I Haven’t Written A Post in 2 Months — Here Are Some Excuses
Back in November I managed to write a blog post every single day for the entire month. It was quite the accomplishment. But I haven’t written anything since then.
Honestly, I was burned out after writing so much. Day in and day out I committed to getting something on the blog. Ok, some days I missed it and doubled (or even tripled) up in order to reach my quota. While I did enjoy getting into a groove with writing, it just put me over the edge and I took a break in December.
That December break ran into January and here we are almost in February (how has this month flown by so fast).
It wasn’t just that I tired myself out by writing a lot in a relatively short amount of time, it was that I was focusing on the wrong thing.
If you’ve been to my blog before you may have noticed that it looks a little different now — stripped down and not as fancy. I realized that I had spent too much time getting my blog to look a certain way. I do web design on the side, so it satisfied that desire to create something, but ultimately it was supposed to be about the WRITING. Wasn’t that why I decided to start a blog? To write?
Well, I’d lost my focus and spent too much time on how my blog looked instead of the actual writing.
Here are a few of the things, that when added up, had set up a blocker in my mind: “well, if you write you’re going to have to do all these other things before publishing…”:
The previous blog design relied heavily upon images, and I spent a decent amount of time finding the right one. Then, I would bring it into Photoshop and apply an effect to it. This current blog design actually uses images nicely on the SINGLE post, but for the rest of the site it doesn’t matter as much if posts have images. I can focus on just writing.
Embellishments in the Blog Post
Look up at the top of this blog post. You see that larger first letter (called a dropcap)? Well, the way I was generating that in the other blog design was by adding something manually to every post. It was just annoying enough that it made me not look forward to publishing my blog post (or, I guess even writing it).
I was also including a shortlink at the bottom of each blog post, to make it easier for readers to share the post. That was also inserted manually every time and was just one more little thing that turned me off. I know, stupid little things. But ask any writer about their obstacles and you’ll find all kinds of tiny things like this. They’re excuses, really. But they became reasons I didn’t want to write and post.
Pressure to Post on Social Media
While social media can add value to blogging, it also sucks to try and find things to post on all these networks. When first starting out, a blogger really should just write. I was spending time posting to a Facebook page, to Twitter and Instagram, and finding ways to share those Instagram images on the blog. These were (and still are, for right now) distractions. I’m not some established blogger who needs to put myself all over the place. Might it help somehow, to get exposure? Maybe. Is it worth it if burns me out from writing actual posts? Hell no!
Cross-Posting to Medium
I like medium.com. It’s a great platform that enables writers to create gorgeous posts, and they make it super easy to do so. It’s all very clean and minimal and modern. You can even set up publications, where collections of posts can be displayed. It’s kind of like what my blog used to be. More like a magazine. I actually have about 1,500 followers of that publication, but never get many reads of my posts. Not sure how that works. Anyway, I was being sucked into yet another thing that I thought would help me spread my brand. Or get me exposure.
OR DISTRACT ME FROM WRITING AND GIVE ME AN EXCUSE TO NOT FOLLOW THROUGH WITH THIS.
I’m a tinkerer and love new and shiny things. I kept getting distracted by things that ultimately don’t matter that much. I placed too much pressure on myself to do all these things that I thought were important. No more.
I’ve simplified the design of the blog so I can choose not to add featured images and everything will still look fine. The dropcap is created automatically. The shortlink at the bottom of the post is created automatically. I’ll post to social media if I feel like it, and if not, whatever. I’m over it. And Medium, well for now it can sit there and collect dust. I might be better off doing everything there instead of on this blog. Who knows. But I like owning the domain name, the website and feeling like this is my home.
So here we are. There are still a few kinks, but I’m getting crap out of the way so I can focus on what this blog should have been about from the start — WRITING.