My blog isn’t dead. It’s just … lost a step.
It’s Brett Favre with the Vikings. Or Jets.
It’s Elvis, sweating on a Vegas stage.
It’s E.T., all white and powdery away from home. Not in his extraterrestrial glory.
Unlike Brett Favre and Elvis, E.T. can find a way back his alien homeboys and to the heart light. This blog can, too.
Even with my faithful core of commenters you can hear me crunch my graham crackers up in here. It’s gotten quiet. Cue the crickets, easy on the very wow.
I know I’m lucky. I feel Lou Gehrig, not Nancy Harding. I’m happily humble, not vengeful victim. I’ve watched numbers plummet. Downhill isn’t wretched. It’s just … a lull. And I’m okay with that. It’s my blog. And it’s me, my voice, my observations. I can be only me.
How should a dude respond when his readership reaches 1,500 subscribers – and clicks on post day struggle to reach 100? When his February numbers this year might not even match those from last year?
When in seven of eight of the past weeks, visits have dropped, by as much as 40%?
If this were a restaurant …
I wouldn’t bring the McRib back. I’d simplify. I’d key on Big Macs and Happy Meals with cookies in them. I’d scrap the flashy menu screens that induce vertigo as you try to order. I’d resurrect the concept of a sandwich, a side, and a drink. Beautiful simplicity.
If this were my kid’s grades …
I’d shake up the process. I’d put English ahead of Instagram. I’d examine study environment and habits. I’d learn what my kid’s class is learning. Much to her dismay, I’d save NPR podcasts on subjects she’s studying. I’d clear a spot at the dinner table for her to work alongside me.
If this were a sports team …
I’d check concession stands for adequate cheese portions on the nachos. I’d redesign our helmets or get a sweet alternate batting practice jersey. Maybe sign a dude with a gnarly name. I’d definitely watch film and figure out how we’re getting our butts kicked. Did I mention the nacho cheese check?
This isn’t flipping cheeseburgers, though. It isn’t lifting that math grade or making the playoffs, either.
It’s my blog. In my voice. The only voice I know.
I read comments on past posts and say, “wonder what happened to her.” Bloggers stuff the world with stellar words. Bloggers must earn readership by peddling their wares in the blogosphere flea market. “Hey, lady … check this out!”
If you’ve got the goods, maybe she’ll come back.
I knew this day would come, after the BlogHer Voice of the Year traffic steamrolled in. It blew in and out like a Mardi Gras hurricane with a bowl game attached. And guacamole. I realized when the crest reached its highest, it’s a long way down to reality.
Life isn’t just what happens to you. It’s how you react. Here’s the my plan:
Read. There’s a folder in my taskbar labeled READ! I will, as I always have, visit every blog that leaves a comment on mine.
I save the links in this folder. I aim to read three or four a day. After VOTY and 6 Words posts, this folder gets slammed full. It’s thinning out. It’s time to read and catch up.
Comment. If I haven’t been to your blog in a while, I’ll be by soon. I’ll check on what’s up where you live. While my shop window is quiet, I’ll step away and sample.
Connect. Or Reconnect. I’m just a dude who writes a blog, and who appreciates the written word. I’ll discover blogs I’ve never read, and visit familiar friends.
Keep on keeping on. Which to toss overboard? The Monday post? The Wednesday guest spot with monthly 6 words? The Go Ask Daddy on Friday? I couldn’t pick a favorite daughter, and I can’t just scrap a chunk of the blog, you know?
Coach Daddy isn’t a rookie anymore. Life changes. I’ve changed. There’ve been pills and pain, love and lasting friendships since I started. There’s a time you know your fastball just doesn’t have the zip it once did. You paint the corners of the plate instead.
You pick your spots, and lean on wisdom more, zeal less.
I’ve spun my wheels a bit, admittedly. I’ve been unwilling to delve into the heart as I had before. No more. You’ll see.
What I’ll do is write.
I’ll sweep up a little, chat with you at the lunch counter. Visit you.
Tweet your posts.
Pin them, even.
There are so many words. Let me read. Let’s talk.
Let me story-tell, not stat-watch. Bring Magic, not metrics. And never forget the power of just.one.click.
My blog isn’t dead. It’s just … lost a step.
And the very wow? There’s plenty of it, everywhere.
*I lifted the quote below from Nothing Was Said, a must-read blog I just discovered.