Friday, 8 June 2012

Dyslexia,arrogance an writing a blog

Fr those of you who haven't religiously followed this blog, I'm dyslexic. On the scale, I'm somewhere in the middle. As we are no longer in the 1960's most people accept that dyslexia is not a byword for thick. Most people accept that some dyslexics (Albert Einstein comes to mind and nope I am not comparing myself to him) are very clever.

Comments made this week about the political blogs I write have alerted me to one big difference between how I write blogs and how I perceive some non dyslexic bloggers write a blog. I happened to mention in a comment that I based my writing style on Simon Hoggart who writes the diary column in the Guardian. I got told in "no uncertain terms" that I am "no Simon Hoggart". Sadly it appeared to me that the person who "rebutted" my comments misunderstood completely what I meant. I suspect that this misunderstanding was also due to a misunderstanding of the way the dyslexic brain works and processes information. I started blogging, by writing a blog for the Hendon Times newspaper. I had never even considered writing a blog before. I've written a couple of (unpublished) novels, but other than that, I'd written nothing (apart from the odd comment on a newspaper). I was a bit stumped. Then I thought about the way Simon Hoggart writes his diary in the Guardian. He lampoons the way people behave, is witty and is always looking for a slightly left fields approach. I thought I'd see if that approah worked.

The words seemed to flow with consummate ease. I found, much to my surprise, that if I wrote how I thought, I could actually write something vaguely readable. Previously on a couple of occasions, I'd tried to write reviews of bands but they were "The band were great, they played this and that and I really enjoyed it". I f you can't write about bands you like in an interesting manner, how on earth do you make council reports sound interesting? In my case,  I trawl for info. Most of these are hellishly boring from start to finish. How do you make them the subject of a blog? Well this is where dyslexia seemingly gives me an advantage. Because I can't actually concentrate long enough, I skim them. Then I see some random word or couple of words and realise that three quarters of the way through, there is some killer info. I guess someone with a normal, more ordered brain would never get that far, they'd read the first page and give up. With me, starting at the back or middle seems seems logical.

When I write a blog, I then read it twice to correct the errors, If it is dull or boring I scrap it or start again. The way I write is pretty much how I think. I have been criticised for being too personal in some of my comments. You see I'm not a great believer in throwing in lots of superfluous big words, where a quick "Twat" will do. I find wordy prose dull and so assume other people do as well, unless you are exceptionally good at it (which I am not and never will be).

So how do you write a blog if you are dyslexic? In my case, find something I'm interested in , care about or that just plain annoys me and let flow. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't but don't be afraid to express yourself and don't let overeducated patronising idiots  get you down with snotty comments and sly put downs. Most of the time they are just jealous !

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