If my last writing post shows anything it’s that when I do end up writing it’s often an interesting experience. A lot of the time I end up having to put in a lot more effort than I usually do to get something down on paper… Screen. One of those two.
Here and there I have been known to ever so proudly proclaim that “I’m a writer” when in all honesty most of the times I’m not. Half the time I just end up sitting down, writing a few hundred words and then stop for any number of reasons. Seldom are productivity rates high when I write.
My current novel attempt is on a bit of a hold (there’s a shocker) at the moment and the reason for it is the same reason why I’ll never write for television. Filler. Or the slightly more colloquial term; stuff that happens between other stuff.
As much as we want otherwise, tv shows and novels can’t always be exciting. It’s just far too much to take in. That’s why we use filler material. Parts of a chapter/ episode or even an entire is written so we can take a step back from the story line, these sections are used to give more back story if needed or to build up to a major point in the story line. It’s a key element in the writing process and I really can’t seem to do it.
I sit there staring back and the screen wanting to write something interesting eventually realising that’s what most of the last chapter was. Most of the time this is what’ll end a writing session. A mental blank shortly followed up with an admission of defeat.
If I tried to write a tv show it’d be 1 season spanning maybe 5 episodes of constant action. SO EXCITING its boring. It wouldn’t make it close to the 10-20(ish) episodes per seasons most shows maintain these days. It’d be like making a cake without the minor ingredients, it MAY be good but it’s not a cake without them. OR you could even say (if you’re into terrible dad like jokes) it’d be like a making a cake without filling.
It looks like I’m starting to say this a lot lately but it has been a while since I have posted anything, Almost 5 months to be exact. I’ve unfortunately had to make this apology multiple times since rebooting my blog. What’s the deal Callum? It’s unfortunate because I haven’t really got a reason for it. It’s not like I haven’t been writing because I HAVE. My efforts to write a novel are ongoing on top of posting once a month for the website A Better Today Media so I have been writing, just not HERE.
I don’t have to talk about my work habit issues, Absolute Procrastination explain how bad it can get at times. I’ve been working on this blog for almost 5 years now, this blog should be my priority. The phrase “I’m a creature of habit” is becoming increasingly accurate as each postless month passes.
The question(s) at hand now is what happens now? How is 2017 going to be any different? The (scary) answer to that is that I’m going to set my self a goal. That’s scary because the G word gets thrown around a lot, especially by me. I say I’m going to set myself a goal and and it ends up becoming an empty promise. The promise I am about to make however I know is more than reasonable.
In 2017 (not including this one) I promise that I will post at least once a month. I know this goal is reasonable because that is my current post rate for ABTM. This said however isn’t a guarantee I’ll meet it. I will try my best but I MAY miss a few here and there as I have done with ABTM. Once a month is both a low and very fair minimum and I have set it in hope to motivate me to post more and maybe even eventually increase that rate.
I’m definitely glad to be back and hopefully I’ll see you soon.
Post content edited: 2/2/2016.
I’m not too sure if anyone has so far realised the changes I have made to my blog but they are some rather big changes so for a moment I’m just going to talk about what changes I made and why. I’m not sure how long this post will be or if it will be of decent length, it is here purely as an explanation.
Five or so months ago I created The Word Board as a space to facilitate the new style of blogging I was working on. I wanted to start writing more serious content and decided to start the new blog as opposed to deleting everything I had on my old blog and starting fresh, ruining everything I had built over the past 2 and a bit years.
Even though for a while I felt happy with how the blog looked and was proud of the new content I was writing, it just didn’t feel right for some reason. I was having fun with what I was doing but trying to rebuild the so far decent reader base I already had on my old blog just didn’t come as naturally as it did when I first gained the followers.
So what does this mean and what have I actually done?
Although I was originally rather hesitant in doing so, I changed up the look of my old blog and deleted all the old posts turning An Opinionated World into The Word Board 2.0. It’s more or less the same look (minus the few extra widgets I added) as the original Word Board looks with the EXACT same posts and all of the AOW followers.
Why change the blog if you weren’t going to originally? Even though I’ve made all these visual changes and even changed the name of my blog it’s STILL my baby. It’s still the blog I have worked hard on for 2 years trying to make it the closest thing I can get to perfect. Changes happen. Just think of it like someone dyeing his or her hair and moving to a new state.
So YES I am back! Not to AOW necessarily but I am back on this blog and ready for action. For all of my followers who have come to know and love An Opinionated World over the past 2 years THANK YOU SO MUCH for everything that you’ve done for me. I hope you will stick around and join me in YET ANOTHER new chapter in my blogging story but if this is where it ends for you, I hope you have a nice day and good luck with all of your adventures in the future.
Post content edited: 2/2/2016.
Often you see posts and various kinds of articles where the title is a bit of an overstatement of the main point of the article but in this situation it’s not really all the possible to exaggerate. The process of bringing a post together through coming up with ideas and actually sitting down to write it can be rather painful sometimes.
The overall goal of blogging (or at least my goal) is to be posting content that both myself and the people reading it enjoy it the first time they read it and again if/when they read it for a second or third time. With this in mind me and my brain collectively often end up overthinking what ever it is I’m writing about and the post ends up on the cutting room floor.
In my time blogging, across all of my blogs (including collaboration posts on other blogs) I have accumulated a high post count. After your post count passes into the hundreds, thinking of ideas can start to become a bit of a chore. This is especially true in my case since I only have a general theme in writing about my opinions as opposed to writing about food or travel.
Once I actually think of a topic and get to writing it I’m completely in the zone. I think to myself “Yes I’ve FINALLY done it” like I’ve cured a major disease or something. For a while I’ll just write whatever comes to mind, take a sip of whatever hot beverage is on hand and then read it back to myself obsessively analysing it like it would be the end of the world if I made a mistake or poorly expressed one of my points. Then naturally I cut out 90% of what I just wrote before moving onto the next paragraph.
If I manage to make it through all of that with all my limbs and brain still attached then I have succeeded. I have managed to write myself a post or part/most of a piece or novel.
P.S I am yet to write an entire post and delete it because I “Wasn’t feeling it” or something along the lines of that. If I get to that point there is no hope left for me.
Two years ago I created An Opinionated World as a way to pass the time, as a way to share my thoughts and ideas with a world that often ignored people’s opinions on topics or areas they’re not “experts” on. Shortly after, I became addicted. I was posting 2-3 times a day multiple times a week, they weren’t even remotely good (trust me, they were doozies) but I was committed so I kept at it. Not long after I dropped down to posting 2-3 times and then eventually once a week but had become more confident in my content as I got better. A few months into blogging when I dropped down to posting whenever I could scrounge up an idea for a post I realised something that’s been pretty consistent to this day. Blogging is hard!
It’s been 43 days since I last posted something and normally I can find a way to push through a writer’s block and I’d have a post out 2 or 3 weeks later at most, but this is different. In a conversation I had the other day with another blogger I said that life’s a blogger’s kryptonite and regardless of the fact I was the one that said it, it couldn’t be further from the truth. Until we find a way to monetize our blogs and we’re able to focus on blogging more we have jobs, we have school, and we have lives that conflict with blogging.
In hindsight blogging can rather consuming. When I have forced my brain to think of ideas, practically beat myself up for not posting on time and spent an unnecessary amount of time or stayed up way too late to get a post done (I’m doing it as we speak/ type/ read) it would seem like it’s verging on an unhealthy addiction but when the post FINALLY gets out, the thought of people reading my writing makes it all worth it.
There must be something in the water, because I’m not honestly sure what it is that prompts some of the ideas I’ve heard and seen based around blogging. My theory is a mixture of facts or information people get from real bloggers and the ideas people get from movie/TV portrayals of bloggers. Although most of the portrayals are somewhat accurate, occasionally there are ones that are somewhat… Creative. So here and now I just want to clear up/ give my view on some of the blogging-based misconceptions I have heard of:
- Blogging is for sharing your feelings: Okay I can admit this much is true but in a completely different way to what is often thought of, primarily when people are taking at blogging. Blogging covers a wide array of topics ranging from blogs for movie buffs to cooking blogs to blogs like mine where people just speak their minds. Blogging IS NOT just people confessing their feelings like it were an online diary, it does happen but it’s only one of the many uses a blog can have.
- Blogging is easy: With or without a common theme to your blog, writing consistent content isn’t always a walk in the park. I personally have gone from writing multiple posts a week to multiple posts a month to one post a week consistently, thinking of a new topic for each and every post can be difficult. On one circumstance I went a month without posting anything because I couldn’t think of a topic that felt right to me.
- Getting followers is easy: It is highly unlikely that a blogger is going to become popular as soon as they start blogging. Much like speech writing or novel-writing blogging is about getting the reader’s attention and with out word of mouth and a little bit of luck, getting followers isn’t an instantaneous occurrence. Without people knowing your blog exists or where to find it, the viewer and follower count isn’t likely to go up.
- Bloggers don’t know what they’re talking about: This one in particular is a misconception that seriously annoys me. IT seems to be a common thought that just because bloggers aren’t experts in all the areas they cover they have no idea what they’re talking about therefore their opinions are irrelevant. This couldn’t be any less wrong. Bloggers are some of the most passionate and achieved writers I’ve ever seen and research their ideas before posting to their sites. Posting without knowing what you’re talking about can seriously hurt credibility, the last thing a blogger wants.
- Blogging is just a hobby: like I just said, bloggers are some of the most passionate writers I have ever seen. Some bloggers blog to make money by definition making it a job and not a hobby but even with a separate job blogging is more than a hobby. For bloggers (including my self) blogging is an escape, a way to release stress and get away from anything causing troubles in daily life.
Blogging is more than some people make it out to be, don’t let a biased opinion or someone trying to bring it down influence you and make you feel otherwise.