Monday, July 07, 2008

Taking a Breather to Find Something Lost

I have been doing a lot of thinking....and the last four days I spent in Lake Placid has helped me get my head around a few things, including what I'm doing with various projects, including what I'm doing (or not) with this blog....

Recently, Heather Brandon of Urban Compass announced an hiatus, as did David Eisenthal at the Eisenthal Report in May, when he was elected to a post as selectman in his hometown...and there have been a few others here and there....and I've been thinking that an hiatus sounds like a wonderful idea.

A number of circumstances have, for me, have been something of a signal to step back and re-evaluate what's happened over the past 2 years, where things are going, where I want to be going...

Some of where I've gone has been in a direction I wasn't sure I wanted to go. It just sort of happened....and at times, not too well...which really isn't all that good....(although I will always say a big thank you to the people who made all sorts of things happen...they know who they are...and they mean a great deal to me, whether they know it or not...)

There have also been some life-issues that have raised their ugly heads--things I've put on the back-burner, or thought could "keep" until I figured things out with career. But they've cause their own level of discord....

And then there was the kidney stone in March. Something of a wake-up call there, I wasn't able to totally listen to...but it was the culmination of a number of wake-up calls....

So, by taking the summer off, shutting things down here, I'm putting the focus more on my life--on taking a look at where things are going, and where I want to be. Looking at my future, rather than just in-the-moment...and trying to find my Center again. Like a piece of clay on a potter's wheel, things about Me got pulled off-center in the zeal to create something special....

There are a few places I'll be:

  • there will be some photos on Flickr (some new ones not uploaded yet)

  • a tweet or two on Twitter (@tishgrier)

  • LinkedIn and Facebook

  • and popping up at a conference here and there (try Bizjam Seattle and PodCamp Boston next.)

  • Update I'll be at Andy Sernovitz's Word of Mouth Marketing Crash Course. Thanks for the scholarship, Andy!

  • But I'm not going to be online all the time, nor worrying about getting my $.02 in before the news turns to fishwrap nor whether or not I'm the Girl with the Most Tweets.

    There's work to do for some others to help them get started, and I'm glad I can do that for them. They've got very worthwhile projects and I'm glad to be part of that.

    But no big whoopie announcements of grants or fellowships or anything of that sort. That's not quite where I wanted to be anyway...

    And then there's getting back to the me that exists beyond blogging. Since college (98-01), there have been many changes in my life--from a traumatic divorce and all the identity loss that comes with the territory, a weighty degree and no clear goal afterwards, my Mother's death, a distancing from faith, and a few more things best left unsaid here. The easiest way to say it is that I have been finding things about me that I lost years ago. And in the process, slowly clearing out the underbrush of anger and disappointment, understanding what love is about, and acknowledging when I missed it and why...

    and in all of this, slowly beginning to see a path into a very different future....

    So, for now, things will be...well...quiet here. It's for the best....enjoy the summer everyone!

    Things to do on your summer vacation...WOM, Widgets and Writing Notes

    So, you've got some time to spare this summer? A few of my friends are doing some cool stuff you might want to check out:

    Word-of-Mouth marketing guru Andy Sernovitz will be hosting a small-group w-o-m crash course in Chicago on July 30th. Andy'd also like me to let you know they're offering a $250.00 discount (use the code "welovebeelinelabs" when registering.)

    RSS widget-building just got easier with Grazr 3.0 I just went in and in 5 minutes created a very attractive black widget titled "Springfield Reading List" which you can see in my sidebar. There are a whole host of new features in Grazr 3.0, so check out the info tour and some of the cool sample streams, including Top Twits
    a special stream from Twitter
    (disclosure: I did some work for Grazr...)

    And awhile back I had a chance to test out Evernote which "easily capture information in any environment using whatever device or platform you find most convenient, and makes this information accessible and searchable at any time, from anywhere." I've given it a test-drive, and it's great for taking notes in various formats, sorting the info, etc. And it even reads the terrible scribbles of whiteboard writing!

    Now, go play!

    Tuesday, July 01, 2008

    The Death of Blog Comments and the Rise of the Commentosphere (??)

    Something strange has been happening in the blogosphere--lots of people have noticed that blog comments aren't as plentiful as they used to be. This lead Robert Scoble to declare blog comments dead and Duncan Riley to say "no they're not, they're just someplace else" on Disqus, FriendFeed, etc...

    This is something a Aldon Hynes and I recently discussed both online and off--we'd noticed something quite similar...and it's something that other friends have commented on in phone in "where have all the bloggers gone?"

    So, no longer can we judge a blog by its comments section--because depending on the blogger's involvements, the comments may be aggregating in other places.