Blogger Jason Kottke has given up on trying to make a living by blogging full time.
Kottke announced on Wednesday that he is no longer seeking payments from people who enjoy his blog, Kottke.org. He said he hasn’t managed to attract enough readers or developed “a sufficient cult of personality” to support the subscription model.
He also explained that he wasn’t able to keep providing the time and energy needed to make his blog successful enough.
“My (unstated) intention from the beginning was to approach the site as a start-up, but along the way, life intervened (in a good way), and I couldn’t focus on it as much as I wanted to. The site became a normal job, a 9-to-5 affair, which meant that I could keep up with it, but growth was hard to come by,” Kottke wrote.
Kottke made decent money, at least the first couple of months, but after that things got a little lean.
Kottke revealed on Wednesday that he had raised a total of $39,900 from 1,450 donors. Most of that was received in the initial fund-raising drive in February and March 2005, when his project began.
It’s unclear what Kottke will do next.
“In the short term, (the blog) is going to be taking a backseat to some other things going on in my life. Longer term, who knows? I might look for other ways to fund my efforts on the site, or maybe it goes back to being more of a hobby. But there will be posts and links and other things here almost daily, just like there have been for almost eight years now,” he wrote.
Let’s not kid ourselves – blogging takes a lot of time, not to mention commitment. What makes blogging even more difficult is the lack of payback, appreciation or even attention from blog readers. Often times, bloggers feel like they’re writing for themselves, a few friends and maybe mom. Other than that, bloggers gaze at their daily stats longingly, wondering who’s out there, when they’ll come back, and if they’ll stick around long enough to click on a sidebar ad.
But, we blog, constantly. We love it enough to show up every day, without fame and fortune. At least for now.