The Longest Day

March 23, 2018 2:27am
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I don’t normally write about my problems with anxiety & depression, but today was probably one of the worst days that I’ve ever had, so I wanted to take a few candid notes here to read back to myself at another time…

There were parts of today where I wasn’t sure if I was going to make it through the day.

There were parts where I felt like a failure, both as a parent and as a husband.

There were parts where I had to beg my kids with tears in my eyes to do what I needed them to do because all they wanted to do was fight back.

I’m still recovering a bit from my kidney stones earlier this week, but I don’t think that was it. This is in my head.

Today my life completely and utterly overwhelmed me. It felt like I had 1,000 things on my plate to accomplish, and I was capable of accomplishing approximately zero of them.

It felt like I met every form of resistance along the way, most from the kids because toddlers just know how to push your buttons before they even know that they’re doing it. Not wanting to eat. Not wanting to put on clothes. Not wanting to stop hitting one another. There was just no end to it, to the point where I felt guilty of just how relieved I felt when I got the first two down for their nap … at which time the third started to up his game to make up for his sleeping brothers…

I screamed at one of my sons – multiple times – not out of anger, but out of desperation. And I knew before I was even done yelling that I was in the wrong by the way he winced and clamped his hands over his ears.

I don’t want to be the type of Dad that my kids fear. EVER.

Some people tried to help along the way, but I declined it – I think because accepting help for something that I felt like I should’ve been able to handle made me feel like even more of a failure.

I tend to get overwhelmed when I realize that I have more tasks to do than I can actually get done, and it’s much worse when more and more tasks continue to get piled on top while I’m already standing there staring with my hands up in the air.

What helped me to inch my way through the day was to stop and take a breath, and then choose three things that I was going to work on next…

  1. Take my pills.
  2. Feed the kids.
  3. Start the laundry.

The mountain was infinitely larger than that, but the list protected me from the mountain as long as I focused on it because nothing new gets to tumble down from the mountain onto it until it’s clear.

  1. Find clothes for the kids.
  2. Pack a bag with diapers and bottles.
  3. Start getting them dressed and ready to go, one at a time.

  1. Get the kids in the car.
  2. Refill the tank at the gas station.
  3. Drive-thru to pick up something for dinner.

Looking back, I don’t yet know how to prevent days like today from happening again, but I can tell myself this – I made it.

It was one of the worst episodes of depression that I’ve ever faced, and I survived it.

And I’ve got lots of follow-ups to do, and I’m sure I’ll talk a lot about it in therapy tomorrow, but that’s why I go. Because my brain has issues, and sometimes they grow to be completely and utterly overwhelming.

Tomorrow is a new day, and hopefully it will be better than today was, but if it isn’t … I’m capable of surviving that, too.

A brain dump about dollars and cents…

March 6, 2018 9:13pm
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Corporations can be a good thing, but usually they only operate in their own self-interests … which I suppose is a lot like people, but we should be striving for something more.

Workers are supposed to be happy about companies that have announced raises and bonuses on account of President Trump’s tax reform, however it was recently reported that these same companies have initiated $171 billion in stock buyback programs while spending roughly $6 billion on workers … that’s 3% for the workers, 97% for executives and investors.

And speaking of executives, why is it that employers seem eager to pay their executives top dollar “in order to attract talent” but don’t offer that same commitment to retain their rank and file employees? A C-level executive can join the company with a six-figure salary and stock options worth millions, work for 18 months or less, and then move onto the next company with a healthy severance package, while lower-level employees are supposed to be grateful for a single-digit percentage bump every few years???

Also, a 2% annual raise isn’t really a raise at all when inflation is running at the same rate.

Still, it’s hard to look down your nose at 2% when some employers give minimum wage workers a $0.25/hour raise and expect them to be grateful for it.

I watched a story today about how Walmart is decimating small towns by closing stores where years or decades ago they strong-armed themselves into – at the time they got millions in tax breaks, promising jobs and economic growth to the area, and now that they’ve put all of the smaller stores out of business, people will have to drive to the next town over for groceries or their jobs because despite making $14 billion last year, they feel they can squeeze a bit more by moving a store 45 miles east regardless of what they leave in their wake.

Low wage jobs continue to become a victim to automation, and now a new hamburger-flipping robot could put another dent in the fast food industry … which according to this story could be a good thing because apparently it would be safer than employers telling their workers “to put condiments on their burns” instead of seeking actual medical attention.

I also learned about Toys ‘R Us’s recent bankruptcy that came after a leveraged buyout back in 2005 and I don’t understand how it can even be legal for a corporate entity to use the thing that it’s buying as part of a loan. It’s not the same as your mortgage because your house isn’t expected to pay down the mortgage that you took out on it!

I don’t deny that I’m still lucky to make more than the majority in this country, however it’s always frustrating to see yourself moving backwards rather than forward. Watching a place like Disney World consistently raise their prices by 10% every year as my own family grows but my salary doesn’t keep up feels like I’m being rapidly priced out of their market. I know that a lot of Disney fans who aren’t within driving distance already feel that way.

It’s hard not to be cynical and feel like corporate greed is ruining America, particularly when it’s so easy for the people at the top to get more money when others of us struggle to make much smaller gains that would be vastly more meaningful.

Dining with Kids

March 4, 2018 1:19pm
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Last night was the first night in a couple of months that we’ve taken the entire family out to dinner … namely because the last time we tried, it was absolutely terrible!

The three of them have just been at a bad age overall because Christopher isn’t as occupied by his iPad as he’s been in the past, and David & Matthew are starting to become wild in their own right. As much as we really enjoy eating out, it’s just not worth the hassle when you know that 90 minutes later you’re going to walk away cranky after paying so much for food you only got to half eat because you spent more time dealing with kids that didn’t want to be there than actually enjoying the atmosphere…


So last night wasn’t great, but it certainly was an improvement from last time. Still, there were a few points of note that I wanted to write about…

  • Why is it that servers act like they’ve never seated a table with kids before??? When you see me quickly whisking silverware and plates and anything away from the kids the moment you set them down within their reach, maybe don’t put anything else within their curious grasp?! Luckily we had a table that sat six with only four seats occupied, so there were some spots where we could “stage” everything, but even when they bring out drinks, it always shocks me when they put them right in the middle of the table when two seconds later that’s precisely what the kids go for…
  • Time seems to pass slower when you’ve got kids teetering on the edge of cranky. I don’t know if it was because we were one of the last tables of the night, but I swear we had one of the slowest servers in existence – frustrating when you’re waiting on those french fries to occupy the kids, or the check so that you can just get the heck out of there! It’s made me start to wonder if servers treat families like ours like the hot potato because we eat slower and they anticipate a below-average tip … although the second part is a misnomer because I actually try to tip more when my kids leave food on the floor that they have to clean up!
  • Don’t make me beg for water. This one has nothing to do with the kids, but one of my primary measures how I rate food service is how well they do at keeping my water glass full. At a good restaurant, I shouldn’t even have to ask for refills, whereas at a bad one I’m lucky to get a single refill all night … which sucks on nights like this when I purposely order something spicy… ๐Ÿ™
  • Dessert is ALWAYS to go! As much as we would’ve liked to enjoy a warm dessert there at the restaurant, the kids had lasted about as long as we could possibly expect, and in fact Christopher had fallen asleep in the car before we pulled out of the parking lot. Sometimes you have to know when to cut your losses and call it a day!

All in all it was nice to somewhat get a meal actually served to us at a table as opposed to out of a window, and it’s encouraging to see that maybe the kids are getting to the point where they’ll let us score a bite to eat without the prerequisite that two-thirds of them have to be asleep and the third has to be in a really good mood!

Updating The Lego Minifig Wall, Phase 3b

February 21, 2018 4:05pm
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For those of you just joining us, this is the 4th iteration of my Lego Collectible Minifig collection that began back in 2011! I’ve had to grow my method of storing these little guys several times along the way – here’s where we came from:

…and yet here we are, barely a year later, with 21 BASEPLATES FILLING UP A WALL!!!

That’s a total of 411 / 424 minifigs to date – I’m basically missing a handful of the Lego Batman 2 series, and then of course still Mr. Gold.

By my best estimate, that bottom row of empty baseplates can accommodate another 224 minifigs, which would be 14 complete series of 16 … which sounds like a lot until you consider that Lego has been putting out three series a year AND have been pushing 18 – 20 minifigs per series as of late.

Another 2-3 years from now if we haven’t moved into a new house, I could very well be staring at this same problem again, except that now I’m kind of running out of wall space to expand into!

I mean, technically I’ve got a little space there above the window that I could use, although the ordering would drive me nuts because there’s no way that I’m moving everything from the third row down to put them back in the right order! ๐Ÿ˜ฏ

Adding another row beneath is out of the question because grabby kid hands would make short work of this collection if they got the chance…

Nonetheless, I’m pretty happy with how it looks for now. In a way, I hate to see it so open after previously my full collection was taking up every inch of free space, though given enough time that will slowly stop being a problem once again!

Come to think of it, I honestly don’t even know what I’d change with this display if/when we move to a bigger house because given the sheer size, there’s not really a better way to do it. I originally liked the idea of shadow boxes or cabinets for them all, but now it’d probably double or triple the space needed to move to a classier-looking system like that.

But at least I have enough space for the near future – sometimes that’s really all you can ask for, and I’m pretty excited for the next series – series 18 – as it’s celebrating Lego’s 40th anniversary with a birthday party full of unique costumes and characters to collect! ๐Ÿ˜‰

48 Hours Later…

February 18, 2018 10:28pm
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Where did this weekend even go???

Deplorable Discussions
As one might expect, I’ve had a lot of discussions about mass shootings the last couple of days. A couple of them have been insightful, but most … have not … which I think has only built upon my anger because it truly is deplorable to spend the time immediately after a mass shooting that took the lives of 14 students and 3 teachers debating the semantics of what makes a mass shooting” or this notion that “there’s no such thing as an assault rifle.”

If anything, it’s really driven home the fact that as much as even I’m willing to consider that many factors are at work with these terrible acts, at the end of the day it’s ALWAYS been about guns, and the right just doesn’t want to talk about that.

The T-Shirt Idea
So the other day – I think right after the shooting took place, I left a comment on a friend’s post in the vein of “Fuck Your Feelings” … no, Fuck Your Guns! in parody of those smug Trump supporters who wore shirts saying as much at rallies back in 2016. At the time I joked that it would make for a great t-shirt, but left it at that until Saturday morning came around and another barrage of tasteless comments got me just fired up enough to actually realize that I had all of the tools to put something together in fairly short order…

I don’t know if I honestly expected to sell any versus it just being a funny jab at Trump supporters, but it was admittedly exciting when an actual order popped up for one after a Facebook page that was seeing a lot of attention that night themselves was kind enough to share a link to their 1,000+ followers when I asked!

As I watched the pageviews shoot up faster in 45 minutes than they had all afternoon, that’s when I started to think that maybe this could be something bigger.

Social Media Frustrations
Like I mentioned the other day in an earlier post, I still have a hard time wrapping my head around how to make social media work for my creative projects. It always seems like you need followers to get visibility, but you also need visibility to get followers, and I’ve just never been able to figure out how to bridge that gap.

I was kind of hoping that maybe this idea would be a better social media fit because it’s punchy and controversial, as well as very timely now with so much discussion around gun control and how to move forward.

Pretty late into the night, I finally decided that if this idea did have potential, I needed a better presentation, so I started working on a single page website that features an essay of about 900 words to collect all of the thoughts that I’ve had around what we as a people need to do, also highlighting some of my biggest frustrations with the anti-gun control crowd.

That website can now be found at

You Can’t Beg People to Retweet You
I literally stayed up all night to finish the site – I think I finally went to bed somewhere around 7:30am, but for what it’s worth, I’m super proud of how it turned out.

My main goals were to A) focus on statistics, and B) make it personal, and I think I did both of those quite well.

I wanted the text to be a clear jab at the extreme gun advocates, but still convey that it doesn’t have to be that way … they just need to be willing to come to the table for an honest and open conversation, too.

After watching the success of the first share on Facebook, I figured that if I could get just one person with a mid-sized following to share a link to the site, I’d be golden! So I put together a list of people who I followed in other avenues – several comedians and a few other liberal activist types, and I sent them a simple tweet asking if they could help signal boost just like I had with the first guy on Facebook.

Mind you, I was super super nervous doing this because I know it’s not always smiled upon, but I hoped that I’d have just the right message to catch their attention in a positive way. Plus, I knew that they’d all been commenting about gun control over the weekend, so the request was on point. I was ready to wake up a few hours later and just have my mind blown when I pulled up the stats and sales!

SPOILER: Nothing happened.

Social Media Roller Coaster
All I could think about was how cool it would be to have a $50,000 check to hand over to a non-profit in support of gun control, or even $150,000! It really wouldn’t even require that many shirts sold, and damn if they wouldn’t make a powerful statement filling a protesting crowd with a sea of royal blue.

Though admittedly I’m not sure how the media would cover it without having to literally censor every single shirt!

This is actually a great example of why social media just drives me bonkers because just one taste – even a small one – and you know that the potential is there, if only you can figure out how to tap into it!

That said, there are a lot of nuances to remember … sharing and growth are meant to happen organically, not by you sending a tweet from a new account begging for a RT!, and sites like Reddit super frown on users posting their own links. I learned this the hard way once because I had some blog posts that I really wanted to share … got a ridiculous number of pageviews, but also my share of negative comments about not following the rules.

And that’s what makes it tough about social media – to know that there’s this giant firehose of users waiting to click links, but it takes a lot more effort than just passing by and wanting some in order to get any.

A Dwindling, New Hope
So I honestly don’t know what to expect and/or hope for anymore. I’d still love to see this take off and generate a bunch of money for charity because I really believe in the cause, but I don’t know if that’s going to happen and I really worry – both for this project and the cause in general – that a week from now gun control won’t even be a blip on the radar anymore because our shitty, short attention span news cycle will have moved on to a dozen other issues by then.

In the meantime, I did create a Twitter account specifically for the project and took some time this afternoon to follow a few dozen people talking about gun control, liking and retweeting and commenting on other tweets in between sharing a few quotes from my own piece. Still, I haven’t really seen any activity at all in return – not even so much as a single follow. ๐Ÿ™

In retrospect, I do wonder if I might’ve inadvertently shot myself in the foot – pardon the expression – by using the word FUCK because I’m curious if Twitter’s ranking algorithm either filters content with “adult language” further down in one’s news feed or even just keeps it hidden altogether!

I was already reminded that Facebook doesn’t allow FUCK in its advertising because I tried to create a quick $10 campaign to try and drum up a little attention, only to have it quickly declined due to vulgar language.

Funny how Facebook seems to be a-ok with circulating political propaganda from Russian bots to sew discourse with American users prior to our election, yet the word FUCK is over the line. ๐Ÿ˜ฏ

So that’s where we are as of late – I suppose the upsides are that while I haven’t sold a lot of my vulgar, gun control t-shirts, I have sold a few and it’s kind of neat to think about them being worn out in the public or at one of the upcoming protests!

I’ve also probably written more in the last four days than I have in the last two months, so there’s that.

Plus, I still have a couple of things I want to work on before I go to bed earlier than 7:30am tonight, so I suppose I should wrap this up. One is even a new humor piece for Just Laugh that I want to run tomorrow … I don’t even want to look at the last time I posted on that site!

I’ll give you one guess as to what the topic is going to be about… ๐Ÿ˜‰

Gun Violence Overload

February 17, 2018 2:26am
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My brain is completely fried from everything surrounding this week’s mass shooting at a high school in South Florida.

Yesterday I wrote an essay about my thoughts, which didn’t get the support that I had expected.

Today I spent way more time than I should commenting on threads with people who will never ever ever consider guns to be even one iota of the problem because it’s everybody else’s fault – parents, violence in the media gun-free school zones – you name it, they’ll point the finger and then make sure that we never mention their beloved guns in a negative light on their watch. It’s so apathetic and sad, it leaves me speechless.

When I went to pick Christopher up from school, I couldn’t help but notice that the flagpole out front had the American flag flying at half mast, and I paused for a second to try and figure out how to explain to a four year-old that it was a symbol of respect because a very bad person had hurt some kids at another school.

On the plus side, holding his hand as I walked back through the parking lot to our car renewed my position on this matter because I realized that I’m going to have kids in the public school system for probably the next 15 years and I’ll be damned if I’m going to stand by and just accept that active shooter drills need to be a part of their curriculum because adults can’t get their shit in gear and figure out how to stop bad people from barging into their schools carrying guns.

I’m still VERY ANGRY about the topic, and I’m rapidly losing respect for anyone who shrugs it off and says that there’s nothing we can really do because that’s bullshit and my children deserve better.

It really disgusted me to find before I started writing this that in fact I’ve already written about mass shootings many times before…

I don’t know how we as a nation got to be so lethargic about gun violence, as if it’s just the uncomfortable side of our right to bear arms that we all have to accept in the name of freedom.

The NRA, an organization that as far as I’m concerned should be leading the charge on responsible gun ownership, spends tens of millions of dollars every single year lobbying politicians to steer clear of any legislation even remotely resembling gun control.

And gun sales spike every time there’s a shooting, just like they surged whenever a Republican talked about how Obama was trying to take away our guns when calling that statement an utter lie doesn’t even begin to do it justice.

My mind goes numb just trying to wrap my head around it, but I know that we’ve got to change. We’ve got to have open dialogues about all sorts of ways to combat mass shootings, from mental health to better background checks to more parental awareness, better security in schools, and maybe some guns even need to come off the streets, too.

I know that gun advocates consider that to be treason, but if we can’t even protect our own children in their own schools anymore, we don’t deserve to call ourselves The Land of the Free. 

Kids deserve better from us and adults need to start acting like adults.

When kids who had to hide inside of closets beg on TV for adults to do something, anything to help protect them from all of this senseless violence, every last one of us should be ashamed. 

Parents shouldn’t have to bury their teenagers because you’re too afraid to loosen your grip on the assault rifle that you cuddle with in bed every night out of this paranoid delusion that it’s the only thing protecting you from your government.

The entire world shakes its head and sighs about how pathetic it is that America can’t seem to figure out its gun problem when it has almost as many weapons as it does people and it spends more on its military than it does on taking care of its own people.

America cannot possibly be “the greatest country in the world” when we stand by and do nothing while our kids are murdered at their schools, and I’m tired of listening to people give excuses – young and old, gun owners and paid-off politicians and just crabby Republicans in general – who shrug their shoulders and say, “There’s nothing that we can do…”

Stand up and get the fuck out of the way so that those of us who still care about our kids can do something before even more schoolchildren are chalked up to statistics.

Creative Brain Drain

February 16, 2018 10:56pm
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I haven’t really written much for the last couple of months.

Part of it has been between work and the holidays and money issues and parenting stress and about a billion other things, my brain just hasn’t had much bandwidth left to be creative with at the end of the day.

Another part is that – I don’t know if I’d go so far as to call it a proper crisis of faith – but I’ve been kind of demoralized about writing and publishing online, and even now I’m not quite sure what to make of it…

It’s weird because whereas 20 or so years ago when I started doing all of this, I looked at the Internet as freeing because I could publish things online that would never be accepted by a print publisher. But now the landscape has become more mature, and I don’t necessarily think that my issue is that there are a ton more people publishing online than ever before – which does make it tougher to fight for an audience, but moreso it feels like social media has become overtly cumbersome to the point where it’s no longer this helpful tool to boost your signal and connect with your audience, but instead this weird ecosystem of its own that commands its own rules and yet doesn’t really pay back creators likewise for their efforts whatsoever.

This article about Funny or Die laying off its editorial staff because of Facebook speaks a lot of greater truths that over the years I’ve observed firsthand with my own creative projects because it seems like what started out as these neat social networks gradually evolved into their own walled gardens where traffic doesn’t really flow away from Facebook and the likes.

It used to be that you’d write something, post it to your website, and then share it on social media and your fans would click through and check it out…

But instead today when you share a link on Facebook, it reaches a very small subset of your fans and Facebook generously encourages you to boost your post by paying them an advertising fee! Which would be fine if that then in turn increased your clickthrough rate, but instead today most Facebook interactions stay squarely on Facebook, so instead of reading an article and absorbing a few ad views, now a fan might only read your headline or blurb on Facebook, Like it, and engage in a comment war right there on Facebook without ever even visiting your site or actually reading what you wrote in the first place.

Worse yet, you lean more towards creating content specifically for Facebook through albums and memes and embedded videos and your Facebook page looks awesome, but at the end of the day it’s a giant time suck that doesn’t attract any new readers to your actual work or improve your ad revenue in any conceivable way.

Oh yeah, and there’s also scammers and fake accounts and clickbait posts that compete with yours for views that drive up advertising costs and crash otherwise diminishing returns even further into the ground!

On top of all of this, I have other issues with the Internet that have made it a less desirable frontier than it once was…

  • Misleading clickbait Taboola ads on even some of the most otherwise legitimate sites
  • Less interest in the written word in favor of video, memes, throwaway content
  • Clickbait content in general overshadowing actual creative effort (e.g. sometimes it’s hard to even watch movie trailers on YouTube anymore because people will create fake trailers labeled as official that get millions of views when the movie isn’t even in the works)

At the end of the day, I still want to write things that can make people laugh and make people think … I’m just not sure how that works online in 2018 anymore?

In the past I’ve never had a HUGE audience, but most of the time it was respectable, and maybe I had a project here or there that was admittedly more for me because it didn’t really take off, but when everything that I’ve just described all balls up together and it feels like nothing is getting any traction anymore, I suppose it’s admittedly kind of depressing and eventually it leads you to wonder if maybe there are other things that would be a better use of your time.

…particularly right now when finding “free time” to write is often such a struggle as it is… ๐Ÿ™

So that’s where I am right now.

Yesterday I wrote probably my first piece in a good while – something about the perpetual cycle of inaction that we seem to see after our mass shootings here in America – and I was honestly pretty happy about how it had turned out, but then I let some early criticism from someone close get to me and it sort of took away most of the energy that I’d built up after finally posting something new for the first time in ages! :<

I know that I desperately need this creative outlet in my life. It helps to keep me sane and happy and organize the thoughts in my head, but I’m really struggling in a way that I’ve never quite felt before and I’m not entirely sure how to move forward from here.

This was kind of a fun, little introspective that I did on Instagram over the last week – admittedly I broke the rules a bit because I guess the original text says something about “no people, no descriptions,” but whatever.

I personally used it as an exercise to consider what seven unique things serve to define my life today, and so the following is what I ended up coming up with… ๐Ÿ™‚

(in no particular order)

7 days, 7 black and white photos describing your life… (7/7) #blackandwhitechallenge #family

A post shared by Scott Sevener (@ssevener) on

Excessive Viewing

October 28, 2017 2:21pm
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One of the unique things that I’ve experienced as a parent is that we tend to watch the same movies over and over again in our house.

Case in point – I think I’ve seen The Lego Movie three times in the last 24 hours, and Moana at least twice … although once was this morning and I was still asleep for the majority of it.

Only with a toddler is it possible to have the conversation:

Dad: That movie was great – what do you want to watch next?

Kid: Toys!

Dad: We just finished watching Toy Story … the credits are literally still playing on the screen.

Kid: Toys!

Dad: Toys it is…

Admittedly we probably let our kids watch TV a little more than we should, but frankly there’s three of them and only two of us, and when one of us is incapacitated with work or whatever … hey, I’ll take any help that I can get! ๐Ÿ˜›

Besides, I don’t really paint TV as the terrible threat that a lot of people consider it to be because I’ve seen plenty of its pros firsthand. Sesame Street and Mickey Mouse Clubhouse have done a great job of supplementing and reinforcing what Christopher is learning with his letters and numbers and shapes and colors, not to mention speech, creativity, and gaining a better understanding of the world around him and how things work.

Yesterday he came into my office and I was drinking out of a bottle of water, and so he pointed to it and said, “Me try it!” and we had a fun, little (albeit wet) mishap of him trying to drink straight from a bottle, and regular water no less! All because of a Sesame Street song with various singing foods convincing Elmo to try something new.

And a big part of why I introduced him to The Lego Movie last night is because he’s gotten more and more into Legos in the last year, to the point where he’s not only playing with Duplos but also most of my own Lego sets which are several years above his age range. It was really awesome to look over and see him playing with his own in between watching scenes in the movie – I was finally able to capture a picture of it this afternoon…

If my kids were literally just vegging in front of the TV for hours on end not doing anything else, I might be more concerned, but they tend to watch a lot like Sara and I do. We’re almost always doing something else while we’re watching, and a lot of times I’ll just have it on in the background to listen to episodes of Shark Tank or something while I’m doing the dishes or other simple work. TV has way too much value to tune it out completely, and as long as the kids are getting something worthwhile out of it, I’m ok with that.

…even if it means watching Bolt for the fourth time in a row on the same day… :O

Toying with Contently

October 25, 2017 5:30pm
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For the longest time, I’ve been in search of a really good hub website to showcase all of the various things that I write. I ended up making one myself because I just never found anything that I liked – you can see it on the front page of this site – but it’s still not perfect.

My ideal option would be a WordPress theme that I can plug RSS feeds from all of my other sites into, and then it would aggregate everything that I write from everywhere all into one nice and pretty news feed.

A layout similar to what Pinterest looks like would be ideal, which is why I was kind of curious when I saw Contently mentioned on social media the other day, so I decided to check it out. The site is actually designed to host a portfolio for freelancers, so the display itself is very cool. The part I’m not crazy about is that it’s entirely manual because it’s meant to be a curated portfolio, so I had to enter URLs for every single article listed, as well as tweak the excerpts because it just grabbed the first X characters of each post…

I still like it from the perspective of creating a portfolio of my favorite work, so I took a few hours to scour all of my recent projects to find 30 – 40 pieces to fill it. And it was neat that I could include my books in it as well, although it kind of stands out that the site is designed for people working for mainstream sites because all of those boring, text file shapes at the top of my profile are supposed to be much larger “As seen in…” logos if I had work for any bigger sites like The New York Times or The Huffington Post.

I’m kind of surprised that they don’t grab a site’s favicon if it isn’t already a preferred outlet – would make for a nicer presentation…

I honestly don’t know if I’ll do anything else with it just because there’s not really much else to do, but if you’re looking for something to read, right now I think it’s a solid collection of some of my own personal favorites that you might enjoy reading as well!

(Tip of the hat to Sara Benincasa whose post on Facebook about her own portfolio pointed me to Contently in the first place…)

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