A very belated Happy New Year to you! It’s been a while- only one post since last April and even that was just to plug a musical fundraising project. But, after 9 months “out of business”, the time has come to restart regular posts at Five O’Clock Shadow.
Why the long break?
Well, even though I enjoyed writing the pieces, I was confused about how best to set up a blog for success, both in readership numbers and financially. Plus, I was pressuring myself to maintain a strict deadline of 1 new post per week. I was getting stressed out about keeping up production, and also about my relatively low readership.
There were times when Tom Brady’s career post-season win total was higher than the number of people who read my stuff. (Many thanks to all of you who actually did read my stuff!).
So I pulled the plug on the whole blog thing in order to figure out how to do it better. That was supposed to take about month or two. But after that, my family and I had a chance to spend 5 weeks at the beach. Guess how much work I did then? Yep. All of the sudden it was summer. Anybody remember what happened back then? People started coming out from Covid isolation en masse, all vaxed up and ready for fun. As a musician (toddfulginiti.com), I had an avalanche of gigs that lasted pretty much through the end of the year. A year and a half worth of pandemic-cancelled events were itching to get back on the books, and it seems like most of them did. No complaints here- as a musician it was great, but restarting the blog took a backseat.
Enough with the excuses- did you fix your problems?
It’s complicated. Yes and no.
I learned that, as far as technical/structural things, Five O’Clock Shadow is in pretty good shape. I also learned that most of the common ways to grow and monetize a blog involve doing things I don’t want to do. It’s not that I’m lazy, but my purpose for writing doesn’t include selling or advertising products; it’s also not focused on a well-defined and narrow demographic, as is recommended. In fact, some of the biggest “no-no’s” of blog earnings are things I really like to do!
Oh- so you think you’re smarter than the experts now?
Of course not. I think I’m writing with a different focus. Five O’ Clock Shadow is more of a magazine or a newspaper column than a standard blog. I’m interested in telling stories, offering commentary and sharing creative projects as the inspiration hits, hopefully in ways that readers will find valuable. I don’t want to bombard people with an avalanche of posts each month, nor do I want to put myself on a strict production schedule.
No disrespect to the experts and their advice, but I’m keeping my wide-ranging focus with all of the Five O’Clock Shadow categories. I’m shooting for 2-4 new posts per month. No paywall. No subscription site. No ads.
In other words- no money?
Maybe, but hopefully not. As a musician, I know what it’s like to “play for tips.” I’m just expanding that concept into blogging. My virtual tip jar will be open on every post. If, as a reader, you find any value in an article you read on Five O’Clock Shadow, please consider throwing a few bucks into the jar. Writing takes time, bills have to be paid, and although I could stand to lose some weight, I’m not necessarily looking to do so via starvation.
Thanks to all of you for supporting Five O’Clock Shadow, and I hope you’ll enjoy the upcoming reboot.
Five O’Clock Shadow is offered for all to enjoy, but we do have groceries to buy, rent to pay, etc. Tips and donations are greatly appreciated!
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