Friday, June 7, 2013

Site, Sight, and Insight

Great sign. Whole bunch of them found here.
It’s been almost five years since I started this blog (celebration coming in July!), and in playing with some elements of The Storialist, I’ve been trying to define what this site is, for me.

Mostly, I think of The Storialist as my studio: a place (a site is a place, yes?) in which I can write, work on my practice, experiment with ideas, all while in public. A studio with the doors and windows open.

Initially, the site served as proof that I was a writer, I think. It was place to start conversations with images and with myself.

In the future, I’d like to let my studio get a little messier, and still leave the doors open. More and more, I am interested in how creativity works in each of us.


Your turn. What is your blog, for you? How has it changed since you began it? How do you envision it working for you in the future?


  1. I really like your explanation of the concept behind your blog, Hannah. An open-air studio, yes. And I have certainly noticed the freer play of your play of late, a development I really appreciate.

    As for me, I started my blog as storage device because I was between home computers and had a few scraps written down that I didn't want to save on my work computer. Over time, blogs like yours and others showed me the value of sharing my daily practice - somehow the "open air" aspect helped me refine it in a way I couldn't otherwise.

    Looking back, it is my life that has changed so much, but my blog has been a (the?) constant - even as most of the links I initially had are now gone as the sites have died or stopped regular publishing. What the future holds is a good question. I can't share my current strain of poems publicly for legal and other reasons, and I'm the type of person who never has more than a few pennies in his pocket, always relying on the continual kindness of the universe. The future for me is as Fiona Apple sings in "Red Red Red":

    "What's happened has happened
    What's coming is already on its way
    With a role for me to play
    I don't understand
    I'll never understand
    But I'll try to understand
    There's nothing else I can do"

  2. I love thinking of this place as a studio...5 years a quite an achievement! Did you write a poem a day even prior to the blog or were you more systematic because of the blog? I have asked that of myself many times...why would I want to share my cat diary...I will think of it another time. Happy Friday to you Hannah! Enjoy the weekend.

  3. Yes, a nice idea. I am not sure what I think of my own blog and it has evolved into a place to put the comics I draw. I think it's interesting to put poems up but some journals get upset if they find out you have posted them. But I don't try to publish comics so I don't worry about that, and it's nice to have a place to store them . . .

    I love your blog!

  4. You’re always dropping big questions on our plates! I had little idea of what my blog would be—certainly not such consistent commentary about poetry as it’s become. Didn’t I get enough of that in college and grad school? But when no one was responding to my opining about BLI (Big Life Issues), I stumbled onto talking about a poem—or poetry—and slowly a few people got interested. Some have stayed for years, and it feels very much like “first life” friendship. I’ve stuck with it as a conversation with people outside my first life and with people who (with a notable exception or two) are not English teachers, but have interesting, intelligent things to say about poems—and birds and photography and who knows what. Also, blogging and visitor comments have been more like classroom discussions than I expected, but of course with less pressure and formality. In the future I think I’ll keep aiming for a poem per week, if people continue to want that. But I’ll also keep changing it up once in awhile (like today’s bird questions and Thursday’s movie review) if a topic seizes me and I think I can make it seize others. (Yes, “seize.” It’s all about the vigor, you know).

  5. I was trying to be briefer than Bill, but we've tied at 13 lines. But he added that song! I'm briefer, I'm briefer.

  6. Thanks for these comments, everyone.

    Bill--I find it interesting that your blog is a constant for you (and during times of change for me, I have felt similarly). I love this idea, that something intangible (a website) can be comforting.

    Mona/MrsLittleJeans--Thank you! I did NOT write a poem a day before this--the blog forced it out of me, very much. I love your kitty diary.

    Nin--yes! A site can be our storage facility :). I think it's brave of you to do the comics, and so fun.

    John, I really enjoy how you start discussions on your site. You know how to ask good, direct, specific questions (which can be challenging, actually). And it's also nice to allow ourselves to change things up as our interests dictate.


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