What’s Next?

blogging, writing, humor, Modern PhilosopherPer a notice from WordPress, yesterday was this blog’s fifth birthday, Modern Philosophers.

And all I can think is…

What’s next?

The blog was supposed to be a temporary distraction.  Rachel, aka The Girl Who Went Away, insisted I start it to keep me busy and out of trouble when she went away to chase her dream.

In my mind, I figured I’d dabble with the blog for a few months, she’d come home on Christmas break and realize she missed me so much, and we’d figure out a plan to be together.

At the most, I’d blog while she was off at school and then stop when she returned to occupy all my time again.

As we know five years later, Rachel never came back for me.

Because of the recent power outages in Maine, I’ve been working in my company’s Admin Building for the past couple of days.  There is a giant framed photo of Rachel in the main hallway, that the company used in an advertising campaign.

I must have walked past it two dozen times this week.  Just a painful reminder that the future I had planned did not materialize.

Since I missed Rachel so much, the blog became almost an obsession.  For the first few years, I wrote a new post every day.  Sometimes, there were even multiple daily posts.

blogging, writing, humor, Modern PhilosopherOver the past few years, I’ve lost the drive to keep up such a demanding schedule.

I had no idea what to even write at first.  Then it all slowly came into focus.  The House on the Hill had its own mythology, and was visited by crazy characters, who I could blog about whenever the mood hit me.

I learned how to make social commentary by using the blog’s characters, and suddenly, the challenge was how to parody real life via this unique and ridiculous world I’d created.

When I realized Rachel was not coming back for me, my plans for the blog changed.  No longer was it a distraction, but a way to meet new people.

I’ve made many wonderful friends and met some very interesting people via the blog, and even fell in love with one of them.  We planned to get married and start a family.  With an eye on the future, I got to work on a novel based on the blog’s mythology.  If this silly collection of stories and Deep Thoughts could help me meet my future wife, then it was a sign that this blog held the key to my future.

When Melissa, aka The Sweet Irish Girl, visited for the first time, I asked her to read what I’d written of the novel.  She really liked it and urged me to finish it.

Then she decided to stay on her side of the ocean, and the novel was forgotten.

And so I changed my vision for the blog again.  Now I would use it as a way to showcase my writing skills and land a publishing deal or a writing gig.

blogging, writing, humor, Modern PhilosopherI ditched the mythology and crazy characters for political parody, short stories, and inspirational posts about my running and weight loss adventures.

I wanted to show that I could be topical, funny, and motivational.  That my writing had a wide reach and a large audience.

I still loved blogging because it gave me an outlet.  After working all day, I needed to come home to the blog and prove to myself I was still a writer.  Since I didn’t have a time machine to travel to the future, I wanted to write in the present as often as possible to ensure I was a writer in the future.

But no one has offered me a publishing deal or a writing gig.  While the blog still has a very solid and loyal fan base, it’s not growing the way it did back in the early years.

I’m still motivated to get to one million hits, but the passion is no longer there.  It doesn’t seem like blogging is “the thing” anymore, and I wonder if I’m using the wrong platform to introduce my writing to the world.

So that’s why I keep wondering…

What’s next?

blogging, writing, humor, Modern PhilosopherHas five years been enough for The Return of the Modern Philosopher?  It’s had a great run, so should I pull the plug before it all goes downhill?

What do you think, Modern Philosophers?

Is this blog the best way for me to showcase my writing?  Is it even a good way to do so?  Is anyone reading this blog that could offer me a dream job?

In the five years I’ve written this blog, so many of my posts have gone viral on social media, and I was certain that would get my words to the right people.

Am I foolish to think that’s even a possibility at this point?  Should I finish the novel, self-publish it, and use the blog to market it?

Should I add videos to the blog and turn it into something more like a podcast?  Should I start sharing pages from my screenplays to see if that attracts any interest from producers or directors?

I’m honestly asking for input here, guys.  Five years is a lot to invest in something that was only meant to be a distraction while my broken heart healed.

blogging, writing, humor, Modern PhilosopherBefore I wrap up this post, I want to say THANK YOU (in capital letters!!!) for all your support over the past five years.  When Rachel made me start this, I had no idea if anyone would ever read what I posted.

Almost one million hits later, I am eternally grateful that you liked my silly stories.

And if one of you wants to make me forget about Rachel and Melissa, fall in love with me and get married, you’d better speak up soon…

About Austin

Native New Yorker who's fled to the quiet life in Maine. I write movies, root for the Yankees, and shovel lots of snow.
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26 Responses to What’s Next?

  1. Ritu says:

    5 years is a milestone Austin! I’d be sad to see you leave the blogging world ….

  2. WordPress sent me no messages on my blog’s fifth birthday. What’s up with that? 😀

  3. Bryntin says:

    You’ve done well to keep the name, in that time I’ve had at least nine different blogs and five different WordPress accounts, you change yourself, keep the blog. Neither of us is wrong, evolving is probably inevitable either way.

  4. ksbeth says:

    i say go the evolution route – and write it with you in mind, not for anyone else. we, your audience will enjoy it no matter which way you go

  5. thebeasley says:

    Congratulations on your amazing milestone Austin! I often wonder if blogging is the best way to showcase one’s writing skills, as there’s so bloody many of us! I read some advice one writer gave and that was to not even bother with a blog and writing direct into a Facebook post was a much better way to get your writing out there as most people can’t be bothered to click on links. Though I think a Facebook post is very limiting in many ways, but can see how it would reach a much wider audience. Anyway, I’m not sure what is the best way to get our writing out there, but if you find out- can you please let me know.

  6. geminilvr says:

    aww I’d fall in love and marry you but I’m definitely too old for you 🙂 Keep up your writing and congrats on your milestone – and 1M hits -holy wow!

  7. Austin says:

    Thanks, Ellie. I like this plan. Know anyone who might be interested in the marriage part? 🙂

  8. One of the hardest things to do in writing is making a passive activity like writing the source of a novel. Could you imagine writing a novel about two guys playing a chess game? Playing chess is great, watching chess… not so much. I have seen it done from time to time, but wow, it took some skills.

    Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy your blog and hope you keep writing, but any attempt at making writing a career is a long shot.

  9. D. Parker says:

    Happy Blogiversary, Austin!!! Cheers and I hope this and you keep running for many, many more years!!! 🙂

  10. Five years! That’s actually really good, especially since you’ve been almost freakishly dedicated. I always wonder how you manage to crank something out every day.

    I’ve been blogging off/on for 11 or 12 years (previous blog deleted online but saved on laptop). I was dedicated at first but now view it as a mere extension of the projects I’m developing and not the foundation. I will need to pay a bit more attention to the blogging part of my new site this next year, but I feel it takes away from the minute amount of precious time I have to work on my novel. (Thank you, Maya. 😉 )

    Maybe you should consider simply cutting back on the number of posts and use the free time to focus more on your screenplays and novel. I want to see you succeed, but I fear a blog might not be the way to your dreams. (At least, not career dreams.) Remember: you’re a screenwriter, not just a blogger. Plus, you’ll still have plenty of material for someone to discover.

    You’ll figure it out in time. {hug}

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