To Blog or Not to Blog?

by Michael

To blog or not to blog?

That has been a question, as the lack of updates to this site can show. I have no prophetic answer. No enlightened reasoning for the lack of writing or for why I sit and type now. I’m human, and like with everything, this all ebb and flows with the universe.

Ok, there may or may not be a tinge of bullshit in that.

If we’re being honest, and I feel this is a safe space between us, where I can be, I’ve simply struggled.

I’ve struggled with knowing what to write and where to put it. I’ve struggled with how much or how little to share. With what voice to use in my writing? From top to bottom, in the past few months, I’ve struggled with nearly every aspect of doing this whole blogging/website thing.

Some of that is self-inflicted. It’s self-inflicted because I’ve been trying too hard to make this something more than what it is. I lost focus, and with that, I lost motivation and drive.

You may find this shocking, but the man sitting at the keyboard, writing these words that you’re reading, is not perfect. He is human, and thus prone to countless mistakes, weaknesses, self-doubt, and all range of fun stuff.

I wish I could say I’m better or stronger than I was 18 months ago when we found out our son had Arthrogryposis, and I set out to change the focus of this site somewhat. The fact is: I’m not. (and that’s ok)

Rather than writing about the ups and the downs, the emotions, the struggles, and just everything involved with this new, unplanned role I’m now in, as a father to a disabled child, I hid behind posts about movie trailers and Doctor Who castings. I slipped into the same worn ruts I once found myself, and I sat there and allowed it to happen.

It was much easier to write a quick blurb about the latest Thor trailer and throw it online to see a few spikes in website traffic than it was writing something more in-depth. I got away from writing about AMC news or putting together a helpful, informative review of something that a like-minded parent may be interested in.

“No one wants to read about your struggles or another post about your obsessing over your kid’s hands”.

I can’t tell you how many times that or similar thoughts would go through my head. Not just for this site, but the other blog. I was making excuses for everything and hiding behind them.

Funny enough, though, I can tell you the biggest kick to the shins that caused me to move down to the end of the bench for a while. (Let me be clear, looking back on this, it’s a pretty weak and pathetic kick to the shins, but it’s what triggered my quick deflation.) After having a successful back and forth with BlenderBottle for a few years, they denied me any collaboration or review products, for the first time asking. Now understand, I fully admit to reaching out to countless companies in hopes of collaboration. I’m on a pretty tight budget, so I can’t just go out and buy products to review. My success rate, with cold emails, is at best 7%. So I’m accustomed to denials, but for whatever reason, this denial from BlenderBottle, a company I felt I had a good rapport with, was a swift and firm kick to the nether regions that took every ounce of air I had in me.

I guess it’s a sign that things were already balancing on a razor’s edge when that simple denial kicked my motivation to the curb, but it did.

Since then, I’ve struggled for a few months with what to do. Hiding behind a random design project, or inching my way back into trying to game a bit, has helped distract me in the evenings when I would sit and work on the site.

So what do I do? Move on with life? Reboot this thing for the second or third time? Simply write and blog about the recent updates and be all rainbows and sunshine over at The Greene Affect? That’s been the continuous debate, and while it may seem that I’ve landed on a decision because I’m writing this post, I’ve not completely.

Facts I know

  • I need an outlet and enjoy writing stuff out and having a website.
  • I’m much better at this than I am at videos, and to save my life I can’t get me and my wife to sit down and start a podcast.
  • I need to be more genuine when I write.
  • I started trying too hard with this site, and rather than allow it to stand on its own, I did things to chase a quick spike in traffic.
  • I need to keep The Greene Affect updated more, even though mostly just family and friends go to read it.
  • I want this site to be for everyone. To be informative and entertaining (when appropriate)

Things I’m unsure of

  • Can I maintain a more strict scope or will I slip into old habits during stressful times?
  • How do I want to handle the social media accounts associated with this site?
  • Do I try to maintain a balance between blog posts and other posts, or just let this site be the untamed wild west of my thoughts and interest?

This site was something I was proud of and was loving, then I fell out of love with it, but I’ve never given up on it. I sit here writing, knowing that maybe 5 people will come across this post, with, at best, 1 of those 5 visiting another post or returning to this site.

So why do this?

I am in a position where I can. Because I’m able to put together a website, then put together words in a semi-logical order. Because this is something that I am capable of and can be good at. I may never publish a book about my life as a father, or about learning to be a father to a disabled son, but that doesn’t mean I can’t write for those that may read it and need to read it someday.

It’s time. Welcome to the new chaos.

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