Monday, April 9, 2012

Greetings and Salutations... Again

Monterey, California
The first post in a new blog is always something of a snore, don't you think? It almost has to be an introduction of sorts so that people at least have some sort of a clue as to what they're reading so they can decide whether or not they want to be bothered to read more of it in the future.

If you're reading this at all at this point, the chances are pretty good that you follow one of my other blogs on Blogger. I have three of them -- a food and recipe blog, a spiritual and astrology blog, and a creative blog that revolves around my artistic endeavors and my life as a full-time freelancer. Either that or you're one of my friends from Facebook, Twitter, or Google+. That being the case, there's probably little need to spend a lot of time introducing myself.

Suffice it to say that my name is Shannon (or "Cat", depending on who you are and from where you know me) and that I'm a freelance writer and artist from Monterey, California. I'm engaged to a man named Seth who is also a freelancer in the arts... but then you very likely know and understand all that. Instead, I'll sort of introduce the blog, I guess.

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Despite the actual name of the blog, this isn't really a blog about California or California living, although I'm sure those subjects could show up from time to time. However, it could well be described as the everyday diary of a California girl. The other day, I was spouting off about some random thought I was thinking about writing down and posting somewhere. Seth actually asked me off hand if I even have a public blog anymore that I just treat as a journal for recording thoughts, daily doings, and just stuff about... me. Not who I am as a writer or an artist either, but just who I am as a person.

I guess... I don't. I still have my old LiveJournal, as some of my better online friends may know. I even made a passing attempt at posting publicly there from time to time. However, in the end it just didn't feel right, not least of all because people like clients were constantly finding it and lurking on it. That's... my place for working through personal dilemmas, feelings, and emotions these days, so having just anyone who was passingly curious about me hanging out there and absorbing what I wrote felt a bit like a violation. Naturally, it wasn't long before I simply locked it back up so LiveJournal could go back to feeling safe and private again.

I guess that's why I decided that if I wanted a blog to treat as a public journal, it would be best to just start fresh with a new site so I could simply allow it to accumulate a completely new readership and develop its own unique vibration. Then I'll be less likely to feel violated or intruded upon when clients, business associates, and passing acquaintances get curious about me and start Googling my name hoping to find a blog, or a journal, or a Facebook profile. I've always enjoyed Blogger for that. It's easy to use, new readers seem to find you without you really having to bother very much, and it comes attached to everything I personally like my public sites to have including a "timed post" option that lets me write when I feel like it -- which is typically super late at night when no one is reading -- but schedule the posts to actually appear some other time.

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To go off on a slight tangent, as much as I love the Blogger service, I'm not particularly thrilled with some of the changes Blogger has apparently made since I opened my older blogs here. To begin with, I really dislike pretty much all of the layout options that they currently offer for new blogs. They appear to have done away with anything that actually looked simple and classy. These days, everything seems to be this "new", distracting, completely overdone style that I loathe.

I honestly prefer the really very basic design my other three blogs have and I am disappointed that I can't simply have the same thing in a different color for this new blog. I don't need all these fancy-schmancy picture backgrounds, transparent layers, extra columns, and other disco garbage. It took me forever to find one that I felt I even might be able to tolerate, but I still think it's pretty ugly.

That said, the look of this blog is likely to change several times before I finally settle on a layout once and for all. I just don't have the time or the inclination to design layouts for this stuff from scratch anymore, so hopefully I can eventually find something free and ready-made somewhere that doesn't make me want to wretch. Otherwise, I guess I'll have to bite the bullet and design something some weekend.

The content here will mostly just be about my life and daily thoughts though -- a sanitized version appropriate for family, clients, or people I barely know to read, of course -- because I feel like I'm losing that part of myself as far as my public internet life goes. That said, it will probably be of the most interest to people who actually care who I am as a person outside of my work and niche interests.

Food posts, spiritual or philosophy-centric posts, or posts related to my writing and artwork will continue to be posted at the sites set aside for them as before. Those subjects don't and probably never will feel like they belong in a journal-type blog, so if that's what you're interested in, see my sidebar for links to the other blogs I manage.