Olson’s Observations

Technology. Innovation. Science. VC. Media. :: by Eric Olson

Time for a Hiatus

with 4 comments

I have been thinking about the future of this blog for the past few months and I have decided to put it into indefinite hibernation.  When I started this blog I did it for myself.  I love to write and blogging was a way to pursue that passion. In fact, putting together a record of my thoughts has been very fulfilling. Over the years a number of people - more than I ever would have imagined - have read my posts and some have even engaged in dialog with me via comments and email.

As I began to see more and more readers checking out my posts the overall blogosphere exploded and is now, pretty much, mainstream.  A lot of top “blogs” are really professional news sites with comments in that they have many employees and publish frequently.  That is fantastic.  We have witnessed a media revolution that is still in its early days.  I was lucky enough to witness it not only as a blogger but also in my business development role at FeedBurner, which was one of the best learning experiences of my life.

There is now a lot of new content being published on the web each day from all corners of the globe.  The barriers to entry that used to exist to publishing on the web are now all but eliminated.  Video on the web is also starting become more pervasive and mobile devices provide a new frontier for the web and publishing.

What does all this have to do with Olson’s Observations?  Well, I am not sure how spending a significant amount of time writing my columns on my own site makes sense given that I write infrequently and readers don’t seem to like that.  I feel as if it would be better to contribute to larger sites once in a while in order to get my work out to a much wider audience, which would also allow me to get more feedback in the form of comments.

I am also giving the blog an indefinite vacation because I felt pressure to post, to get more content out to readers.  That caused writing to lose its fun for me and, if it isn’t fun, I don’t want to bother. Contributing to other sites will allow the pressure to be lifted since I can contribute when I feel the urge to write and only then.

Lastly, writing-wise I wanted to spend more time on the book (or books - or maybe screenplays) that I think I have in me (I could be very wrong though - I might not have one in me). I want to start in on some larger, more long-term, writing projects that I have outlined but never seem to get to.

Over the the last year I have been increasingly frustrated at the lack of time in the day.  There is so much I want to do, to read, to write, to build but there is just never enough time.  Lack of time was the enemy, or so I thought.

Last weekend I had an epiphany.  I realized that lack of time wasn’t the enemy.  Lack of time forces people to prioritize, to make decisions about how to spend their time.  In a sense it causes people to focus. Focus was something I had at FeedBurner and all my life up until we sold FeedBurner.  I lost my ability to focus after FeedBurner.  I wanted to do everything. Start/run a company, blog, build TECH cocktail, etc.  Focus, though, is what helps one be great at what they do and helps with creativity.

In my case I am working on being a great venture capitalist, building TECH cocktail into a top notch organization and excelling in graduate school.  While those are all related activities, focusing on those things will take a lot out of me and focusing is what I need to do to make those goals come to fruition.  With what time is left I want to focus on my fiance, on my band (the Button Pushers), on spending time with friends and family and on some select hobbies (writing a book, rocket building and other things without deadlines).

Keeping up a blog (writing regularly at least) falls outside of my main focus areas. For those who want to know my thoughts I will make sure to post on here any time I contribute a piece elsewhere with a link to that post.  If that’s not enough you can just ask me and I will tell you.

Thanks to everyone who has read and contributed to this blog in some way over the years.  It has been a fun ride (and one that may continue to the future).

Written by Eric Olson

November 3rd, 2008 at 11:00 pm

Posted in General Thoughts

Tagged with

4 Responses to 'Time for a Hiatus'

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  1. Hey Eric,

    I totally share your sentiments about blogging. We’ve been going through something similar over at the two-bit blog where the postings have slowed to a trickle. Anyways, best of luck on your new ventures. I hope to make it out to another tech cocktail someday.

    Justin

    Justin Chen

    4 Nov 08 at 12:44 am

  2. Hi Eric - I completely understand where you are coming from, as I think most people who have a blog as a secondary task go through this. I have enjoyed reading your thoughts and observations and hope to see your future work on the big screen!

    mp/m

  3. Thanks for the support guys!

    Eric Olson

    5 Nov 08 at 3:01 pm

  4. Eric,

    Nice to hear what’s going on. I think you’re making a wise decision, on so many levels. Despite us who will miss reading your blog. Things sound so great for you, congrats on all fronts (-;

    Jonathan

    6 Nov 08 at 2:12 am

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