December 16, 2018

doldrums

It seems it's time to grapple again with the question of why I write in this blog.

I suspect that what happened to me over the past few weeks has happened, or will happen, to anyone out there writing, and that the effects have varied.  Some blogs you see with the last posts from 2012.  Some writers have shrugged it off and kept going and their encounter with it went unnoticed by the rest of us.

I'm losing readers.

I don't even check statistics any more, so I don't mean stagnant growth or dwindling numbers "out there".  I mean my base.

I learned last week that my therapist has stopped checking in on a daily basis, the way he once did.  This is because I haven't been writing on a daily basis.  It's perfectly sensible.  But hearing it took some of the wind out of my sails.

The week before, I realized in a conversation with a friend who once read daily that he hadn't checked in for what must be several months now.  He lost interest.  I know he won't be returning.

The brief flurry of readers who came and went because of a blogging group I found was just that.

Sometimes, I even have to remind P.J. to read, though I know she always checks.

As I sit in my boat, still on the water, the wind insufficient to move me back into the currents and waves of ideas and enthusiasm and long hours at my laptop, I have nothing but time to ask questions.  Was I writing to be read?  Has the pace slackened because the bones have been written?  Is this a normal phase, one everyone hits?  A crossroads of sorts?  And the darker ones ... have I become boring, trite, uninteresting?

I revisited my statistics page and studied it, and was struck by how readership is consistently higher when I'm funny instead of serious.  For that matter, the same is true of my Facebook posts.

That makes me feel that to be heard, I have to be the clown, not the deep waters.

To be heard.  My boat is not moving.  I know by watching the clouds and the stars.  There is nothing to hear.  I have not been writing.  Now the wind has gone.

Now I must discover for myself whether I'm seaworthy.  Now I have to learn why I write.

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