Why Write?

You have a blog ?!

– The Boy, incredulously

I think the boy was more surprised that blogs actually still exist and people still bother to use them.

Blogs seem really not cool right now. Big companies have them to drive SEO traffic to their products by keeping fresh links to keywords and topics. My blog obviously doesn’t do that, as my Google analytics indicate.

"Screenshot of Google Analytics showing little traffic"

So why bother?

In the last decade, we’ve had a move through various blogging platforms. There’s the venerable Wordpress (which I used to run this site on). Then the move to Medium, which promised easy tooling and a community of writers, but has devolved into a walled garden with monetization issues. (Aside, Toronto design studio Teehan & Lax worked on the first iteration of Medium, before they sold out departed for SoCal and Facebook).

Now the new hotness appears to be newsletters via email platforms like MailChimp or hybrid platforms like Substack. Everyone with something to say seems to have a Substack.

I don’t. Why not?

Mostly because I don’t view my blog as a place to share my deep thoughts. The thoughts aren’t particularly deep. Instead it’s a place to practise writing.

"Allen Iverson talking about practice, man"

My company has moved to fully remote. We’re trying to figure out the new norms of communication. But it’s becoming rapidly apparent that asynchronous written communication is going to be pretty important. The old trusty “one pager” to capture why we’re going to do something. So it makes sense to me to practise writing in a low-risk area where no one is watching. And not my journal …

And … if I interview someone and they want some background on what I think, or better yet if I’m out looking for a different role, someone can Google me (add to my Analytics traffic) and see what I’m about.