When I was a teenager, I wanted to be an author, like my grandmother. When I was in 5th grade, I lived with her in her apartment in Åsgårdstrand south of Oslo. When I was 19, I moved to Bergen after 7 years in Denmark, and I started studying at the University of Bergen. I then also worked as a volunteer At Det Akademiske Kvarter, which is a student culture house in Bergen.
In 1998, Neil Gaiman came to Bergen, and he did a reading at the Kvarteret. I was then working for the internal magazine at Kvarteret, and I arranged to interview him. So, in the evening after his reading of some novel he had written, we were some people who went to a restaurant. I interviewed him, fumbling with my papers and my questions. I knew his work, of course, having been a big fan of The Sandman for years, and also enjoying his ‘Stardust’ graphic novel, illustrated by
Dave McKean Charles Vess (edit: thanks to a reader, I was reminded that it of course was Vess that did Stardust).
I gave him a print-out of a short story that I had written, called ‘The House’. It was so terrible! It was so bad. After giving it to him, I re-read my short story many times, and the weaknesses of everything in that piece of garbage stared me in the face, mocking me.
So, after that, I silently stopped dreaming about becoming a Writer.
Now, On January 1st, 2015, I am sitting here, and I am thinking back to my meeting with Neil, and my years in-between. What has happened in those years, and – more importantly – what has not happened.
I started my first blog on LiveJournal in ’99, when I was working as a manager of sorts of a Computer Cafe in Bergen called “Dataport”. Since then, I had dabbled with online media, first in the text format of the blog, and then later on in video. Despite my very visual approach to life, I had not been very interested in videos before then. Never did any home movies, and I rarely took much interest in taking pictures of myself. But discovering videoblogging changed that, and for about five years, from late 2004, until late 2009, I published videos, most of them spur of the moment things where I documented a moment (or ‘Moment-showing’ as Jay Dedman called it).
Over the years, I published thousands of blog posts or videos, but at some point I lost the inspiration for doing it. It felt like just being a mouse running on it’s wheel.
So in 2009, I gradually stopped. I still did some sprints, for instance with Google+ in 2011, but that was mostly because it was a new social network to explore, and the tragedy of that summer compelled me to write.
The autumn of 2014, I suddenly stopped in early September. I stopped checking twitter, and Facebook became something I checked once a week mostly to see if I had new personal messages. I didn’t bother to state that I was on a social media hiatus, or to deactivate my Facebook account (something that I had done twice before, and each time my break lasted only a few months).
I didn’t miss it while I was gone. I was enjoying my offline life.
But now, in this new year, I returned. And since my first blog post here on RMND (I am writing this on Jan 3rd, I started this blog entry on Jan 1st), I have wondered what would inspire me the most. What would make me feel compelled to doing this?
My motivations are split among these:
A) To later remember what I was thinking back then.
B) To practice my writing.
C) To connect with new people and new ideas.
At the moment, I am still figuring out how to move from those motivations to something that truly and utterly inspires me. I will figure it out, and I will write about that process.
The goal is to have this blog running for at least 5 years from now. 5 years – that’s over 1500 days. 1500 days with blank sheets of paper to fill with whatever I want.