I gave up control of my platform to actually start writing
Sometimes you need to give up control to get stuff done.
I just recently found one of my old blogs that had been missing for several years now. I forgot what I called it, and where it was located. I ended up just stumbling upon it. By looking through a google inventory of my sites.
I clicked the link, and started looking back on it fondly. It made me laugh a little. I was using blogger between 2008–2009.On blogger I had a total of twelve posts. In the time of those posts an entire year had passed, and that was all that I had written. By comparison this should be my twelfth or thirteenth post on Medium since I started on July 26th.
I start to think back on why I had written so little. I figured out that I stopped writing for two fundamental reasons that I am working to get past.
I cared if someone read my work
At the time, I didn’t realize that it takes years to build a following of people. I just thought that if I put my writing out there someone was bound to stumble upon it, and love it. It became really discouraging when I went months, and had only a couple of views.
Right now I don’t have a following of people. What I realized though is that it doesn’t matter. I just need to keep writing. If I keep writing I should get better. If I get better the followers should come. That also means that I need to keep with it for more than twelve posts.
Even if the followers don’t come that’s OK too. At this point, I am writing for myself. I do it now, because I want to get better. Eventually, I want to be able to write that novel. Along with being the world’s uppermost underwear reviewer. Being a legitimately published author is on my bucket list, and I want to achieve it. I don’t want to just publish something that I threw together. I want it to be work. I want to look back on it, and see that I really pushed myself to put something of quality that I can be happy with.
Half a dozen people might read this, and that’s OK. Every post makes me a little better. Every post gets me closer to being a writer.
I cared to much about control to get anything done
When I started writing. I wanted to control every aspect of my site. I wanted to code all the html itself. So, I did, and that thing looked like a steaming pile of shit. I didn’t care. I wanted it to be completely by my hand. I was also always looking for that perfect web hosting company.
To top that off, I had issues where I couldn’t decide where I wanted to keep my writing. I had some notepad docs floating around. I had some files saved off on my home server. I had stuff on my homegrown site. If there was a way to put some text down electronically, or store it, I probably did it.
The problem was I have forgotten where I have kept a good number of things. Some are still floating out there, and I might not ever be able to find them again. I got consumed in freedom. When in reality that freedom just pushed me into more of a prison of indecision, and forgetfulness.
What do I do now?
So, I have now split my two types of writing.
If it’s a blog it goes on medium. If it’s code it lives in Github. If it’s any other type of writing, and extra material it goes on google docs.
I then make backups that I load on my home server that transfers to a service called Crashplan for safe keeping.
For me the backups give me a weird piece of mind. It gives me the reassurance that if the platforms just disappear. I would at least still have the effort I put into them.
One day I might revisit starting my own blog again, and hosting the content myself. Once again, I might get fed up with not having control of my platform. With Medium being available I seriously doubt that. Medium has given me the ability to get my thoughts down as fast as possible, and build them into coherent posts. They put controls in place that some don’t seem to be happy with.
For me though, it causes me to worry less about exactly how something will be formatted, and more about getting my message out. Which to me, is the thing that takes priority.
I do say thank you Medium. You taking control of my platform has left me with nothing to do, but what’s important. That’s to write.