This year, the blog didn't exactly begin with a bang. However, Teecup intends to get back in the game -- but not without touching a bit on blogging hiatuses.
A hiatus is synonymous to a break or an interruption. Sometimes, long hiatuses can lead to the death of a blog site. Sometimes, they are so short that you won't even notice a blogger's absence.
Call them excuses, alibis or justifications if you like. There are plenty of reasons that bloggers go on a hiatus.
The whys range from the most mundane such as forgetting passwords and finding yourself too sleepy to write because of medications to the most serious such spending time in the hospital and surviving a tragedy.
By far and as experience goes to show, the most common causes are:
- A Full-Time Job. People have got to work. Regardless of whether you found a day job or entered into a freelancing agreement for clients on a fixed schedule, work hours are hours you cannot spend posting new content to your blog site.
Some bloggers argue that you can always sneak in a blog post or two while on the job. Work ethics dictate that you don't. Clients pay you to work for them and not to maintain your blog.
Besides, if you're familiar with Elance and Odesk hourly jobs, you've got trackers to deal with. The trackers not only record your time; they also take a snap shot of your active screen every few minutes to let clients know how the job is progressing. Save yourself from the embarrassment.
- Blogger Burnout. Did you post too frequently that you ran out of fresh ideas? Were you too stressed to even recall you had a blog? Were you frustrated that blogging for you did not turn out to be as profitable as your friends predicted?
A sudden drain of inspiration and creativity can plague the most brilliant bloggers. If this happened to you too, you're not alone. (Luckily, there are ways to deal with blogger burnout.)
Needless to say, unless you're actually employed to maintain somebody else's blog site, don't force yourself to create content just for the sake of keeping the blog site alive. Poor and irrelevant content not only takes a toll on your credibility; it can also have a detrimental effect to your fan following.
- Personal Time and Ties. Blood is thicker than water. When loved ones begin to complain that you're "more married" to your computer, that's a serious sign that you need to lay back and cultivate on your social relationships.
Like blogs, friendships require maintenance too. The only difference is that you deal with more than just content or a good conversation; you need to meet expectations and let people feel that you're there and that they're still important.
The list isn't exhaustive. However, the reasons cited bring to mind a couple of realizations:
First, bloggers who are able to continue the craft for years deserve a medal. Though it's easy to string words and write about what you want whenever you want to, it takes a lot of discipline to keep the faith and sustain the momentum.
Second, online users are very utilitarian. Reading audiences can decide to stop patronizing a blog site once they've gotten all the info they need. In the same way, blog owners can choose to go on a hiatus because they have other priorities.
More importantly, the time you spend on something defines your priorities. If something really matters to you, you will find time for it. As a blogger, you will find a way to overcome your blogging challenges.*