Andrew Sullivan Hangs It Up

Andrew Sullivan, two days ago:

But when you write every day for readers for years and years, as I’ve done, there’s not much left to hide. And that’s why, before our annual auto-renewals, I want to let you know I’ve decided to stop blogging in the near future.

Why? Two reasons. The first is one I hope anyone can understand: although it has been the most rewarding experience in my writing career, I’ve now been blogging daily for fifteen years straight (well kinda straight). That’s long enough to do any single job. In some ways, it’s as simple as that. There comes a time when you have to move on to new things, shake your world up, or recognize before you crash that burn-out does happen.

I find this surprising, but only because Sullivan seemed so energized when he took The Dish independent two years ago. But there’s no way anyone could do this if they feel burned out.

I’ve mentioned before that my mom’s father was a coal miner. That was his career. He spent like 40 years going into dark dangerous coal mines to perform grueling manual labor every workday, and wound up dying of black lung disease. Blogging isn’t hard work in the way that coal mining is, but above all else it demands enthusiasm. There’s no other way to keep going — blogs cease when their authors run out of enthusiasm. For many people, the enthusiasm seems to run out after just a few months, maybe a few years. For Sullivan, it took a decade and a half. A good reminder that nothing lasts forever.

See also: Sullivan today, on the notion of The Dish continuing without him.

Friday, 30 January 2015