Tuesday, 25 March 2014

Blog Carnival, the last month.

"Next month is the SAA session on blogging so this will be the final question for #blogarch. Learning from my mistakes this will be an actual question this time.
The last question is where are you/we going with blogging or would you it like to go? I leave it up to you to choose between reflecting on you and your blog personally or all of archaeology blogging/bloggers or both. Tells us your goals for blogging. Or if you have none why that is? Tell us the direction that you hope blogging takes in archaeology."

It's the final installment of the BlogArch Carnival... and yes, of course I'll participate again - won't miss this! So... Where do I want to go with blogging? Hm.

There's dreams and wishes when I think about my blog, and then there's my realistic brain which tells me things about the dreams and wishes. If I dream wildly, I would love my blog to be as well-read as the Yarn Harlot's, or Scalzi's blog, and feature actual scientific-ish content with lots of pictures and new insights and information about clothes and techniques. My realistic brain, when it catches me dreaming thusly, tells me that I would need to devote much more time to the blog in that case. And if I had so many comments, it would suck all my time to read them. (Also, many comments come with much spam.)

I would like to blog more about actual archaeological stuff, and do more reseach-esque posts on the blog, but I know this is more like a dream than an actual goal I can realistically achieve. Writing a proper post about some piece of garment (or some other research subject) takes an astonishing amount of time, and that won't fit in with my schedule most days. Ironically, it's especially when I am doing more research than usual that I have even less time to spend on the blog...
I've thought about this from time to time, but after a while of almost beating myself up about it I realised that most of the blogs that do research-type articles don't update that often. I know myself, though - if I would switch to posting occasionally aiming for longer pieces, that's when I would start posting not at all. (So these short uninspired blog posts that come up from time to time are the price I make you pay for keeping blogging. Sorry.)

My hope for this blog is that I can keep going with enough variation and enough interesting posts that I can gain more readers than I lose. I'm well aware that blogs are not something you read forever - interests change as do priorities and styles of writing, and if you blog about a certain topic you are bound to repeat yourself sooner or later. There's quite a list of blogs these days that I used to read, but stopped after a while - because the blog's focus changed, because my interest in the topic waned, because I felt that I got no new input, or because I was annoyed by the much too infrequent updates. Some blogs fell silent, and I missed them a lot for a while.

In retrospective, most of the blogs that fell silent after a while or that I stopped reading because it felt like repetition of the same, the same were those relatively restrictive in their topics. Which seems to make sense to me - the more variety you have, the less you need to repeat. (Thank you, Captain Obvious.)

With the mix of topics I have, I'm still far from the big-player territory like IT stuff, so my blog will probably never become a huge blog with gazillions of readers; but if enough people read something like a Call for Papers or a heads-up to a free access week or something like that to make a difference for a few of you, I'm quite happy.

Otherwise, I'm not planning to go anywhere with this blog. I plan to stay right here, writing something every weekday, keeping my favourite second language polished and making the occasional weird mistake with it, posting too few pics and bombarding you with links that you might find helpful, or amusing, or none of both.

As for blogging in archaeology in general - I'd love to have more textile archaeology blogs around. (If you know of any, please let me know!) I also love to hear about current developments in excavations, or finds of dress accessories. Getting more people to know about the actual work in the dirt, not just the spectacular finds, would surely be a good thing for all of us archies.


Lena said...

Word to all of this. How come you manage eight paragraphs, when I only wrote two? I clearly need to practice my elaboration a bit more. :-)

a stitch in time said...

Hm... maybe because I have a lot of practice in writing more than any sane person would? ; )