On Blogging and Certainty

One of the things I love about blogging is the stream-of-consciousness aspect to it.  I’m a fairly literate writer, so I feel like the end product of a long riff at my keyboard is still fairly readable, but at the same time, it captures the raw data coming out of my brain.  I do very little substantive editing of my posts either as I’m writing them, or after I publish them.  Mostly I just fiddle with tags, obvious grammar errors, factual errors, etc.

One of the advantages of this stream-of-consciousness style is that you can signal to your readers (or yourself, for later review) when you are certain or uncertain about what’s coming out of your brain and through your fingers.  I do that in a few ways:

  • I write the word “Hmmm.”
  • I write “I think” as its own sentence.
  • I type ellipsis (…)
  • I use a question mark.
  • I use a parenthetical pseudo-negation.  Ex: “I really like Fallout Boy (or not).”

Sometimes I use a couple of these at the same time to indicate REAL uncertainty (“Hmmm……”).  I guess these are more direct signposts than trying to use fuzzy/vague/uncertain words, such as possibly, maybe, sometimes, etc.  I’m not sure that a grammarian would approve of this approach, but I find it works well in the fast-paced world of blog writing.

Do you agree?


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