I Need Some Advice, Please.

One of my professors shared this great blog post: Blogging for the Hell of It, Not Blogging to Stay Relevant.  The writer talks about how he used to love blogging, until he started thinking about the audience he was writing for, and then things got stilted and weird.  (FYI: I might be editorializing.  But that was my takeaway.)  His writing style is super conversational, and it's clear, even now that he's a bit jaded, that he's super comfortable banging out and immediately publishing his (surprisingly coherent) stream-of-consciousness pieces.  As a writing exercise, I'll be trying that technique for this post.      


It used to be super easy for me to type as I thought, and post whatever came to mind, but something changed, and I don't like it. I've been working on this one blog post--on minimalism, ironically--for almost a week now, and still don't think it's good enough to publish.  I think my standard for "good enough" is higher because there's something at stake now.  

I started my first blog to document my study abroad experience, and was just SO comfortable talking as a sassy 21-year-old and sharing my thoughts on, like, grocery stores and escalators.  But now, like five blogs later, I consider myself an "educated adult" with a "perspective" that I should "articulate."  And that's way harder!  But it's probably also worth putting some effort into, since mastering the skill of casual-but-coherent-and-interesting-and-smart blogging could actually be a really good use of my... "potential."

Ok.  In all honesty, I think I'm a really good writer.  (It's weird to say that here, because the proof is in the pudding, and right now the pudding is like, room temp gas station snakpak at best.)  And there's this (unfortunately really cliched) quote that I always think about when I'm convincing myself to keep writing and publishing blog posts: 

All of us who do creative work, we get into it because we have good taste. But there is this gap. For the first couple years you make stuff, and it’s just not that good. It’s trying to be good, it has potential, but it’s not. But your taste, the thing that got you into the game, is still killer. And your taste is why your work disappoints you.
— Ira Glass

I guess this is some version of an ignorance-is-bliss situation, where the only reason I know I'm bad is because I have the potential to be actually good.  And apparently the only way to work towards being actually good, is to keep making stuff that you know is bad.  So here's my question: How do you let yourself care enough to keep producing bad content, but not so much that you acknowledge how bad it is, and get discouraged and stop?  This is a serious question and I would love to hear opinions in the comments below-- share your wisdom, friends and strangers!  

For now I'll leave you with a Ben Folds quote that has, predictably, taken on a whole new level of meaning since I first heard it high school (I think I first liked it because of the super-emo use of the word "shit...")      

You get smaller as the world gets big / The more you know you know you don’t know shit
— Ben Folds, Bastard