GreyMatter, Personal

One Year Of Blogging

It was this month, last year (March 2003), when I first began blogging. At the time, I did not know what I would be writing about, nor had any idea of how much I would be able to write. So I made a small beginning, writing one post a week, striving to maintain the pace, in spite of a hectic work schedule.

The first few months were tough. Installing Movable Type – the publishing tool I started with – took its own sweet time. Finding server support for it in India was also not easy. But I persisted, like I always do, and got it up and running. And then began the long hours each weekend trying to make my website look and behave exactly like I wanted it to.

All through this time, I also continued publishing posts on the blog. At first, my posts were the usual link-and-comment type followed by many blogs: When I found something I wanted to share with others, or opine on, I would blog about it. And very soon, a pattern started emerging. I found myself reading more and more blogs, every day. And learning more and more with each day that passed by. And every once in a while, I would find something interesting and blog about it.

Soon, the blog began to grow, still averaging about one post a week. Not bad, I told myself. (Especially when I came across a survey that said that a significant percentage of blogs were found to be abandoned after just a week or two of writing!)

Link-and-comment were not the only kind of posts I was publishing. I soon discovered that I can use a publishing system like MT to archive any thing I wanted to, and make it available to myself online! This was an idea that first came to me via Rajesh Jain of Emergic fame – unquestionably, the most prolific Indian blogger today. And it made so much sense. So I started a personal blog (URL known only to me) where I archived all such articles so that I could access them from any where I was.

I also extended this concept to my published blog. I began posting stuff that I would otherwise send by email to friends and family. I figured: Why not? Might as well publish it in one place and have every one access it from there. That way, I could also look it up at a future point in time, if I needed to.

After about 10 months of blogging with the fabulous MT platform, I shifted to the out-of-this-world TypePad system. Having beta tested the software, I already knew it was the best thing to happen to blogging. And so far, there have been no regrets. TypePad makes it so easy to manage my blog, that I can devote any available free time to actually writing (instead of worrying about server support or CSS code, as I had to earlier).

Earlier this year, I changed the name of the blog from “Open Mind” to “Uncommon Wisdom”. The new name was a much more accurate reflection of what I was ending up writing about, most of the time. (And I have a special place for it in my heart as I once used to run a small enterprise by the same name.) I also added a subscription feature to the blog, and found that the blog actually has a few subscribers ! (No, I am not paying them any thing. It’s all voluntary.) And finally, in Feb of 2004, the number of comments on the blog actually surpassed the number of posts – a sure sign that at least somebody was reading what I was churning out week after week!!!

So that’s the story of my blog, so far.

I have made many friends through this medium, and learned much through this past year. There is also the hope that, through the blog, I can hone my writing skills to some day become the “writer” I always wanted to. May be that dream will also come true…