Fifth Time's a Charm?

 I want to try blogging again and see if I can avoid the problems I have had in the past.

Actually, my first blog, which I called New Wood, lasted around five years. But it began to feel forced the final two of those. I felt like I had to post every day and accompany each post with a good cover photo. Finding the right photo was frequently harder than writing the actual post. 

In 2015 I tried again with a blog I called Gathering Runes. I was doing more with photography then, and chose a Wordpress theme that emphasized pictures. I had fun with the photography aspect, but found myself ending up in the same rut, only a little more artistic. So I stopped for a bit and then restarted with a news-themed Wordpress site I called The Earthkeeper. I wound up writing about too many things I wasn't passionate about, combined with the same issue of always seeking appropriate copyright-free cover photos.

Several years ago I tried a fourth time, using the same name I'm using now, only with a magazine-style Wordpress theme rather than a blog. I had fallen into the same trap yet again. It was closer to my heart in content, but still I had put too much pressure on myself to produce frequently, with that same old combination of article and interesting cover photo.

To make matters worse, I was getting back into book writing after years of being focused on other things. I had begun working on A Private Wilderness: The Journals of Sigurd F. Olson for the University of Minnesota Press, and brainstorming ideas for my first novel, Listening Point. I couldn't justify putting so much time into a blog that was less important than the books. So I shut it down.

So why am I starting one up again, especially since I'm writing novels? I think the best answer is that sometimes I just feel like writing something different. I've never really written about writing, for example, and I'd like to try that. And I want a good way to jot down flashes of inspiration that come to me as I walk along the bluffs looking over Lake Michigan, or as I read a book, or in some other way. And I thought maybe a blog would give me that space as well as encouragement to get things down before I forget them.

So I'm back using the same Blogger space (Blogger is owned by Google) that I used when I created the New Wood Blog all those years ago. I hope to avoid the pitfalls of my first four attempts, all of which arose from my perfectionist tendencies and the underlying fear of failure or--worse--disapproval. I aim to studiously avoid perfectionism this time around. I will be perfect at it! ... Ummm ... I will allow myself to write posts without photos (unless I immediately have one or so in mind and at hand). I frequently will write simply as the words come to me, making for a more personal blog rather than a polished one. And I will allow myself to write posts of even just a sentence or two, if that's what comes to me in the moment.

All this, I hope, will make this fifth attempt at blogging a sustainable one. It can be a creative outlet for me. And if anyone finds anything valuable in any of my posts, then perhaps--as with my books--this blog can be a source of hope in these challenging times.

No comments

Post a Comment