A few weeks ago I decided I was sort of over the whole 'blogosphere' thing. It's not so much that I don't find some writing on some blogs to be worth reading, it was more that I was completely overwhelmed with the whole thing. I had fallen into the whole trap of trying to post everyday to increase pageviews, scouring RSS and Twitter to break stories, and all of that other nonsensical stuff that doesn't actually result in any sort of interesting reading.
I've also been extremely busy, and when the pace of life picks up, something that causes stupid 'stress' will be the first thing to hit the backburner.
So yes, I have not been as voraciously consuming news about DC as I used to. I realized that I had, in fact, become something that I sort of hate about DC. I had become the self-important blogging blowhard, who at times took himself too seriously and spent far too much time writing about things everyone else had already written about.
I haven't opened by RSS reader for three weeks. I'm doing this to try and find a better balance between 'staying up on things' and 'obsessing over things.' There's a place for bloggers in the world of media and the world of writing, however I think most of the time we write for the wrong reasons. We imagine there is some sort of pressing demand for our pieces--we see readership numbers and feel a compulsion to write something. We feel like we need to keep the 'momentum' going, so we copy and paste links and press releases. But that's not quality writing, and unless those news stories are accompanied by some sort of thoughtful commentary or insight, it's generally wasted effort.
It's easy to take yourself too seriously when you begin to think your writing is popular. It's easy to think our blogs are all that and that our comments will make some sort of difference in the world. In reality, though, we should write about what we think is important, and write what we feel. As such, I'm writing a bit less. I write when something strikes me as important, or when I happen to see something amusing (e.g. photos).
At the end of the day a blog isn't going to make you into a rockstar. In most cases it won't ever earn you a dime, and certainly not a living. In this town we have a lot of bloggers, and a lot of them hope it will lead to their big break. Not to crush anyone's dreams here, but it's extremely unlikely your food blog is going to get you a book deal. It's very unlikely that your neighborhood blog is going to turn a profit. Blogs are wonderful because they give us a medium to express our own voices. It's a shame when we distort that in order to get more pageviews.
tl;dr: I've ignored the DC blogosphere for three weeks now. I feel like I haven't missed much at all. The blog echo-chamber is hard to escape, but I'm glad I'm no longer just regurgitating the same things everyone else has already talked about. Bloggers should write from the heart, and spend some time thinking about what they want to say. There's rarely a prize for posting X number of posts in a day.