There’s a reason we do what we do, whoever we are, whatever it is. Sometimes conscious, sometimes not; sometimes logical, sometimes not.
I started this blog for a conscious, calculating reason: I wanted to have ideas.
You might be thinking “but wait, shouldn’t you start a blog when you already have ideas? And if you’re going to write daily, shouldn’t you already have lots of ideas?” Well… that’s not how ideas work.
I have a friend who started a daily blog a few years ago. He was constantly worried about running out of ideas, but he always managed to get one written before the deadline each night. We were at lunch one day when he pulled out an index card with a list on it. “It’s getting harder and harder to have ideas. I’m starting to get really worried I’m going to run out, so I’ve written down ten things I could write about on a moment’s notice, and I keep it in my wallet in case I ever get writer’s block and need to use one.”
I laughed and told him, “That piece of paper is what’s giving you writer’s block. You can’t get new ideas while these ones are festering in your head. Go home, take your list with you, and your next ten posts need to be these ten ideas.”
Ideas want to be had. They flock to people who are busy using up all their ideas. And that’s why I started this blog.
I’m not sure how much longer I can keep it up, though. Well, hang on. Back up. I know I can keep posting here every day, rain or shine. What I don’t know is if I’m content with the current quality of my writing. I find my own writing improves greatly with a second editing pass. This often takes as long, if not longer, than the original writing. But with life pressures and my own procrastination being what they are, I have found myself writing the next day’s post at midnight with bleary eyes and a swimmy head. (The careful observer may even have noticed a couple of How To Train Your Dom posts went up after my regular update deadline.) Those posts go up with lots of errors and entire paragraphs phrased badly; these are things I catch when I take time to revise.
This would be the perfect setup to say I’m dialing back my blogging, right? How I want to give you the best quality blog and so I’m going to drop back to some number of posts per week, etc. Buuuuut, I’m not doing that. There’s another reason I started this blog.
Back in my vanilla life, on my vanilla blog, I used to be able to knock out a tight, 300-word blog post in 30 minutes. Day in, day out. Clever idea, funny joke, unique perspective, punchline. Boom. Right now my posts average twice as long and take four times as long to write. I want to get back to that skill level, and until I reach or abandon that goal, I need to stick with the daily ramblings because I need the practice. So if you like my daily posts, rest assured they’re still coming. If you’re tired of slogging through my daily posts and all my rambling, I am so sorry because you are sooooo screwed.
It’s actually harder to write shorter posts than long; Blaise Pascal famously penned, “I write you a long letter because I have not the time to write a short one.” But I’ll keep working on it.
Until then, the ideas will keep coming because they have no choice. If you want to know how to get more ideas for your blog, use up the ones you have to make room in your head. Until then, I leave you with the wisdom of F. Somerset Maughan: “I write only when inspiration strikes. Fortunately, it strikes every morning at 9 o’clock sharp.”
Oh, wait, one last thought: If you don’t blog daily, that’s cool! I’m not judging. We all do what we do for our own reasons. I currently enjoy a certain amount of discretionary free time each day and right now I’m choosing to use that to get better at my blogging. When my goals have been reached to my satisfaction I very likely may change my priorities here. I absolutely do not judge anybody who blogs at their own pace. Except those of you who are way better at it than me; you smug bastards annoy me no end. 😉