364.5 Days ago I launched a project to blog every day throughout 2013. Publishing this very post will complete that project. By way of something to write about today, I thought I’d surface some of my fave moments, and (going by view stats) some of yours. It’s been a remarkable year. Some of it I knew was coming – the birth of our new baby and my 40th birthday for example, but some of the moments, were unpredicted, like when I discovered a film that I’d shot in a camera some 30 years prior … changing my name and having a vasectomy.
I’ve experienced some fantastic stuff this year – from photography, art, technology and fun to stunning musical happenings, through walks, talks, sports and (er.. something that rhymes with the above and has something to do with food.. ) forks. Here are some of the highlights…
and I wrote up an idea that should by rights, make me millions upon millions of pounds – my DragonDrop’s Den idea. I challenged the world to Shoot some film, I talked about Procrastination Elf and the Final Version.
I wrote a piece about A nice cup of tea and questioned if we were looking at The demise of facebook and proffered my opinion as to the Top 10 niche groups on Flickr including, the Ho group – a group started by a friend which only contains photos of the letters H and O together…
Of course the big event here was me delivering my own baby, which I recapped in the years most popular blog post by far, entitled The birth of Annie Mo. “A flicker of disgruntlement appeared on her visage before she spluttered once, spluttered twice then took her first breath.“
Other stuff in March – we visited Iconic Dublin and sadly, had to say goodbye to our beloved Misty cat. Ooh, and I also changed my name from plain ol’ Watson to super hero styles “Watson-Power”. My most intense day’s ‘work’ on DragonDrop was in March – when I wrote about On’t Sofa – A couple of guys I know who are passionate about music. A site visit to see them at work in Leeds, then a full write up.. this post took nearly the whole day and night to do and I just made it with minutes to spare (the copy is probably a bit buggy, but hay ho).
I was one of a select few lucky enough to attend ‘the gig of the year’ – An evening with Karl Culley where I made up the word Genvy.
Being a blogger finally paid off, when I got invited to a free bar Nokia promo called Lumia Live Sessions. I got a lovely letter from a man called Roger Lean and we had our First BBQ of the year. I also wrote about the new Harrogate – Killinghall – Ripley Cycle path.
I wrote a spate of technology articles, on such subjects as Interior orientation, the Techno pushchair and Lifelogging by Memoto and wondered Where will Nokia be 5 years from now. I did some experimental photography and wrote about it in a piece called Double X, X-Pro. Speaking of experimental photography (a hobby which I’ve docuemtned frequently throughot the year) the best result was when I found a 30 year old camera with film still in it.
I sent a life changing email in which I handed my notice in at my old work, and started on a quest to learn and master a photographic technique called the brenizer method .. which as the month of June drew on, I seemed toGetting there with..
We did a festival / party in a field called AllanGate and explored the question of if I’m doing stuff just to get content in a post called Compelling content. I also did a thing about Royal Hall Harrogate.
A month dominated by outdoor Shakespeare, first with King Lear at Newby Hall, then, a trip to Wales to immerse ourselves in Midsummer Nights Dream. I fell in love with a camera (LOMO LC-A) and Film combo – Kodak Ektar 100.. producing punchy brilliance like this..
I also wrote about stuff like Smellography, Speed reading and Twitter. The Human Milk Bank got a bit of interest and I stumbled across Claro Bees.. We also got to swim in a river for the day at Bilton Beach..
We spent a magical afternoon at Cwy-ffynnone and wrapped up our trip to Wales.
I finished my old job (End of an Era) and we headed off into France for a bit where I acquired Second degree burns and Jay and I discovered an abandoned underground Quarry called Chapeaumont Souterraine…
Felix turned 15 and I wrote about “The impossible photograph” and Samaritans Confidentiality. I wrote about my new camera – an Olympus OM 10 and how it had nice-bokeh! I published my favourite photo of the whole year (as taken on said camera)..
I also attempted to invent a new demographic definition – Generation D.
I wrote about Phones made by free range humans the Hashtag Selfie and Neo Marketing. I also wrote about the Second The Ashes in a year (but we don’t like to talk about that now.) I went on a Stag do in Dentdale and went on a woodland / river walk..
where I shot a super slow mo Dog Shake Video.
Bringing us almost up to date.. I claimed a title of being one of the wolds leading experts in Horsefaceography (no one has disputed this, yet), had a brilliant Christmas day and had a look a curious thing. I also shot a video of a curious thing – which I’ve later been told could be a ” brocken spectre” but at the time I was calling a Round Hill Round Rainbow. I also shot a couple of photos that I’m quite pleased with..
Bringing things right up to date, the FIRE party we had the other night was one of the best party nights all year. And here we are, NYE.. a night that I may well NOT write about!
I’m quite looking forward to the freedom of not having to blog evey day, yet I’m going to miss the discipline of having to.
This project has taught me a lot – a great guy called Seth Godwin once wrote ” “The writing isn’t the hard part, it’s the commitment. Drip!”. Getting into a regular habit of writing / creating / shooting / capturing / reporting has been excellent. A real self discovery at times – quite often on the evenings when I really couldn’t be bothered.. something sparkly happened. It’s taught me to observe and document the world around me – to look at it and look at it again. To self edit. It’s taught me how to see detail, it’s taught me to go further to get see more. People have asked me along the way if blogging every day has encouraged me to do more, so I’ve got something to write about – yes it has. Adventure and writing this blog have had a symbiotic relationship and both parties are a winner as a result.
So what’s next?
I’m going to have a bit of time out from blogging (every day at least) and consider the longer forms of writing and longer projects. Not book length stuff, but things that take a bit of time to learn about and/or pull together. I toyed with this format a few times during the year, but I always had a midnight deadline.. It’d be nice to throw away the deadline (ish) and see how I’d fair. Possibly getting a few things on the go. A few themes have matured a bit over the year – particularly the site’s current main currencies; ADVENTURE, FAMILY, REVIEW, SEASONS, TECH, PHOTOGRAPHIC, ART and MUSIC and I get the feeling that what ever I do as far as ‘long form’ / essay pieces go, may be around one or more of those. Anyway – I’ll just give it a blast and see what happens.
Finally, if you’re still reading this, I’d like to say a massive thanks to you, dear reader. Who ever you are. Friends and strangers alike – thank you. Thanks for reading. I hope you have a tip top 2014. Well done for reading all this. Have a lollipop.