#MicroblogMondays Week 1, 2016

#MicroblogMondays Week 1, 2016. Hello again.

The New Year is upon us. I have a new ambitious posting schedule, but I don’t want to put it out there in detail, only because I’ve shot myself in the foot many times. I’m pre-writing and scheduling posts as much as I can, and hopefully I will have everything in place for your reading pleasure.

Do note that Appreciating returns as a weekly feature, but it’ll be on Wednesdays instead, so I can do #MicroblogMondays. This week’s Appreciating will be about the new year.

As you might have already seen, #FridayFiction is another weekly that started last Friday. The story of Clarissa Williams will be in 12 parts, so expect one every Friday, except the last week of every month. That’s reserved for something else. 😉

This new, ambitious schedule is one-thirteenth of my New Year’s Resolutions. Maybe I’ll write a detailed post about it soon. What are your resolutions this year? How do you plan to achieve them? Leave a comment below with your answers. 🙂

Also, suggest a sign-off phrase? So far, I’ve always ended with –
Thank you for reading.

My First New Year

I talk about freedom and how I can’t seem to handle it. It is my first new year as a fully functioning adult.

Cutting straight to the point minus any fluff, I’m starting to feel really down again.  [1] I realized that this is the first new year where my life is in my control. Up until last year, I was in school and/or college, and the sequence of events were more or less set. I had to get promoted through classes and pass hurdles (exams) – it was like a closed-world role-playing game. Wrong choices ended up in backtrackable dead-ends, and eventually I would find the “right” path. Continue reading “My First New Year”

Wow Many Reflection

I talk about a time of reflection and going back to quality posts and not quantity posts.

2014 has been a big year for me, and for this blog. It has grown from eighteen posts to a hundred, and even been moved to a self-hosted site, where you are now.

At one point, I was writing up to 4 posts a week, and trying to maintain regular features viz. a monthly WWE PPV review, Monday Muse, Friday Showcase, Cascader Wednesdays. None of those are still in cycle – I’ve diffused them all. Why is that?

Here’s why. I originally started the blog in 2011 because I thought it was a cool thing to do – a personal space where I could intermittently broadcast some thoughts and ideas to whoever was listening. Along the way somewhere, I lost that in a sea of statistics. Anyone who has a WordPress blog knows that WordPress maintains some very detailed statistics of page views, clicks, links etc. I’m a sucker for numbers. Somewhere down the road, I got sucked into those numbers, and my primary motive became getting those numbers to increase.

I got happy every milestone I touched, and every little achievement was a milestone. 1000 views, 2000 views, and then 3000 views on the blog – I had 4 digit statistics! And then I moved the site, and my stats reset. Strangely enough, it wasn’t much of a letdown. Somehow I managed to make myself happy about it – new beginnings, new challenges et al.

Then started a newer, more difficult challenge – to get regular comments and commenters. I did not succeed. Here are some unfair and unjust excuses –

  • I’m not a girl. Girls get criminally more attention on social media.
  • I don’t write about mundane everyday events. I don’t display a diary for everyone to see.
  • Most comments are self-promotion anyway. Nobody really cares about abstract thinking.

And those are just those – excuses. I didn’t manage to get comments. So I looked into tips to get more comments, and on that advice, started writing more regularly, started regular features, started writing more about myself, started doing daily prompts often, and as quickly as possible so that my post is near the top of the list, and tried to start reading more blogs and perhaps leave some feedback there, to encourage a return exercise.

The result of that is that I lost the original premise – to write because it is fun; to write because I am bursting with excitement about an idea that seems great and I cannot hold it in and I need to push it out as the child of my brain and mold it into a beautiful, comprehensive, eloquent, and self-sufficient entity. It wasn’t fun anymore.

In late October I started attending therapy for vicious mood swings and intense loneliness, and I also sought help for anger management, burnout and purpose. I am terrified by stagnancy – a product of always being told that life is a rat-race and you’ll get left behind if you don’t push yourself. As such, I am never fully satisfied with the results of my pet projects or work or whatever, and I’m always looking to others for feedback and validation.

Therapy was helpful at a basic level, but it was a conversation and internal dialogue that triggered the path of recovery. Here is the internal dialogue (simplified) that brought about an epiphany – “Why do I feel lonely? Because I look for validation in others and I don’t get it. Why don’t I get it? Not to be explored. Backtrack. Why do I look for validation from others? Because expectations from others are easier than expectations from myself. Why are my expectations so high? Because I don’t like the way I am. I don’t respect myself.”

People who know me would be surprised to hear me say that I lacked self-respect, but that was the trigger. I surprised myself too. Since that realization, I’ve found it way easier to forgive myself for mistakes and to take things in a little more relaxed manner. Just knowing that that was the problem helped me deal with it. “Knowing is half the battle won.” I’ve been mostly okay since then.

One of the offshoots of that revelation was getting to escape the vortex of statistics on WordPress. I was finally able to give up the hectic post schedule in favour of more fun writing. Case in point, I haven’t posted anything since Post Number 100, which was more than a month ago.

From now on, I will go back to the style of my friend Nem’s blog Life in Night Vision, with no schedule whatsoever. But unlike my old self or Nem, I hope to post more often than 18 posts in 2 years. As such, I have fulfilled my 2014 [New Year’s] resolution of giving life to the blog, and I no longer seek to pander to hundreds of people or get thousands of views. So far, I feel content with myself and with writing out my ideas for public display.

Let’s see where it goes and how long it lasts. Thank you for reading.

Post Number 50: Labor Day, Baby Bear and Blog News

Post number 50! I have been hitting all kinds of milestones this past week. It feels good. We all know it feels great to achieve the goals you set out to achieve when you started a project, especially after a long and arduous journey. But that is the end, and it is marked by the inevitable moving on to another project. However, the smaller goals and stepping stones during that journey – the milestones – they last from the moment of their birth till the end of the project. You don’t forget your first victories, just ask this guy:

Post number 50! I have been hitting all kinds of milestones this past week. It feels good. We all know it feels great to achieve the goals you set out to achieve when you started a project, especially after a long and arduous journey. But that is the end, and it is marked by the inevitable moving on to another project. However, the smaller goals and stepping stones during that journey – the milestones – they last from the moment of their birth till the end of the project. You don’t forget your first victories, just ask this guy: Continue reading “Post Number 50: Labor Day, Baby Bear and Blog News”

Piyush Daga (4892) – A new WordPresser emerges!

So a friend of mine from school started a (Indian) film review blog as recently as… 8 hours ago. His name is Piyush Daga, and he was the Prefect of the Student Council (=Student Body Head, Student President, The Big Kahuna etc.) from our batch (2011). His blog is born from motivation by several of us after reading some of his film reviews on Facebook. My job here is to make him look as cool as possible, so here goes.


Classy as f***
Classy as f***


PROFILE

Name: Piyush Daga

Education: St. Joseph’s College, Bangalore; Don Bosco School, Kolkata.

Blog: PiyushDaga4892
Blog Content: Reviews – Indian Films
Blogging Experience: Beginner


Herein I include his first post – A review of the movie “2 States”, released yesterday, based on the book of the same name by author Chetan Bhagat.

It was a mere coincidence that Chennai And Punjab clashed not only on the field but also in 1500 theatres of India today. In the end, the game and the love emerged victorious.
“Dil Chahta Hai” was a game changer. “Wake Up Sid!” was a breath of fresh air. “2 States” is on similar lines in terms of its execution; the common link being the music directors. The Music must be credited for the success of these films. The trio of Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy catch the beat of the film. ‘Mast Magan’ and ‘Chandaniyan’ shine among the lot. The lyrics of Mast Magan carry that old world stamp! The music is well-knit with the storyline.
If one attributes a Rahul to SRK, then a Krish has to be Arjun Kapoor. After a long hiatus comes a name that suits the character and the actor to the core. In that sense, the film is close to the reality.
The first 40 minutes are surprisingly fast and thankfully so. The essence of the movie is not the love story but the TWO STATES. The casting is perfect. The marriage is shot beautifully. The fact that the couple does not want to elope did remind me of DDLJ.
Arjun looks like Junior Bachhan in parts, but thankfully underplays. He looks uninterested in the songs though.
The female lead-well just three words-AILA! AALI ALIA.. She looks beautiful, is a chicken eating Tamil Brahmin, and is not wannabee-ish to say the least!
The stars of the film are the parents-be it the rude Punjabi Amrita Singh, the graceful Revathi, the calm Shiv or the inebriated Ronit Roy. The parents own the film. It is more about the difference between two parts of India- North and South. The love story is only a medium to portray the 2 states. The biggest highlight is the relationship between Krish and his father. Hats off to Abhishek Varman for showing us this bond. It is the most complicated one and he handles it very well. The Hero is undoubtedly RONIT ROY. A very restrained yet heart-warming act!

Watch it with friends. The dialogues are funny. It is common parlance.

Does this generation really care for family values? Chetan Bhagat did. Do you?