The New Beginning

I am a veteran blogger. I started my blog in 2005, and the writing had been off and on since then until 2015 when I decided to quit the blog. It is not because I am tired of it but an ambivalence that has been haunting me over the years towards writing: Do it or not? Does writing still make sense to me?

Writing is never easy because it takes a considerable amount of time and efforts to wrap up ideas into a readable article. Then I had the hunch that I needed to churn out enough articles to attract views and clicks, with the pipe dream that I could become an internet celebrity. However, I don’t have enough time for writing.

I was very diffident with what I had written. Sometimes enthusiasm to write something down just ebbed before I could finish the article. Sometimes I just feared that the minutiae of my writing could offend people subconsciously and subsequently make them misjudge me. Sometimes I worried that my wording might mislead people about who I am.

Another confusion buried in my mind was what to share in writing. Was that topic worthwhile sharing? Would that disclose my privacy? No clear boundary between what I could share and what I should withhold had been bothered me all along.

OK, considering all of these cons, I need to abstain from writing.

I had been maintaining a blog in Chinese, the only language I could freely use at the time. However, a strong sense of insecurity due to the ubiquitous censorship and diminishing recognition of Chinese values has chipped away at my vim for typing in Pinyin input method. However, I clearly know the ember of keeping on writing is still glowing in my heart.

After two years’ musing on writing, now the question comes back to me “do I really need to keep unvoiced”? The answer now is “No, I still need to write something down, just for myself, just for fun.”

I had expected too much of myself in writing. Writing should be a personal and enjoyable experience, and it is unfair to foist extra values on it. People’s views and clicks, which are exterior, in fact, matter nothing to me and I cannot internalise them into writing. Though writing is challenging, I need to accept that I can only publish it when it is ready. Therefore maybe I can just finish one article in one year, like the one you are reading now.

If I wrote nothing, people would definitely have no idea of what I am thinking about and who I am. If they cared about me, they would still judge and misjudge me, stereotype and pigeonhole me as someone they had met before and just envisioned. Do I really feel comfortable with these? Of course not! Nowadays, intelligent guys have developed various unfathomable sensitivities to things around; it is hard to know when I triggered their nerves and made them panic, even my keeping silent could be an irritant. What should I do then? Perhaps I should “disavow” this mentality, or else my mental power will be drained by this considerate cautiousness.

In what I will write down, I am going to just focus on the thoughts, viewpoints and perceptions I developed during my research and life, hoping for a clean detachment from my private life. The article only reflects the mindset I am holding at the time of writing. I could and will change. I don’t expect you to know who I am via my words, but to know who I am not, which suffices.

I will enjoy writing from now on.

Chao (Cico) Zhang
PhD Candidate of Bioinformatics