Jumping the gap between zero and one by Marcus Shepherd

I suffer from a condition that I've heard rhymingly referred to as "Analysis Paralysis." It's a fancy form of procrastination that ultimately derives from perfectionism. If I can't do this perfectly, I might as well not do it. But I'm sure that if I just sit here and think about it, I'll be able to create a system that will allow me to do it perfectly after all. That's why:

  • I never blog
  • I never journal
  • I can take four hours to clean one bathroom

I'll never forget hearing the phrase "jumping the gap between zero and one." It's the difference between having nothing and having anything. Between a blank page and a page with a single word. Between running shoes in a box and running shoes on your feet. It's the beginning of something, no matter how poorly that first step is taken.

It doesn't take a system. It doesn't take inspiration. It just takes a step.


Upcoming: living in suburb hell, buses bringing out the crazy, and internet nostalgia that makes my wife think I'm an old man.

The past is a foreign country by Marcus Shepherd

I have had a lot of blogs. They've enjoyed different lifespans, different homes, and different philosophies, but they've all met the same fate: neglect and death. Most of them are deleted and gone forever, beneath the notice of the Wayback Machine. But for an incredible, nostalgic trip, I looked at my high school blog, my very first.

I started with an audience of zero, intended audience of zero. I'd be shocked if more than a dozen people ever read it, and I don't remember how anyone, even my friends, found out about it. What I wrote in 05-06 was the first time I put writing out there, and there were even a couple of posts that I felt proud to have written. Reading all that now is a fun (and psychotic) time capsule.

There was a feeling back when having a blog was a new concept, before Facebook and Twitter and Instagram and Snapchat offered us a chance to easily share how we thought. Blogger and LiveJournal were so simple to use and instantly empowering. I don't even know if I could see how many people visited my blog back then, but it certainly wasn't a concern. It was about sharing a cool photo with the few people I knew would see it, about venting to the whole world, about finding a way to describe a crush. I never worried about having a consistent voice, frequent posts, or an innovative vision. I just wanted to talk and hear from anyone listening.

It was my favorite time, when blogs weren't publishing platforms but communication and social networks.

Yeah. It's a new blog.

Well, I've been sort of working on it for a few months, on and (mostly) off. Nothing in the design is final and I don't know what I'm doing. I won't publish anything I don't feel good about, but I also don't feel any need to pretend like this is a sacred space where I can't experiment or be fun. I'll read and reread and edit my writing, but I'm not above embedding a YouTube video and just saying "watch." I'm not writing in hopes of making any money and I'm not writing in hopes of gaining much of an audience beyond the people I care about.

My plan is to let my friends know I'm writing here once I have something to show them. This doesn't count. When I have a few weeks of posts published and a few more weeks in the can, that's when I'll let people know.

Stats and analytics never make me feel like I have an actual audience. I'm not interested in metrics and I'd like to make blogging feel like a community experience again. If you comment here, I will comment on your blog. Promise. None of us want to feel alone and we all want to know what each other think.

Upcoming: dealing with Obsessive Collection Disorder, embracing meditative mornings, breaking out of routines, deciding to save the world, and plots to escape the Suburban Hellscape of Layton.

Posts in "LDS" are primarily for my Sunday School class, though when that's behind me I'll turn it into more grown-up posts. Presently, there will be a "Travel" section for sharing our adventures, so stay tuned.