Status update

‘I should blog more,’ I think, as one does when one has a personal blog. But writing is so hard, and writing about something worth reading about is hard, and self-doubt is so easy.

Here’s what I’m pondering lately:

The current project: my homepage redesign. As usual, I have grand, ambitious plans for it, and the scope continues to creep. The original idea was a ‘responsive comic’; and then I wanted to incorporate the higher-quality artwork I didn’t have a chance to do in my visual novel; and then I wanted to put in my secret easter eggs; and then I actually went to create and build all of this and found it hard.

What a surprise! Making the thing is hard.

But—I’m finding it worthwhile. Even as I oscillate between being excited about this and feeling tremendous self-doubt about whether it’s even worth it—well, the excitement outweighs the doubt, I think.

I’ve been tweeting through it.

A big drawing of a snake winding around a couple of my comic panels that read 'art' and 'design.'
The beauty of personal projects is you can do nonsensical things because you feel like it. Here, I've added a snake because I like the imagery, even though it doesn't make any fucking sense. (But: I'm going to reverse-engineer a reason to include it. The comic's internal logic will check out. Or something.

The digital garden: I want to work towards this, but it’s stalled by things like not yet knowing how to structure it, or what topics I want to include, or what level of unpolished notes I’m comfortable with sharing.

One of the goals would be to force myself to write notes that are comprehensible to the public, but the focus isn’t on having polished content to share but rather the process of writing for clarity, which is important for thinking. Writing is thinking, or whatever.

I have some drafts that would do well in a digital garden, but they’re drafts and I’m unsure about how ‘complete’ or ~rigorous~ I want something before publishing it. I don’t think garden notes need to be perfect, but I think there should be some baseline for quality, and I’m trying to figure out what my baseline is.

And particularly for topics that are more opinionated or critical—I don’t want to throw rocks at things without being sure about it, but I don’t want to flatten my anger at xyz thing in order to be palatable, especially if I want to uphold the ethos of what my personal site is. It’s a hard balance!!!

(A while back, it was like one in the morning when I got angry and wrote a tirade against software that intruded on my privacy and other annoyances, and I feel too nervous to post it in an incomplete state, which is why I’m wrestling over this at the moment. But I don’t want it to die in my drafts either.)

Search engine optimization. Listen. Listen. I too detest junky commercial keyword soup. But. There is definitely value in the long-tail keywords of my extremely specific development adventures. Nearly all of my Eleventy problem-solving has been aided by other strangers on the internet writing about exactly the thing I was trying to do, in blog posts with specific titles that got picked up by my desperate google searches.

Their writing has been so invaluable to me, and I don’t want whatever esoteric dev writing I put here to never be useful. I write it because I want it to be useful. But it needs to be findable, first.

I’ve blocked my site from getting indexed by search engines since the beginning, but I’m planning on changing that soon.

Other ideas to write about, in either a blogging way or a gardening way, who knows:

  • How I use FigJam for personal projects – the ideating, storyboarding, inspiration-dumping, notetaking. Not a ground-breaking topic, but whatever, it’s unique to me.
  • Documenting all of my Eleventy customizations – I wish other people wrote the most basic, detailed, ELI5 explanations of their setups and workarounds as possible, so I must be the change I want to see in the world.
  • Something about my general personal website ambitions. I’ve written briefly about this before, but it’s been scattered in various places, never to be found again.

Wow, I really sat down and thought ‘I’m going to write some bullet points about what I’m thinking about for my site lately’ and then wrote out a whole post.