“I noticed your blog is kind of everywhere! You’ve written about owning a gun, a lot on fitness, and recently posts on death. How do you choose your topics? And where do you plan on taking the blog?”

I. How I Write

I write about the things that excite me, and hopefully excite you too!

If I ever find myself telling a story or an idea more than 3 times (either through my own unbridled excitement or through the repeat curiosity of my friends), I turn it into a blog post.

I also write in a very personal, non-authoritative way. These are my own n=1 experiments, with the results and takeaways. I cannot guarantee that if you run the same experiments, you will get the same results.

In plainspeak: “Here’s what I did. Here are the results. If it sounds interesting to you, try it out yourself! And please, let me know how it goes =)”

There are many paths to “success” (whatever that means =P). Here’s a simple one I use, applicable to any endeavor:

  • Step 1. Create.
  • Step 2. Present.
  • Step 3. Listen.
  • Step 4. Learn.
  • Step 5. Repeat.

What I write about, and how I write about it, are one and the same.

II. Why I Write

To share stories and ideas

In this digital and global world we live in, a lot of our closest friends are no longer local. We don’t get to see each other often, but through technology, we can still stay in the loop about each other’s lives. For me, Facebook takes care of about 80% of that.

The purpose of blogging, then, is to share stories and ideas that I want to express in a more thoughtful manner than is suitable for Facebook: longer-form, richly-integrated multimedia, nested comments, etc.

These are also the stories and ideas that I deem “timeless,” as opposed to the immediate and short-lived nature of Facebook posts. A blog is much easier to search, both for computers and for people, than a Facebook timeline. An old blog post, therefore, has a much greater chance of being discovered than an old Status Update.

To clarify my thoughts

I hit a really low point towards the end of 2013. Through the help of friends, some reading recs that came at just the right time, and just time itself, I finally found my way out of it. I found myself again.

There is an old adage that if you have something nagging at you, write it down. For example, if you’re upset at someone, write a letter with all your grievances. It doesn’t even need to be sent out. The mere act of putting your thoughts onto paper will make you feel better about the situation.

By playing The Writing Game, I had to write. Before you can write, you need to think. I had to figure out both WHAT I was feeling, and WHY. And when you can answer those 2 questions, man does it feel good. It’s like 80% of the battle right there. From there, you have to clarify and organize your thoughts in a presentable manner, further refining and reinforcing it. Writing as therapy, catharsis, & closure…

To challenge my thoughts

With every post, I invite you the reader to challenge my assumptions, so that I may learn and grow from it.

To meet new people

I’ve had the pleasure of making the acquaintance of two awesome people, and hopefully many more to come, simply by having this blog. And it was during a time when I wasn’t even writing all that much!

Oz of Guy Guides came across my blog and messaged me with a nice intro and offer to meet. We now talk on the regular as participants of The Writing Game he started.

Through a comment I left on his blog, Brock of The Modest Man found mine. Despite being on opposite coasts, we had the (proactive) fortune to meet for dinner. He was the first style blogger to review our shoes.

When you express and put out who you really are and the things that you really love, you’re much more likely to come across people who you want to meet and love the same things you do.

To create

There are few nights where I can go to sleep more easily than those where I publish a post. I don’t know of anything else that allows me to regularly feel such accomplishment, as writing.

To remember

Since making an account on Xanga as a high schooler, I’ve been blogging on and off since 2003. Reading those posts years later, most of it makes me cringe. And perhaps years from now, what I’m writing today will make me cringe as well. But there are occasional diamonds in the rough past that pleasantly surprise me. The thing is, I want to remember it all: the good, the bad, and the ugly.

Now I’d like to ask it back: How do you write? Why do you write? Comment below. Links to your blog are welcome!

  • Thanks for the shoutout Mtn – such a fortuitous thing that I was able to meet you in real life. The internet CAN connect people, even offline :p

    Definitely feel your sentiments on recording down all the good, bad and ugly. Looking back on some ancient posts I dug up – actually, anything old (including email conversations), I see a lot of cringe-worthy stuff. But at the time writing it out in such a way helped me process that event and carry on with life. So cheers and keep writing man 🙂