Thoughts For 2022
We’ve reached the end of 2021. It’s time to clarify a few ways things will change here for 2022.
This is my 45th and final blogpost for 2021. I hope these pieces have helped you navigate this moment in our history with some sense of hope and inspiration. None of us got the year we were expecting, and my writing during 2021 took me into some unexpected and challenging places at times.
In 2022 the blog will change a little. Since, in the past, these changes have caused some readers to jump to conclusions, I thought it best to write a few words about what will be different and, perhaps more importantly, what will stay the same.
Its major themes in recent years have been creativity, productivity, technology, and simplicity. I’ll continue to concentrate on them. But as well as that, I want to discuss more freely the books I’m reading. You get a bit of that in the articles. But I want to be a bit freer about writing reviews or summaries of things I’ve read or tools I use, without having to make them fit those themes.
I recently wrote a thread on Twitter about three big philosophical problems that are troubling me: bad faith, credentialism, and the future of criticism.
Don’t worry. This isn’t going to turn into a blog full of political rants. But I am concerned about the quality and tone of the conversations we have. They affect our frame of mind and our ability to focus on our creative passions. And so we have to address them.
I’ve always tried to balance having a personal blog and writing things you might find useful. This balance will continue but will shift a little in 2022 (it’s already been shifting this way for a few years). I’ve always thought of myself as more of an essayist than a blogger or online content creator. Increasingly, this means approaching what I do as creative non-fiction.
My hope is always that the words you read here would be just as effective if printed in a book or magazine.
The Blog In 2022
For the past few years I’ve written about 50 articles a year. The tempo will be similar in 2022. But because of the way I’m structuring the year, together with my forthcoming relocation, there will be more weeks when I don’t post or write for the blog. You’ll probably see fewer posts in the coming year.
The This Week I Quit series will continue in 2022. But I will bring the series on Mastery to a close soon. The topic still fascinates me. But the drafts I have on hand are long and yet terse. It seems to me that much rewriting is necessary before they become helpful.
I’m considering removing comments from the blog. They now look like a relic from another era, and over the years they’ve caused me a lot of pain. I’ve deleted so many cruel and unhelpful comments, and no longer feel any joy when I see a new comment waiting for me.
There will be other small tweaks that you may not even notice. But then again, you might.
I may be getting ahead of myself here, but the blog will turn 20 in 2024. That is still a long way off, but given how quickly time seems to pass these days, also feels like something that will be upon us surprisingly soon.
Obviously my creative practice isn’t where I want it to be right now. But I have an idea of where I’d like to be by 2024 (and 2031). It’s a destination I’ve been navigating towards for some time, and 2022 will be another course correction in that direction.
This blog has always been a window into my creative practice. It started as I made the transition out of academia. And at every stage when the blog has been most fun to write and also most engaging for readers, it’s been a reflection of that creative journey.
Tensegrity In 2022
Finally, in keeping with my yearly theme for 2022, I want to try and embrace a tension and move the blog in two different directions at the same time — by making it both lighter and more serious.
The surprising gift of the past two years is that I’ve enjoyed writing the blog more than I had in a long time. Necessity drove me to write more, but I’ve also had more fun doing it. But I also know that many of the posts were heavy; again, of necessity. For 2022 I’d like to find a bit more levity, a bit more inspiration, a bit more hope.
I also want to write things you can trust. Well-researched pieces that will be worth the time you spend reading them, and will give you a chance to think seriously about your own life.
We need both right now. Seriousness and fun. My hope is that in 2022, when you read something here, you will experience some pleasant sense of anticipation as well as the thought that what you’re about to read will be worth considering.
Until then, I hope you have a joyful new year, and that 2022 brings joy and delight in the things you do. I look forward to sharing the coming year with you.
all the best,