Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Going AWOL

The ever delightful Lady Glamis has dared her many followers to Unplug. Actually she's invited us in her sweet and warm way, but the concept remains constant: Unplug from the Internet for an entire week each month.

Dedicate that week to whatever you wish, of course, but we writers are pretty focused. An entire week to simply write. No blogging. No misspent hours combing those intriguing blogs or sites or "researching" or emailing or tweeting. Just blessed silence. And time to write.

That prompted grey matter spasms. Seriously? I know I spend far too much time visiting blogs and commenting and contemplating and thinking and being a part of the on-line community. But I also know I gain a great deal from that interaction.

But then I realized: If I'm honest with myself, I know that I've written far far less now that I blog. Yikes. That's a powerful and gut-wrenching self-realization. Yuck. Not exactly something I want to face. But it's true.

So, now to you:

1. How does blogging influence your writing for the positive?
2. How does blogging influence your writing for the negative?
3. How many minutes/hours per day/week do you spend blogging?
4. How do yo balance your writing life with your on-line life?
5. Are you, too, planning on "unplugging" the third week of every month?


  1. Some people are out of control. I have 45 blogs that I follow, 8 of which get updated less than once a month. Out of those 45, less than half get updated daily.

    I will admit posting on my blog every day decreased my writing time. So I slacked off. But I certainly am not following hundreds of blogs.

    Cause that would suck!

    I have learned so much about writing online. And I have made some really good friends. I've found my balance.

    I'll skip down to question 5.

    No. :-)

    Find a balance that works. Unplugging yourself from the net for a week may work for you.

    It may not. Different people have different ways at learning prioritization and multitasking.

    Of course, I am cheating. I worked for a large corporation in the 90's. This is exactly like the old email vs. real work debate of yor. Us folks in that environment had to find a way to deal with the online inputs or look for new jobs.

    This is why I both snicker and feel sorry for agents who get so much mail. That stuff is really old hat to us techies. The email flood did drown people, I know people who went on to different types of work because they just couldn't figure it out.

    So I sympathize with this discussion, I sure do. My singular advance is to prioritize online inputs. Ride that sucker. Don't let it ride you.

  2. I also follow a lot of blogs, most about writing, but some other silly ones as well. My writing comes first, then I check out my social networking friends, read some blogs, and finally feed the cat... I'm kidding. The cat gets fed first thing in the morning.

    But I do prioritize my writing over pretty much anything but the wife.

  3. I'm definitely scaling down. But I do think there is value in blogging. It's still writing. Right. And you get to meet some wonderful bloggers, too.

  4. Writing is such a solitary thing, so blogging helps me feel connected to a community.

    Also, I was researching one of the editors who has my novel on submission and found an interview wherein she was asked, "Do you ever google a potential new author?"

    her answer was, "Always."

    Blogging is a connection to fellow writers...a source of fun and information...but it also helps if an editor punches my name into their google bar and actually finds something.

  5. A whole week? Yikes! It sounds like it might be beneficial, you know - to family life, to writing, but I could not do it! Now, I might be able to take baby steps - a day or two. But a week, that reqires some serious mind muscle.


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