The blogging experience at 1000 posts

Yes, this is the 1000th post here on SelfAwarePatterns.  I started this blog in November, 2013, largely from two motivations.  One was because I had done Nanowrimo the previous November.  (Nanowrimo is a challenge to write a novel in a month.  Worth checking out if you’ve ever had that ambition.)  I felt bad about not doing Nano that year, and starting a blog seemed like a good alternative for writing development.

But the other motivation was just to have a place to comment on things without space limitations, arbitrary commenting policies, or biased moderators getting in the way.  After an absence of several years, I had returned to online discussions primarily to test my conclusions, to see what kinds of arguments people could make against them, and out of a desire to connect with people with similar interests.

I went through 2012 and much of 2013 happily commenting on news sites and other people’s blogs.  But by late 2013, I’d had numerous comments on Huffpost blocked, and a few bloggers who had deleted one or more comments, not for rudeness, but for simply disagreeing with the content.  When news stories broke about the biased moderators on many news sites, I decided it was time to get my own little spot on the web.

An early delightful surprise was the friendly and thoughtful commentary from fellow bloggers in the WordPress.com community.  I’ve participated in many online environments over the decades, and I have to say this is one of the best, if not the best, for lucid thoughtful discussions on complex topics.  I’ve found a lot of friends in this community.  It’s hard to see this blog lasting as long as it has without them.

Posting frequency has varied a lot over the years, from the daily posting in the first year, to what I’ve often referred as a “blogging winter” in late 2017 and most of 2018.  It was a relief to be able to reestablish the posting habit in 2019.

From the beginning, this has been a blog preoccupied with the mind, but also with science, philosophy, space, science fiction, history, and society, although occasionally veering into other topics.  I used to do more political posts, but those are pretty rare now, mostly reflecting my own disgust with the topic these days, but also a suspicion that there’s already enough of that elsewhere.

This year, technical problems forced me to change my theme for the first time in years.  I’ve gradually become used to the new one.  It looks like soon I’ll have to change editors, which will be a new experience I have mixed feelings about.  On the one hand, the block editor will provide features I’ve always been annoyed were absent, such as tables, which will enhance the content, but it will definitely be a different experience to the simple one I’ve been used to for years.

I’m not going to make predictions about what I’ll post on in the future.  Past attempts tended to be wide of the mark.  But it’s hard to see stopping anytime soon.  If you have opinions on things and a desire to talk about them, I highly recommend blogging.  It’s a much better experience than most other avenues.

As always, I remain grateful for my online friends and the conversations we’ve had.  You’re what makes this worth doing.  I hope the next 1000 posts are as enjoyable as the first!

33 thoughts on “The blogging experience at 1000 posts

  1. Congrats on 1000 posts! I have to agree that WordPress is one of the more pleasant places to hang out on the Internet, and your blog is one of my personal favorites.

    Regarding block editor, I was pretty nervous about it at first too, but it didn’t take long for me to get used to it. I’d say it took me a week or so to get used to the new system, and I haven’t wanted to go back since.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks James! And your blog is one of mine.

      Good to know on the block editor. I’ve actually played around with it a few times, the first right after it was launched, when it was pretty awful, and not that long ago, when it much better although still a bit complex. Sounds like they keep a Classic Editor block available, which will probably make the transition easier, although I suspect like you, within a week or so, I’ll be immersed in the new toys.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Mike it’s always a pleasure to see you on my spot. Though most times your posts are above my pay grade, I still find your explanations very lucid and easy to follow.
    And I agree with you, blogging is great and WordPress community is quite a community.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Mak! I try not to make them above anyone’s pay grade, but it’s not always easy. Glad you find them lucid! (Hopefully the generally shorter post lengths are helping.)

      One of the great things about this stuff is interacting with people like you, who I never could have when I was younger, simply because of distance and cost.

      Like

  3. And you thought you’d miss it. Congrats, dude! Welcome to the 1000-Posts club! There is a reason this is one of the very few blogs I follow, and those discussions you mention are the reason. For exactly the reasons you list. Here’s to the next 1000!

    (Funny how our arcs are similar. We both started in 2013, we both took some time off after 2016 (for me it was all of 2017), and we both have an interest in science, SF, and the mind. Blogging Brothers! (Like most brothers we don’t always agree. 😀 )

    [sigh] I suppose I really should get around to checking out that block editor…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Haha! Thanks!

      I almost did miss it. I just happened to notice that the previous post was 999 when I went back for some minor typo fixes.

      Blogging Brothers! Definitely we have a lot in common. But like all friends, we spend a lot more time on our differences. But that’s what makes it fun!

      The Block Editor was better the last time I looked at it. I’ve just been reluctant to switch until I needed it. Looks like WP has decided that’s soon.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. 2013 seems to have been a big year. That’s about when I started getting seriously involved in all this consciousness stuff, and started on the Twitter.

    Your blog has been a highlight of this whole process, and I look forward to the next 1500 posts.

    *
    [1500 being my go to large number, obv]

    Liked by 3 people

  5. Hello, SelfAWarePatterns! I would have never thought that you would eventually reach 1,000 posts! I haven’t read a lot of what you have said so far (not even 0.2% of your posts), but I have enjoyed reading about your thoughts on science, mind, and morality. Keep going!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Congrats! I started my website after a NaNoWriMo too! I’m not as prolific with my posts (passed 350 recently), but I wonder if my word count is higher. : )

    I didn’t realise there is a “community of WordPress.com bloggers.” Can you describe that more and how you’ve found each other? Maybe it’s something I should consider.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks! You may well leave me in the dust on word count. Particularly since a lot of the posts from the first year were really brief ones sharing some link, before I realized Twitter was better for that sort of thing.

      On the community, with a WordPress.com account, you get access to their Reader and the ability to Follow sites within it. It also gives you the ability to search all the wordpress.com content via tags or just search strings, making it easy to connect with people posting on the same kinds of topics. I meet (online meet) a fair number of people through it, and I think a lot of people find my blog through it. And, assuming you’re logged in, you usually know when you’ve landed on a wordpress.com site (even if, like me, they’re using a custom hostname), since a WP utility bar shows at the top.

      I don’t want to oversell it too much. The Reader has bugs that some of us spend a lot of time lamenting. But it’s something I didn’t find in the other blogging services I looked at back in 2013. Honestly, I the value of it caught me by surprise.

      Like

      1. Cool thanks. I recently started using wordpress.org for a charity website that I have taken over and yeah I kinda hate using it. So, I already get that banner thingy at the top of my browser when I visit your page, but since our charity doesn’t blog, I hadn’t looked into the community aspect before. I use weebly for my own website, which I find super simple and powerful enough for me. But thanks very much for that extra insight about wordpress.com and the community there. That’s a surprise to me too that I’ll have to consider.

        (Although surely Occam would explain your legion of followers compared to mine to be a result of the content rather than the platform…)

        Like

        1. WordPress.org sounds like a self hosted site. I’m with you on hating WP in that mode. Thankfully, wordpress.com doesn’t make us deal with the hosting details. (I’ve had to deal with self hosted WordPress at work. I probably wouldn’t be using this service if it made me deal with those issues.)

          Legion of followers? Not so much. It’s really a small group of friends who enjoy debating philosophy and science.

          Like

    1. Thanks! Some would say it’s a thousand posts of opinionated blather, but it keeps the writing skills somewhat oiled and interesting conversations going.

      I know what you mean on the pandemic. I know some people who’ve taken on serious projects in the last few months. Me, it’s taken effort to just keep doing the same ole thing, even without the commute.

      Like

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