Why Do I Do It?

By | Thursday, July 08, 2010 Leave a Comment
Through a series of links and Tweets, which I won't bore you with, Deb Aoki noted that the life of a blogger seems to trail off after about three years. Without doing any hard research, I'd say that feels about right. Of course, if I held to that myself, I would've stopped back around February 2009. And when I pointed that out to her, she noted that she gets a lot of her own sustainability from 1) getting paid and 2) going to conventions.

Me? I've never earned any money from this site (I did have AdSense ads running here for about a month, but earned nothing from them) and the last convention I attended was in 2008. So, how and why do I keep updating this blog every day?

One of the initial reasons I started this blog was to practice writing. To sit down to a blank screen every day and come up with something to say. I don't do much writing in my day job, so this serves as a way to keep my writing skills (such as they are) from getting too rusty.

Secondly, it provides a creative outlet for me that's different from my other pursuits. I spend much of my day designing and developing graphics, so writing exercises a different part of my brain as a creative release. I put together ideas here that I might not think of if I were exclusively working graphically. I also play the drums on occasion to let out yet another portion of my creative impulses. Creativity tends to work best if you don't continually focus on only one form of execution.

More recently, a new reason for my continued blogging has cropped up. I stopped buying pamphlet comics in early 2008, due to budget restrictions. From $25-30 every week to nothing. That also meant that many of my personal connections in comics -- the people I saw at the Local Comic Shop every week -- evaporated. And though it's only virtual here, this blog has helped me maintain a connection with comicdom at large. Sure, I could hang around the message boards of Newsarama or any of a number of webcomics I started reading, but that would place some implied restrictions on what I might want to talk about. Which, frequently, is not what the rest of comicdom cares to talk about. At "Kleefeld on Comics" the field is wide open for me to go on about art or writing or business practices or characters or history or... whatever I want to bring up, regardless of what the current "hot" topic is.

And I think it's that last one that really makes it for me. Tom Spurgeon once noted that, "If most comics blogging reads like it was done in the same room from people talking back and forth amongst themselves, Kleefeld's reads like he walked in from a different room down the hall to which no one else seems to have access." I love that. I've always been more inclined to just go off and do my own thing, rather than follow or lead anyone. That I can hang out here and do that, AND sometimes get recognized for it is just really uplifting for me.

Of course, it's also beneficial to have an outlet where I can say BUY MY BOOK from time to time, too!
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