A Tiny Insignificant Blogging Challenge

When I think about the old days at Be Awesome Online, where I published an article every single day for ten months, my inner manager says, “I couldn’t do that nowadays. Oh hell no.”

Why not?

“Too busy. Too many priorities. Too many demands.”

Really? It doesn’t take that much time to write an article, especially if you don’t make assumptions about how long it should be. Remember those times when we’d just publish one paragraph-question? It took fifteen minutes, tops.

“Well, we can’t write those any more. They were part of the old website, not the new one. We have Standards now.”

Yeah, but with these Standards we’re lucky to publish once a week. We still have a never-ending flood of article ideas, but we don’t write them down.

“Most of those ideas aren’t any good! We write the good ones!”

What’s our measure for good?

“Don’t do, “Hey, this happened and then this happened and this is what I think it means.” Tell stories. Don’t write about yourself all the damn time. Write more Jonahs.”

And if we can’t write one of those now?

“Then maybe it’s better to write nothing. Or maybe to write, but not publish.”

So we are the sole arbiter of which articles are good, and which ones aren’t?

This is the point where my inner manager throws a hissy-fit. “This is what we decided! We didn’t want to publish throwaway crap any more! We – YOU – wanted to be all goddamn profound and artistic and shit. I’m just doing what you wanted.”

I think what I wanted is broken. I think that I need to write more often, publish more often. I think I need to stop trying to be original, or definitive, and start trying to be true. To let it be ordinary.

“Like the old days.”

Like the old days.

“We publish every day?”

Except this time we’ll take Sunday off.

Heartfelt sigh. “I still don’t think we have the time or the energy for this.”

Well, we could try it for a month and see what happens. No harm, no foul.

“What about comments? Comments are pretty dead. You killed them.”

Ack, I don’t know. We could try the old “Ask a questions, tell me in the comments” call to action we used back in the days of Be Awesome Online. But you wanted to stop doing that when we started writing here.

“Because I thought it was time we actually promoted our offerings. So sue me.”

No, you were right to be a hard-liner about that. We were still really shy and unconfident about promoting our work back then. But that was… holy crispy crap… two full years ago. We don’t need the practice of saying, “Here is my thing, it is awesome, you should buy it” that much nowadays.

“Granted. Most people don’t convert directly from our articles unless the article and the offering are well-aligned, anyway.”

Right. So if they are, we talk about the offering, and if they aren’t, the call to action is for comments.

“Just for this month.”

Just for this month. It doesn’t hurt to try.

“It might.”

Shaddup. We’re trying it anyway.

So the Tiny Insignificant Blogging Challenge begins.

For one month, I’m going to publish every day but Sundays. I’ll be encouraging (and replying to) comments. And I’ll likely be getting rather meta with some of the articles, like this one.

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What will I write about? I have no idea. It’ll be interesting to find out.

Is this a masterly plan, or total insanity? Tell me in the comments!

photo by: Ed Yourdon