This is my thirty-first post. It’s unlike any previous post because this time I want to discuss whether or not I should be writing them at all.
My readership is very small. I don’t mind small but very small does get discouraging, especially when my ideas about how to increase it are continually frustrated. I’m not at all a techie and when I go to websites and search engines that promise they’ll help balloon my numbers, I invariably discover one of three things: (1) they make no sense to me; 2) their advice has to do with merchandising and I have nothing to sell; and 3) their counsel frequently isn’t applicable to a WordPress blog at this level (free). One thing is certain: you have to spend time, effort, and sometimes money, to find ways to attract visitors, and I’m not certain I’m up for that.
I care passionately enough about my subject – the aging artist – to keep blogging about it, and I’ve learned a lot, but I’m still not sure how long I’ll want to continue doing it under the circumstances. I get frustrated when I’m thinking about something else on a particular day, and the parameters I’ve set for the blog won’t let me write about it: e.g. our tolerance as a society for untruths; the soon-to-happen celebration of the bicentennial of Runaway Pond in Vermont; the nature of the universe. Whatever. I’ve toyed with putting essays on Squidoo as a kind of complement to my usual blog, but I discovered that Squidoo’s format is restricting and simple to a fault and I’m not sure I want to or even can do that, even though it might help me be less verbose.
I’ve thought: what if I put a novel up, piece by piece, like a Dickens serial? There are sites where people do that; I’m not sure a blog is where it should happen. And, of course, I’ll have the same problem, only worse: how do I get visitors to my novel? If people don’t visit it, I’m likely to feel much more distressed than when they don’t visit an art and aging blog.
Even though my friend Sally and I have exclaimed in loud voices from her coast to mine that we no longer care if anyone reads what we write, it turns out that I lied. I don’t think she did, but I seem not to have meant a word of it.
A smaller issue. I also get frustrated about pictures. I’d like to put up more and better photographs. Most of them, unfortunately, would be irrelevant to my subject, whatever it is. Like they are on this post this time.
Sometimes, I wish I could make a site that would be peculiar, fun and extraordinarily revealing, though I’m not sure of what. The kind of site you can find on Stumbleupon, or a place where people watch owls being born (check out http://www.ustream.tv/theowlbox). It seems to me that that’s what the internet does best: make social events where thousands of people from everywhere gather to watch the birth of infant owls.
At any rate, I’m just letting anyone who might happen to read this know that I’m not sure what I’m doing, and I just might do something else instead. And if anyone has any advice….???