30 November 2009 by Published in: Blogging 21 comments

I’ve had about nine weeks of time off from the Civil War. I’ve done a few things, most of which were to fulfill commitments, but I’ve done almost nothing Civil War related since declaring my sabbatical in September, other than a fun day of visiting Kentucky battlefields with some friends last month and one of Ted Alexander’s programs in Chambersburg last month. It’s given me a chance to get my trial out of the way, rest, recharge my batteries, and regain my perspective.

My addiction to the Civil War had turned into Frankenstein’s monster. I realized that I had made 1000 posts on this blog–some of which clearly took on a life of their own–in four years. I had also written a couple of dozen articles (I will have one in the next issue of North & South, if it ever comes out, and one in the next issue of Blue & Gray, co-written with J.D. Petruzzi) and sixteen books in 13 years. It’s no wonder that I was tired and burned out. It had become like a second job–a second job that I loved, but which didn’t pay very well at all but was just as demanding as my first–I was beginning to resent it, and I was definitely very stressed out by all of it. I realized that I hadn’t had but a single day of visiting a battlefield just for the fun of it in several years, and I really resented that fact.

I needed to rest and think about all of it, and I have since regained some of my perspective. I have one more book under contract, and then I intend to dial it back. I’m going to remove the self-imposed pressure to produce from myself and do this more as a hobby than as a job. No longer will it be production just for the sake of production. I will definitely continue blogging, but I’m no longer going to feel compelled to find something to post about almost every day as I have in the past.

My object is to have this be fun once more. So, to that end, I appreciate everyone who has been patient with me. Your patience has been rewarded, because I’m back. However, please don’t expect daily posts from me as I did in the past. Now, I will post when I have something worth saying, not because I feel compelled to post something.

Thank you for all of the words of encouragement that I received during my dark days, and thank you for hanging in there with me.

Scridb filter

Comments

  1. Mon 30th Nov 2009 at 11:05 pm

    Welcome back Eric! A part time “ranting” is better than none at all. Can’t wait to read what you have to say. I’ve been waiting for that N&S article also. Hopefully soon.

  2. ROSS LYMAN
    Tue 01st Dec 2009 at 9:18 am

    Welcome back Eric!!! You have been missed.

  3. Tue 01st Dec 2009 at 9:46 am

    Thanks, guys. It’s this type of support that gave me the incentive to return instead of simply bagging this blog altogether.

  4. Brooks D. Simpson
    Tue 01st Dec 2009 at 2:17 pm

    Well, I know it’s been a challenging late October/early November four you, but now you can return to the Yankees you like. :) Giants? What Giants?

  5. Tue 01st Dec 2009 at 4:47 pm

    Eric,

    Glad to see you’re back.

  6. Alton
    Tue 01st Dec 2009 at 6:24 pm

    Welcome back, Eric. I’ve missed the rants too. BTW, the latest N&S arrived in the mail last week and your article on Kelly’s Ford is in it.

    Alton

  7. Andrew from NYC
    Tue 01st Dec 2009 at 7:35 pm

    Hi Eric, glad to have you back! My blog reading has been pretty mundane for the past 9 weeks!

    By the way, I’m currently finishing up your latest book and I just want to tell you that you’ve written a really great story.

    Welcome back.

  8. Raffi
    Tue 01st Dec 2009 at 7:39 pm

    Good approach, Eric, keep it fun and pleasurable. Don’t add more pressure to yourself! And come visit Gettysburg simply for fun (no researching!) this summer and we’ll have to hang out.

  9. Phil
    Tue 01st Dec 2009 at 9:10 pm

    I’m glad you’re back.

  10. Mike Fitzpatrick
    Tue 01st Dec 2009 at 10:34 pm

    Eric,
    Great to have you back!!

    Mike Fitzpatrick

  11. G.E. Colpitts
    Wed 02nd Dec 2009 at 12:07 am

    Hi, Eric,
    Been AWOL myself on a sabbatical project that has turned into something of a nightmare. (Why is it that Civil War projects do that????) Hope you are feeling better after taking a break and that your projects will become fun again instead of a burden. I:ll send you a card for my sabbatical show when the time comes (if I ever get `er done…).

    G.E.

  12. Sherree Tannen
    Wed 02nd Dec 2009 at 11:14 am

    Eric,

    I read your blog regularly. I am one of your silent readers. I enjoy your posts and learn from them. I hope that you keep blogging. Noting how several CW bloggers of late have expressed that they have grown somewhat weary of the demands of blogging, perhaps it is time that we, the readers, do our part and let you know that you are all appreciated. That is the point of my comment. I read many CW blogs, and I learn from all of them.

    I hope that you and your family have a good holiday.

  13. Keith Yoder
    Wed 02nd Dec 2009 at 6:36 pm

    Also glad to see you are back. Thanks for keeping it interesting!

  14. Wed 02nd Dec 2009 at 7:07 pm

    Add my welcome back to the list. Your blog is fantastic, but your well-being is even more important. Hopefully you find the right balance and can still blog your thoughts from time-to-time.

  15. Tom Thompson
    Wed 02nd Dec 2009 at 11:36 pm

    Like a lost puppy, I faithfully checked your site daily. Kevin Levin helped me pass the time with good discussions. Today, I checked Kevin’s site first and he was announcing his own “break from the action”. I wondered what I’d do with you, him, Brian Dirck and James Bissland all out of business…Hell; I might have to get a life!

    Seeing you back in the blogosphere was like seeing a light on in a friend’s window. Welcome back, Pal.

    Tom

  16. Thu 03rd Dec 2009 at 11:07 am

    Eric -

    I echo the others: Welcome Back. I completely empathize with your comments that this should be fun and not a burden.

    Best,
    Paul

  17. Christ Liebegott
    Thu 03rd Dec 2009 at 2:35 pm

    Eric, Glad you’re back. Look forward to your abbreviated postings.
    Christ

  18. Ken Noe
    Thu 03rd Dec 2009 at 7:57 pm

    Welcome back, and belated NL congrats from the Dodgers to the Phils.

  19. Dave Morehouse
    Fri 04th Dec 2009 at 11:59 am

    Welcome back! Glad to have you back.

  20. Chris Evans
    Fri 04th Dec 2009 at 11:14 pm

    Just wanted to add a welcome back. I really enjoy reading your columns and opinions on the Civil War. This has always been one of my favorite Civil War blogs to visit.
    Thanks,
    Chris

  21. Tom Clemens
    Sat 05th Dec 2009 at 7:51 am

    Welcome back Eric, I missed reading your thoughts.

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