Out of Practice

I logged into the blog tonight (Thursday) out of a sense of obligation. I haven’t posted anything all week, after all, and my posts seem to be becoming progressively later in the week, in any case. I used to write every Monday, after all. Every Monday, publish early Tuesday, a routine like clockwork, and…

…and I’ve complained about this before.

So, I’m not here to initiate a resurgence of whining. I’m just noticing something else that goes along with this, a part of the bigger picture. I don’t keep up with the blogs that I follow as I used to any more, either. I used to carve out 30-45 minutes every day to read posts from everyone that I knew in the blogosphere. I was always looking for a new blog to follow. I classified myself among the serious bloggers, those who would list this as a very important hobby, if not a side vocation. The reason is because I think that this medium is so important. The expression that this permits is so huge on so many levels. Free information is put out there by numerous sources. As everyone kept a journal at certain points in our history, we can now throw our thoughts out there for anyone who wants to listen (sort of what I’m doing now). And, of course, what has always made it so fascinating is that readers can interact with us and our thoughts.

“Ummm…yeah, Dave,” you’re saying right now. “This isn’t exactly new. Not like we didn’t realize this and you’re giving us an ‘aha’ moment…”

I know. Not like Web 2.0 is a new innovation or anything. I think, though, that we need to be reminded of this, because we’re doing it every day and we’re lost a bit in taking it for granted. Choose your social network…whichever one(s) you use, you’re doing the same thing, just is shorter sound bytes.

And that’s what concerns me.

I will always believe that long-form blogging is important in a way microblogging can’t achieve. Not saying for a moment that the latter isn’t important, as well, but there are things that it can’t do that we can do in this medium. Yet, this medium seems to be declining, or at least that’s the word on the street with many bloggers that I’ve followed for a long time. There’s no time to write these posts anymore, they say, and many say there’s no time to read them, either.

And, certainly I find myself skimming my subscriptions and pulling out specific posts now, and that’s on the every-third-day that I manage to open Feedly at all.

I can identify any number of reasons why this is the case, most of them legitimate, if not all. My time is stretched thin with a 2-year-old in the house, family obligations, various creative pursuits, and, of course, that whole day-job thing. However you slice it, our attention spans become forever shorter, our time to read anything more than a few characters increasingly strained. Out of practice, and all that. So, perhaps this is a hobby that’s been nudged down the priority list as my season in life has changed. That happens. It’s still important, though, for all of us who write, and for all of who read, in spaces like this one. The thoughts that can’t fill a book by themselves, but that can’t be boxed into 140 characters. These spaces are important.

We just have to find the time to read them.

2 thoughts on “Out of Practice

  1. I hear you all the way. I have cut down the amount of blogs I follow on Feedly now, and it saddens me but is freeing at the same time. I think it’s a matter of priority — what we deem worthy of our time, WHO we deem worthy of our time. I personally like the blogging platform most of all, but as a published author I’m finding it increasingly difficult to blog about the same things I used to blog about. I’m not sure what blogging will become for me now that I’ve decided to not be as emotionally vulnerable in social networking as I used to be. Publishing my writing is enough emotional vulnerability for me these days, it seems. And places like Twitter and FB just don’t hold the same appeal to me as the seem to for most other people. I guess I could say I’m feeling pretty cut off these days, which makes me focus a lot more on relationships on a face-to-face level.

    I do feel, however, that I will always keep reading blogs like yours, from people I’ve never met in real life, because it’s a different kind of connection I don’t think can be forged any other way.

  2. It’s sort of always in flux, isn’t it? The way we use these mediums, I mean. There will always be certain blogs that I hold onto, as well. Quality over quantity.

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