February 16, 2010

Personal blog? Don’t worry about your strategy

February 16, 2010 - Categories: blogging, writing
This entry is part 10 of 19 in the series A No-Excuses Guide to Blogging

Personal branding seems like such a big deal these days. If you’re a beginning blogger, you’re supposed to pick a topic and focus on it, carefully considering how you want to present yourself. Come up with a catchy tagline. Imitate your favourite blogging stars. Polish, polish, polish.

Over lunch, one of my friends told me she envied how easily I write and asked me if she should plan her blogging strategy or just post whatever she could.

Here’s what I think: Don’t worry, just write. Don’t focus on a niche. Don’t hang on to drafts forever. Don’t write like a magazine. You might want to think twice about posting things you might regret, but there’s plenty of other material to share.

Writing is a skill. You won’t know how to do it right away. In fact, if you do it right, you’ll never stop learning.

Don’t write for other people. Write because you want to understand.

When you start, you’ll be boring. You’ll wander around, looking for the point you want to make. It’s okay. You’re still figuring out what you want to say and how you want to say it. Write. Write. Write. The more you write about something, the better you’ll understand it.

Don’t write something a million people could write. It’s better to be unfocused than to be generic. I generally don’t take guest posts from other people because far too many guest posts are soulless entries written more for search engines than for people. Be yourself. Write until you know more about who you are, then write some more.

It’s okay to tell one story twenty times in order to learn how it’s told. Experiment.

The real challenge isn’t coming up with one thing to share. Once you open your eyes to the world and discover writing, the challenge is choosing among the many, many stories to tell. You don’t have to tell the best story. Just make a choice and get out there.

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Fixing SIOCSIFFLAGS: Unknown error 132 for Karmic wireless on Asus Eee 1008HA

February 16, 2010 - Categories: geek, linux

I was having problems with wireless on the netbook-oriented version of Ubuntu Karmic Koala. ifconfig wlan0 up returned SIOCSIFFLAGS: Unknown error 132. Thanks to Ubuntu’s bug database, I found the following solution:

rmmod ath9k
rfkill block all
rfkill unblock all
modprobe ath9k
rfkill unblock all