Friday, January 01, 2010

Well then...

I'm hoping to get back into blogging again. I don't want to think of this as a New Year's resolution (though Happy New Year to anyone who's still following this after so long or who stumbles upon it anew), because resolutions are so easy to break. It's a goal, though, part of a much more wide-ranging set of goals I have for this year and beyond. In fact, it's part of a plan, all meticulously mapped out, of what I hope to accomplish this year and within the next five years.

I've been hesitant to do such detailed planning in the past. I think I'm at a point, though, where it will be valuable to me. I have a copy here of Jeff VanderMeer's Booklife, which I'd been planning to get for Christmas ever since it came out, and he argues pretty convincingly for creating some kind of strategic plan. I've broken my plans and goals down into what I want to accomplish creatively; what I want to accomplish from a visibility/publicity/marketing kind of standpoint; and things I'd love to achieve but have little control over beyond constantly submitting stories and queries and the like.

So this blog fits in the middle category. I'm not going to suddenly turn into a publicity hound or do crazy things just to get attention--that's just not me, and if I tried to do that with my blog, I'd quickly become disillusioned. About a year ago was when I stopped blogging regularly (after some two and a half years of generally pretty regular posting)--I just became so overwhelmed with all the ways it seemed I should be marketing myself, between Twitter and Facebook and blogging and LJ and various forums and... It just became too much, so I shut down even what I had been doing. Unfortunately that included losing touch with people as well, which is probably my biggest regret of the past year, and something I also hope to repair. In most ways, then, this blog will simply return to the kinds of posts I was creating in the past as I dip myself back into the online world.

I do have a few more specific themed posts that I plan to begin next week, though, a bit of structure to help me post even when nothing comes to mind. So the goal for now is to have at least two posts a week and see where it goes from there.

I think that's enough of an intro to 2010. Happy New Year (again) and now back to writing (and picking up toys, and loading the dishwasher...).

3 comments:

Lion said...

Good to see you here again. I always enjoy your posts.

"I just became so overwhelmed with all the ways it seemed I should be marketing myself, between Twitter and Facebook and blogging and LJ and various forums and... It just became too much, so I shut down even what I had been doing."

My hope is that the ideal of the hermit writer, slaving over a typewriter and scotch and only making contact with the world through his editor and his mail slot, can still survive in this world. It seems increasingly unlikely. What if I don't want editors or readers to find me and know me and be exposed to the totality of my web presence? What then? Am I going to have to grow up and start using my real name? Horrors.

Daniel Ausema said...

Yeah, it's probably pretty tough to achieve success as a hermit. I can think of a couple of writers who make a virtue of the fact that they write under a pseudonym, making that mystery a selling point. I imagine there are others who are quietly pseudonymous as well, but within the role of their pen names maintain a web presence and the like. So...those could be some options for you, until I blow your cover :p

Lion said...

I would love to use and abuse a pseudonym. When I made my first submission at the beginning of December, I wrestled with it right up to hitting "send"--made an email address and submission account for my fake name and everything. Ultimately I decided against it because it was the same story I'd been putting in my fellowship applications, which of course use my legal name... and on the off chance I actually land the publication and one of the admissions people sees it, that would just be awkward. Besides, all my academic credentials and such are going to be in my name, and what little networking I do is associated with that. So I guess I'd better get used to it.

The hang-up for me is that my current web presence is not very "adult." I picked up Facebook and livejournal in college, and use those accounts to keep up with my friends and vent my silly day-to-day anguishes. They're not designed for networking or maintaining a professional presence, the way they would be for people who sign up for that reason. And I don't want to have to give up those personal life indulgences just so I can have something all polished and writerly to point people to. It seems silly.