Three months ago I took my first tentative steps into this unknown world of blogging. I’d been thinking about it for a long time, even tried a little “sea change” blog a couple of years ago, but quiet frankly I’m not good with one topic – five posts and I was bored. Moving on.
Returning to work after 10 years in the trenches of motherhood I discovered a lot had changed between 1997 and 2007. That internet thing had really caught on, but not only that a whole other field of communication had been invented. Social media was growing, growing, growing. Suddenly in the media/marketing/PR fields employers were asking what your strategy was for working with social media, evidence that you were engaged with the medium, samples of your blog.
Here was me, my strategy was simply to get myself to an office, fully dressed anything after that was a bonus. Evidence I was engaged and communicating with a variety of people I didn’t know and would never meet? You really want me to tweet about what I had for breakfast? Worse, you want me to read about what OTHER people had for breakfast? As for the blog thing – I’d been a little distracted for the past ten years, what with growing two human beings, birthing them (and trust me that took a bit of work), trying to raise them to be polite, socially capable, fully functioning individuals – then there was my little home-based business and oh yes the volunteer work at the school – I didn’t have time to write about it all – and the state I was in I couldn’t have been held responsible for what I would have written back then anyway.
Nevertheless it was obvious that I needed to become more au fait with all this stuff.
So in October I began the journey. I signed up for the Blogging Your Way course, one of the requirements was you had to have a blog. Funny that. So a week before the course I set one up.
No idea what I was going to write about but off I went.
There was a lot of exploring other blogs at which point I felt very unworthy. The blogs were beautiful. The pictures awesome. Feeling pretty despondent and on the verge of giving the whole thing up a woman wrote a comment on one of my posts. Her name was Tina – she was another participant in the BYW course – she said
Your blog makes me laugh. I so relate to your stories of chaos and not quite getting it together (being a bad mother). Keep writing because you are very funny! I came across your blog on the ‘blogging your way’ forum.
I don’t know whether she ever visited again but that comment made me decide that maybe I could do this. My strength wasn’t in pretty design but in words. So I pulled myself together and decided to keep on going with it (thanks Tina).
The stats so far:
3,518 page views
63 Blog followers
93 92 91 92 (oh who cares) Twitter followers
40 Facebook followers
3 Instagram followers
How does that shape up for three months work? I have no idea. Probably better than some and way below others.
There’s been so much to learn. A whole other language in fact. There’s still so much more to figure out – Instagram, Pinterest, Flickr - how many ways can we communicate for goodness sake?
There’s been early starts, late nights. I have ideas galore but am often too tired to put them into any coherent form. The whole time issue has been a struggle – blogging is a time consuming process – sometimes that worries me – while it is lovely to have an outlet that gives you a link to your creative side and support from like-minded individuals you do need to be clear on what you are getting out of it and what you are giving up to do so.
The reward has been connecting with lovely people from around the world. The opportunity to write every day on any topic I desire. The fact I’m learning new stuff every day and I don’t have to leave the house to do it.
What I’ve learnt along the way:
- Don’t lose sight of why you began blogging in the first place.
- Find your strength and get other people to provide what you are lacking.
- Don’t worry about what other people are doing – your blog needs to reflect you – not a copycat version of others.
- Just do it. Get it out there and figure it out as you go along.
Do you blog? What has been your experience?