Thursday, 22 September 2011

What is it to be?

It's been almost a month since my last post. And I've been wondering if it's time to let go of blogging. I started as a way of practising writing, almost five years ago, and I do that by just writing now. I teach writing, and I write. So I don't feel the same compulsion to write a blog anymore.

Most of the friends I've made here I see on Facebook, Pinterest, or Twitter, so I don't need it to keep in touch. And I just don't have time to read and leave meaningful comments on other blogs anymore. I have three jobs, a novel to redraft, and my house is falling down.

And yet...

I had some yogurt to use up, and wanted to practise shooting chocolate cake. So I invented chocolate yogurt cake.

I do have a new thing to practise. I am besotted with my camera (remember, Bob, my son, gave it to me for my birthday?). When I'm not doing work/writing related things, or trying to shore up the pantry walls, I most often have my camera at my face, usually aimed at something edible. I cook, I shoot, I eat. Cooking and baking have always been the way I recalibrate, and now the camera adds an extra dimension. It's turned kitchen activity into more of a challenge, and thus more fun, more rewarding.

Panzanella, perfect when you have a tomato and stale bread glut

But I'm not a brilliant photographer. Not appalling either, just not practised – I haven't put in my ten thousand hours yet – but I'm improving and recently a local restaurant to let me pay in photographs for a couple of meals, rather than the more usual money. I had loads of shots of their food because I like it so much I spend a lot of time there. They wanted to get a website up, and they needed pictures for it, so we did a spot of bartering.*

I don't suppose Nigella Lawson will be calling me to snap the pies for her next book. But as I don't need another damn job (at the moment. I can hear my husband muttering about economic realities) it will be quite nice to keep this as play. You learn more by playing, once something becomes work you stop exploring,  I do anyway. Work seems to create stresses which change the whole dynamic. I start focussing on time, and 'product'. And the product never seems to be able to be made good enough in the allocated time.

So, perhaps this blog will morph into a place for me to practise my photography. Scary enough to make me really consider what I'm doing before I share, but not stifling like work can be. Play, but public.

P.S. Blogger has completely changed since I last visited, and I seem to have inadvertently done something that's changed everything!

*Most, but not all the photographs on the site were taken by me.


The Unbearable Banishment said...

I've "quit" blogging so many times that I've lost count. But I've always got just one more post I need to get out. And then, that's it! I'm DONE! How many times have I had that conversation with myself?

If blogging is turning into a goddamn job then you should bail out. Or, as you seem to be doing, re-purpose your blog. You've already got some goddamn jobs. You don't need another goddamn job.

Alesa Warcan said...

I'd be sorry not to read you anymore, but that's life... People meet and people part.
Whatever you decide to do, I'll be rooting for you! : j

debra said...

It seems to me that blogging is putting our "stuff" out there for anyone to see, while Facebook is more like having a gathering of invited guests.
I kind of like seeing you in both places :-)

Scarlet Blue said...

The Moffat-White Chocolate Teardrop, looks like abstract art!
I haven't been to Pinterest for awhile so I'll get pinning!
I will miss your blog posts, but I understand, I think many of us are running around like headless chickens at the moment due to life commitments and my blog has morphed into a place where I just pop up now and again and basically say: Yep, still here and here's something from Youtube!
I think a blog gallery would work for you. You have taste and pizzazz!

The Weaver of Grass said...

Even if you only blog once a month, do keep blogging - and next time you put a post on tell me how you do that recipe - it looks good.

Pat said...

I agree with what UB says. The photos are lucious - I'd certainly eat there.

Titus said...

Hello? Goodbye? Au revoir? Chow!

The Pollinatrix said...

Even though I get to see you on Facebook, I'd miss your blog if you stopped completely. However, I totally relate to the multiple-jobs-no-time-to-comment conundrum. While I may not leave long (or sometimes any) comments on your blog, I always read it when you post (unless I'm to busy to visit blogland at all), and I always enjoy it. I welcome your food photos. And photos of your falling-down house too, for that matter :)

Kim Ayres said...

Just when I was beginning to think I'd run out of things to say, I've had a rush of several posts this week, and I'm about to embark on pretty much daily blogging while I'm at the Wigtown Book Festival. So never say never - just keep the blog ticking over until suddenly the urge or the circumstances rise up again.

Your photography is getting better and better. We really are going to have to get together again in the not too distant future and swap notes :)

Anonymous said...

allow your blog to transition with you..

and keep the photos -

I totally agree about the passion vs work thing.

too many times I've let my passion to become the job only to have the marrow sucked right out of it.

Ah, we are all so young still - so much to learn.

angryparsnip said...

From a selfish point of view, since I don't Facebook, Pinterest or Twitter, Keep Blogging !

Even though I am losing so much of my mobility and I sit so much more than even a year ago, I am trying to cut down some of my computer time so blogging is my choice.

The once a month post sounds really good to me, as we can still hear from you and see your photos.

I had mollybot show me Facebook about a month ago and we sent you a Hello.

Winter is coming so keep that house from falling down.

cheers, parsnip

nick said...

Oh, photo blogs seem to be two-a-penny, I'm not sure that we need any more of them! What I've always enjoyed are the thoughts and observations rather than the pics. But yes, blogging can be one thing too many if you have plenty of other activities to pursue.

Rachel Fox said...

It seems almost cruel to show us that cake but not let us eat it.

chiccoreal said...

Dear KBWP: Bloglicious! Please continue...and do share! More cake please? And all the rest is good too!

Eryl said...

UB ~ I expect if I decide to definitely quit I'll suddenly find myself unable to stop posting.

Alesa ~ thank you. I'm pretty sure I won't stop entirely, I just seem to be going through one of those massive overhaul phases at the moment. It's almost like I've woken up in someone else's life.

Debra ~ I think you're absolutely right. Maybe I'm just having the blogging equivalent of a bad hair day, and just want to hide from public view.

Scarlet ~ thank you! But what is a blog gallery?

Weaver ~ I will, on both counts. In fact I'll post the recipe over the weekend, it's great and one of my very favourite late summer eats.

Pat ~ you would love Brodies. Every time I lunch there I think "I'm having a Pat day," because the food is so good and you do like a good lunch out!

Titus ~ Chow, yes! I wonder if I could change the name of this blog to The Kitchen Bitch Chows?

Polli ~ I really must take some photos of the pantry (to be) and post them. Perhaps I'll juxtapose them with picture of dream pantries.

Kim ~ I think I might have to engage your services as a photoshop personal tutor for a day or so pretty soon. Now Bob's not here I have no one to ask when I have no idea what to do, which every time I open it.

Denise ~ let it transition with me, yes!, that is just what I'll do. Knowing you is like having my own personal Solomon.

... My back's beginning to ache sitting at the keyboard so I'll take a break and respond to everyone else in the morning, X

Eryl said...

Parsnip ~ Don't worry I won't abandon you! The first thing I plan to do once the house has been saved, and if any of these jobs make me any money, is buy a plane ticket to Tucson.

I went looking for traces of you Facebook 'hello' but couldn't seen any...

Nick ~ this will never become one of those blogs of endless photos with no text, if only because I can't help chit-chatting.

Rachel ~ I see your point. Perhaps I'll start taking photos of gutters. X

Chiccoreal ~ thank you!

Anonymous said...

Oh dear, even crumbs from your table ... :)

Eryl said...

I could put a bag of crumbs in the post to you, Mago, no problem.

India Banks said...

hello Eryl, I'm new to blogging and I love your blog because it's real. I understand the novel and teaching demands! But I hope you'll keep blogging even if there are long interruptions in between posts. The cake looks so good that I'm going now to the store to get something chocolate xx


Eryl said...

India ~ thank you, I'm pretty sure I will keep blogging, though sporadically for a while. I hope the cake picture hasn't messed with your dietary regime!

India Banks said...

You're welcome, Eryl, and thank YOU for your beautiful comment on my blog! It really inspired me. And don't worry about my diet: It's the best diet ever. Eat everything I want to eat and see what happens. Would you mind posting the chocolate cake recipe?! xx india

mary said...

Purely selfish reasons - please do not stop!1 I am reading this book that states that women who compete in long distance running almost always complete the race ....90% men, not so good. We are the super part of the race. (no pun intended)

rochambeau said...

Hello Lovely Eryl!!
I concur upon your lamentation. To blog, or not to blog...... THAT is the question. Your do a super job in your writing which always leaves a smile upon my face AND with your new camera too. These photos by the Kitch Bitch are simply mouthwatering.

If you end your blog, I hope we won't loose touch, as I enjoy the essence your humor immensely !! I would be willing to stab with l my pins more frequently if you do!


red-handed said...

Well, I would miss you. You don't have to visit often, just be around for the visiting.

Carole said...

Great pictures. Want some cake. Yum. Yum. I will hunt you down on facebook for an Eryl fix from time to time.

The World According To Me said...

I want that cake! But just remembered I am on a diet for my wedding dress.
I would miss your posts if you stopped blogging.
I don't have as much time to blog these days, but I still enjoy it and I'm always hopeful that I will have more time to blog one day!