If there’s something I learned from the famous talk “149 Surprising Ways to Turbocharge Your Blog With Credibility!” by John Gruber and Merlin Mann, was that one should make a great effort to write as if the people you admire we’re going to read your work. This is true even if the people you admire are fictional, or like in Gruber’s case, an idealized version of himself. I like to think that this piece of advice is as valid for writing/blogging as it is for anything else you do in life.
I can certainly say that I personally don’t know most of the people I admire,1 which is fine by me. But I don’t write exclusively for them. Quite often, if not always, I write for myself.2 I write as a way to remind my future self of what it felt to be me in the past.3 I write to the better version of myself, in the hopes that by doing so, my worse version recognizes his mistakes and learns from them.
In some ways my ideal reader is the better version of myself. More often than not I find myself reading my own articles several times after they’ve been published. It certainly is not a narcissistic thing,4 I just really like to feel proud of what I make. This is why I write the site I want to read.
This, without much doubt will continue to stay this way, for some of them are dead, and believing in the afterlife is plain foolishness. ↩
I had been meaning to write this post for quite a while, but hadn’t found time to do so. However, Gabe Weatherhead’s post on his Audience and Multiple Personalities prompted me to write it in a flash. Thanks Gabe. ↩
Trust me, one easily forgets how things felt in the very moment you were experiencing them. And all that is left is a vague reminder of what happened. ↩
Or so I like to think. ↩