Telling something in as few a words as possible is not my forte. Or so I was told repeatedly by my fellow bloggers when I began blogging in the now extinct Y360 platform. Not that they did not come back for more. They did and lauded my efforts too. But they also felt somehow compelled to repeatedly inform me that my blogs were pretty long.
Anyways, I had not thought about it exactly on those terms never having blogged before then or written anything other than daily letters to the L & M (which were definitely longer than the ones he sent me) whenever he was away from home and occasional ones to the parents and siblings. Even those stopped with the advent of easy facilities to call long distance. Writing then became a matter of penning wishes on cards or the mere signing of checks once in a blue moon.
Interestingly when I go back and take a look at my old blogs (I find that many of them were within the 1000 word limit) I am inclined to doubt the rationale of the You Write Long Blog gang. Hmmm…. Even a decent short story is expected to have 1500 words. What took the cake as far as I was concerned was when some bloggers who themselves wrote blogs longer than the railway line from New Delhi to Thiruvanthapuram started teasing me that my blogs were too lengthy. Were my eyes tricking me into seeing more words where there were less, I wondered.
Inquisitive is my other name, that is, after Irreverent (there are more). So one day I copied some blogs on to MS Word and took a word count. Ha! It was exactly as I had thought. The blogs were longer than mine. Grrr…. But my eyes had tricked me after all. I had to scratch out Thiruvanathapuramn from my example and write New Delhi to Kanya Kumari and as everyone knows that is an even longer distance. It had been nothing but a blatant case of a pot calling the kettle black and in this particular instance it was a rather fat-cat pot calling a wee little kettle who had applied some little extra mascara as black, nothing more.
Now coming to the others, proud authors of short blogs, I wondered what made them join the Long Blog Accusation Squad. One would expect them to be smug in their ability to write to-the-point blogs. Was this their way of looking down their noses of varying sizes at poor old me for my inability to wind language around my little finger and make it dance any which way I like?? Was it their way of discreetly letting one know that they were a cut above or was it the green eyed monster that had reared its head at the free flow of words which I never seemed (or so they think) to have a paucity of??
Of course undoubtedly there is the other reason also, the Follow the Herd Syndrome which affliction is rampant among the population of our country in a wide variety of fields. Look at the field of education and the number of parents that want an engineer or doctor in the family. Look at how all the teeny-boppers want to listen to the same songs at the same volume. So when someone says “Oh my my! She writes long blogs, doesn’t she??’ the herd instinct can be expected to take over the rest and have them sing the refrain.
Anyways what with the “too long” having affixed itself to my blogs I play it up to the hilt. Ha, what did you think of me?! I have a few tricks up my sleeve too. So you think I use too many words and write too long blogs?? Right ho. Here, have more of them, I have plenty more where this has come from. That is the sort of outlook I have. So I dump more of them on the hapless readers, all the while giggling to myself. What no one knows (now of course they do) if you tell me I am fat I’d go and make myself fatter and come back and say ‘Take a look at me! Am I not fatter??’ No amount of reasoning with me that it is the opposite that I should do (yes, yes, I am intelligent enough to know what is good for me) would make any difference. Self-destructive best describes me.
Perhaps that is what is illustrated by me when I write longer blogs even when I am told I write long blogs. The underlying argument is I will write as long a blog as I like, tchah to you! Anyone interested to wade through is welcome to read or else, ta-ta. But yeah, those who stick around and read those long blogs and take precious time off to let me know, I love you all.
I have a sneaking suspicion that I have somehow digressed from where I was headed. That is what comes of starting off on a post with no definite aim. But whaddya know, there is always something that comes out of even the most pointless of ramblings. So I might find it as I go along. If you stick around, so might you, though no guarantees are being given.
So coming back to long blogs, there I was the uncrowned Queen of Long Blogs. People left right and centre were urging me to write a novel. After all, according to their contention if I could write long blogs, I could also write novels. After all, both involved churning out lots and lots of words, right? This was the time when a friend chanced upon a really short story from the archives after reading which he said, ‘I withdraw what I said earlier. You can express in a few words too’.
I respect him and his judgment. So was naturally thrilled, but sadly not convinced. It was similar to how I had been brainwashed during student days into believing I was no good at Math by my parents. I never ever recovered from the effects of their over-indulgence in anxiety and however much to the contrary truth was, chose to take up Arts stream. In a similar manner, I listened to what my friend said with skepticism and went on writing even longer blogs with a vengeance. One had to live up to one’s name you see.
Then one day, out of the blue, I wrote some quatrains, followed in subsequent days by some 55 word stories. I even attempted some haiku. Now I was being hailed as Woman Who Said Much With Fewer Words. How do you do that, people marveled. Wow, how quickly perceptions change. As you all must have guessed, right now I spend time hop-scotching between very lengthy, lengthy, short and very brief posts according to my whims. To hell with guidelines to blogging and tips on How To Hold the Attention of Readers. Who wants guidelines?? Not me.
Then a day came when carrying brevity one step further, I tried my hand at….. (Contd here)
Aha! To know that you have to wait for another day! 😉
Pssssst! Before some wisecrack says it, this post has exactly 1211 words. So there!