As the last post on this blog before the end of the year, I have yet to address an all-important question: What to do with this blog?
I kid you not, this has kept me up a few nights in a row. (That, and the toddler suddenly deciding to nurse again at from 3 – 4 AM, before declaring that she needs to go to the washroom, and where she has very stoutly refused to go to the washroom beforehand. Why?) I need a spine, something else that Twyla Tharp refers to in her book The Creative Life (see other thoughts related to that book here). A spine, in short, is a central idea that helps you keep creating. It might not be obvious in what’s actually created but it’s a guiding force nonetheless.
Clearly I enjoy writing. But I do that in my journal, with no editing except when I suddenly think of a better way to phrase things. And clearly I think my thoughts are interesting enough to share. (Sort of. Actually, I sometimes write and re-write things and fret that this blog might be a waste of people’s time. Blogging is one layer of thought up from journaling.) I guess I’ve gotten enough comments from people in the past saying how they appreciated me sharing my thoughts that I figure there might be something useful in it after all.
But writing about “my thoughts” (in big airy finger quotes) week after week feels so overindulgent. (On a side note, I’ve met my personal goal of posting weekly until the end of the year with this post!) Other than being with a trusted friend or trying to build a relationship, I’m wary of talking too much about myself unless I think it might be useful to someone else. So what direction to take?
- Food blog. I revisited this very old page from when I was in teachers’ college and recalled that I wanted to be a food blogger. In fact, I wanted to be recognized as a food blogger by The Food Bloggers of Canada. The problem? No niche. I eat everything, don’t want to invest much time in photograph, and there are already bloggers out there for pretty much every cuisine imaginable.
- Restaurant critic. I did this when I first purchased my own domain. I even think about it now. There aren’t that many restaurant critics for my part of town. But with the pandemic, I’m much more aware that a restaurant is another person’s livelihood, and I can’t bring myself to leave a publicly negative review on someone’s livelihood. Maybe I’ll figure out a positive-reviews only process.
- Mommy blog. I. Can’t. Stand. Mommy. Blogs. Yes, I am a mom and yes, I blog, and yes, sometimes I write about things my child inspires, but this is not a mommy blog. I mean the ones where inevitably I end up comparing my holey Donald Duck shirt to the locally-sewn backyard-grown minimalist cotton shifts that fit mother and each of her fifteen children with all the ethereality of pre-ring Galadriel. “Maybe the problem’s with you, Andrea.” You’re absolutely right, and I’m working on it. But I also have zero beauty tips to offer, precious little fashion sense, and I refuse to make money through Amazon affiliations. So I have no future as a mommy blogger.
- Reading blog. I think this is the winning one so far. I’ve been enjoying the marriage of talking about my books, and mulling over other people’s ideas is fun! In fact, I’ve even got a book list set up for the coming new year (I’m giving nonfiction a rest, for the most part, and diving back into fiction wholeheartedly).
So 2021, come in, come in! I can’t wait to read what you have.
Happy new year, everyone!