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The Loneliness of the Long Distance Blogger

Posted By Beth Terry On May 29, 2008 @ 9:46 pm In Blogging about Blogging | 45 Comments

I had planned to write a post about plastic on BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit) tonight, but I’m tired. And a little depressed. Because I just got wind of the fact that one of my favorite bloggers, Crunchy Chicken [1], is going to retire from blogging for a while, take a mental health break because of serious stresses in her life, and part of me went, “Oh. Lucky girl.” Is that f@#$ed up or what?

Don’t get me wrong. I love, love, love Fake Plastic Fish. I love how much I’ve learned since I started blogging here, and I love and appreciate all the support and great ideas I’ve received from FPF readers. But I’m also a perfectionist. So each night before writing my post, I have to psych myself up for the task at hand. I’m not a natural writer who can whip up a frothy bloggy confection lickity split. I usually have to add a few drops of agonizing and whining before the thing is done.

A while back, several technology bloggers suffered heart attacks [2]. Two of them died. Certainly writing a little personal eco-blog does not carry the same pressure as competing to break big technology stories. But as friendly as eco-bloggers tend to be with one another, we certainly feel the push to increase our readership or to be the first to find the answer to a green living problem.

So to those of you who blog, I ask the following questions. And to those who don’t blog but spend a lot of time reading other people’s blogs, some of these questions apply to you too.

1) Do you feel pressured to write a minimum number of posts per week?

2) If so, where does the pressure come from? If not, why the heck not? What’s your secret?

3) How do you manage your computer time in general? Is it easy for you to get on, do what you have to do, and get off? Or do you get sucked in for hours and lose track of time?

4) Do you have significant others who resent the time you spend online? How do you negotiate computer time vs. personal real-life time?

5) Do you ever find yourself walking down the street in the real world and realize that your head is still totally stuck in the Blogosphere?

6) Has your body suffered in any way from spending too much time sitting and staring at a computer screen rather than exercising? Has your diet suffered?

7) Have you resorted to alcohol or other chemicals to wind down and take your mind off cyberland? If so, is that a problem for you?

8) How do you manage your e-mail? Seriously. I need to know. Because remember when I wrote about having over 500 messages in my inbox? I still have over 500 messages in my inbox!

9) Does blogging ever make you feel lonely? It is, after all, a solitary act while you’re composing your posts. I suppose it’s no different from being any other kind of writer in that regard.

10) What kind of support can we, as bloggers and blog readers, give to each other besides nice comments on the blogs? Is there a way that we can work together and give each other a break? Sure, we could create a Forum to vent our frustrations and give each other feedback. But would that just add another task to our online “to do” lists?

11) Bonus question: How do you read blogs? Do you subscribe in a reader and if so, how many blogs are you subscribed to? How many feeds do you read each day? Do you feel pressured to keep up with your blog reading in addition to your blog writing?

Or is it just me?


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URL to article: http://myplasticfreelife.com/2008/05/loneliness-of-long-distance-blogger/

URLs in this post:

[1] Crunchy Chicken: http://www.thecrunchychicken.com

[2] bloggers suffered heart attacks: http://www.nytimes.com/2008/04/06/technology/06sweat.html

[3] Image: https://plus.google.com/+BethTerry

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