It’s that time of year again; namely, the anniversary Whatever’s founding, on this day, September 13, 1998. Which means that today it is a teenager, a couple months older than my daughter. And, given the nature of the commenters here, rather more likely to talk back and give me attitude than she is. There are days I’m rather ambivalent about that fact, although today is not one of them.
September 13 is often a day that I am introspective the writing world and my place in it, and this year is no exception to that. Someone yesterday on Twitter congratulated me on this site being the place Google takes you when you type “Whatever” into the search bar. I don’t know how much credit I can take for that; a lot of that is just calling the blog the same thing for thirteen years and writing on it on a daily basis. On the other hand, I’m not going to be artificially coy about it either; thirteen years of doing what I’m doing has given me a pretty big footprint, which has been pretty useful for me and for what I’d like to do. I’m acutely aware how much I owe to this blog.
I do wonder how long it will last — there is some indication that the “blog moment,” as it were, has passed, and people have moved on to Facebook and Google+ and Twitter and whatever comes after those things. I don’t especially have a problem with this; I’m on all of those services and use them (although I like some more than others), and have a reasonably large footprint on them, too. But this is my home online; I’m naturally partial to it. To some extent “how long will it last” is a null question — Whatever will exist however long I choose to write it. But I also write to be read, so if everyone went away, the question would become, what then. I suppose I’ll worry about it then.
(Ironically, looking at the stats, the largest impediment to the growth of the blog is how much travel I’m doing — viewership here took a dip in May, when I was touring, and goes down when I’m off doing off-line things. Reasonable enough, since I’m not posting, or posting much less, during those times. This will be incentive, I suppose, for me to stock up on canned entries when I’m off to Germany next month.)
I’m still having fun writing here, which is ultimately the thing that matters. I like coming to the computer and blathering; I like reading the comments and commenting myself. I’m glad Whatever has become a useful place for other authors to talk about their work through the Big Idea pieces, and that it gives me an opportunity to talk about things I want to talk about, to people other than my pets. So I plan to keep doing it. We’ll see what happens in the next year. Check this space next September 13 for an update.
Also: Thanks for reading, and commenting, and being part of all of this. (Most of) You are part of why this is still fun for me.