blogging


“I like the brevity of the blog. You can make it quite short. You can just go on as long as you want to go and then just stop. It’s sort of like making a paper airplane…. I used to love to make paper airplanes. I made great paper airplanes.  You throw it out the window, it goes a little ways, turns and curves beautifully and then it’s gone forever. It’s like a blog.”

Roger Angell, at 95, on The New Yorker Radio Hour

Ah, yes, it’s so easy to write a blog post. To the extent that writing anything meaningful is easy, writing a blog post is easy. It’s as low stakes as public writing gets, especially on a small-time blog like mine. Nothing for sale, no sponsors, few readers.

And yet I haven’t been writing, despite all the inspiration and satisfaction I’ve gotten from it over the years. My list of ideas for blog posts has more words in it than I’ve actually posted in the last 10 months. It makes me sad to think about. I miss the way writing clarifies my thinking. I miss the way writing makes some contact with the friends and family members who don’t live next door to me. I’m out of touch with so many of you. And I’ve had too many interesting ideas swim in and back out of my head, unchecked by writing.

I’ve also been noticing how not writing makes my internet presence stagnate. I’ve been listening to a ton of podcasts and audio books on my commute, often in intense imaginary conversations in my head with the authors/podcasters. I’d like to be getting in touch with them on Twitter or something, at least to say thanks. When I remember that my last blog post is about the common ants of Joshua Tree, though, I refrain. I love that post, but it’s a funny way to represent myself, especially as the only public observation I’ve made in ten months.

The thing is, I’m working like crazy on getting my license for marriage and family therapy. I talk to clients and write case notes all day, which is not inspiring writing and results in too much time looking at a computer screen. If I have energy after work, I can’t be sitting down writing. I need to go the gym or scramble on some rocks. Or play piano, or rest, or spend time with my wife and family, or get ready for work or bed. It’s a good life, just no blogging for now. I’ll be back.

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The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2013 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 47,000 times in 2013. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 17 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

I started Nathen’s Miraculous Escape inspired by my friends Jeannie Lee and Ethan Mitchell who write great blogs about whatever strikes their fancy. I love this format but I know I shed readers who are only interested in one of the topics I write about. A psychology student, for example, might lose interest after a few posts on my family life, ecology, epistemology, or some other random rant. A Joshua Tree local, family friend, or fellow desert-sustainability explorer will almost certainly tire of my deconstructions of the DSM or various essays about theories and practices of psychotherapy.

I will continue posting everything I write for the public here, but have started two new blogs which will get a more focused subset of my writing. Here are the links, with top ten lists of the posts therein:

NathenLester.com, for my posts about psychology and therapy.

1. Three Approaches to Psychotherapy: A Film Series

2. Experiential Family Therapy: The Humanistic Family Therapy Model

3. Congruent & Incongruent Communication, Paradox & Double Bind

4. Oppositional Defiant Disorder Assessment

5. Albert Ellis’s 15 Irrational Ideas

6. DSM-IV-TR Diagnostic Criteria for Eating Disorders

7. Diagnostic Criteria for Substance Abuse and Dependence

8. Sternberg’s Triangular Love Typology

9. Review of the Sleep Cycle App

10. Lee’s Love Typology: Love Styles

Living in Joshua Tree, for my posts about living in the desert and striving for a sustainable lifestyle here.

1. Guest Post: We are moving to the desert!

2. Humidity in Joshua Tree

3. Some Thoughts on Sealing the Outside of my Trailer

4. A Quick Foray Into Carbon Footprint Calculation: 10.41 Metric Tons of CO2

5. How Deep is Your Ecology?

6. A Couple Things About Gas Mileage

7. Causes Cancer in California

8. Some Things I Love About Joshua Tree

9. A Violent Storm on the Beaufort Scale

10. Keeping Cool in the Desert: “You might say the secret ingredient is ‘water.’”

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

4,329 films were submitted to the 2012 Cannes Film Festival. This blog had 39,000 views in 2012. If each view were a film, this blog would power 9 Film Festivals

Click here to see the complete report.

WordPress sent me this in an email. Last year they let me post the whole summary (here) but this year it’s just an excerpt with a link to the rest of the information. Their summary this year is more interesting than last (including a map showing that, for example, 24.5% of my hits from Asia were from India), but it’s annoying that they are using this teaser to advertise some of their new features.

Anyway, happy new year everybody!

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2011 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

The concert hall at the Syndey Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 24,000 times in 2011. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 9 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

 

 

On my stats page I get a list of “referrers”–websites that have supposedly sent someone to NME with a link. Off an on I get waves of what appears to be a strange kind of spam–websites show up that are clearly not linked or affiliated with me in any way. It’s slightly annoying but more perplexing. I am the only audience here, not my readers, because this stuff is only accessible to me. Does someone actually think that I am going to go buy their stuff because they sent a robot to make it look like a person came to my site from theirs? I guess it’s like email-spam, and they are relying on spamming huge numbers of people to get a few suckers, but is it really worth it to write these spam programs for a few suckers?

"Referrers" to NME from a bad day last fall

I don’t watch my blog site stats like I used to, but I still feel happy when they cross a (n arbitrary) line like this. I had 2,024 hits in March, more than twice as many as last March, and four times as many as the March before that. Should I hope for breaking 4,000 in March 2012?

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