That thought surfaced several times in the past few months, but in the last few days I looked at the ugly truth of it.
Blogging, while providing a great outlet to hone my writing skills, sometimes serves as a distraction for me.
Just when I decide to sit down and face that novel again, I realize I’m due for a post, whether it’s Wednesday or the weekend.
I made a commitment, I tell myself, and if anything, I follow through.
Sure, I follow through, on shot-in-the-arm kind of writing. But, the bigger projects sit on the sidelines, waiting. And, the longer they sit, the more difficult it becomes to bring them back into focus.
Several posts by other writers shed light on the importance of keeping my blogging in balance with my outside writing.
In Lisa Rivero’s recent post, she writes about the “place of stillness,” as described by Jonathan Franzen in an article in Time Magazine. Franzen’s words were inspiration enough, but it’s the quote Lisa uses to open her post that grabbed me:
“You have to protect your writing time. You have to protect it to the death.” – William Goldman
That got me thinking. Where am I devoting the majority of my writing time, and how can I redirect it towards more important projects?
A post from Michelle Davidson Argyle offers one suggestion, “slow blogging,” and highlights an essay from Anne R. Allen. In Allen’s essay, she discusses the dangers of blogging too often and the pros of blogging less often. Allen mentions writer/translator Lee Robertson, who shared his philosophy, “A blog is like frosting on top of the cake.” Then, Allen quotes Miss Snark:
…There’s a lot to be said for sitting down with your ownself and writing. Nothing, literally NOTHING replaces that. Focus. You’re wasting time.”
Someone, or something, was nudging me to pay attention, and finally I started listening. I’d been wondering how I might shake things up on this blog, set some new goals, and now it was clear.
Blog less, write more.
I still love the Wednesday Word challenge, so I won’t give that up. But, I will stretch out the schedule of those writing exercises. Every other Wednesday, I’ll still face off with Wordsmith.org and his logophilian self. Then, on alternate Wednesdays, you can look for a post on all things writing: author interviews, book reviews, essays on the craft of writing itself.
That means, posting once a week.
And, the other days of the week? Well, considering I just sent in my check for a writing class on Flash Fiction and a Roundtable critique for longer works (like a novel-in-progress…*ahem*), I’ll be writing.
And, I will NOT be obsessing about rising or falling stats or how many bloggers “like” my weekly posts (WordPress sure makes it easy to become gluttons for punishment).*
Where do you spend the majority of your writing time, and is the Universe directing you towards change?
* I might obsess a little, but it’ll be my dirty little secret.