Andrew Sullivan & some thoughts on Blogging

Donkey: Hi, princess.
Princess Fiona: It talks.
Shrek: Yeah, but it’s getting him to shut up that’s the trick.

Shrek 2001

I must admit Andrew Sullivan’s announcement gives me mixed feeling in several ways.

Sullivan was one of the first bloggers I read, and even when he eventually whet and started turning crazy over Sarah Palin he generally provoked thought & post after post.

He along with Stacy McCain gave a model of the blogging business, and I confess I’m a tad jealous.

You were there when it was just me and a tip jar for six years, and at Time, and at The Atlantic, and the Daily Beast, and then as an independent company. When we asked you two years ago to catch us as we jumped into independence, you came through and then some. In just two years, you built a million dollar revenue company, with 30,000 subscribers, a million monthly readers, and revenue growth of 17 percent over the first year. You made us unique in this media world – and we were able to avoid the sirens of clickbait and sponsored content. We will never forget it.

That is a notable accomplishment and regardless of what you think of his opinions the free market is a fair judge of success.  Perhaps I should  made a closer study and emulate his methods if not his opinions.

He talks about always being on deadline. Anyone who has seen me since 2008 knows my laptop is my constant companion from game night to dinners. It annoys people. Elizabeth Scalia absolutely nailed it:

I hear him. Having blogged almost non-stop for ten years, the last four-and-a-half of them while also writing two books and building this channel (and since May battling my own health issues which have been exacerbated by the stress) I fully hear what he is saying, and partly identify with it.

In truth it’s a mixed blessing, yes you are always on but you attend interesting events and meet interesting people (the readers are the best).  If you reporting as well you get an insight to things that you can’t get from behind the  media filter and can actually make a difference.  Finally a guy like Sully should thank his lucky stars because his stress doesn’t compare to a person doing hard labor. Vs past generations trying to make a living, the stresses of blogging are nothing.

On the other hand the relationship stress is real.

I notice a significant difference in how my wife and others perceive me since 40-50 hours weekly are now spent doing contract work instead of blogging 24-7.  To the family’s mind it is “real work”. While those who have seen me at CPAC over the last half decade or Blog Bash know that even at events that are fun I”m usually in a corner on the floor, writing, uploading and editing. To the wife & kids back home they only see the trip to Washington or Denver or the road trip with Stacy and the blogging as “playing on a computer.”

The question becomes as Sully leaves the nest, what about this place?

I’ve been flat out since 2008 (Since 2005 if you count the years blogging for Lightfrog / HiWired as a high level tech discussing everything from wireless systems to the net as a resource , the public net and buying a PC  That’s where the name “DaTechGuy ” comes from in case you’ve wondered.  Thanks to the Magnificent Seven writers: Baldilocks, Fausta, Pat Austin, Steve Eggleston, Lady Liberty, Pastor George Kelly and John Rubery (with a few more on the way)  burnout is less of an issue.

We’ve  had strong years when the blog was paying the bills and slow years when I couldn’t buy an instalanche (it’s been 10 months since the last time Glenn Linked.) and the contract payables/receivables work is needed to pay the bills, but when it comes down to it all of us here at DaTechGuy Blog as it says in the old Monkees song, have something to say and as long as we do,  like Glenn Reynolds we’re not going anywhere.

 

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