Upkeeping a blog can be stressful (I say on the blog that gets the least of my attention). Heck, writing is stressful, even if you love it. Even if you love the subject matter. Being aware of the craft of writing means that you are second-guessing your word choices, that the smallest typo will haunt your waking moments, that sleep will elude you for the sake of lethologica –
the inability to remember a word or put your finger on the right word
– and desks will be flipped for the sake of research roadblocks. If you’re a freelancer, this goes double. Views, comments, likes, and reblogs become measures of success which can determine if you’re able to snag a contributor position on a site or gather Patreon supporters (shameless plug). Exposure becomes your lifeblood and suddenly timing and topical seasons are everything in order to get your pieces circulating. A source of joy becomes a source of stress.
Which is why, after I had fallen so desperately in love with The Jungle Book (2016), I told myself that I would not go analyzing the tar out of this movie. I told myself that The Jungle Book (all adaptations) would be my fandom “safe place” in which I could just simply take in the stories and enjoy it the ride. No blog series, no in-depth critiques, no massive research projects. Just fangirling. Yelling over the feels and such.
Even in my primary fandom of Halo, it has been a while since I’ve simply fangirled over something, with a large part of that being due to my status as a blogger and a content writer in the community. So The Jungle Book, I decided, was going to be my pure-fangirling fandom. I would be a consumer, not an analyst. A stress-free fan.
In the midst of my yelling over the feels of the story, I kept getting caught up in the telling of the story. I kept on wanting to share how I felt scenes were put together, how I felt the structure worked, what a certain line meant, the tiny nods to Kipling’s work. I had words slowly storing up in my brain, and I just had to get them out! I wanted to get them out.
After this realization that over-analysis is my method of fangirling and there was no-way-no-how that I was ever going to be able to turn my brain off, I decided to go with a different tactic –
to blog without stress or pressure from deadlines, commissions, or other obligations.
the act of blogging without stress; a blog post written without stress
synonyms: doodle blog, doodle blog post
– a term is based off a post from Tumblr user windycarnage:
also people should keep in mind that sometimes when an artist says “doodle” what they mean is “stress-free art”. that doesn’t necessarily mean that the “doodle” they made is something that they didn’t work hard at or didn’t spend a long time on. (…)
sometimes “just a doodle” means “not working on commissions or something work-based”
But why appropriate “doodle?” Why not use a term specific to writing? Two reasons.
For one, “ramble” might be the closest writing equivalent of “doodle,” but “ramble” has a connotation that I’d rather avoid. It brings to mind the idea of unconnected thoughts that trail off without a conclusion – an unpolished piece. Rambles can certainly fall under the umbrella of doodle blogging, but not all doodle bloggings are rambles. Doodle bloggings can be polished works with hours of time behind them.
Secondly, I like the sound of “doodle blogging.”
Even more than I like the sound, I love the idea of doodle blogging. I’ve been writing ever since I was in fifth grade, but everything I wrote, even back then, had an end goal. To be the youngest published author ever. To win a contest. To complete a piece for a friend. To build a portfolio. To meet a deadline. To get paid. I had fun, but I don’t know if I ever wrote for fun. For no other reason than I wanted to. And that is such a lovely, freeing idea.
Don’t misunderstand; I love writing for Halo Archive and CAPC, and I’m excited to get my Patreon series off the ground. I love my “work.” But sometimes, I also need to play.
Painting of a ballet dancer sitting on a couch and leaning on a round end table with a pen, inkwell, and paper. Pierre Carrier-Belleuse [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0) or GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)%5D, via Wikimedia Commons