So, what’s going on anyhow?

It’s hard to believe it, but I’m currently in my 5th year blogging.

Yup, that’s right.

The first time I hit “Publish…” and thezombieshuffle.com officially became a blog was back in March of 2014; 4 1/2 years ago!

I had been writing about these same themes for a few years prior to that, but it was just for my own consumption and I didn’t have any idea that I would one day be putting my thoughts out there, for the world to see.

I have to say, these last 4 plus years have been quite a journey for me.

My life has gone through a lot of ups and downs since that day. Some really hard times, and some really great times.

Most importantly though, I’ve grown significantly as a person. Looking back, I’m not the same person I was at the start of this journey. And I think that’s a good thing, as we should always be trying to grow.

Which brings me to the title of today’s post…

So, what’s going on anyhow?

Any regular readers may have noticed that my blogging output has taken a bit of a hit in recent months. I used to get a post out every week, or every two weeks at the worst. Before my last post I realized I had gone two months without posting.

And now it’s been two months again 😬.

TWO POSTS IN FOUR MONTHS?!?

Geez, how in the world did that happen?

Well, there are lots of reasons actually…

First, I moved into a new place back in March. And although it’s great, it’s also been a lot of work. It seems like there is *always* stuff to do in order to get it where I want it. To have it feel not just like a house, but like my home. So when I have time I often find myself tackling some of the little things. Thankfully, although there’s still a lot to do it’s slowing down. I look around now and think “yeah, this is *my* place”. And that’s great!

The second reason is probably the biggest.

I work on projects for my job, and a project that has taken up the past 26 months of my life has just completed and is going live right now.

This has meant that these last few months have been pretty chaotic – testing, working through last minute issues against deadlines, and finally getting this thing out the door. The last two weeks in particular have been brutally exhausting; but there’s light at the end of the tunnel (yay!!!).

The reason this has had such a big impact on writing is, a big chunk of my consistent writing time has over work lunches. And the past few months I just sorta work through lunch. Hopefully you can see the problem there.

The next reason is, I’m happily in a relationship (and have been for close to a year now). She and I both have fairly busy lives, and when we can have some time to spend together we try to take it.

One of the themes in my writing has been about “choosing” our partners, and making them a priority. Well, I’ve always tried to “walk the talk”, and she’s a priority to me.

Lastly, it’s been summer; and it’s been beautiful. So I’ve been trying to spend as much time outside enjoying it as possible.

When you combine all these things, writing has definitely fallen by the wayside.

That’s not to say I’ve stopped.

I’ve written thousands and thousands of words over the past few months. I’ve started a number of posts, and written out rough ideas for a number of others.

I just haven’t gotten any to the point where I feel they are ready to hit “publish”.

Things are starting to get more settled at work, my place needs less effort, and fall is hitting. So I’m hoping to get back behind a keyboard and get some posts out.

So there you go.

If you’ve noticed the drought, that’s why. Hopefully people are still around when I get back to to posting. I’ve kinda missed the little discussions and feedback in the comments, as there are a handful of readers I’ve gotten to know over the years.

Drew

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Return from vacation…

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In my last post I mentioned that I was going to be away from blogging for a bit as I was going on vacation.

Well after spending the past two weeks touring China, I’m back!

I went on the tour as part of a group.  Thing is, I went by myself and landed in Beijing with no idea what I would be getting myself into.

I’m a fairly sociable guy, and can get along with pretty much anyone.  But here I was half a world away; and I was going to be spending the better part of two weeks with a bunch of strangers.

I’ll admit I really wasn’t sure how it was going to go.

Our group was 41 people.  20 “pairs” – mostly couples (though there were a few people who went with friends or family), and me.

 

Most of the group was a bit older (largely retirees), so I naturally gravitated towards the group that was closer in age; and they became my “family from China” for most of the trip.  Though as I got to know some of the other people in the group there were a handful of other people who I would like to think became friends.

 

It was a really interesting microcosm of relationships though; as I had 11 days to meet people, form opinions of them and make connections with some of them.

In some ways 11 days is a short time, but when you’re around each other for approximately 12 hours a day it’s also long enough for personality conflicts to start to show and tempers to start to flare (there was one guy in particular who I would have been happy to leave behind on a number of occasions).

 

Still, it was a great time.

I was reminded of how much of the world I have yet to see, and how beautiful it can be.  I was reminded that first impressions can be wrong, that even with the people you get along with there will be rough moments, and that humor goes a long way towards making any experience more enjoyable.

 

In any case, I’m back.  I still don’t have a usable computer at home so it may take a while before blogging gets back to normal, but I’m getting there!

Drew

Site Organizing

Messy-pile-of-boxes-on-top-of-a-person

Thezombieshuffle.com is closing on 4 years old!

When I started writing, I don’t think I had any real ideas about where it was going or how long I would be doing this.  But I quickly found I enjoyed it, and it filled a creative niche that was missing in my life.  So here I am, almost 160 posts (or 250k words) later, with no real end in sight.

As my blog has grown in content, it has become increasingly difficult to find any way to keep it organized; and I also find that my older posts tend to get lost.

A few years ago I tried adding a “Quick Links” section to the title bar at the top to try and address this.  And I suppose it may have helped, maybe.  But the Quick Links section has turned into a bit of a maintenance nightmare, where it seems to always be 3-4 months behind in content.

 

A while back I had a request from a new reader if there were any specific posts that she should read on the site to get a sense of what thezombieshuffle.com was all about, and that gave me the idea for adding another page with kind of an overview of what this is about.

I’ve been working on that on and off as time has permitted over the past few months, and I suspect it will change a bit over time.  But as of today, there is a now a Site Synopsis link in the menu at the top.

Any feedback is appreciated, so take a look (it’s essentially a new post) and let me know what you think.

Drew

Site Organization

As I add content to the site I’ve found it’s become increasingly difficult to find things. So to try making the site easier to navigate, I’ve added a Quick Links page to the header at the top of the site. That page has links to my different blog entries organized by the main topic. Hopefully it makes it a bit easier to find older entries.

Before I started this site I came up with a list of topics that seemed relevant for long term relationships, and those are (largely) the topics I write on. So if you see any headings in there with no entries under them, that’s why. Entries are on the way.

If you look at the list and have any ideas for topics that I haven’t listed, let me know. I’m always happy to have new things to think about and write on.