C's bookshelf: read

The Peculiar
Maggot Moon
The City and the City
The Road
A Certain Slant of Light
The Muses Among Us: Eloquent Listening and Other Pleasures of the Writer's Craft
Persepolis: The Story of a Childhood
Brown Girl in the Ring
Well Wished
The Innkeeper's Song
Understanding Comics: The Invisible Art
American Indian Myths and Legends
The Left Hand of Darkness
The Return of the King
The Fellowship of the Ring
The Two Towers

C S Peterson's favorite books »

Monday, October 17, 2011

Digital Utopia

In the beginning was word.  In Ascii’s fancy code for on and off.  And then the word became image and there was youtube.  And there was nothing that was made with out word and the word became digitized and dwelt among us almost instantaneously everywhere at once and all (well, almost all) people beheld it.  And took it and created themselves in the image of media on facebook. And twitter. And doing stopped except for the sake of image. And image shaped doing and image grew into a world of Kodachrome perfection shaping perception and giving us a measure to value our souls by the look of our digital lives.

Recently I found myself enthusiastically telling a friend of mine about blogging.  At the risk of coming off as just another narcissist, I expounded on the benefits of blogging for a hesitant writer. She had been telling me she wanted to write more and I was encouraging her to give blogging a try.  A few weeks later I spoke with my friend again.  She had read my blog and had some fun exploring a few others as well.
            “But,” she continued, “After a while I started to feel badly because everyone’s life seems so much more exciting and together than mine is right now.”
            This from a woman who has traveled the world as a street performer and who tackles every challenge life presents her with go-getter confidence.  One who has ridden through life storms, holding on to flotsam by the skin of her teeth and lived to tell the tale!

Utopias always fall apart, abandoning truth for an image of perfection.  Truth is hard and risky to write.  Whenever I edit, I create something not quite real, often a bit more like the world I wish there was.  I’m only human. 

I hope my friend does eventually write something she’ll let me read.  It can’t help but be a gripping tale!


  1. Well, you can only try, Katie. I love this way you moved into our world as it is today, 'a measure to value our souls as we look at our digital lives'. This should be a long conversation.

  2. What a beginning! It would have been a fine post in itself. I like how you continued it. I understand your friend. I read other people's blogs and see them being talented, creative, productive, and managing to do thousand things while staying positive. I am glad when once in a while they reveal that they are humans too. At the same time reading their posts inspires. Writing helps me to see my life in new perspectives. I hope that your friend starts blogging.

  3. Loved that beginning! It is scary to put your words out there for someone to see and respond to, so I get your friend's reluctance. But once the leap has been made, you find yourself in a totally new world. You get the world to be how you want it to be. Tell her to jump in and make merry with us!

  4. Love this. I enjoyed the part where your friend thought that everyone else had more exciting lives. Funny. I think we all believe the same thing. Everyone else's life is more exciting. They're better at their jobs, their children are perfect....hmmmm. I'll bet they're just like us, creating something not always quite real...

  5. Isn't this the truth of a writer...and one that every writer probably faces. Thanks for writing the truth that is sometimes so hard to face.

  6. This is great! You had us laughing here at the beginning!

    I find a lot of my friends are still intimidated by the internet. The thought of writing for the "world" can make some people freeze up like a deer in the headlights, but it is a rewarding experience. You find yourself communicating with people across the globe.

    Poe had once said that the problem with being a writer is that you need others to read your work. I think Poe would have enjoyed blogging. I don't think I would have come as far with my writing and art without it. :o)

    Peace and Laughter!