Recently I’ve been asked if this blog is “changing direction.” The short answer is no, not really. This blog has always been an eclectic, honest and sincere record my life and will continue to be so.
That said, I did make a decision some months back; to be more helpful in my writing, more open with what I’ve learnt about making music, creating photos and crafting words and more honest and sincere about how hard this journey has been.
It’s not a marketing ploy. It’s a result of asking the old question – why bother doing this?
Some people blog for purely commercial reasons – to make money from advertising, freebies and the like. And, there are no plenty of blogs that are simply cut and pasted from PR releases and other forms of ‘content.” That’s never been of interest to me.
I’ve always preferred blogs that honestly inform, encourage and inspire by telling real life stories.
Of course, the big question is; how interesting is the story we are living? And, are we doing a good job of telling that story?
Looking back over my worst years as a blogger (07-08 in particular), it’s clear that I was kind of just ranting a lot of the time. OK, maybe I’m being harsh on myself. But, what I was putting on the blog wasn’t inspiring.
Trying to be helpful is a modest goal, but I like where it has taken the blog so far. And, it’s the template for where this blog will go in 2012.
Nowadays, I’m looking back over past posts for patterns – topics I’ve been regularly engaging with – to see if I can crystallise some thoughts, or move ideas forward. That’s how I came to write 7 Kinds Of People You Need In Your Creative Universe, which has proven to be this blog’s most read, retweeted and recommended post of the year.
I’ve also stopped, for the most part, talking about the future, about stuff I’d like to do one day and so on. OK, given that it is the end of the year I have snuck out some new years resolution and reflection stuff in recent weeks. But, I’ve come to believe that there’s a real limit to how often we should talk about what we want to achieve in the future and what we wish was different about our life and work (and too often, I’ve been on the wrong side of that).
The number of people reading this blog has definitely gone up this year. It’s still very humble numbers for sure. But, I’d be lying if I didn’t admit that it is rewarding to have new people reading the blog, commenting on posts and getting in touch via email and Twitter.
I don’t want to turn this into some complicated how-to strategy. To be frank, I’m just a guy behind a keyboard trying to figure this stuff out. That said, however, I have been blogging for over ten years now, have seen a few trends (and bloggers) come and go.
So, if there’s any advice I’d give to my fellow bloggers as we approach the new year it’s simply this – be helpful, be honest and be sincere.