In Memoriam

While browsing through my blog links last night, I realized that there are some fine voices that no longer  echo through the blogosphere. I miss them.

Whether it was a bigtime blogger with thousands of fans or some of the many bloggers who wrote thoughtfully or even painfully for smaller audiences, we are all the poorer when someone drops out of the game.

It may seem that blogs are like a vast panorama of flickering lights and that ten or a thousand could vanish without materially affecting the overall effect. Such is not the case. Each voice was unique and many were exceptional in their own way.

Blogging is unlike any other activity I know. There are no natural predators. A blog’s existence is totally determined by its creator.

As I wrote a year ago, in Survival of the Fittest, the only way a blog can shut down is for the creator to lose interest in writing it, or stop paying for the hosting.

Keeping the creative fire alive depends more on your own choice of actions than in any outside support. After a year of writing, I still think these six actions are the key to a long-term life as a blogger:

1 Understand why you are writing. Have a mission statement, even if you don’t publish it. Revisit it occasionally if production drops.

2 Write about things that interest you

3 Write so you do not have to apologize for your choice of words.

4 Try to make your topic as interesting as possible, without bending the truth too much. Parodies are excepted, of course.

5 When the words don’t come, work on something else.

6 Keep track of what you have written so you will know when you are revisiting subjects.

If you feel you are beginning to lose interest in your blog, you may wish to revisit that early post.

If you feel you have exhausted a particular line of endeavor, re-invent yourself and create a new online personna with a new attitude. Your interests and friends change with the years, and so will your choice of topics. Cast off your self-made shackles and be free to explore again.

I would like all of you to be writing for many years to come. Your work
deserves to endure. The record of your creativity and life energy will
continue to be available as long as you or someone else cares to
maintain it.

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