"When dawn spreads its paintbrush on the plain, spilling purple... ," Sons of the Pioneers theme for TV show "Wagon Train." Dawn on the mythic Santa Fe Trail, New Mexico, looking toward Raton from Cimarron. -- Clarkphoto. A curmudgeon artist's musings melding metaphors and journalism, for readers in more than 150 countries.

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

What to do about stale coffee on a blog's birthday?

Coffee with Clark was born as a blog on this day, May 3, 2009, with no idea about where it was going or if it would survive. 
The future blogger, Paris
After its seventh birthday, now beginning its eighth year, that is more true than ever. 
Judging from the declining number of posts this year and the past couple of months, it must be getting stale. At least the aging blogger is.
It's remarkable that it's stayed fresh as long as it has, because most blogs cease to exist after only a short time. But...
The blog has changed and aged, with the blogger. Is it time to just  throw out the dregs, rinse out the pot, and put it away?
I said last year at this time that I was wondering why I blog and the purpose of the blog. I'm no closer to answering that than then, but I know it's time for a change...it's time for fresh coffee or no coffee at all.

"It's time for fresh coffee or no coffee at all."
The aging blogger, Edinburgh
I planned to work on this during the summer, having sat in on webinars and more, trying to find  new directions, perhaps a new blog. My wife suggested this week that I should perhaps switch to a different blog.
Part of that is life stage, I know, some is laziness because I have plenty of ideas and stories to tell (for instance, I'm in the middle of reading about five books right now, all that need to be reviewed) but find myself just not wanting to sit down and spend the time it takes. This shows in the decreasing number of my posts, and the fact that I'm posting more paintings and less writing.
I have continued for several reasons, including teaching a blogging for journalists class at UCO. That pretty well demands that I be a blogger too. I don't believe you should teach something you can't do or haven't done.

And, I'm still a journalist--this is part of who I am. As one friend said, "You've got your newspaper column back." I don't want to give up the Coffee with Clark moniker because it's established, but there have to be some new directions. I'll probably try to keep it going through the summer, until I've met with consultants and others on taking my blogging to something that will be a pre-retirement and retirement effort that brings in some income and has a specific purpose.
So, on this birthday, here are the facts this year, and so far--the coffee is stale. Facts this year, and so far:

  • 33--number of posts this year, counting this one
  • 2--Month with fewest posts, June last year
  • 4 and 4--number of posts last two months
  • 144--number of countries where I've had readers
  • 203,000+--number of page views since beginning
  • 1,966 posts since beginning, almost all original
  • 339--number of posts from May through December, 2009
  • 76--number of posts in August, 2009 
  • 11--number of posts in August, 2011
 And yes, I'm open to suggestions. In this insane political year, I'm desperate to have a voice that's heard, because it is so essential as Oklahoma education and everything else in the state goes down the toilet. But party politics don't belong in Coffee with Clark. So, I don't know. Will the blog survive another year?


  1. Sitting here reading this birthday post with a cup of coffee in hand... No advice to give because I'm still trying to find my own voice! Good luck old prof - have a great summer!

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