Sunday, 5 January 2014

So... how does this 'Blogging' thing work, again?

Last year, I made it a New Year's resolution to make 100 blog posts in 2013. That went well...

It went OK after a fashion for about the first three months of the year. I was a little bit behind by the end of March, but all that effort was actually having the desired effect - download numbers for The Second Realm showed a steady rise through that part of the year (though since the trend continued long past the point I stopped blogging, the causal link may not be as strong as I thought at the time).

The problem, though, was that I was struggling to find things to write about twice a week. Topics didn't come along in an evenly-distributed fashion. Some weeks I'd have three things I wanted to talk about, some weeks none at all, and the spare things from previous weeks ceased to be topical too quickly for me to keep up with.

And I'm not sure I was actually blogging very well anyway; a couple of times, people whose judgement I hold in very high regard told me in no uncertain terms that I was making a fool of myself. Looking back over some of the things I talked about, I think I was probably not matching my tone of writing to my choice of topic - there were times when I was flippant where I should have been more formal, and times where I was rather po-faced about silly little ideas that I'd chosen partly out of trollishness.

Anyway, for a variety of reasons my self-esteem collapsed in about April, and that made getting back into anything writing-related rather difficult. By the time I was ready to start again, the summer had come round and it was time to finish my PhD thesis and get it submitted (which there are plenty of stories about, but for another time). There was barely enough time to keep The Second Realm ticking along, let alone think about promoting it or writing other things.

I'm not repeating the mistake this year. I do intend to keep this blog going, but it'll be stuff more like this - short posts about what's going on for me, my writing and so on. Fewer rants about the publishing industry, fewer ideological screeds (though I stand by some of the positions I've taken absolutely and without reserve). I want to write about where I'm coming from in my writing, and about the things I find interesting. These are, after all, the only things I'm likely to be able to write interestingly about.

I also want to plan this less, which means approaching it without so much structure. Last year, I had a big spider diagram covered in potential blog topics, about half of which I chickened out of ever using because I couldn't find an 'angle'. Thinking too hard about topics has given me cold feet about them too often over the last three years. Actually, I could probably fill this blog purely on stories about me getting cold feet due to over thinking things...

But I'm not going to, because that would be tedious. I'll probably do some writing about anxiety (if nothing else, one of the few new things I wrote last year was a short story about anxiety, depression and aliens), but not too much. For now, I think I'm done. Thanks for coming back to me :)

1 comment:

  1. Glad you're back :) I defaulted on my blog pretty much, too, during 2013, and, like you, I aim to fix that this year. You're right--overthinking isn't conducive to more blog posts. Spontaneity, then. Cheers to that, and a very happy, outstandingly successful, 2014.