Before I launched into this task, I thought back to why I started this blog the first place. Conveniently for me, I had set out some reasons why I thought it was a good thing on my oldest site, Welcome to Baskerville Manor. At some point I discovered a place in Windows Live where I could also write stuff and thus began Occasional Stuff, which was moved to WordPress when the Windows Live blogging option was discontinued.
- 10 good things about doing this blogging thing here on this site (February 2009, Welcome to Baskerville Manor) – This first post was a less than serious list of things that might attract me to writing into the ether on a regular basis
- 10 good things about blogging (April 2009, Occasional Stuff) – this was a quick look back – some key items emerged – I liked writing in order to express a thought without being interrupted half-way through, messing with formatting/widgets, and being able to edit and re-edit to my heart’s content
Cut to almost five years later. Between 2009 and now my life changed quite a bit, work is different, younger family members have moved on and for the first time in ever such a long while, I not only have time to think, but also enough mental energy left at the end of a working day to get down to writing about what I think. I was just as inclined then, as I am now, to digress off into a range of experiments with the look and feel, bells and whistles, and not actually post anything. A lesson learned from five years ago is that it is not always easy to think of topics to write about straight off the bat, and it really is necessary to exercise those old writing muscles a bit before those topics start coming to me easily. Not that I am short of things I want to talk about, but how to approach them and what to deal with first, or, when it comes down to actually writing, whether I really have anything to say are factors that brought me to a full stop back then.
On 2 January, in Daily Prompt: Progress, I essentially set out my agenda for the coming year, and although this post lists another ten points, they boil down to one thing – I want to write some decent posts that are worth reading. While the judgement of that will lie with the other people who read them, I am not in a huge hurry to extend myself to a larger audience until I have nailed the writing – my feeling is that if I engage in developing an online presence when I don’t have good, or at least interesting, content, then the chances of repeat visits from people I attract through promoting my presence at this point won’t be adding me to their favourites, or coming back another day to see if there is anything new from me.
So my strategy, if you can call it that, is to continue following the writing challenges, and along the way, find ways to turn the prompts into mini-platforms for the myriad of things I want to write about. Along the way I hope to develop a better writing discipline, more fluency and a clear picture of what topics I can really work with. I won’t be actively chasing more visitors, but I will be doing my best, through my posts, to keep the lovely new people who have been calling by interested in coming back for more. So there you have it – my 30-day goal.