The final day of Urban Psychopomp has arrived, and I will today commit the modern cardinal sin of shutting down the most long-running and most followed of the blogs where I regularly post. What can I say? Some things are more important than platform-building, like actually writing and spending time with people we love.
I’ll start off by saying a great big thank you to the bloggers who played with me yesterday during the I AM LEGEND Blogfest. I loved all the posts. I will not keep you in suspense, my fellows. Caitlin Nicoll of Logically has won the favor of the Random Number Generator Gods and her choice between Donald Maass’s The Fire in Fiction or a hardcover edition of George R.R. Martin’s A Dance with Dragons.
As mentioned in the title of this post, Urban Psychopomp is going out on a nice little high note, having recently received the 7x7 Blog award from L.G. Smith at Bards and Prophets.
It was a perfect time to receive this award, as I was planning on discussing my favorite posts anyway. The blog award has several categories of posts it asks about:
Most Beautiful: Hmm, I’m not sure I’ve ever done a beautiful post. Who am I, Hektor Karl? :) In this case, I think I’ll interpret beautiful as elegantly simple. For that, I’ll go with Dividing the Story – An Outlining Tool.
Most Helpful: Crap, another hard one. I don’t have time to take a survey, so I’m going to go with a short series of posts that I think discuss something that confounds a fair number of writers, story structure: Inciting Incident, The First Plot Point, The First Pitch Point, The Mid-Point Twist, The Second Plot Point, The Final Confrontation, and Aftermath.
Most Popular: This one always surprises me, because it’s not one of the most commented on. In the course of a year I got hundreds of pageviews on Overplayed Urban Fantasy Cliché #1 – Supernatural Cops and Private Detective. If I go by comment activity instead, that would be an A-to-Z Challenge post, U is for Utopia.
Most Controversial: Probably a tie between another of my A-to-Z Challenge posts, C is for Cultural Appropriation and that whole story structure series. Structure is still a four-letter word for many a writer.
Most Successful: Wow, how to judge some of these? I think Voice in Description turned a little light on for a few people, so I’ll go with that one.
Most Underrated: Ah, this one is easy. Any post I’ve ever done on backstory, specifically Putting Backstory in its Place, and The Purpose of Backstory.
Most Prideworthy: Heehee. Punctuation Love.
Now I need to pass the award to seven deserving bloggy friends. Well, I have more than seven fellows who fit that description, but I know some of them don’t like to receive awards or have other reasons they wouldn’t want me to tag them. Decisions, decisions.
Coral Moore at Chaos & Insanity
Matt Larkin at Incandescent Phoenix
Jennifer Burke at Jen’s Bookshelf
Steph Sinkhorn at maybe genius
Miss Cole at Miss Cole Seeks Publisher
Tricia Conway at TL Conway writes here
S.B. Stewart-Laing at Writing the Other
That done, Urban Psychopomp is also ending on a note of sadness. Part of it is simply the natural sadness of anything that is ending. Part of it is due to the fact that I recently lost a close friend unexpectedly. He was too young to go, too important to me, too beloved of too many people. His passing has caused many people, myself included, to reassess many things about out lives.
One of things I feel I need to change is the number of activities I let distract me from writing, like blogging three times a week, among other kinds of social networking and platform-building. For me, the platform must be secondary to the actual writing. I know so many of us say it is, but so few of us actually act on that assertion.
I had, of course, already made the decision to shutter Urban Psychopomp by the time my friend passed away, but the event served to convince me I’ve been directing my energies away from their most appropriate use.
What does that mean in concrete terms? It means this will be my last post on Urban Psychopomp, though the site will remain up for those who might find the posts helpful.
It means I’ll be trying to decide what I want to do with Unsafe Haven, my blog about my writing, aimed at readers. I’m not entirely convinced one way or the other that I need to continue blogging there once a week. No decision yet on that one.
It means I will have to be content with visiting you, my fellows, on your blogs. It is quite likely, however, that I will actively avoid being online everyday. I might have to catch up on all your posts on the weekends or on one or two weekend evenings. I will also continue to blog on Wednesdays on Wicked & Tricksy.
It means I’ll be focusing a lot more of my time for the next couple of years on writing—not blogging or tweeting or networking or marketing or platform-building. Writing.
Once made, the decision feels right.