Brian Bailey Preface to the Revised Edition

Sablogical

Two weeks ago, I announced that I was taking a break from this blog - a sablogical if you will. I return today refreshed, inspired, and with a new perspective. I greatly appreciate the many comments and emails I received which were uniformally kind and generous.

Why did I stop?

I stopped blogging because it had become something very different than what it once was and it was time for me to make a change.

1. Acrimony

My initial experience with the blogosphere was of a place filled with passionate people driven by a desire to share and communicate with others. More and more, and not unexpectedly, I found blogs filled with acrimony. Competition + arrogance + the echo chamber is a volatile mix. It is often easier to attack others than to offer your own, original contribution.

2. Addiction

On a personal level, there is no doubt that blogging can easily become a consuming passion. The reading > writing > feedback loop is nothing if not addictive. Unfortunately, blogging isn't found in the priority chain (God, family, church, work), though, somewhat sinisterly, it often touches them all. A key to successful blogging is putting it in its proper place, within appropriate boundaries.

3. Statistics

Lastly, a blog can often become more about numbers than words. How many hits? How many subscribers? Where do you rank? How many comments? Traffic, traffic, traffic. At the heart of it all, I had to ask myself, "What is your motivation?"

There are many ways to measure the success of a blog, and it will be different for everyone, but I refuse to be driven by numbers. I never want to lose my original purpose and passion.

4. New Things

I have a couple of projects that may or may not become a reality in the near future. I hope to have more to share soon, but I needed to step off the blog train in order to explore these possibilities more thoroughly.

Why did I start again?

Simply, I love to write, and I love how blogs allow you to share your voice in your own unique way. That and the chicks. Chicks dig bloggers.

What's New

1. If you're reading this in a newsreader, visit the site to see the new design. Thanks to Six Apart for releasing a number of great new templates.

2. The stat trackers are gone. There are a number of free sites that help you track how many people visit and what they do while they're there. You simply add some Javascript to your pages and each time a page is visited, information is sent to the site aggregating your data. Unfortunately, this is one more thing that has to load on every page and one more thing that can break, both of which negatively impacts the user's experience. I have removed all of these external scripts to make the site as quick and lean as possible, and as I said above, words trump numbers (and paper covers rock, for those of you scoring at home).

3. I will be posting more by posting less. In other words, I hope to invest more time and thought into each post, which will most likely mean you hear from me less, but hopefully you'll hear more when you do.

Thanks to everyone for your feedback and continued interest. I look forward to the next 15 months!