It’s been a little over four months since I started this blog. It’s a decent amount of time, I guess. There were some significant changes throughout, the downsizing of three to two posts per week being the most important one, I believe. Though there was that time I stopped doing the short stories because I couldn’t come up with good ideas anymore. Maybe I didn’t explain it enough at the time, but the major reason was that I felt demotivated, because whatever I could come up with just didn’t feel good enough, though that might have been something I just convinced myself of. Maybe putting a deadline on writing a short story wasn’t the best idea either. In any case, I was hoping that writing some informational pieces in the meantime would solve that problem. Alas, I was wrong. Honestly, I’m not convinced it’s not just writers block, and just my general state of mind that prevents it, but still. And now I’m to announce that the informational pieces will end as well. I am putting this blog on an indefinite hiatus.
The reasons are similar to the end of the stories, I’m running out of ideas to write about and I don’t want to force myself to write about something I myself have little interest in. The big parts of my life, video games, music, movies, … have all passed the revue. Things that I wanted to share are on here, and while there might be others, I just can’t think of them right now. That’s why it’s a hiatus and not just outright quitting. When I do stumble upon something I want to share, it will be turned into an article and posted on the blog. It just won’t be twice a week. I wouldn’t count on it to be twice a month either. Or maybe when I do think of a cool idea, I might post a short story again, whenever that happens. I mentioned before that the idea of posting two or three times a week was there to make sure I keep writing and not slack off. I’m proud of myself that I kept this up for a few months (especially considering I did THREE posts a week at the start), but I can’t help but feeling I was forcing myself to do it, and I never liked being forced even if it was me doing the forcing. I’ve always felt that something was lacking in most of my articles, despite the usually good feedback of the few people who do read the articles. I’m definitely my own biggest critic and it’s at times like these that I realize I’m still a perfectionist, but one who is also convinced that perfection can’t be achieved. And that’s when I always want to give up. Because I’ll be honest, my mind hasn’t been in the best of places for a while, which was one of the reasons I started this blog, to give it something to do. And while it did help, it might not have helped as much as I hoped. This doesn’t mean I regret doing this, I’ve been sharing things that I’ve wanted to share for a long time. It has been a way for me to clear my mind of this useless but fun knowledge and instead of me having to remind myself “Oh, I need to mention this to random people at random times”, I can take peace now in the fact that it’s on the internet for anyone to read. Instead of telling it all again and again, I can just say “read about it on somewhatfascinating.wordpress.com”.
Another factor in my decision to leave the project for a while is motivation. I’ve never been a patient man, and it’s not like I expected to become an overnight success, but after four months I was hoping I was a little further along than I am now. I need this goal, this reward. It doesn’t have to be money or likes, but it needs to be something. In this case, I would’ve liked to see growth. The amount of views I get is very variable, but for one page, I can count myself lucky if it’s over ten views, even after this time. I actually have more views in the first few posts I made back in November, but that’s normal for there to be some drop off. And I know these views are mostly coming from my friends (and dad. Hey dad!). I would be lying if I said I was satisfied with that. I’m even disappointed. If I’m writing for just my friends, I can just as easily talk about a certain thing directly to them, right? Some subjects do better than others, obviously, but some posts that I was thinking would attract at least some kind of attention from outsiders too, didn’t at all. I do get some views from other countries, but not nearly enough as I would like. I was hoping I’d get a bigger audience much faster, or at least faster than just still having only my friends reading it. I know this is a problem that many YouTubers have as well, many of them are struggling with depression and easily get lost in their analytics and numbers too. Even if they have subscribers in the hundreds of thousands.
This blog isn’t perfect, I know that too. Maybe two times a week was still too much, and I should’ve focused on quality over quantity even more. Put more time into an article. But I figured, I shouldn’t make them too long either. Might as well just write a book otherwise. So it’s difficult to find a balance at times, especially considering my prospensity for rambling on. And maybe my array of topics was a bit too eclectic, too many different aspects of life, that aren’t closely linked. Maybe I would’ve fared better if I focused just on movies, or games. But that’s not how my mind works. There are so many things I’m interested in and wanted to share, because life isn’t just one thing. So I never wanted to limit myself like that. An option I maybe should’ve considered was to make different blogs, each with their own focus. One for my short stories, another for game-related material, and so on. Oh well, not gonna do that now anymore either. As for the writing itself, once I got myself to do the writing, it usually was fun enough for me too. There’s many more details I discovered while doing the research, even of subjects where I thought I knew pretty much everything. So none of it was wasted effort in the end, at all. I just kept feeling I could do better, and I’m still not sure why I just didn’t do just that. But like I said, I need to fight my own brain sometimes, and that drains the effort I can put into the actual writing. But even when I’m in a good mood, it doesn’t always go as smooth, it depends on the subject too of course. Or maybe my writing isn’t really that bad, and I should start believing people when they say it’s good. Lastly, I’m getting really frustrated by the unreliable auto-publish feature of WordPress, but that’s only a minor concern in the grand scheme of this thing. Maybe I’m just doing something wrong. Maybe there’s other parts I’ve been doing wrong too that I don’t see. Maybe it’s just bad luck. It doesn’t matter that much.
I never figured I would do this to the end of my days. I started this as a test, to see how much I would like it. I definitely prefer it over that YouTube gaming thing I did some years ago. There are parts of this that I disliked too, but overall, I do still like writing for this blog. The short stories especially rekindled that flame in me that wants to write a genuine book one day. So maybe I will try to work on that in the time that comes free from not having to write for this blog anymore. The stories that are linked to the Inn at the edge of the Forest of Things were, in part at least, the exact purpose of exploring what kind of novel I would like to do, the exploration of ideas. Just writing them down and see what sticks. The Lady of the Night would definitely be in there.
There’s also a part of me that really wants to go travelling again. The style I used for talking about my Africa travels are something I wanted to do more in this blog, but I never found a good way of doing it. I can’t make information all that funny. The purpose of the informative pieces were to teach you something, not necessarily to make you laugh, or to distract you from the facts. So I never figured that out. As for the short stories, there is some humour in there, I guess, but for some of them a funny style obviously wouldn’t fit. But, when I do go travelling again, and I hope I can put myself up to that, I will write about them in that style I used to be able to do so well. I hope I haven’t lost that either.
So there is only one thing left for me to do. And I will leave it to someone wiser than me, if a bit of a trickster.
“I regret to announce — this is The End. I am going now. I bid you all a very fond farewell.”
Well, until the next post at least. Whenever that is.
This blog was brought to you by: The High Kings – Parting Glass
P.S. if you really need some names to substitute for my absence, here’s a short list of names you can look up:
*Brady Haran (Objectivity, Numberphile, Computerphile, …)
*My Virgin Kitchen
*Joss Fong (of Vox-fame, if you can handle their regular political spoutings)