Posted in Net Fiddler

Progress Report: 5 Months of Fiddle

Before I jump into the meat of this post, I just wanted to address the folks on this blog real quick. Back in December, I bought a cheap violin. I was interested in learning to play fiddle (leaning towards Irish and folk music), and I dove into trying to teach myself how back in January – last Friday marks 5 months of making this effort.

In order to keep myself accountable and remain inspired with this endeavor, I spun up a little blogging project on the side that didn’t overlap with this blog… until now. A few days back, I decided to take the content I wrote during my musical journey and consolidate it into this blog — so the Net Fiddler category with all of these posts is now archived here!

So what’s going on?

Basically, five months in, I’ve decided that writing about learning to fiddle isn’t really a topic that sustains a blog all on its own. Maybe it could be if I threw myself at music full time, but as it’s just a hobby, it felt a little silly to host a whole different blog with only a few posts a month.

I felt it would be much better served as part of this blog — while I generally focus on gaming and online topics, it’s also a hobby blog. So music projects fit here, too. Plus, maybe, it could be of interest to folks who already read this blog. Who knows?

5 Month Slump

So how did Month 5 go for me? It started out great, as I’d picked up a new practice journal that really fueled my inspiration for a few weeks. I even got into learning a few new notes (F normal and C normal) which opened up new songs for me.

But then, a combination of work and just not feeling that great (migraines) knocked me off my path, and practice has been sadly sparse ever since.

Up until now, I’ve been trying to maintain a 30 minute a day practice session, and that’s a daunting thing with so many other things wanting my time. I know for people heavily into music, this seems like a paltry attempt. But with work, after work adulting, and gaming goals, sometimes 30 mins of something that requires as much focus as learning an instrument seems really hard to squeeze in.

So, to encourage myself to get back into the practice habit, I’ve cut my required practice time back to 15 mins per day. Yeah, that doesn’t seem like much at all, but the way I see it, if I do anything, that’s better than nothing. And if I find myself in the groove, I can always extend my practice.

Plus, since I’ve been out of practice, it seems like I need to get my hands and arms readjusted to playing again. Believe it or not, holding the fiddle requires building some endurance. Back when I first started playing, I could hardly get through an exercise but a few times before I needed to give my hand a break. Now, at about 10-15 mins, that’s when I start feeling the need to shake myself out… so that tells me that might be a logical stopping point.

In the future, I’m going to shoot for eventually trying to slide a second 15 min session in, to equal out to the full 30 mins I used to do. And in following my practice of trying to reward myself for still sticking with it, I bought a new songbook, which should arrive today.

While I love my practice book, and have learned a lot from it, it occurred to me that changing it up some with songs that I really want to learn (rather than just practice tunes), might be a way to hook my interest again. So, I bought Easy Pop Melodies for Violin. This has a number of songs that I know I’d enjoy learning to play, and while not for the very beginner, are geared towards the easier side. Looking forward to seeing what I can learn from it!

Anyhow, thanks for listen to my rambles. You’ll find more fiddle posts as long as I can keep sticking with it!



I'm a technical writer by day, gaming gal by night. I have a wide array of gaming interests, though I most often blog about MMOs, RPGs, and Nintendo fanstuffs. Like what you just read? Check out my Webcomic and Fantasy Fiction projects!

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