“I’ll walk where my own nature would be leading: It vexes me to choose another guide.” — Emily Brontë
I briefly mentioned last week that September 1st marked the anniversary of this blog, and I figured I may as well do my annual bit of soul-searching. It’s very hard for me to believe that Time for my thoughts has passed its 4th birthday. It was September 1, 2014 when I published my first post. It wasn’t particularly interesting or profound, but there it was – written & sent out into the ether for someone to see. Of course, the initial someone was my elder daughter, who said she could hear my voice in her head while she was reading and found it disconcerting. For my part – that was great news. I’d quite literally found my voice! Which is good – it’s much easier for me to write that way. She says she still can, and it still is disconcerting, so if nothing else, I’ve managed to stay true to myself & made the blog’s chosen name more meaningful. Even if I’m keeping my voice in my daughter’s head from halfway around the globe. But really, isn’t that every mothers dream?
Although I’ve often been time-crunched over the past year, and have slacked off quite a bit, I’m continuing to learn. As usual, some things I’ve chosen to disregard, some I’ve incorporated. I’ve gained a number of new followers, and I’ve lost a few, too, but it would be strange if I didn’t. Some of the bloggers that I had been interacting with are no longer blogging, which is unfortunate, but I’ve found that it happens every year. Although some have stopped for reasons outside their control, others are simply going where their own paths take them. I’d never sought, or expected, a huge following, my current number of followers is huge considering the fact that my blog is really all about me – Time for my thoughts pretty much spells it out – and I’m not a high-volume blogger (still too many competing priorities). I, admittedly, like to see the numbers rise, and am a bit disappointed on a day that has no views, although most days do manage to have one or two. I don’t publish every day simply because I don’t want to make the time – I have other projects, other commitments, and a need to make sure that whatever I’m writing is accurate (poorly proofread, perhaps, but accurate), and now we’ve begun getting the house ready to be sold (on hiatus due to my spouse’s broken leg), and have begun actively looking to see where we end up next. My family copes well with my assorted writing endeavors and volunteer work, but it’s nice to have some family time sometimes, too. And some downtime for me occasionally is also nice.
My current posting schedule still works for me most weeks, so I’ll stick with it for now. I’d though that I might get to 4 posts per week sometime in 2018, but it now seems unlikely. Perhaps before the 5th anniversary… Sometimes it isn’t easy to stick to a schedule at all (and on days like this my posts are written quite late in the day), but out of all that I learned in Blogging U that first year, I think that sticking to a schedule may be the most important. Nonfiction still works best for me in a blog, so I’ll continue to trudge down that path – although reality often seems stranger than fiction. I’m a poor planner, and am not likely to change, so most things that I write will continue to be written on the fly. I do plan to continue with the 1000 Voices Speak for Compassion posts each month most months – even though it has largely lost momentum. I still think it’s a wonderful idea, and pushing myself to focus on compassion once a month helps me stay balanced during the rest of the month. I’ll continue to keep those posts close to the 20th just to make sure that I really get them written (deadlines: sometimes I really need them).
I’m still wary of social networking, but less so than in the past. I’ve recently set up a separate Facebook page for this blog and other miscellany, and bravely added a link to the sidebar. One of the reasons I started the blog was to be able to expand on my views somewhere not in Facebook, but some recent changes in Facebook’s interface with 3rd party apps led me to make the jump. I’ve recently become a bit more active on Twitter – but 280 characters are hard to work with, and most of my twitter activity is retweets. I still have no clue what Google+ is for, so I use it exclusively for Time for my thoughts. I am still thinking about grabbing the timeformythoughts URL since it’s still available and I’m still blogging, but the idea of paying to blog, and of losing the WordPress Reader (where most of my new followers have come from), seems like it would not be beneficial. If anyone has any suggestions/comments/experiences to share about that, they would be much appreciated.
Thank you for reading and, especially, for continuing to share your thoughts with me, as I continue on my journey, and I hope to never forget this wise advice from Albert Einstein:
“The important thing is not to stop questioning.”
Photo taken August 28, 2018 – the moon was just so photogenic this month!