Thursday, January 1, 2015

2015 - The Year of the Blog

Longtime blog-readers will know that 2014 was a pretty solid year for this blog. While it wasn't as prolific as some years, I feel like I provided some of my best content overall in 2014. Between some standard sports posts, a few new feature-style sports posts, and a variety of gaming-related articles, I generated something for everyone. Alright, well, not everyone, but anybody who would've come to the blog in the first place should have been able to find something fun to read.

Still, when it comes down to it, I had higher hopes for the blog than the totality of the year that I had. I wanted to expand the features to include not just baseball stories, but interesting tales from other sports as well. And just on sheer volume, there were extended periods during which I didn't provide any content, and I don't feel great about that.

But, rather than lament about opportunities lost, I'm going to set goals for the coming year. Most of these will be blog-related goals, but I'm going to throw a few other goals up there, just so you know what I've got brewing in my mind, and so that I feel a little more beholden to the goals, since "everyone" will know about them.

Here goes.
  1. Publish a blog post at least once every week. There's really no reason I couldn't do this; there have been stretches on the blog when I've posted 2-3 times a week for over a month. Part of what hangs me up is that a lot of my blog ideas are larger posts; the CS:GO trade-up post took me over a month to compose and revise. So, this goal is going to have a couple of sub-goals:
    • Plan ahead. Have a couple of larger posts in the pot simmering at all times, and try to schedule posts in advance
    • Find smaller post options. Not everything has to be a six page epic about the adventures of Bret Saberhagen. Some of them, sure, just not all of them.
  2. Post about the big three at least once a month. My big three topics are sports (baseball), sports (non-baseball), and gaming (board or video). This plan should help me get focused on my bigger posts, and also help give myself some direction for goal #1.
  3. Get my editing landing page refined and ready to share. Most of you are probably unaware this has been going on in the background, but I've been spending some time trying to set myself up to offer editing services. I've been editing for a website for a few months, and editing for friends, family, and co-workers for years. I'm hoping to turn those skills into a small supplemental income. So as the main part of that, I've been working on a landing page to be able to link for potential customers. My goal is to have that up and running by the end of January.
  4. Stream more (or at all). Longtime readers will know that a previous role of this blog was to support a regular Friday night Twitch stream by myself and two friends. We streamed mostly Magic, and we generated a small but robust following. Problems with Twitch, changes in our personal responsibilities, a general displeasure with Magic's recent sets, and MTGO's consistent bugs and other issues made us mostly give up the streaming game, but almost any time I've streamed solo, I've still enjoyed it. Whenever I set out to stream again I seem to get distracted from it, but hopefully establishing it as a goal will get me back on the horse. And of course, I'll continue to use this blog to support the stream, when necessary.
  5. If possible, find ways to monetize the blog that also add value to it. I have an affiliate partnership with Amazon.com, and Amazon has thousands of ways to link to their goods and services. Right now I just have a single banner advertising Amazon Prime, but I'm thinking that with sufficient commitment, I may be able to post timely advertisements of great deals to both provide a useful deal-finding service to readers, and create a small amount of income for myself. I'm sure there are other ways to effectively monetize the blog, but those will take some further research.
  6. Post something in the Steam Workshop. There are two possible avenues I could use here. The first is posting a CS:GO skin. I've tinkered with the workbench a little bit, and while I'm no expert, I'm definitely more comfortable with it than I was at the outset. I haven't made anything too exciting so far, but I've got some more content to work with, so we'll see if it goes anywhere.

    The second possibility is posting a collection on Tabletop Simulator, a recent gift I received (thanks Nick). I've collected a few items and boards from other workshop posts, and I'd like to assemble a kind of "catch-all" collection for a certain tabletop role-playing game I've played with a few friends. (Nerd alert! Just kidding, you knew I was a nerd when I started posting Magic decks.)
So those are my blog/internet goals for the coming year. I'm hoping to increase the amount of content I provide overall, as well as hopefully generating a little bit of revenue.

If you've got any suggestions or naysaying you'd like to offer, feel free to post a comment.

Happy new year!

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