Despite appearance this blog is not dead, merely resting. (As Dad used to say, I wasn’t sleeping, just resting my eyes).
There are several reasons for the paucity of posts over the past couple of months. School is one.
Teaching a new-to-me course on feature writing this semester, as well as a fairly intensive multimedia journalism course (don’t tell anyone; it’s supposed to about newspaper production), took a lot of time and energy outside the classroom as well as in.
Twitter is another reason. For everything that Twitter is — and there is so much to love about it — it can by a black hole for time and attention. And, when you can kick out a link to something interesting (which is the prime role the blog has played) as quickly as you can type…
(Like almost everyone else, I’m still feeling my way around Twitter, even though I’ve been on it for more than year.)
And there’s a third reason: I got tired of much of what was happening in the mediasphere. Much of what I’ve seen and read over the past six months has been of little value and even less interest. While there have a number of interesting things happening with journalism, and some very smart commentary on the state of the beast, too much of the discussion seemed to me to be infantile and angry. Faux issues that in were settled in many minds years ago — blogging vs. journalism, the value of pro vs. amateur, etc. — seemed to dominate too much of the chatter to make it interesting. It was, instead, wearisome. I burned out, not on journalism, but on the conversation around it.
(Burn-out is actually good for the soul, I think. It forces you to rethink, reconsider, remake.)
That’s the explanation. This post isn’t, however, the announcement of return to normal. Tomorrow, we’re heading out for California for a this weekend’s Herdeljezi Festival in Sebastopol. Then, on May 11, we’re heading out for a ramble from Istanbul to Belgrade, across Macedonia, Kosovo, Montenegro, Croatia, Bosnia and Serbia, a trip long-planned and eagerly looked-forward-to. The chances that I’ll be blogging, let alone Twittering, are slim.
The blog will awake from its slumber, likely sometime in June. By then, I hope, there will be time for thinking, the batteries will be recharged and the mediasphere will have moved on to more interesting and compelling debate.