Monday, January 14, 2013

Hey, alligators.

Hiatus: A gap or interruption in space, time, or continuity; a break.

I have been posting on this blog off and on for seven years.  In some years it has been more off than on, admittedly, but for the past three I have been posting frequently (for me), even if not consistently.

I'm taking a break.

I'm not sure how long of a break.  It could be days, weeks, months, years.... forever.  It might not even last longer than tomorrow, if I chicken out or find I can't live without the delusions of .... not grandeur... influence maybe? .... that I get from this thing.

I have been thinking about leaving for some time now.  At first, I planned to walk away completely.*  Just leave it sitting here.  I had thought in December that when I hit 1000 published posts, that would be the perfect time.  That deadline came and went.  Then I thought that the New Year would be appropriate.  That has passed.  I found myself thinking about giving blogging up for Lent -- I have a couple of times in the past -- but that would be intellectually and spiritually dishonest; Lent has little meaning for me anymore, which fills me with deep sadness.

I had planned to write this post this past weekend. Then I chose to wait until I could post about Aaron Swartz's suicide. That done, I am writing it now.

This blog is a time sink, a distraction, a temptation.  Not just to write, but to obsess over unimportant statistics. To see how many people (not many) follow me, or how many hits I get a day, or which posts are most popular. It becomes a not-very-healthy compulsion.

It might not matter quite so much if I didn't feel so unhappy about the quality of my blogging these days.  Writing is slow and hard. I know that blogging is not real writing, but I seem to be spending a lot of time writing very short posts about very little things.  Not that there have not been any I have liked or been proud of:  my post on mental illness and violence, "Dickens Fair," and "I wish you joy" stand out for me.  Whether they are good in some objective sense is, as always, difficult for me to tell, but I like them.

I have other things I need to do.  I have skills I need to hone. I have people I need to reconnect with.  I would like to take some courses -- online and in real life.  I have books to read; the only way to become a better writer is to be an accomplished reader.   I have other writing, even, that needs to take place beyond the confines of this space and which I would never place here. I am hoping that without this blog to tempt me away, I can get some of that done.**

I'm sorry, this has all become needlessly melodramatic.  Contrary to what you might think from reading The Wild Winds of Fortune, I do actually try to avoid drama. In this case, I don't need to tell you why I am doing this, but I do need to have this explanation down for myself.

So.  Take care of yourselves; be happy, be healthy, be wise.

I'll see you on the flip side.

*I developed the idea of a break rather than blog-death from Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom by Cory Doctorow.  For those who have read it, I'm deadheading this blog for a while.  For those who haven't, I recommend it heartily, unless you don't like science fiction.
**Next up: facing my unhealthy Facebook addiction.