Wednesday, December 09, 2015

Relevant

Lately I've been pondering my future, more specifically, the future of my blog and podcast. I starting asking if my writing here is relevant anymore, or if I should move on.

From Flickr
Thinking about these things leads me back to the beginning, almost eleven years ago, when I started this blog with the question "Why?" and the simple answer, "because I can."

This blog was never meant to be relevant to a wide audience. It was just a place I could concentrate all my writings about my Warhammer 40K hobby and adventures for me and the few friends I had in that community. And actual running journal of "Look at this paint job", "look at this army list", and "read this battle report".

But something happened that magical year of 2007 when I played EVE extensively and the EVE blogging community exploded. I found that I had a lot of relevant insight to offer a wider audience and I became fairly relevant to the extended community. I joked once on a podcast that I was "Ripard Teg before Ripard was Ripard Teg" but for a good stretch of time it was not far off the mark. Such relevance and influence is intoxicating for someone like me that likes to be liked.

Things changed. Ripard Teg came around and raised the bar of what being relevant and influential as a blogger means, Rixx Javix changed what being a creative blogger means, and more organized aggregate sites like EveNews24.com and theMitanni.com and CrossingZebras.com came along and raised the bar on providing information and content.

And things changed quite radically for me personally. Twins born in 2008 and another child in 2010 eating up a lot of free time at home. My job became more demanding with less free time to research and write.

Yet I persist in writing. Sometimes I try to be funny, sometimes I try to be topical, sometimes I try and be helpful, and sometimes I try to be analytical. The question is, am I relevant anymore and do I care? Is the effort of trying to keep producing a blog worth reading worth the reward I get from doing so? Somedays after writing a rewarding post like the one last week about CCP's War on Logi I feel the answer is yes. Other days the answer is no.

This does not mean my enthusiasm for EVE or the community has diminished. But I wonder if now, after 2900+ posts, if its time to move on.

12 comments:

  1. I for one, will miss this blog, if you decide to move on. And I'm not even a serious EVE player. And maybe that's why. The dizzying array of sources, often laced with propoganda, gives the casual player pause. Here I can get capsule updates and some interesting thoughts on changes in the game and also just read some fun updates on the action that players like you are having within it.

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  2. "Am I relevant" is a VERY bad question. I have like 10000 reddit and forum posts telling me that I'm not.

    The only question that matters is "do I have something to say?"

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  3. I'd miss this blog if you stopped.

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  4. Id miss this blog, been one of the few i follow daily. And i agree with gevlon, if you enjoy it, do it. Simple as that

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  5. Of course you're damn well relevant! But if there is a piece of advice I would give it would be this: write for yourself and your own enjoyment. If others also like it, great. If they don't like the content and the frequency - too darned bad. There's no point in placing artificial pressure on yourself to do what you used to do in an effort to please others. RL definitely and without a doubt comes first.

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  6. Gevlon is right, delusions of relevance are to be avoided. Write for yourself and the right people will show up.

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  7. "Am I relevant anymore and do I care?"

    Are you relevant anymore? Yes, Yes and three times Yes! I check your blog every single day. If you write something, (even fiction :P) I'll read it. Maybe I won't comment, but know this, I'm always reading. :D

    As for the others, only you know the answer to this. As for myself, I'll be here forever.

    (Reposting? Perhaps the comment box is bugged?)

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  8. Bloggers tend to make arbitrary rules and standards for ourselves. Write once a day or minimum twice per week, etc. This is a good thing if you're keen to build an audience. It is however a completely unnecessary thing if you're just blogging for yourself.

    For me writing is very useful to order my thoughts, to explore ideas that interest me and to receive thoughtful feedback. I love blogging and I'm completely fine with the idea that sometimes I'll lose my blogging mojo and not say anything for a couple of weeks.

    Maybe it's feeling like you're expected to get something out that's burning you out. If so all you need do is simply decide to get past that.

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  9. I'd notice! sadly, I can't often read your blog, as for whatever reason it is blocked by our corporate internet elves

    But I watch the blog post titles (that show up on blogs that I can see from work) and I send myself e-mails to remind me to check out your stuff when I get home.

    I will also say, that I consider your voice one of the voices of reason for our EVE community

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  10. Of course you should continue, at your own rhythm, based on your RL priorities. I remember when I first read your blog, I thought it had something to do with Nivea, until I wised up :)
    I agree with the other posters, relevance does not matter. Well, it does matter for those that need the social acceptance, but you do not strike me as insecure.
    I was one day in the same NS system with a well-known, highly visible goon that was flying an inty through. He got trash talked by a guy from a small gate camp there, and responded in local something akin to "shut up until you are relevant...". wow. basking this way in his own feeling of "in-game relevance" really made him sound like a jerk...

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  11. While the decision is yours, I would prefer posts over silence.
    Of course my ratio for effort vs reward is different since I am just a consumer and you the creator.

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  12. If nothing else, the relevance of this blog lies in maintaining a history that now spans eight years. And EVE always has features upcoming that could make one start/resume writing about it, so even if you feel there's not much to write frequently about, next spring and beyond could bring that inspiration.

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