At a pre-Christmas lunch, someone asked me, ‘Are you still blogging?’ This person had read my blog in its earlier days and said nice things about it, but I guessed she hadn’t looked at it for a long time, or she would have realised that it’s been a very long time since I last posted. We started talking about our writing, encouraging each other and congratulating each other on our small successes. Soon we were talking about finding time to write. I have a couple of big projects I’m working on, and my writing friend is starting to get a bit of traction writing regularly for a couple of publications. We talked about how we had to decide what things we would not do in order to keep our minds and time focused on our goals.
It’s easy to enter a competition, attend a course or workshop, set up a blog, or join a critique group and then find the work involved takes you away from your goals, not closer to them. I wouldn’t give up my critique group because it keeps me accountable and working towards one of my goals. But I have become more ruthless about everything else. A course or a workshop? No thanks, not unless it will help me get closer to my goals. Another book on the craft of writing? No, it’s time to write, not just read about it.
And that leads me back to the big question, for me, about blogging: does this get me closer to my goals? Sadly, the answer is no, not really, not at the moment. There is such a lot of time involved in blogging, both writing and also reading other people’s blogs. I fell into the trap of procrastinating by spending hours reading blogs. Now I just follow a small number of blogs that I really enjoy and look in from time to time on quite a few others.
Some writers see blogging as part of their writing, a means of expressing themselves. I’ve realised it’s not like that for me. Blogging can be fun; it’s a challenge and rewarding when the stats start to improve; it’s an interesting way of sharing ideas and snippets of information. But at the moment, because my focus is elsewhere, it has become a distraction.
And so I’m going to take a bit of pressure off and stop blogging for a while. Who knows, I might come back to it sometime in the New Year.