Just Keep Swimming

A Blog Address and What to Expect the Next Month and a Half

At the start of the year, I made a list of 20 goals that I had for 2020. One of my goals was to post something on this site every single day. Looking back now, I think that goal may have been a little unreasonable. There is potential that I may be gone for several weeks this year, which will make it really hard to get something up for those days. Plus, there are days that I have a significant amount of paying work and whatever crazy things family life throws my way that could make it hard to write anything of substance that day. Instead, my goal should have been to write 365 posts in the year, since I would have those days where I could write more and catch up.

The goal was never really about an exact number of posts written on here, though. Instead, the goal is more to stay consistent and not fall out of the habit of regularly posting articles -- which is a thing that I've done far too often the last several years.

Technically, I have achieved my goal so far this year with something posted every single day this year. But you could definitely challenge the quality of what I have written on here this year. I've only written two movie reviews and most of my other work has been videos or quick riffs. Definitely not the stuff that will win me my Pulitzer Prize and to be fair, outside of the movie reviews that do take me some time, everything else has been stuff that I can crank out in under 30 minutes or much less.

The big thing for me is having a realistic goal of what I can achieve on this site. I have always been aware that I am not going to be breaking movie news on here considering that I have no connections and live in the small city of Brantford that is about as un-Hollywood as you can get (though, Silent Hill was filmed here because they needed a place that resembled a ghost town). But what I need to get better at is not feeling that I have to rush out my movie reviews or have my take on a news item right away and if life gets in the way of getting it out quickly to not believe that it has lost value. I need to start having the confidence that my contribution to the conversation has value outside of how fast that I can get it out. I have bought into the big website mentality that timeliness and being first is everything rather than putting more value in quality and thoughtfulness.

I also don't need to comment on every bit of movie news or have something substantial every single day. I want this blog to be fun. Fun for the reader but also fun for me. I plan to write more about what makes me passionate or what I find interesting, and less concerned about how many unique views it will achieve. My goal is still to eventually launch a Patreon and make some money off this site, but that can only happen if there are consistent and high-quality articles that justify people putting money down to read.

Even though my lack of posting the last few years would seem to contradict this, my mentality has been that I need to write about what is hot and get things up as soon as possible. The problem has been when I have failed that, I then get into a deep emotional funk and depressed. The goal this time around is to avoid the burn out that has happened every single time, and actually have some perspective on what I can manage. What I can manage is write when I can write and get it posted when I can get it posted. I do want to be consistent, but along with all the other projects that I am trying to do, I also want to be realistic.

What this all means is that the next month and a half is going to continue to be short 'check-in' posts with a few movie reviews scattered in along with the weekly podcast. I have the Toronto Star Short Story contest, a novel I'm revising, a non-fiction book I've been working on and several other writing jobs that need my top focus along with being a good dad and husband. This means that I probably can't focus much more then a few minutes a day on the blog until March.

My hope is still to post something every single day even if it is just a quick note letting you know what I've been working on for the day or to post a cute picture of the dogs or kids. The consistent posting even if the posts haven't been substantial has turned out to give really good numbers to the blog. I want to keep that up, so it makes sense to just do 'throw-away' posts rather than go on an actual hiatus.

I still have some big plans for the site this year including the weekly serialized story, some movie review series and maybe a few in-depth pieces about significant pop culture events.  None of those will likely start until at least March and even then, they will probably come at a slower pace then I'd like.

The reality is that I need to take care of myself and the best way to do that is not to get burned out on here ever again. I'm not going anywhere; it will just be some short doses for the next bit.