I frequently find myself mentally stumbling upon a theme for a tweet or something equally inane; it either comes out as a singular tweet in a constant stream of nonsense, or I get sidetracked and forget about it; in both cases it generally ends up nowhere. The other morning however marked a change, I had a brief notion of tweeting about something that had tickled my fancy and I thought better of it and tucked the idea away for later consumption.
So I wanted to tweet about a new years hobby resolutions for 2019. I’ve frequently made new years ‘hobby’ resolutions; you know the drill… paint X models in the year, play a game every month. It’s all well and good making a statement at the start of the year telling all and sundry that you’re going to paint a bajillion night goblins, or you’re going to play a game every day of the year but we know that just like regular resolutions; unless you’re kept accountable, that resolution’s got a snowballs chance in hell of being seen through.
Unless someone ends up stalking through your tweets 6 months down the line and asks you how you’re getting on with your challenge of painting those goblins, your resolution is all for nowt. Unless you have a way of seeing at a glance what exactly you’ve done, and I don’t mean whipping out your figure case and painstakingly counting the number of grots you’ve currently got painted up. I really mean at a glance.
So.. ideas… how do I keep myself accountable for a hobby resolution? I’ll write a blog! No, I’ll go one better. I’ve tried keeping blogs up to date in the past and I’m hopeless at it so to begin with it needs to be more than just a blog. Some days I just don’t want to write (today apparently isn’t one of those days) so updating a blog largely depends on whether or not I have something I feel is worth sharing with the world. No, it needs to be more than a blog but it’s a starting point.
So that’s the first of my hobby resolutions, blog more often.
Being built alongside the blog however, is the ground work for a launch of a hobby blog like no other*
I’m a stats whore.
One of my other hobbies is running, and I’m a stats whore. I love to see my annual mileage creeping up, I love to see how many runs and how far I’ve run each month. I like having an annual target that ticks down as I log my runs. I like watching the variance of my average pace varying from month to month, slowing down when it gets hot, speeding up when it gets cold. What those services I log runs on provide me is accountability, how far and how long have I run this year? I can tell you that down to the metre and to the second. Did I have a good November? No, I know that for a fact because I can look at a graph that tells me I barely ran on days when I didn’t explicitly have to. It doesn’t make it any easier to get out for a run, but when I do, it’s all the more satisfying being able to look back and see what I’ve achieved.
Anyway, you’re not here to read about running, so…
….how many models have I painted this year, and how many games have I got in with them? Er… not a clue. Unless I tweeted about it. But again, that means trawling through a stream of unintelligible nonsense to work out. I want a funky little dashboard where I can log models in the queue and models finished, games played (won, drawn, and lost), tournaments attended, annual targets covered.. anything I’d classify as ‘hobby time’; I want to be able to tick a box, scribble out some brief notes** and post about it and have some meaningful charts and statistics to look back on.
So there; that’s a brief overview of what I’m trying to achieve with this site. This site will serve primarily as a blog, with the addition of tracking to keep me on the straight and narrow. Or at least show just how much unpainted crud I have knocking around by this time next year.
Let’s see how it goes then I guess. Is there anything you’re hoping to achieve with your hobby in the new year, and how will you keep yourself accountable to it?
*I might not be quite accurate there, I don’t do much hobby reading so it’s entirely possible some like-minded web developer nerd, who may or may not be my doppelganger has already whipped something up and I’m completely oblivious to it.
**My inability to blog at will is a major factor here, brief notes serve the purpose of “I did X, Y, and Z and I’m happy with the outcome” without needing to go into too much detail. Which is why logging runs is easy. I don’t feel I need to write an essay to accompany every logged run I do, so this is where the inspiration comes from.