Lessons Learned

My first step into the writing world (if you can call it that) was with a union paper I wrote for some four years. The Flynn Flyer in that period put out something like 62 issues, it was a nice little house rag, 10 pages per month, and we never missed a month.

I often think back to the days when I took it to the printer, then the wife and my two boys, we sat down on the living room floor, stapled, folded, labeled it and shipped it out.  All the while hoping the U.S. Post office would not bag it for being overweight and throw a wrench into the entire process (happened twice).

In the end, it was distributed and read on the nation’s railroads, by union working hands, in 31 states and 3 provinces in Canada.  Mildly successful and popular The Flyer ran the gauntlet from extreme to sublime and it got things done.  It was written in my loopy off the wall style, with cartoons, much like Creative Endeavors.  In 1992, I put it to rest when I retired from my active career on the Santa Fe Railroad (now the BNSF).  Shortly thereafter, without any prior knowledge or working computer skills, I dove into the computer world and internet exchange of information.

Without any kind of basic knowledge of widgets, dialog boxes, texting or any of that, I headed into this new world with complete abandon.  In other words, with the help of WordPress.com, I built this site from scratch and gave birth to Creative Endeavors in 2008.

We are four years old today.  It has been an interesting journey, some of it good and some of it not so good, but all in all.

Mostly enjoyable.

Content has always been first and over this amount of time, it certainly has been there.  Starting in March of ’08 with 65 posts, April 50, May 58, June 49, July 65, August 50, September 69, October 60, November 81, December 82.  2008 was a busy year for the site, with some 629 posts.  2009 was beginning in January 67, February 31, March 32, April 22, May 16, June 20, July 8 and then we took a hiatus of sorts and got away from it.  This was the first 19 months, some 825 contributions.

We were somewhat dormant for most of 2009 as we moved out of the big city and into the country, we built a new place, a shop for the bus, and did a lot of work on our new home.  In May of 2010 we resumed the posting with a post (1), skipped June and July, kind of sporadic at best, and then in August we came on line with 2 posts.  At that time, our daily read list was down to about 18 people from a previous high in 2008 of some 5,000.  We then skipped out for awhile to recharge our batteries.  Our next post was in October (see a pattern here?) and we managed to crank out 21 that month, November came in with 24, and finished out the year in December with 23 posts.

2011 rang out with some 408 posts for the year, with an average of about 34 postings per month.  Just closed out January/February of this year with some 50 more posts.  I am sure there were more, we are currently showing almost close to 1,200 posts for the duration of the site, but a lot of that could be video’s and other things, other than pure posted material.

Currently we are standing at close to 2,000,000 visitors (1,184,491 views all-time) the last time I checked it had reached out to over 211 countries world wide.  It has never been Fresh Pressed, but it has been read, and in the end, I guess that is all that matters.  We currently enjoy between 100-300 visitors per day, which is decent.  Our biggest day was over 124,000 visits (the day Obama got elected), and our most recent home run was in November with some 1,845 hits in one 24 hour period.  That is a pleasant note and a tribute to the labor.

You know and I know that all things change, nothing stays the same.

Creative Endeavors having enjoyed a successful run is going to change.  Change is the first necessity of progress, and this site is going to morph into something else I am sure.  Unfortunately I am finding this a hard row to hoe on some days.  The daily load of living is backing up on me like a sewer at times.  I often find that my outlook on things in general is often jaded and without a doubt, something akin to personally disgusting.

Not a good thing for you and certainly not helpful in my world here.

Lately I find that I am coming unhinged far too much, and something has to give.  Allowing the trolls to get to me, the constant bombardment of idiots and moron’s on some days takes a healthy slice out of my old wrinkled tough skin, and I tire of it.  You on the other hand are spared, as I seldom give them an audience or space on the page in the comments section.

The daily grind or responsibility of putting something on the page, each day, every day, sometimes becomes more of a burden than a pleasure.  So therefore, I am no longer going to do that.  I am finding somewhat late in life “that everything that I love, is slowly and surely, killing me.”

So I am determined to find a way to get away from that.

We will continue to publish our stories and our often wacky outlook on CrazyTown U.S.A. but we are not going to be so generous with it.  The load is just impossible at times, and I flat out do not need to succumb to the pressures of meeting this invisible goal on some obscure horizon that I have set for myself which is often just out of reach.  From here on out, we are going to put it out when we want to and that is it.  It could be one a day, one every other day, or just one per week.  That remains to be seen.

In the beginning the goal was to see if we could hit 50,000 hits in one year (which we far exceeded thanks to the majority of you) as I am no longer a frustrated over-achiever in this area of my life, I am going to throttle it back.  So boys & girls, that is the straight poop on that.

All of this is going to be new and somewhat different for me, maybe at some points, will be a a hard stretch.

But I think it is do-able and should be alright in the end.

That is the new game plan, like Dr. Phil is fond of saying … “It works for me.”  Now I am going to find some time to sit on the porch and play my guitar (believe it or not, I am just now learning how to play the blues), sip on a glass of ice tea and when I feel I have something worthwhile to add to the WordPress mix, I will put it up.  This will of course disappoint some and please others, that is the way it often goes.  I am going to search out some new avenues on the road map of life, and try a new path.  Here is hoping y’all understand.

Have a good weekend, catch you later.