them be.

      Delete
  3. I think we all end up questioning our former posts at some point, especially as we get older and begin to see the world differently. You'll see the world differently in another five years, I'm sure. But I don't think I would delete posts, because I feel like that would be a little dishonest. I mean, of course, they don't represent me anymore, but they do represent who I was, and sometimes it's important to be humbled by who you used to be, and maybe who you still are, just older. Interesting food for thought, though.

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    1. Hmm...I never thought about it in terms of honesty and dishonesty, but I think you're right. I would feel like I'm not presenting my real blogging self. Also, being humbled by your past self is SO important. Great comment, very eloquently put:)

      I'm glad I could feed your brain!

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  4. I'm glad you decided not to delete those posts! I'm a new blogger and your blog has helped me a lot. Especially seeing how your style has changed and become better. It gives me hope for my blog! Splash of Ink has been a big influence and I'm glad you're keeping all the posts!

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    1. This is seriously the sweetest comment. Thank you so much! It's so encouraging to hear you say that:) I only hope I can continue to grow and become better.

      Good luck with your future blogging!

      Delete
  5. I've had my personal (lifestyle) blog for 10 years so I know what you mean. Sometimes I look back at my posts from college and want to hide them heh.

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    1. Ten years! Wow, I can understand why you would feel embarrassed. I bow down to that commitment though. That's seriously impressive!

      Also, you accidentally double commented, so I deleted one:)

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  6. The early days of anything are always going to be cringeworthy when you're experienced and looking back! It's always nice to have a timeline, plus I have a habit of totally forgetting about things I had written and its cool to look at that headspace from the outside or be transported back.

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    1. You are so right! The early days of EVERYTHING are never pretty, even if you think they are at the time. I also find it neat to look back at posts that I've forgotten about.

      Thanks for commenting:)

      Delete

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