Fail, fail, fail, fail, succeed

Three Years

That’s how long I’ve been writing this blog, dutifully posting every day, trying to articulate something I’m thinking about and writing it down coherently. But when I hit these milestones, it seems pertinent to ask some questions, to wit:

Why? And has it been worth it?

Before I answer that, let’s get this out of the way – it’s not fucking easy, and although I can go through long stretches where I don’t seem to run out of ideas, there are many days where it’s work and I feel like I’ve got nothing. I’m sure anyone who might come across it when I’m struggling would move on without hesitation, and that’s understandable. I made a commitment to myself to write something everyday, so by god that’s what I’m going to do. If you can’t keep promises you made to yourself, how are you going to keep them with everyone else?

Right now is unfortunately one of those difficult periods, but there’s a reason… At the moment I’m kind of obsessed with writing fiction, and most of my time and energy are spent working on that. As a consequence, writing blog posts cuts into time I could be spending writing my other stuff. It’s never a good idea to spread yourself too thin.

But here’s the thing: I still think I’m getting enough out of this for it to be worth the time and trouble. Why? Well, let’s see:

  • Writing this blog forces me to look closely at the world and think about what I see, if only to give me something to write about.
  • Practicing discipline and keeping commitments you’ve made to yourself is important.
  • In order to write anything, you have to translate your thoughts into sentences. This can’t help but make you a better writer.
  • It helps clarify your thinking and understanding of how the world works, i.e. what is important and what isn’t.
  • If your thinking is weak, it becomes embarrassingly obvious when you write it down.
  • And, probably more important than anything else: It’s good for my brain.

So here we go into my fourth year – let’s see where this thing takes me.

Nothing ventured nothing gained.