Harry Wolff

You can't escape my laugh.

Long Form and Short Form, Where do they belong?

April 15, 2014
Read time 2 minutes

Warning: what follows rambles and has no real point except to think aloud. Read at your own indulgance.

So here's a new idea that's isn't new.

Right now I have my blog. On there I write long form pieces. Things that take up more time than reading a handful of tweets.

I've always wanted some avenue for writing short length content and I've dabbled with having it as part of my main blog but it never felt right. Always felt like it would drown out the rest of my better quality writing.

And I did try it for a little bit. I would post links in there and whatever I came across. Things that I now just post directly to Twitter. And that is where those things belong, on Twitter. They're transient and strongly temporal. They don't have a long shelf life, some losing relevance the second after produced. So to have those things exist alongside long form pieces which are meant to have a long shelf life seemed wrong to me.

Yet I was never sure it was absolutely wrong to do. Having all my produced content in one place has great appeal, despite being in conflict of intended consumption behavior. When I take a step back and ask myself for a quick gut reaction to the question, “Should my long form and short form writing exist in one location?” I respond with an instant “No.” Each would distract from the other, devaluing the benefits of each type and form.

So I have this blog. Then where should the short length stuff go?

Perhaps I should put it on my homepage. Beneath the image of my face, have a time stamped river of content. Some imported from the social networks I frequent, such as Twitter, Instagram, and Foursquare, and some from my own self hosted version of Tumblr. Or maybe just use Tumblr. The only reason I consider self hosted is the same reason I self host my blog: I like owning the material I create.

Yet again this is probably just a distraction. I still want to write more long form pieces but I build up the act of actually writing anything so much until I don't write anything. Perhaps by creating a secondary pipeline of content I can take the pressure off of blogging. If I feel pressure to perform elsewhere then it may seem as if the pressure to write long form is far less. Through creating a context where long form writing isn't as scary as short term writing perhaps it'll be easier to write!

But I don't really know. It's hard enough to work a day job, contribute to open source projects, write long form content, and remain caught up with the tv shows I enjoy. To add another thing into the mix seems like it'll just add to my daily pressure.

But maybe it'll do just the opposite. Time expands to fill all space provided. Perhaps I'm providing too much space so there's more time for nothing. Which then feeds on itself. Perhaps I need to fill in those gaps.

We'll see.