At the beginning of the year that must not be named*, I set out on a few simple goals. Most of them went un-realized, although not for lack of trying. I wanted to clear out the piles of unwatched DVDs/Blu Rays I can’t seem to stop buying, even if owning objects free of the cloud is now amusingly quaint. Those piles still mock me. I wanted to read 60 books, besting my record 58 read in 2015. I barely made 30, but will once again set my sights for 60 this year. I also wanted to blog—even if only a little bit—every week throughout the year.
That one I accomplished. In a year powered by disappointments, I’ve checked in with at least something every week. Now what?
Taking stock of the entries I wrote over 2016, I realized this blog is now a volume with over 45,000 words. To put that into perspective, A Loss For Normalcy—the collection of the sermons I’ve done at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Stillwater over the years**—is just over 23,000 words. The current draft of this year’s*** The Once and Future Orson Welles hovers at just over 57,000.
So, I guess I could try to package all of that into a volume of some kind… But then again, that seems kinda dumb. You’ve already read it. Do you want to pay to read it again? How would I even begin to format that many footnotes? It boggles the mind.
And yet, that leaves the matter of the sheer tonnage of words I have committed to this space. Had I not blogged last year, The Once and Future Orson Welles might be closer to publication. I might even have a good start on a sixth book. Hell, I might have found time for some sort of hobby in between two jobs. If I truly think about the time I’ve been blogging as a waste, should I continue? Is it even worth blogging anymore?
I think it’s worth it. Blogging has a purpose, but it may not be apparent on the surface. The most important part of trying to make a go out of this writing business is building a relationship with you, the reader. A blog like this one is how I start to personally reach out to every person in the world, even if I’ve got to make that connection one person at a time. It’s paid dividends in the last year. I’m a more successful writer today than I was one year ago; I intend to be more successful one year from now than I am today. This blog will continue to be part of that.
So, yes. I’m going to continue this blog into the new year. We’ll talk about movies more. And then some more. As a couple of the other projects I have been putting work into during 2016 start to come of age, we’ll talk about those, too. This time next year, I’ll have another 40,000 words of musings behind me. Every little bit of writing I do makes me a little bit better at writing. Now, with all of that said, I’ll get back to work. 2017 is only a few hours old as I type this and I already feel like I’m six months behind. That, or I’m just nuts. I’ll let you decide.
*And let that be the last “2016 is a terrible year” joke. It’s over now, we have no excuses for dwelling on it. That is, at least, until January 20th. Then, we can start the jokes all over again.
**Buy it here!
***I guess I’m really committing to the idea that the book is coming out in 2017, aren’t I? I’ve announced it 8 or 9 times by now.