Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Kick Me, It's Halloween

My lunch break is a sacred time where I can fall out of the time stream and indulge in a bit of geekery during the work day. Sometimes I write for Exfanding or GameCola, but most of the time it's an opportunity to catch up with YouTube comments on my Mega Man videos. However, there's another lunchtime activity I've let slip, and that's reading other peoples' blogs.

When we first started Exfanding, catching up on other blogs was a daily routine for me. I felt more a part of a greater blogging community, and keeping myself immersed in a culture of reading and writing made it easier for me to blog.

Regular visits to other blogs provided inspiration for content, as well as layout and design. I'm no web designer, but I'm good at teaching myself how to accomplish something I've seen other people do. Beyond that, constantly looking at other, prettier blogs drove me to make Exfanding Your Horizons look as pretty as I could make it without paying anyone or formally learning the craft of coding.

Honestly, I think we've done pretty well. We're not the flashiest blog on the Internet, nor are we the most profound, but it's home for us. Judging from the numbers, it's home for some of you, too. Well, it's at least that monumental ball of yarn you pass by on your trips down the Information Superhighway.

That's been our problem the past few weeks: we haven't been home. We come here to crash after a long day of work, or we pop in to hastily tidy up before heading elsewhere. We spent more than a week talking about a convention we attended for a day. We made excuses for having to make excuses.

Halloween is less than a week away! Alex should be writting about vampire novels and horror movies. I should be whining and complaining about how much I hate candy, pumpkins, and fun. So far, one post this month has had anything whatsoever to do with Halloween, and that's only because the comics that Alex normally buys happened to have a Halloween theme that week.

All because we haven't been home.

Alex has been traveling and working extra hours at the office. I've been relentlessly focused on Mega Man and GameCola. But there's more to it than that. We've drifted away from our ties to the rest of the blogosphere.

We used to spend entire lunch breaks catching up on reading blog posts. We used to swap links with other bloggers. Blogging was once a project; now it's a routine, but that isn't an inherently bad thing. It just means we're more prone to letting our lives outside of the blog directly influence its content and structure. Life has been a strong influence this month, and as a result, there's been more fluff and more excuses than usual.

It's not a matter of quality; it's a matter of focus. Our strongest posts these past few weeks have been the ones that have aligned with this blog's mission: to introduce, explain, discuss, and demystify various hobbies and fandoms to promote an understanding between geeks and to spark an interest in the things that interest us.

Sometimes we need a swift kick in the digital pants to get us back on track. A little bit of quality time with the blogs I've been neglecting provided the perspective I needed.

I've liked everything we've written this month. It's just that we're making good filler episodes instead of continuing the ongoing story arc. We're not blogging about our lives--we're blogging around our lives.

Sounds like it's time for a lunch break.

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