And then there were none

My blogging efforts have hit an embarrassing low point over the past two months. Like Agatha Christie in her well-known murder mystery “And Then There Were None” I feel like I have been slowly killing off my posts with the precision and dedication to purpose that I actually began EMpression with.

In the beginning, I took to EMpression with a flurry of blog updates on first impressions, try times, verdicts and the odd book review. I participated enthusiastically in online chat forums, Google+ circles and avidly followed the latest posts from my new blogger and Twitter friends. But only three or four months in, I found myself being really critical about my ideas for my next post, my writing style, the images I would or would not use. I was surrounded by half-finished posts and half-baked ideas. I reproached myself continually which added to my procrastination. The time between publishing posts got longer and longer punctuated by excuses and protestations that barely covered my guilt at killing off EMpression missed post by missed post.

A washing line of random ideas and writings (taken at the Sydney Writers Festival 2013).

A washing line of random ideas and writings (taken at the Sydney Writers Festival 2013).

I became confused about what EMpression was really about. I reviewed my favourite blogs, I searched for method and meaning, I wanted to unravel the mystery of why I was not blogging when I had “so many good ideas”.

Well the truth is I felt like I was writing into the void: more spam than comments; too few views to be doing anything worthwhile – right? I was a victim of the paralysing fear of not being meaningful!

And so, it was better not to put myself “out there” at all. This of course does not just apply to blogging. The potential for self-sabotage exists in all of us. What aspects of life, love, work and play have you deliberately downplayed, being persistently negative about or in worst-case killed off? Have you done this out of a fear of not being appreciated, out of a fear of being successful and not being worthy of success or for some other equally crazy reason? By crazy, I don’t mean to invalidate the fear itself, it is real, but the fact is, it is in my head or yours and that is the crazy part.

I have decided to abandon my search for meaning, and for method. I am just going to write and post and include whatever damn image I want. I am going to favour participation and productivity over purity of thought. Dear Reader, please accept the consequences of this EMpression (r)evolution which is likely to result in the occasional typo, grammatical fault and lame post. Apologies in advance but I have decided in favour of EMpressing rather than impressing!

5 thoughts on “And then there were none

  1. Hey Emma, don’t beat yourself up too much. I’ve been blogging extensively for a couple of years & my creative technique is still developing. Although, I am seeing benefits in other forms of writing because blogging needs to have a point and be to-the-point very quickly. It’s like boot camp for creative, opinion pieces, editorials etc. Mine are probably a bit easier because they are more business-oriented & I use the PIPES process for this. Depending on what your blogging is for, either way I recommend keeping it flexible so that it flows with different moods & opinions you are feeling at the time as this is most engaging for people. But definitely put some thought into the point of your blog page. Having said all that, I’m not sure the Australian audience are that convinced about blogging – as per their attitude towards other forms of social media / social business. All the best. Cheers.

    • Thanks for the follow Jeremy and the comment. I appreciate you taking the time to share your experience around engagement and the whole content development and publishing process. I feel very much a beginner but I guess the learning process is continual. At the moment I am working towards closing the gap between idea generation (not a problem for me), writing (first draft generally comes pretty easily) and publication (maybe I am still scared by this bit). Thanks for the support, pls check back in when you can, I appreciate the feedback.

    • Yep, have even taken to beating myself up about shopping lists, to do lists and bucket lists . . it’s all going to stop right here, right now, I’m taking a stand and just writing anyway whether it is good or not!

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