The Numbers

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The Numbers

I know that bloggers always start off saying things like “I write for myself, and I don’t care how many readers I get,” but those of us who are fortunate enough to develop a readership find that we want to publish things worth reading, in terms of both content and writing style. I’m very pleased that some of you think my efforts are worth your time and trouble to return here in hopes of possibly seeing something worth reading, and I hope to continue.

I like to joke that I only have 27 readers from my own state of Connecticut, but recent numbers show that perhaps I’m not that far off. Each month, we post a survey on our Grand Lodge website, and we report the responses in the next issue of The Connecticut Freemason publication. Our last poll was based on our curiosity about those in Connecticut who actually do read blogs by Masons. The question and responses are as follows:

Do you read Masonic blogs?

Response Number Percentage
Yes, regularly 25 24
Yes, sometimes 40 39
No, don’t know what they are 20 19
No 19 18

Personally, I’m a bit surprised that there was not a category for “Yes, but only when Tom whines and makes me feel guilty”, but perhaps the CT Freemason writers were being kind.

This poll comes along when a few of my online brothers have been wondering about the seeming slowdown in the blogging world. A while ago I read that the typical blog lasts for three to six months, after which the writer runs out of ideas, time, or motivation. I think that a lot of Masons start blogging when they just have joined or are about to join, and accordingly, there’s a lot to write about because joining is new and exciting. There are all those thoughts running through one’s head, there’s the questioning, the investigating, the wondering aloud. And then there’s the petitioning, the investigating committee, and meeting new people. And after that, there is the getting prepped for the initiation and raising. Whoo hoo! Fun and exciting times, indeed.

After the raising, of course, there are a lot of meetings, reading of minutes, and discussions on fixing the roof or replacing the coffee maker. Excitement? Not so much. And that means, of course, less material to write about, and less motivation to write. It’s not that there is nothing interesting anymore, it’s just that one moves from the unknown to the known. It’s kind of like when Ross and Rachel finally got together; the culmination is always less interesting than the events leading up to it. Simply put, the early part of becoming a Mason – like becoming anything – is a process. Something new and different is happening in your life; but we need to remember that things that are happening are more interesting than things that are not happening.

And that is why, as 3M noted, that blogging can be difficult – we’ve already used up the good stuff.

Or have we?

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