the beginning of the end (perhaps)

I think it's a sign of a blog that is seriously ill, if not on life support, when most of your posts are apologies for not blogging more often.  I'm thinking about pulling the plug.

  • Next month, I'll have been blogging for five years.  According to Typepad, this is my 1,013th post.  It's not that I have nothing left to say, but I'm not spilling over with ideas the way I used to.
  • When I started this blog, I was at a job where I was frustrated with the policies, was not allowed to speak my mind, and had a fair amount of time to kill.  That's not the case these days.  I've done three presentations already this month, and have four more scheduled.  I'm loving it, but I'm exhausted by the time I get home.
  • My kids are getting older, and are staying up later, especially in the summer.  The window of time between when they go to bed and when I collapse myself is shrinking.  And I'm somewhat less willing to post about them as they get older.
  • It's not just me.  Laura at 11d had a post recently about how the blogosphere has changed, and I think she's on the mark.  I used to love the big kerfluffles (remember the Perfect Madness posts?) where we'd all read and post and link and then post some more to respond to the points that someone else had made.  It had the wonderful heady feeling of being in college and staying up until two in the morning because you were discussing the meaning of life and solving all the problems of the world.  I haven't had that feeling in a while.

So why keep it?  Because I'll miss you, my readers and commenters. The level of civility and thoughtfulness that has always characterized the discussions here is really quite remarkable, and not that common.  And (to be honest) because I still mumble about wanting to write a book someday, and having a built in "platform" might help me sell it.  On the other hand, I might be more likely to stop mumbling and start writing without the blog.

Even if I stopped posting, I do think I'd like to keep my archives alive somewhere.  Not sure I'm willing to pay Typepad for that.  Is there a simple way to migrate from Typepad onto one of the free services?

16 Responses to “the beginning of the end (perhaps)”

  1. Lee Says:

    I’ve read your blog for about four years. In those years I’ve wandered from reading about parenting to books to gardening to cooking to home decorating to politics. I was realizing recently that this is the one place I’ve read consistently. I hope you’re able to keep the archives open and perhaps write a book someday.

  2. bj Says:

    The transfer to WordPress is pretty seamless. You use the typead feature that lets you export your blog (I think it’s under the blog/manage). Then, in WordPress, you import that file. I’ve had a few duplicate posts (but I think that might be when I tried to import the same blog more than once).
    I still like hosted blogs, like Laura’s, where I feel like I know the group of commenters, and do feel like the discussions are still interesting. But, I think I underestimate the amount of effort the blogger puts into all of it. And, I totally get being too satisfied with your real work life & family life to spend the time to keep a blog going.

  3. EdgeWise Says:

    I’ve also read and enjoyed your blog for years. I’m sorry I don’t post much. If I do, I lose track of the fact that I have replied and don’t follow-up on further responses. I still like to read it.

  4. wendy Says:

    I think you can transfer your blog to wordpress – that’s my understanding anyway.
    I’m new to blogging so while I’ve heard about the great big interconnectedness of blogs and have seen minor allusions to it, mostly it seems to me like individuals writing their own stuff and then a small community of like-minded or like-interested people cross paths frequently. It’s the only blogging community I know, so I’m satisfied.

  5. Laura Says:

    You would certainly be missed. I, too, have been a consistent reader of your blog and have always gotten a bit excited when I see a new post. As a blogger myself, though, I know how much time it takes and life is more important than blogging in the end. If you do close up shop, I hope you’ll still visit and comment once in a while.

  6. Anjali Says:

    You would be sorely missed! Perhaps if you took a break for a few months first, and then decided whether to keep going?

  7. landismom Says:

    I certainly would miss you if you went, and have struggled with this same dilemma myself. Ultimately, I came to the decision (at least for now) that I’d rather keep my blog and write infrequently than give it up entirely. But YMMV.
    When I transitioned from Blogger to WordPress, it was pretty easy–the import to WordPress is plug-and-play-ish.

  8. carosgram Says:

    I loved it when everyone seemed to be connected and topics were discussed on several blogs at the same time. Yes, times have changed and frankly, many of those still blogging have become quite boring. Luckily you are not in that group but I can understand questioning whether you want to continue to blog. I know you will make the right decision for you. thinking of you and wishing you the best

  9. Jody Says:

    Maybe the analogy to college/grad school works further, in that people are still having those Perfect-Madness types of conversations, but many of us feel like we’ve BTDT and are ready to do something else.
    I don’t underestimate the hit that parent blogs take as the writers’ kids get older, either. All sorts of issues there.
    I hadn’t realized that WordPress offered free hosting, but I do think that Blogspot (which is were I started) also has a pretty smooth import feature if you want to transfer there, instead. I’ve debated returning to my original URL over there, myself, although I go back and forth between continuing to post, albeit infrequently, and actually removing all but the Really Useful posts and then making myself visible to Google and the other search engines (as right now, I am not). But that’s another level of discussion.

  10. Lisa V Says:

    I’ve taken down all my posts except those on adoption, because of my kids getting older and too many real life people finding my blog. If I post something new, I leave it up for two or three weeks and then take it down. Most of the same factors you mentioned.
    I know there are place that will turn your blog into a book (for personal use, not publishing) and I think I will likely do that. It will be some sort of record of this period of my life.
    I enjoy reading you, but obviously understand exactly why you’re thinking of pulling the plug.

  11. Robin Says:

    I always smile when I see you have a post up. I never count how many there are or how many I find interesting. I just smile, read, get something out of it or not, and continue. Shampoo, rinse, repeat.
    I hope you don’t stop. But to everything there sure is a season….

  12. kosier Says:

    I love your blog and was really disappointed to read you might be pulling the plug on it. I hope you don’t stop but if you do I will very much miss you! I’ve been reading it for a couple of years and love everything about your blog, especially the book reviews. Please reconsider!

  13. urbanartiste Says:

    There recently was an article, possibly in the Times or Time magazine, that gave statistics on blog success. The outlook on blogging was not optimistic. I had a blog for about a year and gave up for a multitude of reasons. It was too time consuming and I was not getting paid, no one really visited, I had no idea how to link it to more search engines and I just could not be that open about personal life, work, etc.
    I really enjoy reading your blog particularly when it is about policy since I am not in that field. I definately will miss your blog, but best of luck with a book in the future.
    As someone who entered the blogosphere late and left it early, I am curious to hear specifics on how blogging has changed. Has other forms of digital media affected it such as Twitter?

  14. Jennifer Says:

    I’ve read you since the very beginning and I always love your posts. You inspired me to start blogging myself, in fact. But I totally understand why you’re thinking of stopping. And I’m glad to hear its because you’ve got an outlet offline, now – I’m glad that there is more of the world getting to hear your thoughts.
    It is very easy to move to wordpress – I did it myself (albeit from blogspot). Totally seamless, and quite fun to play with the formats. Good luck, and I hope we hear from you occasionally.

  15. liz Says:

    I love your blog, but don’t want to guilt you into keeping it. Keep it if it feels good to you.

  16. Jackie Says:

    Chalk me up as someone who understands and sympathizes but would miss you. I’ve been blogging for over five years now, and switching to a new blog with new focus and a less diary-esque tone really helped me feel renewed, but also not feeling like I *had* to apologize for any times when I didn’t post or feel inspired.

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