Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Running out of things to say?

It seems weird for a writer to say but I've been wondering lately if I'm running out of things to say, at least as far as this blog is concerned. When I first started I blogged every day or every other day with ease. A lot of the essays and chapters in my Write With Fire book got their start here on the blog. In those days, most of the stuff that went into my blog also ended up in pieces for publication, or at least for wider dissemination. Now I'm lucky if I get one post a week, and very little of it is anything that is likely to be expanded for publication.

As the days pass, I 'think' about things I might blog about. But most of the ideas that arise seem too short to make a decent post. Many of them are more in the way of observations than they are anything coherently organized. One thing that has played a role is that I'm doing less nonfiction these days, by choice. Fiction seems of less importance to share.

Right now I'm sort of considering my choices. I could shut the blog down or put it on hiatus. I don't really want to abandon it but a break might be in order. I could also just evoke a little discipline and force myself to post more frequently. I could pick a theme and post around that. I've been thinking about using the blog as a "journal" of a novel or a story. Using it to keep a record of sorts of where a story idea came from and how it is developing, and what problems or successes I run into. I could use it simply as a record of what I'm doing in writing every day, although I don't imagine that would have much interest most days to any readers.

I like the blogs that I read that talk about books and what books the blog writers are reading, but during the school year I don't read quickly enough to keep up a steady schedule of posting. I also have less time to do the research needed to properly place a book in its context.

So, there is where I'm at here at Razored Zen, 1360 posts in, for a blog that started May 16, 2006. That's where I'm at. But where am I going?

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27 comments:

Seth Lindberg said...

Seems like you are assuming a minimal posting frequency that may be too high. If you have something to share once every month or so, which I think you do, then that may be sufficient to keep the blog going.

Paul R. McNamee said...

I know what you mean, but I also agree with Seth. Post at your whim. You don't need to be regular.

I've been waiting to post about my current read but I only just finished it last night.

I also think that with Facebook, etc, it's easier and quicker to post there - especially short entries. I think we've now assumed blog posts must be a bit longer and meatier - and that's probably just an arbitrary thought.

Keith West said...

Like Paul said, post when you feel like it or have something to say. Your blog is in my feed, so when a new post pops up, I know it's there. I don't always comment, but I do actively follow.

Think of it as lying fallow for a while. You might just need to let the batteries recharge, so to speak. There's nothing wrong with that, and you might find that you'll come back with more to say than before.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I like the story ideas posts.
Sometimes a break is needed, but really hate to see you quit.

Brian Miller said...

breaks are good...i have taken a few when i needed to refresh...

and dont pressure yourself...when you have something to say, say it...i would love to hear about writing process and things like that personally....

pattinase (abbott) said...

I am thinking the same thing, Charles. Facebook has kind of taken its place for me. I think though if you post too infrequently, it may be worse than not at all. At least for me.

Cloudia said...

we look forward to seeing you. Perhaps a more spare approach? And using Lana's photos might be a great idea too! Take a simple idea or thought and highlight that for a post...and then another...

You'd be missed...

ALOHA from Honolulu
ComfortSpiral
<3

Charles Gramlich said...

Seth, that's true. A good thing to consider.

Paul, yeah, quick posts on facebook are far easier and cover most of the material I want to share.

Keith, I'm gonna see how it goes over the next couple of weeks before I reach a decision.

Alex, yeah, there's some possibility there.

Brian, I feel a bit like I've been on a break, a hyphenated one anyway.

Patti, yeah, I'm thinking that too. I'm thinking even if I post with days between I need to try to post on a regular time schedule.

Cloudia, I'd miss it as well.

Oscar said...

Put me down for the story idea. You should get a few blogs out of that.

Randy Johnson said...

Like all the rest, I say post when you have something you think is worth talking about. No schedule necessary. We'll find it when it appears.

sage said...

back in 2006 and 2007, I was posting 180 or so posts a year, but that has dropped way off. I keep wondering what the theme of my blog might be. Some are good at developing a marketing blog but for many of us that isn't our primary intent... Whatever you do, go easy on yourself

Vesper said...

It would be a shame to quit, Charles! (Yes, I knew FB is the culprit!) As the others suggested, post less often, use Lana's photos, never forget to tell us your fantastic dreams, post a review...
I'm always looking forward to anything you have to say here - it's always very interesting. Besides, I can't miss your post because the pop-up on my blog-roll... :-)

Charles Gramlich said...

Oscar, yeah, that could work.

Randy, that's a good think about feedly. It will pop up in most folks' feed.

Sage, I sometimes feel I go too easy on myself already. :)

Vesper, I don't want people to find reading my posts a burden or boring, but keeping that interest level up isn't easy.

Ty said...

I know how you feel. Of late I've only been posting my mini book reviews. I even skipped my usual end-of-year post.

Charles, I'd miss your blog if you shut it down, but I can understand. I'd prefer you keep it open and just post when the mood strikes, however rare, but that's just my 2 cents.

Ron Scheer said...

I would certainly miss you if you went on hiatus. I would welcome your random thoughts on whatever you've noticed during the day and gets you thinking.

Prashant C. Trikannad said...

Charles, I sincerely hope you don't shut your blog and that you'll post as and when you have something to say. I'd miss reading your blog and your thoughts on reading, writing, and publishing.

the walking man said...

You're going wherever your journey takes you. This blog is a package you can set down if you want and when you look back you'll see its legs and has followed you. Look down my blog roll you'll see some that haven't been posted on for years.

*shrug* Eventually everyone has something they want others to see.

G. B. Miller said...

Been there and to a lesser degree, I'm still there.

As you well know, I started a new blog, mostly because I was getting burned out/well running dry on the original one.

Now, I basically post two days a week, and when I feel like taking a break, I let everyone know that I'm doing so.

I agree with the other commenters in that you should post only when you want to and not when you have to. If you need to take a break, either short or long, go for it. Just everyone know that you're going on vaca and we'll leave the lights on for ya until you return.

R. T. said...

Oh, you must persist. Remember Vladimir and Estragon in Waiting for Godot. They never give up. And they had good reasons. So, please hang in there. Your voice matters to many of us.

Charles Gramlich said...

Ty, I think I go through this kind of crisis every few years. I'll get over it.

Ron, my thoughts definitely seem pretty random these days.

Prashant, thanks, I appreciate that.

Mark, yeah, that is true.

G.B., good thoughts. Thanks.

R.T.,thanks for the kind words.

David J. West said...

I hear ya, my posting has gone way down from when I started - I do wonder if some of it is facebook etc, but I still feel like my blog is my actual place and where I'll be in touch more with the bigger book stuff.

Charles Gramlich said...

David J., definitely Facebook plays a role. I guess we still have to define what blogs do differently. Or I do

Richard Prosch said...

I'll be reading your posts wherever you put 'em! Facebook or here...or a new blog down the road. Just keep jottin' stuff down.

Charles Gramlich said...

Richard, I do. I write stuff all the time. Gotta find an outlet for it.

jodi said...

Charles-let the blog continue. Write what you are feeling and things will develop. Blog friends always will be interested!

Riot Kitty said...

I'm guessing you found some more thoughts since you've posted twice since this (I am catching up), but I'm with Seth. Share whenever you feel like it.

sarala said...

Last year I only posted once and it was a photo. I found that the lack of an active community, the back and forth of comment and response started when the Facebook fad began and all my blog friends opened Facebook pages. I'm trying to get back to it now but we'll see. I'd say keep it up. It is worth it.