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Why I Write

November 7, 2011

—– Anybody else think Billy Hodges resembles Stephen Colbert?

 This really isn’t the genre to blog about and attempt to stay friends.  There is a fine line. I have plenty to say, but if I said all of it I would either be spiritually convicted or offend someone or someone take something the wrong way.  Sure, it’s a lot easier telling you what songs, albums, or singers that I don’t typically care for remaining anonymous.  I truly believe I have been constructive in that aspect of my writing.  I may push the edge a little bit, but I don’t let it get too far.

I’m getting a lot of e-mails about “Who is having affairs” or “drinking” or “who is AAP”, or “who is a homosexual”.  And I think the number may be relatively higher than the average SGM fan would think, but I just see no point in talking about that stuff.  If they’re your spiritual heroes, you might get let down.  And that’s not why I began writing.  And everything I write goes back to Kenny Hinson, The Crabbs, Michael English, Lari Goss, or The Cathedrals & The Cathedral tree anyways.  Do we need anything else?  Honestly, I would be fine if that was all that existed in southern gospel music.  Ok, maybe that’s a slight stretch, but not by much.

Southern Gospel has re-captivated me.  Growing up around it since I could talk, it’s something I knew…even when I went through a period when I couldn’t stand to listen to it.  I retain information and I know what good music is supposed to sound like.  And by blogging about it, I have over-saturated myself with it, and I am continually looking to be compelled by something new, and I rarely am…so I find myself writing about old stuff.

And if this blog was merely about “informing you” in the world of southern gospel, I would be cheating myself.  And I would be cheating you.  Based on numbers, I understand the blog’s popularity (though, not as significant as Southern Gospel Blog, Music Scribe or Averyfineline) has increased significantly in the last couple of months, but if I do go out…go out on top, right?

So, I’ll still be publishing posts.  But I have enough articles written in my dashboard to cover the next 3 or 4 weeks, even if I posted everyday.  If the article isn’t finished, it’s going up as/is, even if incomplete.  And during this sabbatical, I will:

  1. Try to discover new methodologies of writing
  2. Pondering the Pros & Cons regarding revealing who I am
  3. Not waste time
  4. Separating myself from industry/fan
  5. Contemplate possibly shutting it down, at least temporarily
  6. It’s hard to play a small part in pushing the genre forward and helping to bring you to the light of quality when so many are satisfied with mediocrity.
  7. If I was paid to do this, I would be considered “media”.  I might not hold back as much.  Or, I might hold back more.  Those structures aren’t really in place in this field.
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9 Comments
  1. I just hope you will stick around. I don’t know of any place with better writing on southern gospel than here. And you do it without gratuitous attacks or personal criticism, which we all appreciate. You would be sorely missed.

    I understand the frustration you’re feeling. If my writing was as influential as yours, I probably would be feeling the same pressure. I hope it doesn’t discourage you. I personally don’t care who you are, and I don’t care to get caught up in the gossip train. I love reading what you have to say about music, and about other stuff in general. I don’t always agree, but I’m always engaged by what you write.

  2. Hey FNR, I applaud the idea of a sabbatical, of course. But I would be disappointed if you shut it down. I mean yes, it’s a little quirky, little rough around the edges writing-wise, and I give you a hard time sometimes if I don’t agree with you, but it’s fun and you do a good job. You’re certainly more constructive than other bloggers I could mention. Ultimately it comes down to that, being constructive, and you’re good at that. Also, I’m glad to have a companion in the realm of simply blogging our thoughts on a variety of topics—not feeling restricted to one thing.

    As for pros and cons of revealing who you are… totally up to you obviously. I’d say you could keep going anonymous and it wouldn’t be an issue.

    Also, I know a lot of people DO enjoy reading about quality, and you’d be disappointing them by shutting down.

    My two cents.

  3. Just to echo Brian a little bit, I appreciate your writing, and hope you keep writing. I don’t why people get so caught up in gossip and hurtful rumors. But I hope you won’t let these things discourage you from doing something you enjoy. We’ll be praying for you!

  4. I echo Brian. I can understand if you have to move on, but I sure hope you stay around!

  5. I’m in agreement with Brian and Daniel… I too hope you continue!

  6. Better to burn out then fade away? Maybe in rock, but we all know that great SG artists typically just fade away into obscurity. I would be discouraged if you or I ever went out any other way. The sting that every business man/marketing wizard feels is hitting the wall/idea of “what am I really accomplishing other than spending ever increasing time for a diminishing return.” The Matthew principle, or something like that. Once you can punch through that, which usually takes about 6-12 months in most people, you get back to what you really love.

    As far as unmasking, I’m not sure that it would make you feel better about everything. I know there’s a prominent artist out there who looks down on anonymous SG writers and has vocalized his disdain for it recently on other blogs. However, annonymity gives a mysterious edge to the article – plus it protects you and your vested interests. There are enough people who know me by my “handle” to prevent me from sayting things I’d like to say somethimes – consider your anonymity a blessing in that regard. The flip side is that if you reveal yourself, it gives you the ability to do some real journalistic stories complete with quotes and even video. Tough call.

    Finally, do what you want to do – not what someone else wants you to do or is “advising” you to do (if that’s the case). There’s a friend of mine who used to give me a lot of advice – and everytime I contemplated his words, I realized they were to help him and his close buddies out and definitely not in my best interests. Read into everyone’s agenda before considering their direction. See if it’s worth it to consider their remarks.

    Good luck in whatever you decide. The Gardener’s got your back either way.

    • Hey are you the Gardener? That’s neat, I hadn’t put that together! It was great to see you in the chat room at NQC. 🙂

      • DisneyGator permalink

        Yip, it’s me! I use the same handle as my youtube channel. So I’m anonymous to anyone who doesn’t really follow the vids.

  7. quartet-man permalink

    I don’t watch Colbert, but know who he is and yes, I noticed how they favor each other too. 🙂 Yes, part of me is curious on who you are, but only mildly. I don’t spend time wondering, obsessing about it, or trying to figure it out. I have mixed feelings on whether you unmask yourself or not. There are good and bad things about doing so. It is up to you and what you think is best. I do hope you continue writing though, but understand if you can’t or don’t want to.

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