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Morning Wood is changing

Morning Wood is changing

by Jacques Rockhard

Hey there. Thanks for clicking on this special transitional blog. You’re a rare breed; I know very few people who actually take the time to read these kinds of corporate update posts. To be fair, that’s probably because these things are usually chock-full of hollow assurances, beige-flavoured attempts at relatable optimism, and self-aggrandizing assessments about the company’s value to society. Not trying to kink shame, but if you’re reading this cause you’re into that kind of thing, you might wanna crawl back into the hole you came out of, because this is going to contain none of that. 

I’m not writing today’s blog out of some panicked need to placate jumpy investors (because I don’t have any kind of investor), nor am I here in an attempt to control some unfavourable narrative surrounding my brand as so many of these types of posts are. Instead, my motivations are transparent: first, to hold myself accountable to the readers and second, to generate a little bit of hype. 

You see, over the past couple months, Morning Wood, the show that accompanies my “regular” twice-a-week blogs, has not been performing nearly as well as I want it to be in terms of views on social media and engagement with Down to the Wire’s audience. The initial vision for the show was to provide a forum through which I could present the world of politics and current affairs in a way that doesn’t make regular people want to jump off a bridge in boredom, and drive traffic to the website where my blogs might be able to farm a few hard nose exhales. 

Honestly, I’m pretty proud of what I was able to do under that framework, but my numbers guy (aka Racco, company founder and host of the Down to the Wire and Down to the City podcasts) has told me that as far as the audience is concerned, I might as well be pushing corporate update blogs on you guys twice a week. There’s also the fact that the pace at which I chose to release my stories was really stupid. Most opinion writers don’t even publish twice a week, let alone volunteer ones, so it shouldn’t have come as a surprise that as the show went on, I began to struggle to meet deadlines. 

The fact is, if this were the early 2000s, and I could just post walls of text online regularly and be confident they would be read, I’d be the happiest little gremlin writer around. But that’s not the world we live in anymore. I have to put on a show in order to compete with the kajillion other morsels of media vying for your eyes. Don’t get me wrong, it should be obvious by now that I love the attention, but it also means that in terms of driving traffic to the blogs and getting my voice heard, the rollout of the piece is equally as important as the piece itself. 

That’s something Racco and I both understand, which is why last week we made the decision to permanently change the format of Morning Wood. The biggest change you’ll notice from now on is that we’ll only be posting a new story once a week. We hope that this will avoid splitting the audience’s attention between two weekly stories, and I personally hope that this will avoid sleep deprivation. It also means that there are no more excuses for the quality of my writing, which I think is very important. That said, you won’t necessarily see a decrease in the frequency of blog posts on the website (hint hint) so keep checking back here for that sweet sweet print content.

The second major change we’re making is to the rollout of each week’s Jacques Rockhard blog. We here at DTTW believe that Morning Wood should be more than a quick and dirty routine, it should be an experience. With that in mind, we’ll be expanding the rollout, so look for a teaser on Fridays, a slightly longer, better produced companion video for the story on Sunday (complete with new camera angle(s) wowie), a recap post video on Monday, and plenty of extra behind the scenes nonsense throughout the week on the official Down to the Wire Instagram and Tik Tok accounts, as well as the @jacquesrockhard Instagram account. I’m not going to tell you to go follow those because we’re getting dangerously close to the type of shit I mocked at the top of this article, but you know, you should probably go follow them.

Especially since the last major change we’re looking to implement for Morning Wood has to do with audience interaction. At the end of the day, as much as I cringe at myself for betraying the carefully manicured bastion of cynical self-awareness that I try to project as my personality, I do actually need some positive reinforcement every once in a while. Actually even when people take the time to criticize me, it feels much better than the cold void of obscurity, so as we move into the new format of Morning Wood, I’ll be focusing a lot more on integrating the audience into the show. I won’t spoil specifics, but the Jacques Instagram account will become much more active, and if you ever have anything to suggest or say to me, don’t even hesitate.

Okay, that’s all I think there really is to say, other than that I appreciate those of you who have enjoyed reading the blogs so far and who have stuck around while I try and get my feet under me. I said I wouldn’t be corny, but I just want it to be known how much I value the opportunity to express myself on this website, and I’m genuinely excited about this new experiment. We’ve got a good thing going here and when it clicks it’s going to click hard. New episode of Morning Wood this Sunday, and keep an eye on our socials. Have a nice week. Peace and Love. 


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