29.2 Making some Decisions

January 10, 2013

It’s the new year and many many people are posting their goals, their choice to not work on goals, their projects for the year, the BOMs they’re signing up for, etc …..

Everything this time of year renewal, reinvigorate, re-energized, ready to go.

Me, I’m not so ready right now.

I think I need to step back and make some decisions. Perhaps it’s also time for me to plan too.

Decide what I want to do from here on.


Of course, I will quilt. I am not quitting that. And I will show pictures of my quilts. This I like, it inspires me, and I hope it makes you happy too.

But, I think there may be some other decisions about my time that I have to make. Mainly about my podcast.

I share the following decisions with you to outline my thought process. This is mostly brain-dump type of decisions done in a brainstorming sort of way. Nothing is required of you the reader at this time except to sit and observe where I am at at this time.

  • Where do I want to take the podcast this year?
  • How do I motivate myself to “stay on schedule”with it?
  • If I enjoy doing it so much, why is it taking me so long to work on one single episode?
  • Why can’t I ‘suddenly switch topics’ once I have started thinking about one topic to podcast about?
  • Why do I periodically “stop” podcasting at times?
  • Is there something deeper going on that is keeping me from talking to you?
  • Can I even stand to be on the internets when people can chose to like me, not like me, people can chose to consistently promote other podcasts over my podcasts?
  • Is it actually ‘doing anyone any good’ for me to spend all this time and effort and worry about not being good or getting things about a topic that doesn’t seem to completely interest people?
  • Does it help anyone to hear my opinion on things?
  • Do I butt into too many other conversations with my own opinions and that has turned people off of me?
  • Or have I fallen into the same as many people’s podcast of: this is what I’m working on this week/month cycle? Do I even want to do a podcast if that’s what I am working on?
  • Should I go back to thinking about highlighting other people’s science-y topics?
  • Should I even worry or think about any of this?
  • Am I letting fear stop me?
  • Why can I show all about all my quilts all the time, but when I also produce and create a podcast, why does it seem that much more personal to me if people don’t like it? Both are art forms of different kinds, so why can’t I mirror how I feel about my quilts with how I feel about my podcast?
  • Should I go back to reading blogs again to “keep up with everyone”? Cuz I rarely know what’s going on otherwise.
  • Deep down: why do I actually podcast? Is it for the reasons spelled out in my first posts / on my about page?  Is it truly about helping people or is it just an ‘attention seeking device’ that I’ve been using for a long time?
  • Do I care more for ‘the community’ of podcasting than actually producing episodes?
  • Will I be able to stay a part of the community if I fail to regularly podcast?
  • What do I want to do with / show people that come to my blog? What do I want them to do?
  • Should I reorganize some of my posts into ‘tutorials’ since they are pretty much that way anyway?
  • Should I break off the personal stuff all together and explicitly only do ‘topics’ on my podcasts to help them seem less personal to me, and therefore easier for me to handle when people don’t like my podcast?
  • Why do I keep thinking that if people don’t like my work (my podcast) then they don’t like ME? And how can I take steps to separate my podcast from “me”?
  • Can I be satisfied with being the 16th out of 16 quilting podcasts? Do I need to be “in the top 5” all the time? Top 10?
  • What do I hope to gain with podcasting? If I reach that goal, can I be happy with it even if my podcast isn’t mentioned?
  • If I podcasted regularly, would I end up doing more for my podcast than anything?  Would it help or hurt?
  • Would I be able to come up with adequate topics if I started podcasting more regularly?  Or would it lead to burnout / wear me out?
  • Is the sound of my voice “THAT BAD” that people don’t like my podcast because of it? If so, can I change my speech patterns? Should I work on my diction more? (Siri doesn’t like my voice, this I know for sure)
  • Are the breathing noises “THAT BAD” that is what people don’t like in my podcast?
  • How can I move away from sounding like Eeyore in every podcast? “woah is me … no one likes me anyway” … is this what people don’t like? … the rambling? the moving away from topics and sometimes not finishing them? If so, how do I prevent doing this?


  1. Some decisions? gosh – if you start trying to think out all those decisions – you’ll get nothing done. I would suggest this – stop worrying too much about every little aspect of the process. Pick a few things from the list – make the decisions on the direction you want to go with those. I confess – I don’t listen to your podcast since I’m a visual person – but have read your blog. I do host Off the Wall Fridays if you every want to link your blog there on any creative post (any week) – we all find it a great way to keep our selves on track – see what everyone else is doing – plus encourage each other. I also want to throw in my 2 cents about process blogs – I’ve found that writing about what I’m doing not only creates a written journal of my work process, it also inspires others, and lots and lots of times it helps me springboard into the next phase of my journey.

  2. It’s your podcast. You invest your time… you share part of your life with all of us that listen. A wise person once told me that often we have to do things that are important even though we are afraid. If you enjoy doing it … go for it. If you want to changes things – do so. Thank for spending your time sharing with me.

  3. Hey Darla. Lots of interesting questions you are pondering. I personally do hope you find a compelling reason to continue podcasting for I truly enjoy your episodes. Your questions point out to me some of the vulnerabilities podcasters must subject themselves to, issues I never considered as I listen to my wonderful quilty friends post week after week.

    I never even thought about ranking podcasters, as the quilt podcasts I enjoy are all #1 in my book. I might lend the thought that, if you are 16 out of 16 among quilt podcasters, you are actually 16 out of thousands when you consider the rest of us who are too selfish, busy, shy, technologically challenged (pick the correct one) to even put a foot into that arena.

    Sending you a friendly cyber hug as you explore your own plans and questions for this new year.


  4. Darla, I too enjoy your podcasts, and I don’t rank podcasts either. They are all good. I have to wonder why on earth anyone would tell a podcaster they don’t like the podcast. Have they no filter? Ill mannered? If they don’t like something, then they don’t have to listen to it. I hope you don’t stress too much over making your decisions.

  5. Darla, I have been listening to your podcast since episode one, and I have heard you steadily improve. I love to turn on your podcast while I’m in my sewing room. Your calm voice, and gentle sense of humour just keep me in zen mode. I don’t know how many listeners you have, and perhaps it’s not as many as some others, but I’d bet that there are lots like me that are very loyal.

    Don’t worry so much about what the world at large thinks about your podcast. Some people will love it, some will like it for awhile then move on, and some won’t like it. I think that’s what’s bound to happen when you put out a product.

    I liked the scientific topics, but it must be hard to find enough of those to talk about regularly. I’d say to do them once in awhile, but the “what I’m working on” casts are just as good.

  6. Darla, I echo the articulations of the three commenters ahead of me. They put so well how I feel about this. I enjoy listening to you, thinking about your journey and perspective. I also do not rank quilting podcasts. Why? You are each unique and unselfishly sharing with us. Do what you must, but please remember nothing is written in stone. You can change your mind about any aspect of your communication as often as and whenever you choose. I’ll always welcome what you have to say. Diane

  7. Hi Darla,
    Please, please, please do not let what other people think influence your decision to podcast. I believe we podcast because we find it enjoyable for ourselves. If we inspire someone along the way, that’s fabulous. It’s a beautiful thing to help someone along in their quilting journey and I know in some way, each of us does this for at least one other person. Just look at the comments above this one for proof of that. If I told you 7 people really, really enjoyed your podcast and got something out of it, would you want to continue? I realize I only know you through social media/quilting but I can definitely tell you are a “helping” type person. You make a difference and I’m SURE it is to way more than the 7 people who have written to you in the last 24 hours.

    If you are tired of it, take a vacation. If you are on the fence, just podcast once a month. Take the pressure off yourself until you can get to where it’s fun for you again. Maybe one month is science and the next is your progress update.
    If you don’t care for it anymore, stop. But keep in touch through your blog because we’d love to hear what you are doing. You make beautiful quilts and your are an inspiring person. Tell the negative committee in your head to take a hike! We all have to do that sometimes.

    My podcast is probably 17 out of 16 and I have no idea how one finds out that info but it’s probably inaccurate and we’re better off not paying any attention to it. The ones who matter are right here in your circle, talking to you on Twitter and following along on your blog.

    Cheer up. Keep on keeping on and don’t lose touch.
    Sandi Colwell

  8. Darla, you have so many thoughts going on about your podcasts and blog. I totally agree with the previous commenters. I enjoy your podcast: your calm voice, your funny music bites and info about your qulting perspective. There are times, since I am a visual person, that I have to go to your blog to see the project that you are talking about. Your science qults are beautiful to see! You are what I think of as an advanced science person (a 4.0 type person)and I am cause and effect science person, I have to see the process.

    I don’t know anythng about podcasting or keeping a blog but I do enjoy listening to the quilting podcasters while I sew and I do enjoy the blogs. When a podcaster that I listen to does not post anything for a while its like not hearing from a friend. I know I do not comment as often as I should, so perhaps I should be more active and let the podcaster know that they are appreciated and valued. You are appreciated and valued. I know that you put a lot of time that you put into your blog and podcast. I would miss you very much if you dropped out of communicating with those who listen and read your blog.

    I will be waiting to hear more from you.

  9. […] A blog and podcast focusing on left brain topics about quilting. « 29.2 Making some Decisions […]

  10. I agree with the previous commenters, as well. I am really surprised and a little angered that you have apparently gotten such negative comments from people about your podcast. I am a loyal listen and yours is one of my favorite podcasts — I’m always excited to see a new one. I personally find the topics that are more generic and less focused on science to be my favorites, but I like all of them and wouldn’t dream of criticizing what you so generously spend your time, energy and heart producing and sharing with all of the quilting strangers out in the world. I hope adding my voice to the clamor of those who appreciate and value you and your podcast will help make us drown out the voices of the less appreciative and more critical that apparently are out there.

    I find it difficult to keep up with blogs on a regular basis, but I always find time in the car, while sewing, while cleaning or something to listen to podcasts, so it really makes me feel connected to you to hear your voice and know what your quilting experiences are or were. So I hope you do decide to continue, though I certainly support you in whatever you decide — making yourself happy is most important and should be your priority.

    Good luck, hang in there and feel free to e-mail me anytime you want to hear how terrific you are!

  11. Wow Darla that is a boatload of questions! I hope you have decided to keep doing the show because it is a favorite for me, too. You have such a soothing calm voice, maybe that is why you think of Eeyore? His voice just has that chilled out cadence, like yours. Whether you continue with the scientific thread or not I’d still listen, i enjoy hearing about your projects and your thoughts about quilting.The scientific stuff is interesting too of course but someone pointed out above how it could be difficult to keep up finding fresh content for that and I would agree with that.

    It is a shame that people feel free to criticize when they most likely haven’t put their own neck out. It is a definite drawback to being out there, I agree.

    I hope to hear a new show come out soon!!! Don’t worry about scheduling. Just do what you can when you feel it and if that isn’t enough for people, well phooey on them. 🙂

  12. What? Podcasts are ranked? Who knew?

    I hope you continue to make your podcasts because I find you have a unique perspective (and I also come from a “hard science” background — engineering.) I came in rather late to listening. (I had dial-up for years and only recently switched to DSL, making streaming anything A LOT less painful!)

    The first podcasts I ever listened to were so full of “buy this” and “get that from my web store,” that is was such a relief to have stumbled on your “review” of using a long-arm.

    But you have to do what’s best for you.

    Just remember, even if you are expressing a part of yourself on your blog or podcast, the person who is criticizing is also expressing a part of themselves. Your work/opinions/thoughts/feelings are, at worst, as good as theirs, so don’t value THEIR thoughts MORE than your own. That’s the only way I’ve found not to let harsh (and often unthought-out) criticism of my work get to me.

    (Hmm. Maybe that could have been worded better…)

    In the end, I feel you should do what makes you happy (although I will really miss your podcasts if you elect not to do them anymore.)

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