This is the end. No wait, that's wrong. This is actually a new beginning.
Let me explain. About this time last year, I hit a wall. No matter how much you love something, and how much you're dedicated to seeing it through no matter the cost, and no matter how much of it you have to do for only that love returned, you can become disappointed, and, dare I say, jaded. Eking out a living as a freelance writer was rewarding in so many incalculable ways, but it was also exhausting, and despite my best efforts, a lot of my paid work dried up. That's the nature of the business, of course, but there was also an element of fatigue. Even if the fight is a righteous one, and your intentions are true, without a break you can get broken.
So here I am a year later. I've had steady employment (of the non-writing variety) for several months now, and while I don't enjoy the leisurely time I once had, my pocket book certainly isn't hurting. But it also gave me time to rededicate myself, think about the direction I want to go as a writer and artist, and more relevantly, where I want to take this blog. The substance of those inner-discussions with myself was to take Guelph Politico to the next level.
So what does that mean? Cosmetic changes? Am I changing the template, or something simple like that? Not really, although I did consider that. The fact of the matter is that I like the current look of this blog fine, and if I did change templates, I'd probably have to reformat the some 750 articles already posted, and I'm not about to do that.
The changes I've been thinking about stem from other things I've been engaged by, websites like Mother Jones, books like Griftopia by Matt Taibbbi, and various documentaries I've seen on Netflix. In other words, places that give you stories and details that you don't get from the mainstream media. I'm talking about in-depth coverage, enlightening investigative research, and community-focused stories. Now that's a tall order for one man's one-man blog, especially when that man has a day job, but that's the level I want to play at.
In the next little while, I hope to re-orientate myself into putting those goals into effect. On the weekend, I'll be posting the first in a new season of "Guelph Politicast," a podcast companion to Politico that I initially started during the 2011 Provincial Election, but like Politico itself, it was a good idea that has refused to die in the aftermath. Politicast will post every other week and will feature interviews with local politicians, personalities and community organizers. And speaking of rich media, I also hope to start production on short videos for Politico as well that will either take the form of coverage of local events and meetings or short interviews.
And there will still be written content as well. In the last year, I've felt the blog has been a little more editorial then it should be, and I've been wanting to get back into more hard news. I've been trying to lean that way lately with more analysis, and posting more frequently with informational pieces and press releases. I'm looking into the possibility of getting some help on that end and bringing on an official Politico intern, so mine might not be the only voice you'll hear in this space in the future.
So that's what I'm looking at in the near future. I hope those of you who have enjoyed Politico all these years continue to enjoy it, and I hope to draw more new readers with what's coming down the pipe. Stick around, this should be interesting.