Friday, April 04, 2014

evolution of a blog

I was online the other day, as I am many times, and read something from author Michael Hyatt, who wrote a book about social media called "Platform".  I've got the audiobook, which is really the only way I read at this point, and have tried to get into it, but realize I need a good day or two to digest it and concentrate on it.

What I actually read was quoted from Hyatt by a friend of mine named Amy Campbell (a little promotion--she's called The Resume Lady, and if you need help with your resume and especially setting up a LinkedIn profile, which I have GOT to finish, get in touch with her.  She's pretty awesome.), and the quote went along the lines of revisiting, rewriting and repurposing older posts that you may have written, with the theory being that back in the day, you didn't have a lot of readers... and now you do. 

I dwelled on that for a bit, and realized that it was a pretty good idea... surely there was some great hidden gems I wrote way back when that would be prime for a re-write, right?  Not necessarily.

I spent a while going through the first two years of the blog, founded in 2005, and discovered what I already knew... I wasn't very good. 

Now, to be fair, you should understand who I was writing for... myself and a few select friends.  My posts were personal... not in the sense that I was sharing intimate secrets, but more of, you had to sometimes have an inside track to me to understand what I was saying.  I toss around names like "Jaci" and "Kourtney" and "Matt" and "Mikey" with no context or last names, just assuming that people who are around me will read it and understand what I'm saying... and for the most part, they did.

And I wrote American Idol.  I mean, alot of American Idol.  Like, sometimes a post per episode, or per week on Idol, covering all the songs, all the performances, all the Idols, the eliminations and everything. 

I wrote about mission trips that I went on--which, to be fair, that's why this blog was started, and though its called Clouds in My Coffee, the first few titles included The New York Adventures and The Adventures of Dave and Dave's Sojourn before finally settling on Clouds sometimes probably in 2007 or so.

The web address is, but you will also find it at with the "Broadway Dave" being the New York centered name I came up with as I created this blog, mostly just to report back to the church and its members our day to day workings on the mission field in Brooklyn and The Bronx.  And I kept going after the trip was over. 

Like anyone doing something they've never done before, then doing that one thing over and over and over 900+ times, I think I've gotten better at it, though I will admit there are a few posts written back in 2008, 2009 or so that I read now and think "That's actually really good..."

Will I delete anything?  A few.  There are a few posts that I just don't like at all, or maybe circumstances in life have changed so much that there is no need for a certain post--or maybe no one should read that post anymore.  I doubt that any of you will go back through and scour for any "dirt" because you will find very little controversial, but there's stuff I like... and stuff I don't.

I intended on actually recapping American Idol this year, after taking last year off (because the season was so bad), but The Lovely Steph Leann and I got behind seven weeks--we had to binge watch all the audition and Hollywood episodes, and the first three weeks of the "finals" to catch up... and lo, and behold, we haven't watched last week's episode or elimination.  Don't tell me who got kicked off.

Over the years, I've done some fun things, had a "random bracket" that is the epitome of personalization, really just done to give happy shout outs to people around me that I like... I did a Summer of Blogging in 2011, where I set a goal for myself to blog 100 times over the course of the summer, which I did something like 75... I tried to do a "July 31", blogging every day in July of 2012, and that was a miserable failure, but I did try... I've posted short stories... I've posted songs and videos... I've been political (I just read a 2006 post on gas prices--I was fired up, I tell ya)... and many times, something pulled from The Word. 

All to keep you, the reader, entertained. 

Over the last year, likely due to my involvement with the START Movement, founded by Jon Acuff, now called "Dreamers & Builders" (why the change?  its a long story), my readership has increased exponentially, and I've found myself with something that I only suspected I had a few years ago--an audience.

My page views increase daily by 100 or so (THANK YOU FOR THAT), so someone is reading, or at least visiting the page, so my challenge is to give you something you'd want to read.

So I have two big things I'm working on now...

First.. the blog will change locations.  I've got a book called "Everything But the Posts" written by my friend Becca Ludlum, and its pretty fantastic for anyone who has ever wanted to start, or improve, their blog.  Blogger sucks a chicken turd, so my goal is to move it over to Wordpress and self-host.  I'm not sure I understand the part from "so my goal is" to "self-host", but I'm figuring it out.  (Becca's book is a good source, as is Corie Clark, a blogger and how-to social guru)

Secondly... there is a thing going around called #100HappyDays, where people are posting daily pictures of happy things... I'm going to do that here, on the blog.  I'm calling it Summer of Happy, and from Tuesday, May 26th to the day before Labor Day, I want to do a daily quick post on something that does make me happy.  Either a pic, or a movie review or just something to make me--and you--smile. 

My Taylor notebook of notes that I'll never, ever, ever get together. Oh,
and some of my random topic ideas that I scribbled over the last few days.
At some point, possibly summer, I'll hit 1000 posts, which excites me, because I know a lot of people who start blogs, and know a very small percentage of them post with any regularity, or even at all after a few posts.  Its not easy, even if what you are saying is total crap, its not easy to carve out the time to blog regularly.

I had a word goal in January, February and March of 20K, 15K and 20K words, respectively... I made it in January, but missed in February and March--granted, much of my blog time was taken up by doing my #Hustle (my passion, fyi), and that is Disney Planning, so I don't feel bad about failing.
I don't have a posted word goal for April, I just know what I want to do. I bought a Taylor Swift spiral bound notebook from Big Lots for $1 recently, and it sits at my desk... when I have a thought of a blog topic, I write it down... actually, when I have a thought of anything substantial, or even inconsequential, I write it down. Its full of random notes and jots and so on. 

Do you have an idea book?  Something to carry around, a small notepad or a notebook at your desk, or even Post-its you can use?  You should get one.  Some of the best ideas are only in your imagination for a few seconds, and if you don't get them written down, they go somewhere else to be utitlized. 

So, that's where I am.  And where we'll go. 

Now if I could only get you people to comment more often... no pressure.  =)


  1. Feeling the pressure to comment

    Wow! What an inspiring journey you and your blog have taken. I love reading about how people determine what they want their blog to be and how it grows and changes with them. Your experience is a great read. And I look forward to following you and your blog to the next level as you "rebrand".

    And, of course, I love reading what you have to say about movies. You offer insights that are not just run of the mill.

  2. I have been frozen in my blogging by too many ideas. Sounds crazy, but it's true.

  3. My own "blogging" is really only a journal of our family's happenings that probably my mom and a couple of close friends read. Even then, it is hard to keep it up to date! I've been working just this morning on trying to catch it up from SEPTEMBER. Good grief where did the time go.

    Anyway, I enjoy your posts and will keep reading!


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