Back from Vacay — Need Patience and Your Input

Back from a week on the beach, but I’m playing catchup on all the real-world work, so please bear with me.

Also, I may be modifying the format here before long since doing a daily roundup gets to be more a chore sometimes, rather than the fun it’s meant to be. I notice, too, I get more response from the random, entirely self-generated content — my rants and what all — than the skewed, Archie Bunkeresque take on the daily news in Dallas that is not at all a blatant ripoff of Leading Off at my main publication. I get so burned out I rarely even Twitter like I used to, and that’s less than 140 characters. Meanwhile, I forget to do off-the-cuff essays in response to crap like the backpage commentary from Sunday’s Points section from that depressing Frog essayist who needs a good kick in the ass. I suppose him being French is punishment enough, though.

Still — there are some days I enjoy the roundup, so I’m still trying to figure out the right balance and how to avoid this becoming a grind, while giving you a reason to come back everyday without tapping all my energies I need for the stuff that pays the bills and writes the wrongs. (Catch that one? Gotta use that sometime.)

So– call to action. Talk to me. I’d love your input on what you like most, what would keep you coming back, what generates the most interesting discussion, and so on, while I continue catching up on my to-do list in my day job as Clark Kent.


  1. Robert Guest says:

    Roundup is not the pinnacle of blog content. I abandoned mine long ago at the advise of my SEO guru. However, I enjoy yours because it’s a quick libertarian slant on local news that I can’t get anwhere else (much like the Agitator does for national news).

    Rhetorical smackdowns and original thought provoking content takes a lot of energy. Bloggers only have so much time and inspiration. I wish I could write AAA posts all the time, but I’d have to quit my real job.

    My advise; instead of asking the audience what they want, stick with what you enjoy writing the most. That will always be your best content.

    Don’t be afraid of switching from being a daily blog to 2-3 times a week blog. My worst writing is when I haven’t posted in a few days and I’m feeling the pressue to put something up.

    Finally, focus on the platforms you really care about. We can only blog/facebook/tweet/write so much content before we are drained. Cut back to what matters. If you can’t tweet then don’t.

    I’ve never understood why solo bloggers haven’t banded together geogrpahically. There are no one man newspapers or magazines, Yet we expect bloggers to provide a daily dose of thoughtful commentary. It’s not realistic. I’m not sure how blogs could join forces without losing SEO cred, but it’s worth looking into.

  2. Man — that’s exactly the kind of input I was hoping for to give me food for thought on where I’m taking this. And I’m flattered to be compared to Radley in any favorable way.

    I’ve been fortunate in building a decent readership and brand with this. And the brand doesn’t undermine my serious work for my home magazine — D — or any of the other pubs that give me the privilege of a journalistic, opinion, or humor platform. And lord knows I like nothing so much as the sound of my own voice, so this blog is something I’m committed to, one way or another.

    So figuring the how of keeping it going — it’s been a going, growing concern now since August 2008 with something like more than 400 posts — is something I’m really trying to cipher out.

    I’ll think on what you’re saying. Easily the most obvious truth in your advice is to stick to what I”m passionate about and love since that’s where a writer’s best stuff comes from. The mechanics just need jiggering.

    Thank you, Robert.

  3. Dallasite says:

    1. Team up with other bloggers so that you still have new content every day, but you aren’t having to produce all of it.

    2. It would help if the bloggers were somewhat like minded so that you aren’t blogging city politics one day and dancing with the stars the next.

  4. Frank R says:

    Obviously sticking with what you are passionate about is the best course. That also does not mean that things get boring or mundane. What we are passionate about is often a common thread which can run through many topics.

    I like the idea of multiple bloggers, but I agree that like mindedness would be desirable. Some blogs I go to because they offer good balance discussion of specific issues. Others I go to for point of view.

  5. Steve says:

    When I started Homers On The Range back in ’07, I had two other co-authors and it made the blog a lot more insightful and humorous due to the combination of backgrounds and viewpoints. However, over the past six months or so, my cohorts have bailed on Homers for the greener (and much, much duller) pastures of posting stupid updates and pics of what they’re eating on Twitter. Since going it alone, I’ve encountered a lot of the same issues you’re facing. If you get to the point where you’re looking for a counterpart, I’d love to discuss possibilities with you.

  6. Jen says:

    Well you aren’t the only one who likes to hear you talk. ;) I prefer when I get to hear/read what you or other bloggers think on a certain topic. Rather than a piece pulled from the news. While pulling my attention to the news topics I like your sarcastic and/or pithy comments about it better.

    And I agree the like minded bloggers would be a great addition.

  7. keith johnson says:

    I like the blog just like it is-a little gratuitous sex and violence every so often wouldn’t hurt though.

  8. Bear says:

    Robert had it dead on. You do your best work here and elsewhere when you’re just letting your reactions to what’s being said flow…

  9. amanda says:

    We could liven up this or any blog by inviting Sandra Crenshaw and Jack E. Jett to contribute content. IJS.

  10. Have you thought about adding a typing monkey?

  11. Tom says:

    More cowbell.
    But seriously, the roundup is the best way for you to get your thoughts out there and for the masses to react and snipe at each other.
    But it doesn’t have to be a daily roundup. Two or three times a week would suffice.

  12. Doug says:

    Write what you want to write…..and when and how.