Friday, May 30, 2014

State of the blog

Dear readers,

I have long seen brilliant minds behind other blogs post regular State of the Blog addresses in the past. Yet, for whatever reason, I have yet to compose one of my own in the two-plus years I've been in the blogosphere.

So, tonight, gather 'round for the inaugural State of the Blog address here on "Dime Boxes".

Where do I begin?

I've been in the blogging business for a while now, and I've loved every single minute of it. When I first started, there was absolutely no guarantee that it would become a long-term commitment of mine.

I figured I'd try my hand at it for a little while and see what it was like. I never expected to blog for more than a month or so. That month has turned into nearly two and a half years.

I'm proud to have developed a decent following of readers who enjoy what I write. I can't tell you how much I've enjoyed reading the other spectacular blog material all of you have written as well.

Of course, some great blogs have faded away over these two-plus years. On the flip side, though, it's been awesome to see so many great ones sprout up over the same time span as well.

There's no denying that the blogosphere is a well-oiled machine.

That's one of the things that keeps me coming back to it on a daily basis.

I don't know about the rest of you, but I find myself going back through my old posts fairly often.

It's hard not to notice the changes I've made to the blog during my time around here. Though the current state of "Dime Boxes" is good, the shifts I've made in my writing has done a great deal to maintain a good balance for this blog.

Some of my more longtime readers may remember that I used to regularly post two, three, even four times a day way back when. I'm still not sure how I wrote at such a backbreaking pace.

At times, I guess I'd force posts, feeling like I had to get something out in the open. I'd often pick a random card, perhaps a cool Negro League issue, and write a quick and often fairly incoherent post about it. I made it more about post frequency than actual fun in my early days.

It's not the same story here in 2014. I rarely, if ever, post more than once a day anymore. And the days I go without blogging has increased dramatically. I probably average five posts a week now, and I'm fine with that.

Blogging is only fun if you do it at your own pace.

I've made a conscious effort to shorten my posts around here lately.

A lot of my older writings feel like novels. Some posts I write have to be fairly lengthy. That's part of writing.

Still, reading through them now, some of my past posts were long for the sake of being long. If I posted a Marlon Byrd card, I'd tell you his life story for no apparent reason.

It's like The Stranger stopping himself at the end of The Big Lebowski. 

Look at me. I'm ramblin' again.

Short and sweet is the way to go.

My theme posts dominated this blog during the early days.

It felt like everything else was basically an afterthought. The main focus was on my random "Gems of Junk Wax" or perhaps "Into the Sunset" posts featuring guys like Rod Carew or Rollie Fingers.

It's not that I don't enjoy writing theme posts now. I do. It's just that they're not the main focus of my blog these days.

I'll toss in a "Sunset" post every now and then, but I've tried to focus more on trade posts and original ideas as of late.

After all, the original purpose of this blog was to have the more dime box mentality of never quite knowing what to expect on a regular basis.

I think that's more true now than ever.

Overall, the outlook for this blog is phenomenal.

I still have the same passion to write as I did two years ago. I still crave dime boxes every bit as much as I did when I started this blog. If not more.

In fact, the blogosphere accomplished something that I didn't think was possible. It made my dime box digs even more fun than ever.

Instead of simply searching for guys I collect, all of you have taught me to expand my horizons a bit. Now, I pick up cards that simply strike my fancy, regardless of whether I collect the player or not.

On top of that, I've developed an appreciation for oddballs that I never had before I started this blog. Whether it's old '70s Kellogg's oddities or more recent ones, it's been fun to see oddballs gain more and more of a presence around here.

Plus, I still get a great kick out of finding a card that I know another blogger will enjoy. I never had that feeling before I became part of the blogosphere.

The art of paying it forward is a feeling that's hard to put into words.

I don't know where I'll be in the next two years, but it's impossible to see my future without blogging.

It's become such an important part of my life during my time in the blogosphere. While I'd like to say that I write for only myself, the support and gratitude I've received from so many people around here has encouraged me to stick with blogging for the long haul.

So, whether you've been with me since the beginning or just discovered this blog yesterday, I tip my cap to you.

Writing for all of you has allowed me to discover a passion I never knew I had in the first place.


Stealing Home said...

A tip of the cap to you, Nick :)

cynicalbuddha said...

Nice. I'm glad we have you in the blogosphere Nick.

Tony L. said...

Great post and great points, Nick. I have to stop sometimes to remind myself that I blog for the fun of it. Since I love music, I subject everyone else to stuff I like or just find that fits...but, it's fun and that's what I love about it. Keep up the great work -- yours is a must read for me every time, even if I don't comment on every post.

Mark Hoyle said...

Keep it up Nick. You do a great job. Always enjoy reading

Johnnys Trading Spot said...

Nick,I know I've said this before, but your writing/blog is what INSPIRED me to give a boost to my card collection and ultimately to create my own blog, which is coming near its first year anniversary (end of July I think). I have missed this past month, not reading any blogs. There is nothing like the blogosphere and its traders, it can pick you up when you are down for sure! I look forward to reading your blog whenever I log in. KEEP IT UP BUD! will get you out a package soon, thanks for the cards.

Zayden said...

Very nice piece of writing Nice! I've enjoyed your posts all along. I think 3-5 times a week is a perfect amount. The fact that you are still passionate about Dime Boxes gives me great hope. I've never even touched a dime box before so you can imagine the world left O have to explore. I love how you keep the passion. You've really made an impact on the hobby my friend.

beefman said...

A tip of the cap to you, my friend! Since the day I stumbled across it a couple years ago, yours is my favorite blog. Given your track record, that will never change.

Thanks again, Nick!

For my daily dose of bliss.

Aussie Nick

petethan said...

Dime Boxes is the People's Choice. Glad there are no term limits in the blog world.

"Blogging is only fun if you do it at your own pace." Amen. And I'm glad your pace is steady, unlike some insanely Random bloggers I know (intimately)...