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Not Catharsis
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A few years ago I wrote a mystery novel set at an orienteering meet. It was never published. Not surprisingly. The typical reaction was that of the agent who said that in reading the manuscript he had learned far more than he ever cared to know about orienteering.

And most people who are interested in mysteries are not interested in orienteering.

How many people then are interested in mysteries and orienteering -- and in writing, and interactive fiction and baseball? Oh, and our cat Sabrina? To name some of subjects that have come up in this journal. Let's see...well...hmmmm...OK, I've got (Even my wife Mary isn't interested in all those things)

Which means, I suppose that I'm writing a journal for an audience consisting of myself. An unusual situation since I have always aimed my writing at an outside audience, however small: the 37 people on the mailing list for the first issue of my fanzine, the readers of the fourth grade newsletter, my friend Johnny when we used to sit on the porch with tablets and a box of crayolas and and regale each other with the adventures we were drawing.

There are those who write for catharsis rather than an audience. Putting my problems down in words doesn't make me feel better, though. Being forced to dwell on problems only depresses me further. I am not poet material.

The closest I've come to witing for catharasis was after I moved to New York City to attend law school. The big city and the law were both alien worlds to me so the fanzine I produced, mostly personal essays, was useful in allowing me to remember who I was, aside from being a stranger in two strange lands. But even so, I gave some consideration to those 37 readers.

One thing about writing for yourself. You don't have to wrap things up neatly.

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