My Hobby: Refusing to Be on Podcasts
I enjoy writing. I don't particularly enjoy speaking, which is normally not an issue for blogging and reviewing. But I have refused to be on a few podcasts recently.
That's not a position I ever expected to find myself in. And a part of me really wishes I were capable. But I think slowly, to the extent that even normal private conversations are difficult for me in real time. On top of that, my nerves and anxiety get in the way of expressing the ideas I do have in the moment. I could never be sure if I was suddenly going to develop shakes or stutters.
Everyone has their strengths and weaknesses, and I'm pretty happy to accept mine. I get to enjoy other people's podcasting skills instead, including my fellow Melbournians at Game Taco. And I can't help but link The Brainy Gamer.
There will be some consequences for my choice not to speak though. Recently, Game People did a podcast about Nier. There were several good reasons I didn't join the discussion. In addition to my usual issues it was recorded at 5:30 AM my time, which would be pretty dedicated.
So, ideas from my review are referred to and interpreted, instead of being directly expressed by me. Amber Gilmore is effectively a persona of mine who writes fairly unusual reviews, and she was being paraphrased by someone else. That's a very odd feeling, and I've rarely felt so disconnected from my words and ideas.
I'm not saying I was misrepresented. I could add extra context and detail to what I was trying to get at, but there probably wasn't really room for that anyway. And I'm definitely not saying they shouldn't have done it. They are welcome to discuss my reviews as often as they like. Explaining why something felt weird is not the same as criticising it, for the record.
But for me personally it was a feeling that got me thinking. It's particularly made me conscious of the fact that I often have a slightly different perspective, which people are likely to disagree with. And that's absolutely fine, I'm not used to people agreeing with me. But it also means I have to work extra hard to be clearly understood. I wonder if my writing ability is really up to the challenge?
That's not a meant as a negative statement. Trying to improve a craft, and having a reason to do so, is actually really cool. Being poor at speaking doesn't automatically make me good at writing. But it's something I'm happy to keep working at.