Today I received an email celebrating my anniversary with Examiner. I've been "here" 3 years, but I have only posted a few times. In one of my posts I promised a multi-part in depth analysis that I never provided. Today, I thought I'd celebrate my anniversary.
As we all shift our attention to the New Year and things we'd like to change, I found this email reminding me of my past blogging encouraged me to finally write this blog entry I've been waiting to write for quite some time. As a yoga practitioner, ethics are very important to me, and I believe it is important to be open and honest in communication.
At one point I got quite busy and hadn't updated my blog in a while. As a result, I received a note that my status was changed. As a result of my inactive status, the fine print said I lost my rights to my work and I would no longer receive payments. Whether this is still true, I don't know... Shortly after this I received message after message promoting a lack of content. I found this site because I wanted to write about yoga. Instead, I am being pushed by a highly contrived payment structure to produce very little content but to spread it across many, many pages. Top ten list? Picture slideshow? Perhaps I could write one word per page and blog that way? I am also strongly encouraged to cross-reference other Examiner material. The idea is that you get to view a greater amount of advertising each time you keep clicking. I'm sure someone has a study that shows if you do a top ten list (Examiner will actually help provide some of the content) that people will likely click all the way through. That could be dozens and dozens of ads all for the benefit of Constant Reader! I have no idea if editors really read this stuff. Perhaps they just skim the first and last paragraphs. I am curious to see if this article gets greenlighted, let alone stays up on the site. This should prove an interesting writing experiment.
So, happy anniversary to me! My content is not considered valuable, nor is it considered mine, nor would I be compensated for it if it was. For the last couple of years I've written a number of other blogs on a number of other sites instead due to these policies. Some of these blogs include Ask Yoga Nerd and Type A Yoga, if you are curious enough to Google. I've even written for my local Patch sites in Martinez and Pleasant Hill on subjects including plus-sized yoga. My purpose is to present information to an interested populace. It is not to provide fodder for B-roll and royalty-free stock photo companies so that advertisers can give Examiner more money. But my real motivation for writing is to invite readers to explore and question the world around them, particularly that which is being presented to them with such an underlying agenda. Hopefully readers will still exist in the future.
In conclusion, in order to get over writer's block, here's a list (formatted for one page):
- Identify your purpose for writing generally.
- Identify your values and what you want to accomplish by writing.
- Keep engaged in the "writing world" through email subscriptions and social media. For instance, if I'd unsubscribed from Examiner, I wouldn't have been reminded of my third anniversary.
Good luck writing your truth in the New Year!