Be careful, my blog is a magnet

No, not a magnet as in John Magnet Bell (who is pretty awesome BTW), but more like seeing a car wreck and you can’t help being drawn to it. You feel compelled to look hoping it won’t be a big mess but it seems to be the same thing every time you look…..

Confession time

I am somewhat reluctant to post about how things are going to change around here because most of the time the changes are so subtle it might elicit a yawn at best. But I will get into that a little bit later.

My confession? I truly am the ‘just show up’ guy; in fact, I’m pretty good at it. If there is an easier way to do something (work included) that doesn’t require heavy lifting, then I’m all for it; and I want it to be fun too.

If I show up at the beach without lotion, chairs, food or drink or even a change of clothes (which I am prone to do all of that) then I’ll figure it out when I get there or just live with it.

Sounds like a slacker to me…….

My blog is pretty much a ‘just show up’ effort too, but I’m preaching to the choir now as if you couldn’t tell. Would you think less of me if I told you I would be ok if 1,000+ showed up each post regardless of what dribble I put out? And of course at those numbers there would be much less time for tit for tat engagement, but it sure would save some time on my part, huh?

I’m not joking; we all know those who have ‘achieved’ enough social street cred to be able to do this. I won’t lie; I’m envious and want to do it too.

That sounds like you want it to be all about you……….lovely, Dorman…….

Get to the point

I recently read two posts that gave me an ‘aha’ moment and how it ties in with my direction.

To copy a line from my friend @TheJackB’s post Bloggers Are People Who Don’t Like to Work (which the ‘no work’ immediately got my attention) ‘And then I hear a male voice behind me say something about bloggers being people who don’t like to work, are narcissistic and a host of other disparaging remarks.

This is somewhat out of context with his whole post, but my point being ‘am I narcissistic’, if so, so what, and aren’t we all to a certain degree?

The other was my friend Allie Irish @AllieRambles and a comment she made while as the featured blogger by Sonia @LogAllot. She says ‘ I find it difficult to be unique enough to get traffic to stick around’.

Don’t we all? It definitely takes a lot of hard work and purposeful planning so, for the ‘just show up’ guy; Houston, we have a problem…….

Zzzzzz….wrap it up please…….

I think I want to either be a movie star, professional athlete or novelist. I flipped a coin and novelist won so by default, that is my new direction.

I only mention this because if I am serious, it will take a certain amount of structure and planning but also ‘cut’ into my social time. If I don’t get to your place as much, just know I still ‘see’ you. And if you don’t make it by here because I’m not giving back enough I will certainly understand.

I view this endeavor as similar to planning and training for the marathon I ran. Because I had laid the proper groundwork and stuck to my schedule, I far exceeded my expectations. My expectation for this is to just finish it; if I get more than one person to read this novel, that will be a bonus.

So, there it is

Change, but not really. I will be as social as I can because I am a social critter, but it might be a little more sporadic going forward.

Wish me luck;


70 thoughts on “Be careful, my blog is a magnet

  1. Good for you, Bill! Seems things are in a state of flux for most bloggers.I don’t think people are disinterested or that blogs are boring. But I think we’re all in a phase of soul-searching. And I also think that as we focus on really serious stuff we’ll all come back in search of some social interaction because it’s hard to maintain any intense focus for too long without a good laugh or cry triggered by someone elses writing every now and then. Thank goodness the friends we’ve collected in the blogosphere are so welcoming and forgiving of our comings and goings!
    Good luck to you!

  2. Good luck.

    Nah, just kidding. A novel huh? What kind of novel? What will the topic be? What gave you the idea?…and on and on and on…See, you’ve unleashed the beast. Enquiring minds want to know.

    All kidding aside, kudos to you for taking on what many people on this planet say they want to do: “write a book”. I watched my brother devote 2 years of his life to researching and writing his non-fiction book: a labour of love and dedication. Now, with all the self-publishing/alternative publishing opportunities, the “way of the author” can be expedited, with so many options available.

    But the one thing I learned was this: write every day. Don’t self-edit as you go along. Let the words flow. Let the editing come later. My two cents, FWIW. I’ll be cheering you on, and will await my signed copy. Cheers! Kaarina

  3. Hi Bill!
    Who was it who said the only thing certain in life is change? We’ve got to flow with it and c’est la vie! You’re doing with many of us are doing I believe. Producing the best at home and hopping around (you better than most) to the other parties to be sociable there. We do the best we can with all the other things we’re juggling in life. It’s been busier than ever for me with my business so I completely understand;-)

    • I was afraid, even at my new sustainable level, that I would just keep losing ground the more I disengaged. However, if it’s not about the numbers for me then I just need to keep that thought out of my head and just do my own thing, right?

      Work has been busy too, but in a good way. It’s all good; whoever wants to find me can do so, I’m still around.

      Good to see you.

  4. Wow, Bill, a book! i am already imagining how wonderful that would be! (awww – i also have a first draft of my own waiting to be edited and meeting a publisher :D). You know – I’ve never cared about blog stats. Neither am I the sort who keeps score about visiting/being visited/commenting. It is nice to be social and well, reciprocation should not be a driving factor at least where commenting is concerned. Funny thing is, many of my blog readers email me their comments rather than do it on the post. I’ll never understand why, and I don’t attempt to. Some phone me to discuss a post – and I love the human interaction. So much better than a few words out there. This is why I enjoy blogging. Wonder what i’ll do without the sound of the real voices, the hugs and the nudges and the laughter.

    🙂 Thank God for email subscriptions eh? I’d love to hear how you’re getting on with your book, your funny moments and your irritating ones! Just know I am a fan of your writing. Cheers!

    It is weird. I wrote a comment and found my internet connection had gone off. I troubleshot it and came back. I sneakily copied my comment before refreshing the page and feel very one-up about it!

    • I’m just at the point of outlining the book and putting together the ‘characters’. I haven’t really started the ‘writing’ part yet, but will start this week.

      So, you have a book in the can, huh? How long did it take from inception to completion? Fiction or non-fiction?

      I know the tit for tat commenting is not a prerequisite, but being the ‘polite’ person that I am, I do feel some angst when I can’t reciprocate. It really becomes more of a ‘time’ thing for me than me not liking the post. I do what I can…..I just think this endeavor will take me farther away from the front line and it feels I’m already losing ground as it is.

      So good to see you; thanks for the visit.

      • 🙂 I see what you mean. Re my book – it is non-fiction and I had planned it for a long time. Then I signed up for the National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) Challenge in November and stuck to the discipline and finished the draft in thirty days. I was totally keyed up over it and managed to keep my motivation up. And now that the first draft is ready, that alone is inspiration to continue the good work by editing it.

        Looking forward to your book! 🙂

  5. Hey Bill, I have to disagree with Ally when she says, “I find it difficult to be unique enough to get traffic to stick around.” I think all you have to do is be yourself. And you do that quite well.

    Thanks for sticking around and sharing your thoughts with us. I think you should have put your choices up for a vote instead of flipping that three sided coin. It would have been interesting to see how your readers would have voted.

    Betsy’s right, though, the support and friendship of other bloggers really makes this all work, doesn’t it?

    Hope you have a great week, Bill.

    • Yeah, with my great hair and everything I really was thinking the movie star route; and with that it might be a lot easier to ‘just show up’ and go to work, huh?

      A book is something I have actually thought of for some time. Even my wife and I talked about it at least 10 years ago. I could tell it would be quite the commitment however, and I was afraid to publicly announce it because then the wheels would be in motion. Well, I’m there now so let’s see what happens.

      I plan on being plugged in as much as I can; I just have a feeling it will be a little more sporadic.

      Well, here goes; I’m jumping in, I hope the water isn’t too cold…..:)

  6. What makes for blog popularity is a interesting question. I suppose that there are many models or blogging styles that work and we have to find the style that accommodates us and our life style. I personally like blogs that have some substance and go beyond being purely social. There are a lot of successful bloggers who selectively respond to a limited number of comments – apparently just the comments that interest them and because you comment on their blog they don’t feel morally obligated to comment on your blog. And there are other successful bloggers who never comment or reply to a comment. So if writing a book competes with your time devoted to blogging, consider revising your blogging strategy. Time is a finite resource. Good luck with the book.

    • Thank you sir, I’m going to give it a go; we’ll just have to see how much time it does require.

      I like a lot of blogs, yours included but lately I have been expanding my choices, not limiting then and I might end up doing more reading than commenting.

      It’s ok not to be tit for tat on the engagement, but that is really my strong suit; I just know how finite time really is.

      Good to see you; thanks for your thoughts.

  7. Hey Bill,

    So I wrote a lengthy response on my blackberry. Why? Because I “lost” my smartphone. What a crock. So here I am writing this again. The first bit was good too! Now, I am afraid I can’t live up to my earlier inspiration. Wait, this isn’t supposed to be about me. You must be rubbing off on me (and I mean that in the nicest sense).

    So, go write the damn book already and quit worrying about you loyal readers. I, for one, will still read your posts even if you don’t srop by mine. There goes my readership altogether ;-).

    Hey, why don’t you document your journey, ask for feedback on development and share your experience? Is that too much to ask after all this time? C’mon, I will still “buy” your book even if I know the story and have insight to it’s development. Honest, I will (I said so now I have to do it).

    Go write and have fun. We’ll be over here drumming our fingers on our keyboards waiting for the next post…….:-)

    • That is actually a pretty good idea to chronicle my journey…..not like you don’t have good ideas……………:). That also puts a layer of accountability to this process and give my ‘readership’ the opportunity to have input.

      I have done the ‘world class’ response before to only watch it disappear because I didn’t sign in right or something………frustrating…

      I like your place but as I mentioned above, I’ve picked up some new ones who are more ‘writing’ focused. I have a feeling I will be doing a lot more reading than commenting. Maybe I can get a ‘great post’ sticker I can start leaving, huh?

      Good to see you and thanks for your support.

      • Awww, too bad. No, I’m just kidding. Understand fully. Niche, niche, niche. Had to say it three times because I know you’re……no, wait. Ah, you know what I mean.

  8. Kudos on the endeavor Bill! I am sure it will be very rewarding, and I look forward to hearing more about it.

    No worries on the tit-for-tat at my place. At some point, we all have to scale our efforts to be more productive.

    • Easy Altamonte, we’re joined at the hip; we have too much history….:).

      I will be around, I’m just afraid it will be sporadic at times. Work is busy enough right now too, but that’s a good thing and I need to strike while the iron’s hot as they say.

      Hope things are well with you; thanks for stopping by.

  9. Hey Bill!

    Sorry about being MIA. Hubby had surgery last Monday so we’re adjusting to a new routine.

    I’m so psyched that your book idea turned into a novel idea! Get it? A “novel” idea? Yeah, sometimes I’m the only one laughing.

    You can’t worry about possibly not spending as much time as you used to here. Things change–it’s part of life. We’ll still be here when you have time to jot down some Bill-isms:)

    • Oh I get it you witty one; that’s my gig……….:).

      Hope all is well with hubby, no need to apologize; we all know how life can get in the way.

      Hopefully I will post consistently enough and I will be as social as I can be.

      I do appreciate your support and words of encouragement; take care of your family.

  10. Just keep writing and having fun like Jack says; there will always be so much you will learn through the process.

    As for being social and social media frenzy; this will always be there…both can go hand in hand!

    • Maybe I could hire a body double; he can do my day job and I can just play in here, huh?

      I just need to be able to stick to the plan and not feel like I’m missing something if I can’t check in every day.

      I’m excited about it; let’s see where it goes.

      Thanks for your thoughts; hope you had a great weekend.

  11. I’ve begun to pull away from a lot of the online stuff I see every day for many reasons, primarily though because the energy and time that is wasted when I start comparing or judging and assessing myself is time and energy I can never get back.

    I’ve begun to comment and connect more with people (like you) who seem to be enjoying this magical mystery tour. I want to have fun while I’m here for however long I’m here, so don’t go too far away because you’re one of the guys I count on to keep things light 🙂

    • And that should be worth something, right?

      I’ve recently expanded my reader but have a feeling I will do more reading than commenting on this foray. There are talented and interesting people in here and I’m learning from all of them.

      Thanks so much for your kinds words and encouragement; let’s give this thing a run and see where it goes, ok?

  12. You see Bill, you have the luxury of being able to just show up because there really isn’t any other point to this blog (lovely as it is) – it is simply a social ‘outlet’, not a business driver. At least that’s my sense of it (based on what you’ve explained in prior posts).

    It’s kinda like the guy who shows up to the street-wide garage sale with a few trinkets, some beers and tunes. He may very well be the most popular guy on the street! But he’s not selling anything; he’s just there to have a good time. Meanwhile, the other vendors are sweating bullets as the visitors nickel and dime them over 1980’s fashion.

    So I say, stick with your model – keep sharing the beer and tunes. I’ll still show up, since I’m a sucker for a laid-back slacker :-).

    • Yes, that is the easy way out and it would be interesting to see how I performed if it was a money driver and I HAD to produce week after week.

      The thing is, I’ve been ‘producing’ in my day gig for close to 30 years; it’s ok to have some fun, right?

      I only want to go deep when I have to and I don’t want it to be every time you see me.

      Thanks for the kind words and don’t tell my wife this blog doesn’t have a point…………..:).

  13. Bill,

    If you have not read Steven Pressfield’s The War of Art, please do. It’s short, sweet and to the point. It’s also a brilliant little book for anyone engaged in art, especially the writer.

    Best of luck to you. About not being as social as you can … well things do change and I just think it’s cool you discovered this is something you really want to pursue. Press forward and enjoy, as Mr. Jack said 🙂 Exciting stuff.

    • Hey Craig, I hear ya; press it forward.

      I will definitely read the book; it will put me over the top right?

      I will post of my progress and probably let my readers help develop the story………but I’m not sharing royalties……….:)

      Good to see you; hope your weekend was well.

  14. Hi Bill,

    I’m eager to read what you’ve come up with. What I’ve done is set time every day to write, and time to be social. I probably don’t write as much as most people, but I need to get time to do a little of both (actually, I need to be able to do a lot during a day).

    Can’t wait to read it.

    • I want to set those times too, but I guess I have to set a time to work as well, huh? Actually it’s the day job that has been keeping me busy but it’s in a good way.

      It will be fiction and deal w/ sexual exploitation and human trafficking of kids (girls) in the system of foster care and/or runaways. Because I am a volunteer w/ Guardian ad Litem, I certainly ‘know’ of it so I have some knowledge of the subject. The premise will be how difficult it is to get out of the system and be a productive member of society when the deck is stacked against you. There will be intrigue………

      Good to see you sir; I think I will do my book in Norwegian too…..:)

      • That sounds like an awesome book. I’m so glad that it will be in Norwegian, I’m a much faster reader when I read Norwegian 🙂

      • Yes, I’ve read the complete series and watched the movies too… awesome. I started to think about it when I read about your book. It’s going to be difficult to create a character like Lisbeth Salander, but if anyone can do it, it’s you 🙂

      • But her character is similar to the girls I see in the ‘system’. If they think you are a misfit, it can be a very difficult process because everybody has a different perception of ‘normal’.

  15. Here’s the deal Bill, we all love coming to your place because we never know what you’re going to share with us. I think I can speak for many when I say we just enjoy your whit, charm and humor. It really doesn’t matter what you write about, we’ve been hooked for awhile now.

    I know what Allie is saying because I had felt the same way too. But like you Bill, you care about people and enjoy the conversations. I believe that is what makes you attractive and why people still enjoy visiting. I know I do.

    Can’t wait to hear how the book starts coming along. You and Jens I so admire for just going for it. Heck, it takes everything I have to come up with a darn blog post twice a week. Novel, no way… But I do love to read.

    Hope you had a great Easter weekend Bill and your week has started off on the same note. So, you get to work young man. You’ve got a novel to write on top of everything else you do.



    • As Forrest Gump would say, ‘my blog is like a box of chocolates, you just don’t know what you will get’, huh?

      I’m still at step 1 with the book and that is outlining my thoughts for a story and starting with the basic characters. Because it will be loosely tied to what I have experienced in the Guardian program, I will have many ‘characters’ to choose from to develop along the way.

      I have been a busy boy too, and that also might cause sporadic social, but it is all good and I’m very pleased with my year so far.

      Thanks so much for the kind words and visit; I had you in mind when I mentioned people following their business model and might not be able to be as social week in and week out. It’s all understandable and I’m sure you know we will support you any way we can.

      See you soon………

  16. Bill,
    this is such happy news for you. One of the things i struggled with was to cut back on my socializing but in the end it’s helped me focus immensely. I miss the social aspect but in place of it i hope i add more value in another way like you are going to do with your soon to be best selling book.

    I’ll still drop by to say hi even if you never come see me.. You’re a magnet after all right?

    • Socializing is very easy for me and easy for me to get caught up in it because there is no heavy lifting required. However, as I alluded to in my post, I’m approaching this like marathon training and will come up w/ a ‘writing’ schedule. Otherwise, I will never get to it.The key is to stick with and not let the siren of social keep me away from my mission.

      I always wanted to sign an autograph for someone; maybe with a book I can do that……..:).

      Good to see you; I’ll bet you thought I was going to leave you hanging for a month again, huh? No way Jose; thanks for dropping by.

  17. Hey Bill,

    I do not think social is going to forget you any moment even if you cut it down. There are only 24 hours a day and only we can decide how to utilize them.
    So right now “Bill the novelist”, seems better suited than “Bill the socializer” ;). No problem, we will all be here when you are back 🙂

    • Man, if I could just make money being social………..actually I do, because most of my day job involves being social in some form or fashion. Yes, I do have to know my ‘insurance’ but it is the social situations that typically create my insurance opportunities. Pretty sweet gig, huh?

      We will try the ‘novelist’ hat on for awhile; I’m excited by also apprehensive knowing it will be a daunting task indeed. I’m ready; let’s do it.

      Good to see you, thanks for the visit and thoughts.

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