I’ve found there’s one true fact about writing: once you get out of the habit of writing, it’s a lot easier to continue not writing than it is to get the writing back on a schedule. “Oh, it can wait one more day” is a terrible excuse, but it works.
I’ve been trying to figure out how much time I know I can spend on writing every week, and what that means for the blog. What I’ve decided to try, at least for now, is to get back on a three day a week schedule. It’s a change of attitude — rather than try to push stuff out as I write it, try to build up a queue of material ready to go, allowing me to put more time into more complex writing (and non-writing projects) rather than trying to feed the grind. Of course, if I get too long a queue, I can speed some of it out the door, too. Now wouldn’t THAT be a good problem to have.
Another thing I’ve decided to do is try to make sure I keep a variety of material going on the blog. I’ve found, for instance, if I write a few reviews in a row, people tend to zone out and there’s a lot less interest in the later ones. It seems the best way to keep things fresh is to make sure I keep a mix of things happening and do it on a consistent basis. Easy to say, not so easy to actually maintain.
But, at least for now, here’s what’s on deck for this site: Mondays will be my grab bag day, where I write about whatever catches my interest. Tuesday will be about birds and/or birdwatching in some way. Wednesdays will be review day, Thursdays are reserved for a project I’m just starting and you’ll hear about “one of these days” (unless I change my mind), and Fridays are all about photography.
Since I’m only going to be writing three pieces a week, I won’t be covering all of this each week, but this gives me the flexibility to write about what is most interesting to me at the point. It also means if I sit down and write a few reviews at once, I can queue them up, and that’ll free time later to work on longer and more time-consuming content for other days.
Once I get the Youtube channel launched, it’ll take over the Friday slot, and the posting will tie in with whatever I’m doing on Youtube that week.
About that Youtube project
It’s been stalled, a combination of needing to focus on some things at work, my work on the room of death, and the dreaded “blank page syndrome” wall I need to punch through. I haven’t made significant progress on it in about a month, but I’m hoping to change that this week.
Work’s been really busy, leading up to a three day in-house meet up with the team to do business and project planning for the year. That’s left me a bit braindead in the evenings, and rather than try to fight through that, I decided to relax and take it a bit easier and focus on getting the work stuff under control. That’s now rounding into shape, so I feel like I can again deal with other stuff as well.
It is getting there, slowly, but it’s not something I’ve been able to put a lot of time into. Hoping to get back at it in the next week or so.
Room of death
But before I can really start putting time back into the Youtube project, I need to get the Room of Death ready to hand over to others to finish up. I’m not quite there yet; over 70 boxes have been removed and stored for now, and the old desk has exited the house and is waiting to be disposed of. I have one, maybe two evenings and the room will be empty, except for…
Laurie has two vertical files in there with her hockey programs and other hockey things. That’s about 24 linear feet of stuff that has to be carefully boxed and put in the garage, along with the two files, until we finish moving stuff round so I can bring I back out and put it in its new home (which, in current plans, is where that 70 boxes of stuff from the room of death is stored. So these will be basically the last thing to be brought out of storage and filled). So, I’m going to have to box up a lot and get it stored as well.
What’s in those linear files? Well, need to do research in a program book from a 1959 Indianapolis Chiefs hockey game? Laurie has that. And about 20 linear feet of its brothers and cousins. (We also have about 500 titles of hockey books, One and a third sets of Trail of the Stanley Cup, about 70 jersey, a hundred or so pucks, and a bunch of other things, including my collection of historic rulebooks going back into the 1940s. All of which really need a permanent home here, and which I’m finally starting to make happen.
I’d hoped to be bringing in the painters and carpet for the room this week, it looks like that may happen next week instead. I do have my colors and some idea of what I want for carpeting, at least. Once I know the schedule on those, I can start ordering furniture, schedule the electrician and work on new window coverings.
And once THAT room is done, with a little carpentry work that I’m looking for the right person to do, we can get the living room finished and piainted, and the bedroom painted and new carpeting, and once that’s done, all of the bookshelves in the living room will start sucking in those boxes of books of hockey (and Laurie’s 400+ cookbooks). And that’s kind of the tipping point, as far as I can see. But it has been complicated to get to that point.
And once I get moved into my office, I can do the same to the family room, which needs the inevitable paint and carpet, and more bookshelves, and…
This is all getting closer. Slower than I’d hoped, but still progress. And once I start moving into my office, it’ll be less of a time sink for me, and more organizing the contractors to do their bits and pieces. I still think I can have most of the house done by my birthday (minus a bathroom and the kitchen, which are bigger projects)
And then hopefully the house is good for another 15 years with only tweaking.
At least I can point to progress. Pretty soon, I should be able to point to results…