I met a great writer recently who just put up a post on his blog potentially “putting it to bed.” He had been at it for over five years and had started feeling drained. I don’t think he’s officially shutting down the site, but he’s stepping back to see how (and if) he can get back to the writing he had originally set out to do.
I really want to give him a hug.
When you set out to write something like a blog, your reasons could be all over the place. You wanted to write because you have passionate opinions around a certain topic. You thought blogging would get you to try something new. You just love the act of writing on a regular basis. For me, I started my site because I had an opinion about a pretty specific area (generational issues). You have probably noticed that I don’t exactly stick to that topic religiously. In fact, I haven’t written a truly “generational” post in a while.
Everything evolves over time. We get new jobs, we gain new interests, and we often drop things in the process of picking up new ones. Sometimes it sucks to make room, but we have to. Unfortunately, even if we are ecstatic about the new possibilities, we still mourn when something old must be given up.
What might be the most frustrating for writers is that readers see this process of evolution. Especially if it’s a blog, readers are front and center to our highs and lows. When I feel like I’m wandering, they see it. It drives me nuts, but there are times when I just don’t have the energy to put discipline back into blogging.
I want you to know I am not shutting off my site. I am not ready to put this to bed.
But I can honestly say that I understand why writers need to step back and look at their work. You want to assess if you’re sticking to what you had set out to do. The struggle you see is that sometimes people aren’t sure if it’s okay if things are different. The original motivation may have been honorable, but it doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice something new or better to hold on to your first intention.
It’s okay when the time for closure has come. When you put something to bed, you have to remember that there is a morning that follows.