When I started blogging almost ten years ago in the fall of 2004, I blogged for fun and because I could. I didn’t really think about my audience, what they would find valuable—and I didn’t care at all about being found in search engines (in fact, I found it creepy that people who didn’t know me would read my blog).
I wrote a lot of posts those first months. Forty-three in October and forty-four in November. The posts were short and sweet—200-300 words (sometimes way less than that). I was my quirky (weird) self. I didn’t capitalize post titles… (One of my favorites from this time: what’s important)
After a few years of this, I started learning more about blogging. I figured out that WordPress was the wave of the future and that blogging was a great way to establish oneself as an “expert.” So I created a WP blog about how to overcome product management struggles (yes, I really did). It was pretty successful. I learned the importance of getting involved in niche blogging communities by commenting and linking to similar sites.
In 2009, I got tired of blogging about product management and wanted to write about my newfound interest in sustainability and simple living. So I started this blog. I was still quite prolific, writing several posts each week. I started to read about blogging best practices—how important it is to bring value or entertainment to your audience and write really high-quality content. I also started learning about something called search engine optimization (SEO) that made your website more “findable” in Google and other search engines. My posts got longer and more involved. As a result, they took longer to write, so I wrote fewer posts. And the past couple of years, while I’ve been working on my book, I’ve really struggled to keep the blog alive and have fun with it.
The point is, the more I’ve learned about writing for the web—what works, what doesn’t—the less fun it’s become and the fewer posts I’ve created. It’s like I have blogging paralysis because I know too much! Well, I can’t really unlearn what I know (that would be bad for my day job), but I can stop taking myself so seriously, get back to basics, and enjoy the process (and not spend hours crafting a single post).
I’m ready to get back to the heart of blogging: as an art form and as a way to express in real-time how I feel about this life and this world we live in. As a dialogue between me and you. I shall write what I please, but I will make it worth your time.
I hope you will enjoy the change.
NOTE: This will replace my weekly Sunday email, because I had to get this out, and I don’t want to spam my tribe.