Gone but not forgotten

I have a retired blog, one that ran for more than three years. I had over 1,000 posts and nearly 20,000 comments. I’m not saying that in any way to brag, not that it’s much to boast about, but only to illustrate that I was actively publishing my stuff there.

It closed nearly two years ago. Toward the end of its run, I started to hate it. I dreaded opening the admin pages, dreading writing, dreaded posting. It had become a burden that I chose not to bear. So, I said good-bye and took some time to consider what I wanted to do – did I want to completely stop blogging, or start over with a new focus.

In less than 24 hours I opened my “Thin spiral notebook”… a place where I can concentrate on just writing, just photography, and not feel like I had to bear my soul if I didn’t want to. It’s a happier place for me, somewhere I enjoy being, and hopefully those of you who stop by have enjoyed something here too.

‘Thank you’ to everyone for all your encouragement and support… I don’t have the words to say that enough.

Occasionally, when I’m feeling nostalgic, I recycle some articles from that site. (Please don’t try to find it. I’ve set it to private, but there are most likely some cached articles out there.) While looking for an old post, I  read through my blogroll. Many of my then online friends are still around, maybe at new addresses, but after almost five years, we’re still in touch.

Some, sadly, have vanished entirely. A few others haven’t updated their sites in months, or years. Then there are even more who have stopped blogging, but are active on other social media sites. I can completely understand, it could have as easily been me who quit.

These absences did, however; illustrate how tenuous blogging has become. I don’t have nearly the number of readers I once did, not nearly the number of commenters. It’s not anything like it was just a couple of years ago.

Of course, there could be other reasons for that change, other than the slow death of blogging.

Sometimes I wonder if, now that I no longer whine about my life and the struggles that my family has gone through, my blog isn’t as interesting. Misery does love company, and everyone loves a good sob story. It’s more likely that my current content is simply not as captivating as I hope it is.

I don’t believe people read blogs like they used to. It’s simpler and faster to tweet something or update a status. I think we have lost something precious. There’s still a sense of community, but that community has dwindled… shrunk down to 140 characters, or into cliché-ish circles or groups.

We don’t talk to each other like we used to. We don’t sit on the porch, sipping sweet tea, and gossiping like we used to. We’ve lost something, and I’d like it back.

14 thoughts on “Gone but not forgotten

  1. Thank you Tara for this post. You say here something very sad but so true. Sometimes I wonder if I will still be in contact with everyone i connected with if i close my blog? Wil people still be interested in reading if my life changes for the better and they stop being able to relate?

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  2. Awww, this makes me sad, and I can’t really put my finger on what has changed. Blogs and blogging used to be way more fun and interesting back in the day. In my case it kind of consumed most of life … if I wasn’t online I was always thinking of the next post and I missed out on a lot of living. Anyway, you’ve got a good thing going on here because the content is creative and from your heart. You’re not trying to pay the bills with this, so it’s genuine. So many blogs today are trying to be money makers and while there’s nothing wrong with that, it’s strips away a lot of that old feeling of just loving to write a blog. Personally, I’d rather read a few bloggers who still *just* love to write vs. tons of people trying to get me to click affiliate links, climb aboard for their cause or redirect me to their paid gig.

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  3. I’ve gone through those same feelings Tara. I post much less than I use to, but I do still like to stay connected through my blog. I think we all go through times when we’re not sure we want to continue blogging; but I can tell you I’m very glad you chose to let us read your wonderful posts and see your beautiful photography on Thin spiral notebook. Thank you. ~Joy

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  4. I had a blog a few years back as well. It was a total family blog where I griped about kids and life etc etc. And then my husband started getting freaked about privacy, sharing the kids pictures, etc etc. It was a shame since I had JUST begun getting a real following at that place. But I respected his feelings and eventually locked it down.

    Sometimes I really want to share that sort of information again, have those conversations about kids sleep habits etc.

    I’ve definitely noticed the decline in conversation and blogs in general. Even the link ups don’t have as many participants. And while I know that many writers feel as Jessie does it can be difficult to get that kind of set up running. It takes SO much time and effort to do a basic blog, I couldn’t imagine the work involved in a place like Write on Edge or Trifecta. And if you let the content or posting slide or disappear it is so tough to get a new website up and running again, even if it is the same format. Just look at Scriptic. Indie Ink used to be so popular you couldn’t get through all the posts but now they are lucky to have 5 or 6 people signing up.

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    1. Yes! I worry about the privacy too. I was posting about a lot of personal things regarding my son, and he was getting older and as a teen, if those posts were discovered it could have been embarassing for him. That was a key reason I ended my other blog.

      The groups I participate in have a few really involved people, like you and Jessie, who interact, give wonderful feedback and have helped me grow as a writer. But like you said, getting that sort of site up and running, and filled with active participants is difficult. Even though I try to get to as many participants as I can, I don’t get the same in return. It’s like people treat it as simply a promotion tool and not a way to interact with other writers.

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    1. A lot of the people I first met blogging have completely vanished. I’ve tried emailing some of them, trying to keep in touch, but that wasn’t always successful either. It’s sad, and I do miss my friends. I’m fortunate that I have met new friends, like you, who make me want to stick around.

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    1. I have thoroughly enjoyed working with the writing groups I’ve joined, but I’m disappointed that some of them are lacking the feedback that most of us writers want. We’re not fishing for comments, we truly want that interaction, and concrit. It should be more than a link fest.

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  5. I was just thinking the same thing over the weekend. I miss the comments and active conversations going on in the comments but now people have moved to Instagram and twitter. But I find it difficult to have good convos on twitter. I do like keeping updated with my friends on Instagram.

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    1. There are so many different ways for people to interact now, but it seems so much less personal. Not like it used to, when it literally felt like we were all sitting around together, talking and laughing.

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