I Like Cake

April 25, 2013 § 3 Comments


Well, crikey. I have to admit, I’m a bit touched by the outpouring of support after yesterday’s post. This included a number of personal emails, as well as the incredibly thoughtful comments left for all to see.┬áThank you all.

I thought it might be worth clarifying a few things. First, I don’t know that I even want 30,000 blog hits per day. I can’t even imagine the ramifications of such a thing, and am not at all certain I have room in my life for those ramifications, whatever they might be. (Of course, all this presumes there are 30k people in this world that would even be interested in what I have to say. Which frankly seems like a bit of a stretch, given that I can hardly get my family to pay attention).

The flip side of this, of course, is the simple fact that writing is how I make my living, and I very much agree with Jon that the old model of writing a book every three or four years is rapidly disappearing. As Doug W points out, my personal economy is about much more than writing, but there’s no question that we are highly dependent on the income I glean from the written word. It seems clear to me that being a so-called “professional writer” increasingly requires that one participate in a number of mediums and conversations, and that these mediums and conversations are increasingly bound by the screen. Add to this the dawning recognition that I have actually come to enjoy writing in this space. I mean, really: What’s up with that?

Likewise, I don’t want to avoid particular mediums simply out of a curmudgeonly dogma that they are somehow distasteful. I am a great believer in the idea that little in this world is inherently good or bad; that generally it is our anthropogenic set of emotions and assumptions that imbue these qualities.

Right now, I am thinking hard about balance. About how much time and effort I am willing to devote to the online medium, and even about how much writing should inform decisions about how I expend my limited energies. I suppose I want to have my cake and eat it too: I want to be able to make just enough money to support the small life I lead, and I want for that option to always be there for me.

The truth is, of course, that it might not be quite so simple.

§ 3 Responses to I Like Cake

  • Roughly 1% of readers leave comments. If we apply Pareto’s law, 20% of that 1% are inclined to leave negative comments. At the 30k read level that would be maybe 60 dumb comments daily. My ego would find that challenging, especially on a blog like this where you leave yourself exposed…which is, of course, why I (and I suspect many others) come back regularly.

    • Ben Hewitt says:

      I can hardly imagine the emotional energy that would demand, although I suspect you get to a place where you just ignore that stuff.

  • Karen says:

    I went back and read all the comments to your last post and don’t have anything earth shattering to add here. However, I did want you to know how much I enjoy your posts and how honest you are about your life. There is so much hype everywhere these days that finding a true voice is so refreshing. The way you live your life is perfect for you and your family and really that is what matters. You have done well so far without the other forms of social media and I think could continue without them. Facebook could be a forum for you to just post to and get your work to more people without too much input from you, but you are right to go slowly. In the end being true to yourself wins out and I have no doubt you will do just that. Thanks for sharing all you do.

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