Goodbye Post-a-Day, hello Post-a-Week

I passed my six-month anniversary of blogging last week. One post every day, without miss, for six months. Could I continue to do this for the entire year? Yes. Do I want to? No.

I’ve thought about this for a while now as one-by-one several of my postaday blogging buddies dropped out of the challenge. The simple truth is that I need to have a day off now and then. Even if I am only slapping a photo up, I still have to find it and post it. It is an item on a to-do list that I have to accomplish every day. I want a day now and then with a blank list.

The postaday challenge has been great. It got me off to a good start as WordPress gave me, and every other postadayer a headline on their PostaDay page. I think early out some of my most loyal followers found me this way. Also, early out, WordPress was selecting a postaday item for their Freshly Pressed page. This got me short-lived fame when they selected two of my posts within weeks of each other. This also gained me two spikes in my stats that I may never equal again. But even though it was exciting to see the hits coming in on the days I was Freshly Pressed, it was short-lived fame. Most of the visitors never returned, although I did gain a few loyal followers.

I also found many of the blogs I loyally follow through the postaday challenge. Which means they are posting every day as well, generating seven posts a week for me to read. That adds up if I am following very many blogs.

I’ve been thinking about taking weekends off for a while now. My husband and I travel a lot visiting our children in other cities and going on short trips. Much of this travel occurs on weekends. Even when I prepare posts in advance for upcoming trips, I still find it more stressful than I want it, or need it to be. If I take the weekends off, I get a break.

This week I read two posts that tipped the balance.

In  What’s the Magic Number? How Often Should Bloggers Blog? , Kristen Lamb author of best-selling books We Are Not Alone–The Writer’s Guide to Social Media and Are You There, Blog? It’s Me, Writer recommends blogging three times a week.

In Are You Writing?,  Joe Konrath suggests that reading blogs can be a waste of your time. “Here’s the bottom line: every minute you spend here is a minute you aren’t spending on your writing,” he writes.

There are a lot of reasons people blog. I started the blog as an online journal to help me write every day. It has done that. As I learned more about publishing, traditional as well as self-publishing, I also became aware of the fact that I need an online presence if I ever hope to publish and sell any books. So blogging has opened that door for me. I’m still on the threshold. For those of you who are hoping to build an online presence, I suggest you consider getting a Twitter account and start tweeting if you haven’t done so already. The reach is far greater and quicker.

The surprise about blogging is the blogging friends I have made and the community I now feel a part of. On those really bad days when I feel like giving up the whole shebang, it is my faithful readers and the people I have met here who comment on my blogs and whose blogs I read, that keep me going.

I hope that by cutting back some on the number of posts, I will be writing less, but better. I hope it will give me more time to pursue other writing projects I want to do. I hope my readers will think, “Thank goodness, now I only have to read 3, 4 or 5 posts instead of 7.” I hope once I give up this challenge I don’t slide down that slippery slope to once a week, then once a month, then “I wonder whatever happened to CMSmith?”

I’ve wondered about that. What happens when someone just drops off the blogging universe? How do their readers ever know what happened? Just one more of life’s mysteries, I guess.

Keep writing. I’ll be reading. And writing.

See you Monday.

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Author: CMSmith

I enjoy reading, writing, gardening, photography, genealogy and travel. I have opinions about many things, but am trying to age gracefully and not continually tick people off with them. Sometimes I can’t help myself.

28 thoughts on “Goodbye Post-a-Day, hello Post-a-Week”

  1. I have seen a few bloggers disappear, and sometimes I e-mail them to find out what happened. I think that, for the most part, they simply move on to other projects and other things to focus on. Blogging in general serves a purpose of helping you practice the craft of writing and connect with others who are passionate about similar things. But, blogging can also be an all-consuming time suck that makes you think you are achieving your writing goals, while you don’t move forward on any project except your blog. I’m still struggling with this, and trying to figure out what role I want writing to play in my life. I know that i cannot simply blog forever, I have to find something else. But meanwhile, I truly appreciate the friendships formed here and recognize that this blog has, in many ways, changed my world.

    I guess that’s my long winded way of saying, do what is best for you. Hugs.

    Lisa

      1. I’m still waiting for cover art. I was hoping to start something new this summer, but haven’t gotten anywhere. I’m beginning to think that all I’ve got in me is blogs now. 😦

  2. I admire the postaday people — but have never had the ambition to join them (you?).
    I know myself.

    I blog as the spirit moves — but encourage it strongly to move 2 – 3 times a week because — I like seeing it in print, and I like reaching out and TOUCHING someone (you?) as often as that.
    But that’s me —

    You do what you do.
    I look forward to seeing you when and in what form you surface!

    1. Thanks for commenting. I took up the postaday challenge when I first started blogging in January. Kind of like jumping all the way in to a cold pool instead of inching my way in.

      I enjoyed doing it. I just really would like to give my self a day or two off in a week.

      Thanks for your support.

  3. There are several bloggers I follow that post every day and none of it is filler or just junk just to keep up the pace. Everything is quality stuff. I don’t know how they can be so prolific. I have averaged 5 posts a week and that’s prolific too and that is beginning to become difficult with cartoon ideas. I don’t post about my cat, that little Timothy got a haircut or my new recipe for meatloaf. So I will slow down too. The long time bloggers remind us that blogging must remain fun not an obligation and posting meaningful comments on the blogs of our favorites is part of it all too.

    1. I don’t know how you do it, Carl. I guess it’s your form of communicating, but I really admire artists who can come up with a cartoon regularly.

      I don’t always know how to comment on your work, but I look at all of it. Many times, you’re right, it makes me smile.

  4. As my husband just commented to me—blogging can become a job!!! It can!!! I have never committed to doing a certain number of posts per week. I do have a couple of “regular posts” every week which include Teapot Tuesday and Wordless Wednesday and iIdo some blog hops occasionally but when it starts feeling like a job and not a fun thing for me I pull back. I admire you for committing to that post a day –that would be a lot of work!!! I have found some great blogs to follow (yours included) and pretty much stick with them because you are right—it can suck up a lot of time to follow a lot!!! And then when do I get anything else done???? Anyway, I totally support your decision and will look forward to your posts when you post!! That is the beauty of the email subscription—I will know exactly when you post!!!

    1. Yes. The e-mail subscription is good for that. I recently moved my subscriptions to the RSS feed and read them through Google reader. That way I can see all the posts from an individual that I may have missed. It’s an easy way to stay organized with my subscriptions. (That I can’t resist continuing to add to.)

  5. I am one of your loyal followers. I have learned a lot from your posts. I appreciate and understand your decision. My thoughts move in the same direction. My reason for blogging is to network my writing ambitions and goals. The online presence is important. Life continues as we move with its flow. Someday, we may be sitting by a warm fire, reading each other’s book and recalling those blogging days. 🙂

    1. I know you are, as I am one of yours. Your posts are very inspirational to me. Who says our blogging days ever have to be in the past?

      Let me know when you’re book is out. I’ll be the first in line.

  6. Life should be more than a series of stressful moments strung together ad infinitum. Life should be a joyous journey of adventure and discovery.

    We change, we grow, we flourish . . .

    It is odd when a “cyber friend” goes missing:
    http://nrhatch.wordpress.com/2011/03/09/when-a-cyber-friend-goes-missing/

    People come and go. Life ebbs and flows. All things must pass. We must not hold too tightly to the past if we want both hands available to embrace the future.

    Enjoy your continued journey as the path unfolds before you!

    1. I remember reading your excellent post when you first posted it. I was fairly new to blogging at the time and hadn’t yet felt like I had “friends.” So although I appreciated your post on an intellectual level, now I read it from the heart.

      Your worldview is refreshing in it’s consistency.

    2. People do come and go. I agree with you, nrhatch. And I like what you say about the past. If we’re holding onto it in a way that impedes our moving forward, then we need to loosen the grip and in some cases let go completely. The past can be useful if we’re creating something, like a memoir, for example. But it can paralyze us if we cling to something that’s gone or that just can’t be.

      I’m now going to click on your link about when a “cyber friend” goes missing. Though I think losing a cyber friend is not as upsetting as losing a friend that has been emotionally and physically in your life. I’m thinking about my sister and my friend of 45 years who both passed away in the last four years. This is what is really difficult.

  7. Having been on the everyday blogging track myself, I completely understand (although I need to be honest — now that I’m only posting 3-4 times a week, I do miss everyday blogging!). And I’ll be reading no matter what as first a loyal fan but also as a friend. I also completely understand your slippery slope fear…. but (now I feel like I’m talking to one of my kids, sheesh!) that will only happen if that’s what you really want, and then it will be okay! 🙂 xox Julia

    1. You are such a good mom. “That will only happen if that’s what you really want, and then it will be okay!” makes me feel so good about life. Will you adopt me?

  8. My hat is off to everyone who posts every day. Five days works for me, leaving the weekend to seek out material for the next week. It does take a lot of time if one follows many blogs, to try to keep up. I have considered dropping to four to have an extra day in the middle, maybe I will at some point.

  9. I’ve considered going to a M-F schedule also, but haven’t quite made up my mind about it. I am enjoying doing the random word thing each day – it has stretched my creativity and gotten stories out of me that I wouldn’t otherwise have written up. On the other hand, Saturday & Sunday should have more down time.

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

    Nancy
    http://www.dogear6.com

    1. Your random word idea paired with a photo is quite good. I’ve thought about jumping in on it every now and then. I’ll have to keep it in mind if said mind shows up blank some morning.

      1. That’s what hugmamma does – she probably does it once or twice a week. It’s always a hoot to see her posts around the word – usually very different than mine.

      2. Since Nancy mentioned me…thought I’d jump in here. It’s always a dilemma knowing if blogging is a help or a hindrance. I think I have a foot in both camps. Blogging has helped me clear my brain of stuff, but it has also prevented me from doing lots of other things. It’s a fine balance, but I don’t beat myself up either way.

        I’ve decided that that’s my life…for now. Tomorrow might be different. Luckily my husband and daughter encourage my blogging, agreeing that it has given me something apart from my role as wife and mom…and something about which I’m passionate.

        Friends such as yourself have made the experience more than worthwhile. So for however long I blog…it will have been so worth it.

        huge hugs…for your decision…it’s what works for you. 🙂

  10. We all have to do what works. I never post just for the sake of posting…I post when I have something to say (doesn’t mean anyone really wants to read it though!). However, at one point I posted daily for ages, and for a while on two blogs. I almost never post on weekends anymore. I look forward to reading your blog when posting works into your life. We all need to remember to live as well!

    1. Wow. Two blogs, every day. I’m really impressed. It’s a balance we strike, between building a following and living our lives. I’m happier when I write for myself than when I’m worried about building a platform.

      Patience and trust in myself is what is required, I believe.

  11. I read Kristen Lamb’s advice, too: 3 times a week posting. When I signed my book contract a year and 7 months ago, I was told at least 3 times a week. It was the only kind of promotion I could do. But there’s also Twitter, as you point out. I’m there, but I need to figure out how to really do it effectively.

    Like you, I recently decided: one post a week. One QUALITY (I hope) post.

    I’m doing just one for several reasons:

    To maintain blogging friendships requires visiting OTHERS’ blogs, and this takes time. So I’m allocating at least one hour per day for this, though I might have to do 2.

    I have to take care of my daughter after my 6-hour per day aide leaves (M-F).

    I want time to read.

    I want to time to write.

    Thanks for this post, Christine, that got me outlining this, which I think I’ll put in my next post!!

    1. I know. There are so many other things to do. Thanks for sharing what your publisher recommended. That’s helpful information.

      I’m still trying to figure out Twitter too. I’ll look for you.

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