Sunday, November 7, 2010

Where Do We Go From Here?

Over at Shooting Suburbia is part two of "Furlough weekend. Over here is an introspective blog post about the man behind Cedar's Mountain.

Briefly continuing on a theme, Friday's post about blogs riding off into the sunset forced a small seed of an idea to germinate, which in turn blossomed from the fertilizer of the comments that were thoughtfully spread out across the landscape of Cedar's Mountain.

No, this isn't a goodbye post. I worked too damn hard to build this blog up to where everyone from coast to coast to border to border and overseas enjoys my little slice, however small, on the world around me, to simply pack up and go elsewhere.

Now where was I? Oh yes, now I remember.

Anyways, everyone's thoughtful comments got me to thinking about my blog in general and my ability to write original blog posts.

For the first couple of years (2008-09) it was ridiculously easy to write fresh and original stuff for my blog. I mean, it got to the point where the volume of my output was so great that for about a solid six months I had at least two weeks of posts at any given time scheduled for posting.

But as I started going into my 3rd year of blogging (2010), the ability to write fresh and original blog posts got to be a little harder to do.

Even when I cut down my schedule from every other day (which was punishing to say the least) to a M-W-F; closed one blog and opened another that wasn't as demanding as this one or the one I closed, it still became, for long periods of time, a battle to come up with quality posts that met my exacting standards for written material.

Which brings us to today.

The tail end of 2010 has brought us full circle, in that once again we are struggling to come up with fresh and original material to write. I mentioned in one of my comments that I take it as a victory whenever I can come up with a weeks worth of posts for Cedar's Mountain.

You may laugh over that particular comment, but the truth of the matter is that comment, along with the one saying that I'm living on borrowed time with this blog, is about as poignant as a comment you will ever see me make about my blogging.

To be honest with everyone, there is simply nothing in my background that would've forecast the fact that I would be sitting here some 29 1/2 months later writing my 547th post for Cedar's Mountain nor for that matter some 48 months after I first began writing in December 2005 trying to write a synopsis for a novel that I am quite proud of.

I'm not sure what I'm trying to say here, or even what the purpose of this post is, but maybe the answer can be found in the title of the post, which you might recognize if you were a fan of late 70's synth pop, specifically Alan Parsons.

In any event, I do hope that this post gets you to think, not only about yourself and your blogging abilities, but about other bloggers who may be trying to find that second or third wind or listening to that internal voice telling them that they need to keep on doing what they're doing.

Who knows, maybe you're facing the same questions and self-doubts about your blog and your blogging ability (like me) and you're too afraid to face the realization that maybe, just maybe, you need to regroup and recalibrate.

Am I afraid to face that realization?


It's been a long difficult road this year and I don't see it getting any easier. Only time will tell whether or not that particular realization will come true.

For my sake, I certainly hope not.


  1. Some blogs succeed for a long time because they are product orientated. I go to a number of blogs of artists and they are always describing the process, showing the results, musing about the next project. I suspect these blogs will go on and on until the person no longer creates.
    If a person, like you has many interest, like writing, music, observations about where you live, observations about the people around you, I suspect I'll be reading you for a long time, too. :)Bea

  2. I'm sort of in a blogging recalibration right now. I'm trying to figure out the balancing act between sharing my writing and talking about my home life. It seemed easier to think of my blog posts six months ago. I want to take some time to rethink my direction too.

  3. Bea: I find that to be true. If you have a particular niche, like being an artist or a writer of a specific genre who loves to explore the entertainment scene, then your blog is gonna go on and on and on ad infinitum.

    I think the problem for most bloggers stems from the fact that they dabble (like I do) in a multitude of different subjects and every now and then, they feel like the well has run dry. More often than not, they'll call it day and continue on their merry way. For others like myself, they'll make a serious attempt at retrenching and regrouping, in the hopes that the creative juices will once again flow.

    Kelly: Was wondering why I haven't seen any updates as of late from your blog. Glad to hear that you're still thinking about blogging by taking a break to recalibrate.

    I find its very tough to take any kind of break from blogging, but sometimes you really have to take that step back and figure out what's best for you in the long run.

  4. Hey G, I'm still blogging about 3 times a week, just to keep my hand in it for now. I don't want to stay away from it because it does give me so much in the way of connection and feedback.

  5. Kelly: I stand corrected, thanks for the update.

    I feel the same way sometimes as well. Blogging is about the only way I stay connected with people on a sane adult level (besides Facebook), so when I take a break, no matter how well deserved, I have a tendency to get stressed out.

  6. I think you are 1) very organized - I never plan posts ahead of time, and 2) very interesting, so I don't forsee you running out of material.

    2010 has been difficult for my family and many friends in my life - hopefully 2011 will be much better!

  7. Yep it's tough. I can read 3 of my posts and think "Damn, I've stopped being funny. I must write another funny post, but I don't feel like being funny". Then I can go through a patch of writing funny posts and think "Damn I'm always so lightweight, I want to write something sensitive and serious, but I feel like being funny!"

    Then I think "Damn, I'm always showing crappy photos, I must just do a post where I just write something and let the words tell their own story".

    Then after all that thinking, I just write and post what's on my mind and heart at that moment. :D

    I have absolutely no ideas for my next post on the pad, but I will.

  8. R: Thanks. Being organized is the end result of being diagnosed as "hyperactive" as a child (what every lame brain do-gooder now calls ADD/ADHD to every child whether the diagnosis is correct or not), which as an adult I needed a way to focus my energies on.

    I may be interesting that's for sure, but there are still parts of my life that will not make it to this blog, so I do have a finite amount of stuff to mine.

    I'm hoping that 2011 will be a better year, but I'm not quite counting on it yet.

    Joe: With me, I always have that little voice in my head that keeps me in check so that I don't insert foot into mouth, so to speak.

    But I do understand about going through spots where I write nothing but funny stuff, or stuff about writing, or other assorted odds & ends.

    It is getting tougher for me to come up with stuff to write about, because some of the stuff I would love to write about I simply just can't do without reprecussions.

    Sometimes, the only way I can come up with stuff is to read something and get inspired to write something similiar, which is what I did with this. I actually wrote this post while I was at the library with my daughter on Saturday, and it took me all of 45 minutes to write.

  9. I've found that for me, it helps having a focused theme to work my thoughts around, living our passions. And then I try different features with that focus - Author tours, interviews, okay, okay, even a Rate the Porch series. And I do take announced hiatuses to give myself a break, but always return to my schedule. Don't you find that even in difficult times, it's kind of nice knowing that old tried and true blog is still there, with a bunch of familiar readers always ready to hash things over?

  10. I think Joe said it best - you might just post what is on your heart and mind at the moment. I'm sorry you are going through such a tough time, G.

  11. Blogging is one area of my life that is stress-free. When it stops being something I enjoy then I know I'll stop doing it. I don't write personal stuff on my blog and I know lots of people get sick and tired of photos of flowers and stuff, but it makes me happy. Do I have times when I have nothing? Yup. And that's when I just don't post. I don't follow any schedule or anything and simply blog off the top of my head most of the time.

    Definitely one of the best parts of blogging is meeting some truly amazing people.

  12. General comment: I hates Blogger. I spent 15 minutes late last night writing out three very thoughtful and very detailed response and when I hit "publish" the damn system gave me a 503 error and ate it all up.

    So, onto the comments.

    Joanne: I've been trying to shake up my routine here as well. Not too many writers would add a category called "Don' Write Like This" and spend each and every post chopping themselves down to size.

    And yes, I do find in difficult times when my blogging starts to reflect what I'm going through, its very comforting to know that I'll always have a core group of readers to help hash things out and get me through whatever problem(s) I may be going through.

    Lynn: Thanks.

    Sometimes I do post what's going on in my head and my heart at given moment (like this post for example), and more often than not, it does become therapeutic to do so.

    Self-doubt can cripple but sometimes having other people point out what you can't see can make a world of difference in the long run.

    Talon: Blogging for me, while I enjoy it to the extreme, is never stress free. My adult character makeup won't let treat it otherwise.

    And I agree, I have met some truly amazing people over the past 2 1/2 years as well, and quite often, its those amazing people who have kept me going for the past several months.


Go on, give me your best shot. I can take it. If I couldn't, I wouldn't have created this wonderful little blog that you decided to grace with your presence today.

About that comment moderation thingy: While yes, it does say up above I can take it, I only use it to prevent the occasional miscreant from leaving thoughtless and/or clueless comments.

So remember, all of your comments are greatly appreciated and all answers will be given that personal touch that you come to expect and enjoy.

G. B. Miller

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