Where I’ve been & where I am

So, as evidenced by the date of my last post, I’ve been absent from the blogosphere for quite a while, for a couple of reasons. Firstly, I needed retreat in order to focus on my work. I’m a freelance Drupal/web developer and general techie working with non-profit organizations, and both the freelance and the non-profit aspects of that mean I need to bust ass and stay very, very focused to make a living, make progress, make deadlines, just make it. I wasn’t focusing like I needed to and found myself struggling to keep up with my work, do justice by my clients, and make enough money to pay taxes and the bills and the rent. So I necessarily stepped back from many time-consuming things in my life, including blogging. When I get really into the blogosphere, especially when I get wrapped up in the more heated discussions, debates, and arguments, it drains a whole lot of my time, and since I’m a freelancer, it’s easy to eat into work hours, promise myself I’ll make up that time later – and never really make it up. But I’m happy to report that I’ve made tons of progress, am more financially stable, and have been making exciting moves towards expanding my work and increasing my collaboration with other folks. I’m still trying to stay primarily focused on work – expansion takes a lot of time and energy – but I’m in a much better place.

The other reason I’ve been gone is that blogging itself was getting away from me – at least, blogging right was. See, it started with commenting on other blogs. I realized that while I was reading amazing stuff from amazing bloggers, I wasn’t really engaging in the conversations or expressing my appreciation, agreement, disagreements, whatever my reactions were to their words. And as a blogger myself, I know how important it is to get that feedback and to take part in the conversations; blogging in a vacuum isn’t very good blogging at all, in my opinion. Then I started slipping on reading other blogs at all; hell, I was barely even reading what my co-bloggers on Feministe were writing. That felt pretty crappy and made me feel even more disconnected from the larger conversations. And finally, I started having trouble responding to comments on my own blog posts. I still can’t believe it took me more than 2 months to respond to Denise Oliver-Velez’s comment on my Young Lords post (she was a leader and member of both the Young Lords and Black Panthers). When I can’t even respond to the people who are taking the time to read and respond to my work, then I’m not doing my duty as a blogger, punto.

So – all that is to say that yes, I’ve been gone, but I’m not gone for good. I’m starting to get the itch to blog again, and that itch got soooo much itchier since I got to the Women, Action and Media conference yesterday. And though I do have to stay on top of my work stuff and can’t let blogging bleed into those hours too much, I do want to come back to this. But I want to do it right, so I’ve set some rules for myself: first, I start reading other folks’ blogs; then, I start commenting on those blogs and get involved in the conversation; then, I start really getting back to blogging again, as long as I can keep up with my comments. I may post here and there before I can really start reading the blogs (including posts about WAM, which I hope to start writing soon). But if I’m gonna do this right, I need to be a part of the blogging communities that are important to me, I need to listen to them and contribute to them and be aware of what’s going on. It’s the only responsible way I can do it, and it’s the only way I can do this blogging thing right.

So yes – hopefully you’ll be seeing more of me soon!

9 Responses to “Where I’ve been & where I am”

  1. 1 maia

    cant wait to hear about wam! so jealous. would have loved to be there. hey can we repost this at ravens eye? please. email us at ravenseyeblog@gmail.com

  2. 2 Jack

    @maia: It would’ve been great to have you there! Hopefully I’ll get up a post about it soon.

    As for reposting this – sure, go for it! I’ll email you too.

  3. 3 Krisna Best


    Glad to see you back. I’ve really dug some of the perspectives I’ve read on this blog and hope you keep it up. Politics is bigger than just blogging; these are questions that will have an impact on developing movements in some way or another. As an organizer myself, I’ve actually used some of what you’ve laid out here in talking with people and trying to convince them of the validity and necessity of Queer liberation and struggle and I know others who are doing the same.

    Looking forward to reading more.


  4. 4 Lauren

    Time is such an issue, especially when you have to devote so much time to work and have to treat the engagement/activist work like a hobby in order to do the bread-and-butter kind of work. It sucks.

    It’s funny, too, I’ve been trying to break out of my usual reads and start leaving comments again. It’s been a long time.

  5. 5 outspoken outlier

    hi jack,

    i JUST started blogging yesterday, and your post (and your blog in general) is a great introduction to the blogosphere for me. mostly, you have set the bar high in terms of what it means to be a blogger, and you’ve laid out a good reminder that we should not write in a vacuum, as we do not exist in a vacuum.

    thanks for that. looking forward to more.


  6. 6 Laid Off Diary

    Blogging is pretty time consuming and I agree, just writing new posts for your own blog in a vacuum is a little boring so I try to read other people’s blogs (especially, like mine, blogs about being laid off and life after being laid off) and comment and keep up with what’s going on but balancing that with my social life (which has tremendously taken off since being laid off so that’s the silver lining) and trying to balance my budget is really time consuming.

    Anyway, I hope you find time for blogging soon!

  7. 7 Shev

    Really good to see you’re back online! I’ve been checking back on your blog every now and then, and I was well excited to see a new post. Obviously real life is more important than blogging, so you just do what you need to do, but it’d be great to read some more of your thoughts.

  8. 8 leiominala

    Congrats on your return! Happy to see you’re back

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