It's taken a long time to find our way into blog-writing. Much of this process has been like a window within us.
For us learning to send things out into the public is challenging. We often associate our voice with fear. As we sit down with this empty blog in front of us, it feels like a chance to spend some time with this feeling.
There's a lot of pressure isn't there... to try and make something based on a model that is 'proven' to be able to generate a readership and bring a financial return that can support our writing.
But when we think about this only, it's as if we cannot prioritize the actual process of our work in a way that nourishes us, throughout the process of doing it. It’s weird that it feels like it is either ‘one or the other.’ But that’s what we’re noticing right now...
We think we need to enter into a space of experimentation. For us, there are certain elements that can help us to feel comfortable. To feel excited and engaged and nourished as we enter into blog-writing. If we can actually enjoy it, maybe then we will naturally want to continue.
One of them is that we'd like to be in the present and speak our words. It helps us in our mind—which goes in so many directions—to be in the present moment and embrace the transformative process of this writing, of this speaking, which swells up within our voice and within our chest.
A challenge we have around blogging is that it feels bit like becoming assimilated as another face on the internet. Where our identity becomes a place where someone else would go in and abstractly search for knowledge. And we do this a lot—where we go online to search for some knowledge, and find that knowledge... and we might learn a bit about the person providing that knowledge through doing that, but we don't really meet the person. We meet a bunch of knowledge.
And we question that as a way of interacting over the internet. We question that because it's like we're becoming a big text, a big directory. Through our blood and our life energy that we pour into this, we become a big text that other people can read.
In its own way, that's a very beautiful thing. But, maybe we can make that text something that serves multiple purposes so that it's not confined to being...
...a function of someone else's need.
It feels like a very beautiful thing to have a voice–right now—to experience that voice, which wells up within in a mysterious way, and carries us like a vessel. And, when we experience that voice, it's so powerful because it comes from a place that no one else has access to.
For us to be able to speak in an online space, it feels like a few things need to be allowed for. And one is, sort of... we guess we're trying to say awkwardness, but also bit of a familiar feeling of "Look, we just can't fit into the ways of talking that we're expected to fill. It's just... painful! Our words have their own ways. This isn't even our language!"
For it to come from our body, for it to come from a place of choice, from a place of possibilities, and trying and feeling with the whole body as the words arise... we find that it's easier to access that place when we're... talking.
In a way it's a bit like nature, in that it never just fills one role. An organism is doing many things in the world at once... through its practice of growth and nurturance, of building and strengthening its foundation and ground. There are chemical processes at play, interactions with other entities, forces... and at its heart, it is a body that is in fullness.
So we'd like to grow the site a bit like a plant from this place of fullness saying that we are here in many ways.
Creating posts from spoken words also helps us because we are often fumbling over words on the computer, backspacing, re-editing the messages we sent. Hashing words until we are not sure what they really mean. This process gives us a sense of feeling of how the words sit as we say them, and it forces us to be in the present moment.
We believe this is because words are sound and vibration, and that vibration carries a meaning that is beyond concepts and dictionaries. Coming through the body they sound differently than words that come through the fingertips.
Perhaps this is only a transformative stage, and we will not do this forever. For now, we are practicing:
- Work from the breath. Blogging as a breathing exercise.
- Writing as a chance to live in many ways at once, and be who we are, making the choices that feel right for us.
- Speaking the writing. Recording our voice and transcribing it. We don’t need to worry if it’s the perfect way to say it, as long as the feeling comes across. Being in presence and conversation. Stopping mid-sentence, and waiting for the words to emerge.
- Clarifying. At the same time, once we’ve written something, we’ll still edit a bit to focus and simplify our words, structuring them in a way that helps the memory to hold or remember them.
We’ll keep making posts like this one (which we’re dubbing our ‘SA Journal’), which will document our everyday flow of life. Just in case that’s of interest to anyone!—but also as a way to give ourselves a gentle encouragement and space to think out loud... a bit of motivation also!
In a coming post series, we want to begin looking into a new topic that we want to understand better—audio practice and environmental impacts. In audio, so many of our tools are dependent on environmental harms. Although it’s a complex issue, we want to look into what these impacts are, how audio technology participates in these destructive systems. We believe if we can see them clearer, and on an individual level maybe, we will each be able to find our answers to this reality with greater clarity. As we start into this blog, we feel a distinct lack of clarity about how/whether audio practice is sustainable for possible futures that we are facing right now. So that feels like a good place to begin.
We are also open to blogging requests— so if you have a recording or audio production question that you are trying to figure out (or any question for us really) we’d be grateful for your suggestions. In the coming weeks. We’ll be taking a few of these suggestions to writing articles about them.
About the Author:
Fili 周 Gibbons (we/them/us) are a musician, multimedia creator, and recording engineer working across a range of community and professional contexts to support plural voices, expressions, and sonic experiences. As well as leading community workshops they frequently work with other artists and creators, drawing on listening, memory and intuition as guiding forces in collaborative making practices. Their work interfaces with plural cultural histories and experiences, intangible arts traditions, and community-centred sound practice.
If there is a topic of interest that you would like us to write about on our blog, we’d love to hear your suggestions. We’ll write about sound practices, audio production, and creative work with technology, but we’re open to other ideas as well.
You’re welcome to send us suggestions by email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Or with the form below: