Whys and Wherefores

My friend Kacha posted this afternoon just about the kind-of meta data about her blog. By which I mean she talks about what she blogs about, when she blogs, etc. That post is here, her’s is one of my favourite blogs to read and I’d recommend the detour.

I started commenting on her post and when the comment reached twenty-odd lines, I realised that my comment had to be a post of its own. Not least, I do not wish to monopolise somebody else’s post with such a large comment. So, here is that post.

Kacha read something early on about posting daily. I know some of you do, and it’s fine if you have the time to do so, but I don’t have either the free time or the writing ability to post something good each day. I certainly don’t want to publish posts which I think are rubbish, just because I feel I have to post something. When that time comes, it’ll be time to wave goodbye to WordPress.

So I don’t buy this write daily idea. I think that if somebody thinks that a successful blog is a well-read blog, it ain’t necessarily so. A lot of us blog, as Kacha says, to try to make some sense of the stuff going through our heads. For such people, the criteria for a good blog, is therefore one which helps them make sense of their world. Now, it might well be that interaction with other people is a part of that process – it’s certainly useful for me to hear different perspectives.

Kacha also talks about when she blogs. She seems to have decided whether to write or not by day. I choose by prompt. My “hard and fast” days are as follows:

Sunday Jim Adams‘ excellent Song Lyric Sunday, because I enjoy presenting songs of my own, and listening to others. In any case, I always though my taste was, er, unconventional, but nevertheless excellent, so it is nice to share that.
Tuesday my tick-tock posts. Because I set the theme for these I prepare them in advance, they just happen to be published on a Tuesday. But it is interesting when you do one of these things because you are committing yourself to publishing regularly. So you have to be prepared to write regularly.
Wednesday Fandango’s Provocative Question. Fandango was about the third blog I ever discovered, and another blog I like to read. I clicked with him/it immediately and have stayed with it ever since. His questions sometimes make me think, but more often it is a case of trying to articulate what I already think. Often, I don’t articulate things, so posting helps toward a coherent view.
Friday Fandango again. Friday Flashback. The whole reason I started my blog was to chart progress, so it is a brilliant idea to force myself look at something of mine from a year gone by, to hopefully see that progress. And I do see progress indirectly, just in the subjects I am writing about. Frankly, that is the only reason for writing daily – so I know I’ll have something to choose on this day next year!
This is actually the most important prompt because it gets closest to the whole reason I am on here.

Anything else, like this post, comes when the fancy takes me.

Of course, I sometimes get block. Sometimes the idea is there but it just won’t go down on paper. I’ll bet we all get that sometimes. My Drafts folder is full of half-written posts.

My Drafts folder also contains a few posts that are pretty much fully written, but I’m waiting for the right time to put them live. I have a post in there at the moment on suicide, which is definitely not going live during the holidays. I need to cajole that one so that it says what I want it to say, but uses language that won’t upset or offend anybody.

Lastly, Kacha talks about awards. I’ve only been on WordPress for three or four months yet, plus other people write far beter blogs than mine, so it has never happened to me. I’m glad. Because it is not a game I want to start playing. If people like what I write, their feedback is appreciation enough. But if it ever does happen, saying thanks but no, thanks will probably be tough, because I don’t want to come across as ungrateful. I blogged for years on Blogger without any interaction at all, so if even one person likes one of my posts, it is appreciated, believe me.