Reading a piece by Kelly Caldwell on weblogs and writing from some months ago, the following paragraph drew my attention:
> I think there is a reason why established, professional writers don’t (as a general rule) maintain weblogs. Well, there are probably a handful of reasons, but perhaps the most obvious is this: “blogging” is a means of avoiding the most common challenges of “writing.” Deadlines, word constraints, strict editors, a critical audience, interesting subject matter, reliable sources, unique perspective, a fresh voice and the minor detail of having to sell your stuff — none needed for blogging.
I’m not sure if I agree with this. Blogging might be a displacement activity for professional journalists, sure, but journalists are merely a subset of writers in general, and this statement seems to ignore the validity of excellent writers of all strands (reviewers, feature writers, short story writers, novelists, et al) who haven’t yet had the luck of the draw, but still want to sell their stuff.
Indeed blogging, in a way, is a means for writers to sell _themselves_; the incentive to improve one’s craft, to attract attention to one’s work and to earn respect — without the solid goal of a deadline, or the safety net of an editorial team — is often much stronger than Caldwell appears to give credit for.
Personally, I wouldn’t say it’s so much “to blog, perchance to write” as it is “to write, perchance to work.”