As we entered 2009, I realised that Iâ€™ve been writing on this blog for five years (well, a little under five years really as the first few posts were back dated) but what started out as â€œMarkâ€™s (we)blogâ€ has become a full-time job. Incidentally, Markâ€™s (we)blog was a play on words that was lost on most people â€“ â€œweeâ€ is a synonym for â€œsmallâ€ in Scotland and is well-known south of the border too, so I thought that Markâ€™s weblog also worked as Markâ€™s little blog â€“ which is precisely why I donâ€™t have a career in marketingâ€¦
The thing is, whilst itâ€™s become a full time job, it doesnâ€™t pay very well. And I already have a full-time job. Meanwhile the number of blog posts has been getting silly. For 2005/6/7 I managed to average about a post a day on week days but, looking back, some of those posts were just reporting tech news and there are better places to get news than this blog (a bit of comment should be expected but this is certainly not a news site). In 2008 it looked at one point as though I would finish the year averaging a post a day (until I timed out â€“ and burned out â€“ in December). I canâ€™t keep it up: I have a demanding day job; a family who are losing out; friends Iâ€™d like to see more of; and I desperately need to get away from my computers and take some physical exercise every day (or at least on alternate days).
Itâ€™s not just the blog either – in 2008 I started to produce some videos for Microsoft (which turned out to be very time-consuming); James Bannan and I finally kicked off the Coalface Tech podcast (which we hope to keep on a monthly schedule); and my MVP award was a fantastic achievement but it also presents new challenges for my time management abilities (access to information is great â€“ but I need to continue working with the user groups and forums if I want to be re-awarded in October). Now Iâ€™ve taken on a role as one of the forum moderators for the Windows 7 beta â€“ so thatâ€™s going to be another demand on my time over the coming months.
So, what am I saying? Well, markwilson.it will continue, and perhaps you wonâ€™t see much change at all â€“ but I will be making an effort to only write something when I feel it adds value. Iâ€™ll also be looking to reduce the amount of time that it takes to write each post: the useful links posts that Iâ€™ve been running on a monthly basis may become more frequent; I may publish more posts in bullet list/note form; and I will try to work though my backlog of part-written posts â€“ but please donâ€™t expect a post a day (I donâ€™t think I can keep it up any more). I need to make some infrastructure changes too â€“ a WordPress upgrade is on the cards, along with a much-needed overhaul of the site design (and a rethink of the best way to run ads on the site â€“ making sure that they are unobtrusive but balancing that with a need to earn some cash).
This website has become more than just my little blog, storing the notes I write up from events I attend and key points from articles that I read. Itâ€™s also the focal point for all my non-work IT-related output and Iâ€™m frankly amazed at how many people visit it every month. So, thank you, to everyone who reads the blog; adds my feed to their RSS; leaves a comment; listens to the podcast; watches the videos; or comes up to me at an event and says â€œhey â€“ youâ€™re Mark Wilson arenâ€™t you?â€ (which is very weird, but strangely satisfying). THANK YOU â€“ I wish you a very happy new year and Iâ€™ll try to keep producing content. Itâ€™s just that there might be a little less of it in 2009.