On starting this

I've been feeling the need to do some kind of weeknotey thing for a while. So I've started this.

I’ve been feeling the need to do some kind of weeknotey thing for a while. So I’ve started this.

I’m not sure yet what it is yet, where I’ll put it1 or how often. I’ll play around and find out.

A swirl of thoughts and influences have brought me to the point of at least getting something started:

  • Because not blogging much feels hypocritical given how much I bang on about its merits at work.
  • Because I’m out of practice. I’m keen to get back in a blogging groove – in a more personal way than I can through work channels now I’m further up the org chart. (With great power comes dry, responsible blog posts). 
  • My growing awareness about how aphantasia and SDAM mean I barely remember anything of my own life, so it’d be good (albeit late) to start writing some of it down. On the plus side, these linked conditions are a continual Marie Kondo for the mind, keeping me focused on now and next, holding onto what’s currently useful and jettisoning the rest. But on the down side I do mourn my missing memories, some of what gets jettisoned is people, and if I dwell on it too long I get to wondering if there’s any point experiencing things at all. Fun!2
  • Because life moves pretty fast. Reflecting in writing will help me look around once in a while and become more aware of the daily purpose, progress and pleasures of my dwindling four thousand weeks.
  • Because social media feels a bit over and I feel a bit over it (them?)  
  • Because logging on the web (a web log!) beats writing journals to future me for a solipsistic memory lane moment that will never happen. 

I used to blog lots – starting back in the day as one of a handful of civil servants who broke rank (and tested the Civil Service code) talking about work on my personal blog from 2008 to 2011. One post changed the course of my career.

When GOV.UK got going I bashed out Tumblr posts in real time, properly working out loud, before more metered blogging for GDS and on Inside GOV.UK

Dave and I got a blog going in Croydon (my valedictory post weirdly now removed by revisionist new management, but archived here). 

The BFI blog is tumbleweed as yet but it’s early days, and we’re having better luck helping BFI folks find their blogging feet on the intranet. 

So my trajectory in 15 years of posting stuff online has been away from personal blogging towards only blogging in an increasingly responsible official capacity on work channels. Not sure how that happened but Twitter was a factor, taking over the personal blogging space and making it micro.

So I’m back, and this time it’s personal. 

constraints make you interesting


I’ll need to stick to official channels for proper work updates but I’ll aim to share a bit here on the nature of my work and how I’m getting on with it. The realities of my job and parenting also mean accepting these posts will be more messy, sporadic, selective and stream-of-consciousness than I’d like. 

But (as Russell’s book says, after these small batch jackets), constraints make you interesting. 

  1. I wrote this in a Google doc but clearly I have now put it here, where you are reading it.  ↩︎
  2. We will return to this theme. ↩︎

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