Puff! 365 days—where did 2012 go? Zap!—another year in the books. History. I created Rite2Run in 2011, exactly 101 posts ago. Since then I’ve learned what every blogger comes to realize—it is a commitment to maintain a blog. Recently I began to wonder whether the time spent maintaining a blog is worth it. After all, time blogging is time not doing something else. It all boils down to your purpose for blogging: to promote a book, as a means of income, or just the pleasure of sharing your thoughts, ideas and expertise.
When I began this blog I knew very little about publishing. Every piece of advice I came across said to begin a blog and build a following if you want to publish a book. Share your story with readers. I had planned to publish my memoir based on the marathon, Twenty-four Years to Boston, and created Rite2Run as the platform. As it turned out, the blog didn’t play a role in the contract I signed with a small New Jersey publisher, but I did learn a lot about social media and publishing, and I met many wonderful writers and readers.
Funny thing about blogging is that it’s kind of a mystery what will be popular and what will go largely unnoticed. Sometimes you feel it; sometimes you don’t. I’d spent a good deal of time on some posts that didn’t get much attention, and others I’ve thrown together and they instantly got hundreds of views.
Last summer I wrote a blog titled, “Write to Run A Marathon” which has been the most consistently viewed post since. I believe it was popular because it was honest. I admitted that my blog is not a typical running blog. There is no calendar of races, training logs, or herculean achievements. Instead, I write and ramble and share over forty years of running experience. I describe my feelings about the psychology of running, races, marathons, training and aging and running. I’m as likely to write about traveling and art as I am about distance running and marathoning. This year I started a series I call “The Art of Running” which features art that is running-themed, and though my definition of running-themed is very broad it has been popular.
This year will be a transitional year for the blog. I will concentrate on the craft of writing, which is the reason I began it to begin with. You see, I’m a writer who just happens to be a lifelong runner. Running has been the one consistent thread in my life that has kept me grounded, reduced my stress, and helped keep my aging body in relatively good condition.
I’ll end my New Year’s post with the things I am thankful for:
First, I’m thankful for my family and friends. Without them my life would be pretty empty.
I’m thankful for good health that enables me to live an active life.
I’m thankful for my fellow-runners at Back on My Feet. Since last July I’ve started my week at 5:30 Monday morning with runners who inspire me, share their lives with me and teach me things about life, courage and resiliency that I never knew.
I’m thankful for my readers, more than 8,000 of you who have stopped by to read, comment, and keep me straight.
I am thankful for my fellow-writers. They teach me, guide me, critique my work, enrich my life and fill my empty head with creative ideas.