Why I’m Not Writing…I Think

You’ve probably noticed that not been writing a lot lately. You might be happy that I’ve not been writing a lot lately. Maybe you didn’t notice. I don’t know what you do with your time. In case you missed it – I have not been writing a lot lately. Lorna over and Gin & Lemonade asked on Facebook who was up for a blog a day challenge and I decided to join in. The problem is – I still don’t really feel like writing. So, I decided to use the first post to try to write about why I’m not writing.

Part of the problem is as simple as a change in schedule. Not my schedule. My wife’s schedule. I was in a groove of writing after work instead of in the morning. I would come home, change clothes, take the dog for a walk and then watch a TV show while vomiting up a blog post. The last few weeks my wife has been home on Monday and Tuesday so I didn’t come home to an empty house. That’s a positive for the most part, but it is not conducive to writing. I find it hard to write when others are here. She’s here now, but she was on a call, so I had time to start this. Now it sounds like she is done, so who knows when I will write the rest.

The bigger problem is frame of mind. My days can be mentally and emotionally draining. Part of it is the public. Most of it is a particular person who makes my days more stressful and toxic than should be allowed. It’s hard to come home and do anything after dealing with a toxic person who has control over your days. I just want to watch TV and not think. This is also a hard time of year for me. Tomorrow is the anniversary of my mom’s death. This time of year was when I was driving home a lot to see here when I knew my time with her was limited. I still struggle with my decision to not go home to be there at the end. I wanted my last memories to be better and I’ve always felt bad about that. Like I failed her. So, depression, grief, and mental exhaustion makes it hard to feel like vomiting words on a blog.

Finally, I’m boring. I don’t have the type of life that gives me a lot of stories for a blog.  It’s hard to be a blogger when you’re boring.

So, that’s why I’m struggling to write. Who knows if the blog a day challenge will work. We will see,

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I Wish I Was Anonymous

I think one of the biggest drawbacks of this blog is that a lot of people who read it know who I am in real life. A long time ago I created a Tater page on Facebook as a joke. I used it to sometimes post things that I thought might be too much for my general collection of friends on Facebook. My closer real-life friends knew I was creating the page and liked it. This lead to a few more of my Facebook friends liking the page. There was no anonymity. I eventually decided I might as well just post what I want on my personal page and people who didn’t like it could just hide or unfriend me. The page is active again as Facebook won’t allow WordPress posts to autopost to a personal profile anymore.

When I started blogging more regularly I turned on the auto-post to Facebook and Twitter. I never hid who I really was. I have scrubbed my Facebook clean of my workplace. It says I work for Tater World Headquarters and a Common Tater, but I share posts about classes at work, so I’m not fooling anyone. I would say half of the 20 or so people who read this thing are people I know in the real world. Even so, I still feel like I’m generally open about things. For the most part, I don’t hold back.

Unfortunately, there are things I really need to say that I can’t say because there could be repercussions. If  I were anonymous I think I could post a little about the stuff that is happening that is making my life miserable and be vague enough that it wouldn’t come back on me. I don’t have that option. There are some people who can apparently spend years doing whatever they want without any repercussions. I see it on a daily basis. I don’t think I am one of those people. I think I’m a person that people are itching to catch and punish. Getting rid of me would be a positive. I don’t live a Teflon life.

So, there are things that will be left unsaid. There are rants that will only live in my head while I increase my efforts to get to a place in life where I can spend my time at a place where I am respected and appreciated. I’m afraid I’ve reached a point where that will never happen and my only option is to retire to a secluded, hermit life.

The Best of Tater

I’m stuck in a phase of having nothing to write. As I mentioned before it’s hard to be a blogger when you are boring. So, while I struggle to get back to writing something, enjoy the five posts I like the most or at least the ones I can remember this early in the morning.

On Marches and Life  I still think this is the best that I’ve written. Maybe I should write on little sleep more often.

I’m Done: A Tater Rant – A recent one where I ranted about all the stuff I’m done with. A lot of profanity included because I was also done with caring about how people felt about that.

Michael Vick – An early one that got a lot of views because a Twitter celebrity retweeted it. I need more people with lots of followers to retweet me.

Exploring Career Options– I thought it was funny and it was good to use humor to deal with my career blues.

Ten Positive Things About Tater – It was good to think about good things about myself for a change.

The Lori Loughlin Scandal in Full House GIFS – This one also got a lot of views. I still think I should do a perioidic “Tater GIFS the News” feature.

Those are the ones I can find/remember. I hope you enjoy the best of Tater.

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Saturday Rerun Day – Some of My Least Viewed Posts So Far This Year

I’ve posted my most viewed posts already. Now I will see if anyone wants a second look at what they didn’t read.

Good Omens! – In which I talk about my love of the book and my excitement about the TV show. I’ve watched it and am now re watching with Mrs Tater.

Alternating Dreams – In which I talk about stress dreams about applying for a promotion. I was correct in my assumption that I would interview and not get the job. It’s a pretty easy assumption to make.

Some Ideas I’ve Had Recently – the post is what it says. Some ideas I’ve had. I still think they are very good ideas.

Going it Alone – I’ve since gone to the concert alone, gone to lunch alone a lot and gone to a movie alone. Still debating going to another concert alone in a week.

A Tuesday Tater Update – in which I talk about the ALA conference where I met Frank Miller and Henry Winkler.

Tater Tours Istanbul – pictures from Istanbul!

We Are the Villains – Humans are the villains of the story. Not exactly shocking news. It gets clearer every day.

Maybe you will like them better this time?

And if you would like to Support the Common Tater you can click here.

How to Fail at Blogging(Like Me!)

Not a lot of time nor energy to be original today, so I thought in honor of my blogiversary week I would reshare my advice on how to be a failed blogger like me. Enjoy!

The World's Common Tater

There are plenty of posts out there about being a successful blogger. This one will show you how to fail. Enjoy!

Start a Blog and then Ignore it For Years – I signed up for WordPress a long, long time ago. I posted a few times a year and never really thought about it. I started posting regularly a couple of years ago.

Once You Start Posting, Be Inconsistent – When I say I post regularly, what I really mean is that I post more often. There is noting regular about my posts. If you want to be sure no one will read your blog post at odd times, on different days and with no regularity at all. No one will ever know when to look for one of your posts.

Don’t Find a Niche – Be stubborn like me and post about random stuff with no consistency. One day…

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Happy Blogiversary to Me

I didn’t get any official notification from WordPress that it is today, but my Facebook memories told me that last year was 10 years on WordPress. My math is good enough to theorize that today would now be 11 years. 11 years of babbling about nothing. Before that I babbled a lot on LiveJournal, but under the name Demoncatch. I’ve been boring people online for years. Yay me.

As I enter the next year of blogging, I think maybe I should consider again the point of the blog.

Do I continue what I do which is post whatever pops in my head whenever I have time to do it even though it is not exactly a successful formula?

Do I veer more towards pop culture and media and do more TV/movie/book/music reviews, recaps, etc with a little more general pop culture thoughts thrown in?

Do I go back to posting more thoughts on current events, but take more time on crafting an essay and not just vomiting my thoughts out for 10 minutes and posting?

Do I just stop thinking about it and do whatever makes me happy because no matter what only about 20 people are going to read it anyway?

You would think after 11 years I would have more of a sense of what I want to do here.

 

My Year in Blogging So Far

I should probably wait until the end of the month so it’s officially mid-year, but I have a severe case of “I should write something but I have nothing to say” so I am going to revisit times this year when I posted and people read. Maybe you will find one you missed.

Here are the boring stats – 4611 views, 2748 visitors, 1265 likes, 383 comments. Very small numbers for most, but not too shabby for me.

Where are these visitors from? Mostly the US, but the UK, India, and Canada all hit three figures so far.

Now my top five posts of the year:

The Lori Loughlin Scandal in Full House GIFS – over 200 views and all it is is my look at the college scandal using Full House GIFS. I never expected anyone would actually read it, much less over 200 people.

Tater Talks Teachers – and now we drop to my more common numbers for most read – in the 50’s. I wrote about some of my favorite teachers and then shared it to my high school class’s Facebook page.

My Favorite Song From Each Year I’ve Been Alive – Self-explanatory. A list of my favorite song from each year I’ve been alive.

I Learned to Knock that Day  A repost of something I wrote based on a friend talking about walking in on their parents at an intimate time. I still think it would be a good children’s book.

Tater Talks Blogging – Where I bore people by blogging about blogging.

And I leave you with the link to my page with a link to pity me and send support my blogging or at least buy me a coffee to drink so I don’t doze off while writing.

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A Change to My Schedule

I have several changes to my work schedule this week and I’ve driven someone to the airport twice over the last few days. That, however, is not the change I’m writing about.

The change in schedule comes from reverting back from an empty nest house to a house with a 19 year old living there. I had changed my habits for when I write, when I watch my alone shows and my reading to fit my new life of having multiple hours alone every night. I’m now back to coming home to someone already in the house.  This is not a bad thing. I like having my kid back at home for the summer. I will just have to adjust my life back to where it was before she went away to college.

I will have to try to write in the mornings before work again. I could write in the evening still, but I still feel weird writing with my family around. I don’t think they get the whole blog thing and I don’t want to have to tell them that I’m posting something on the blog. So, I will write during my alone times in the morning while the college kid is asleep.

I will struggle to find time to watch the shows I watch alone. I will have to watch in the morning or wait until she is at a friends house or asleep on the couch. We will have plenty of time to catch up on the shows we watch together. I have hours of TV on the DVR I’ve been saving to watch with her.

So, after today, my blog posts will go up in the mornings(or not at all if I sleep late) until such time that I am an empty nester again or until I get over writing when other people are around.

An Upward Trend or an Anomaly

I hit 1000 views in a month for the first time ever in April. I actually made it all the way to 1125 views. I know some blogs get more views than that in one day, but for a mediocre little blog like mine, it is a success. My WordAds earnings are still a fraction of the blog cost, but it also far exceeded any other time I’ve been doing this. I’m not really sure why the stats are up. I can’t tell if this is the start of an upward trend in my stats or if it was just an anomaly and will correct itself soon. It might be a combination. I can think of two things I did differently this month that might have helped.

  1. I wrote a little more regularly. I had several weeks where I posted every day. That is not the norm for me. I tend to have weeks where I only post three times with two of those being my regular posts on Friday(week in reading and viewing) and Sunday(What’s Good) with some random post somewhere else in the week. I don’t think this is a trend that will continue. I know weeks will come when I have nothing to say and weeks will come where I don’t have time to write. I have at least two weeks coming up where I will be out of town and likely not writing. I can’t count on this being a reason for an upward trend.
  2. I did more to publicize this month. I shared posts in blogging groups. I shared posts on Twitter and Facebook when they coincided with a topic. I commented more on other blogs. All of this will lead to more traffic. Since then, I have left one of the blogging groups because it didn’t seem like the right fit. I know only belong to one group, but it is a good group and we actually want to read each other’s posts. I will try to continue to share old posts if they are relevant and be better about getting my new posts out there. I really hate all of this, though. I feel weird pushing my posts. I keep thinking I will lose all of my followers if I post more than once. I will continue to try to be better about interacting with other blogs, but sometimes even if I like a post I don’t feel like I have anything to add to the conversation.

So, I guess it is yet to be seen if this is an upward trend or just a weird, one-time uptick that will self-correct.

I promise not to blog about blogging again any time soon.

 

Ask Me Stuff/Where To Find Me

As I posted this morning on my Facebook page I am going to attempt to do an “ask me anything” post later this week if I get enough questions for a post. So, use the comments to ask me questions. Personal questions, hypotheticals, true/false – ask me and if it’s not too personal and embarrassing I will answer them in a post later this week. Of course, there is a good chance no one cares enough to ask any questions and I will have to resort to either making up my own questions to fill a post. So, ask away!

I will use the rest of the space today to let you know where else you can find me in case I don’t bore you enough here.

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