Let me first make the point that I’m not the only blogger with these issues; I’ve got it on good authority that a lot of us struggle with them.
I’m really going to make an effort to be a bit more anecdotal here. I know that a lot of my writing focuses on [sometimes fringe] technical topics — it’s what I know and I really enjoying expounding on that knowledge here. But, the fact is, I’m incredibly witty and quick (and humble :P), especially if I really know you, and I’m tired of that rarely coming across on this site. Then again, it’s almost impossible for that to come across on this site, so I’m not sure where that leaves me.
Along with being more anecdotal, I’m also going to try to post things as I write them. To some that might seem like an odd statement, that I wouldn’t post something after it’s been typed up, but I’ve always had a few hang-ups when it comes to publishing what I’ve written.
I spend an inordinate amount of time deciding when to actually post something, especially if I have a lot of articles already [partly] typed up (I currently have 36 posts-in-waiting), because I then also think about the order in which they should appear. This is incredibly counter-productive and at the end of the day probably serves no real purpose.
The delay strategy is based in part on my desire to reach those that read my site without an aggregator. I can’t believe I just had to say that in 2000-fucking-6, but I know that quite a few people that read my site don’t use any sort of aggregation and simply type out the address every few days to see if there’s anything new on the front page. I’ll never understand it, but to each his own I ‘spose. I’m getting out of the do-it-my-way business; people like being inefficient and I’m tired of telling them that my way is better (it usually is, but they don’t care and I’m sick of caring for them).
Another timing-related issue has to do with who I think will be going to my site on a given day. For example, if I’ve just fired off an e-mail to a professor there’s a chance that he’ll check out the site (based on my signature and/or e-mail address) and, well, you get the point. Though everything is always here for the taking, most people won’t look beyond the front page (or probably more accurately, the first few lines of the latest post) and so I do give some thought to who might be there (for the first time) at a particular time. I know, it’s ridiculous.
Sometimes I’ll leave a post up longer than ‘necessary’ because I want a maximum number of people to see it. For instance, I recently left a picture of a Florida sunset up for a few days even though I had a billion other things to post. I loved how it looked at the top of my page and I didn’t want it to get pushed down until I felt most friends without aggregators had seen it.
The same goes for technical things I’ve written that I’m particularly happy with (how-tos, project announcements, etc); I generally like them to sit at the top longer than other posts. Altogether now, ridiculous.
From now on
Now that all of that is on the table, I’m going to make a conscious effort to push it over the edge and onto the floor. I’m going to post as I write and write as I feel. I’m not sure if anyone will notice a difference (or if I’ll actually do it), but I feel better about the whole thing already. 🙂