Blogging – Why do we do it?

I’m going to make an admission that will do my blogging cred no good but I’ve been honest about everything else so why stop here ? I started blogging almost six months ago and, whilst my blog subscribers are way up, the numbers reading my new blog posts are down.

Am I bovvered, tho?

tinafey

In the beginning

When you start blogging, you get caught up in the whirlwind. From not knowing a thing about it when you hit publish on your first post, to quickly becoming an expert in how to rack up the followers on Twitter, and promote your blog on  ‘link parties.’ In no time, people are reading your blog, and not just your friends and family. (For those not in the know, a link party is a way of driving traffic to your posts. There are a number of kind bloggers who ‘host’ the parties, you drop a link to your blog, and then return the favour by reading the posts of others who have joined the party.)  Link parties are great for driving traffic, and you can discover a lot of great blogs that you might not otherwise come across.But sometimes, just sometimes…can I confess to a heretic thought about link parties? Sometimes I wonder what would happen if we all just stopped reading each other blogs. Would our community implode, or would we continue to seek each other out ?

Blogging will eat your time.

So, three months in and you’re an expert in link parties, you’ve 1000’s of Twitter followers, not to mention Facebook and Instagram accounts. You might have even dipped your toe into Pinterest.

After the initial whirlwind of activity, a degree of burnout is inevitable. You can’t keep up the pace, not if you want to hold on to your job and/or still speak to your family.

I think we all start for the same reasons – to give ourselves a voice, to write, to have an identity outside of employee/mother. Whatever size our readership , most of us are probably reaching far more people than we ever thought we would. So I’m not at all despondent about my premature decline. I’m simply not putting in the effort to ‘promote’ my blog like I was in the beginning. I’m also not posting as frequently – mainly because I don’t have as much free time as I did when I started the blog, for a number of reasons. I was starting to stress about it too. I don’t know about you , but I don’t need something else to stress about. After being unsure for a while about where I wanted my blog to go, I’ve realised , at least, that getting huge numbers  isn’t my short term goal. ( NB it goes without saying if you are making a living from your blog, or even some additional income, that is amazing and impressive – Good For Her, Not For Me)

Your blog, your space, your voice. Do with it what you want

Slow Blogging

At a recent blogging conference I was interested to hear a fellow blogger talk about slow blogging. I think it’s probably something that a lot of us do without realising. It takes away all the stress of blogging (worrying about stats, constant social media checking, stressing about your schedule) and puts you back in control. Caitriona Redmond was the blogger who introduced me to the topic at the conference; here’s a link to her top tips on slow blogging – Slow Blogging Changed My Life.

Community

I’ve met so many great people since I started blogging, whether in real life , or online and it’s opened up my eyes to so many possibilities that I had in no way contemplated before I hit publish on my first (mortifying) post. As someone with not a huge number of friends ‘in real life’, this is one of the things I appreciate most about the blogging community. Meeting like minded people, who understand where I’m coming from – and in an introvert’s dream, I don’t even have to leave my house to talk to them. Just because these friends live in my phone, doesn’t mean I get less from their friendships than ‘real life’ ones.

Why I’m writing

When I started the blog, I assumed it was going to be a parenting blog, maybe with a focus on ASD/ADHD as my son had been recently diagnosed. It has certainly been cathartic writing those posts, and helpful and reassuring to connect with other parents experiencing the same thing. I’ve also had emails from people saying they recognised so much of our story which is amazing. One of my main hopes in writing honestly about our experiences was that it would give some comfort to anyone else experiencing the same thing, who might feel alone. Very quickly my posts took a turn for the feminist – and I am pleased to say these posts are some of my most popular. Feminism seems in many ways to be having ‘a moment’, whilst at the same time experiencing a back lash from the hard of understanding who can’t get past the man-hating accusation. I’m extremely proud to put feminism front and centre in my blog, and in my self.

What’s the point?

Who knows? Does there need to be one? I started blogging in part because I just needed to DO SOMETHING. If you keep doing what you’ve always done, you’ll get what you’ve always got. So I might not make enough money to hand in my notice, but other, smaller, changes have happened and who knows what other developments might come?

Why do you do it? Head to the comments to let me know!

Advertisements

34 comments

  1. Do you know what, I still ask myself why do I blog and that’s after doing it for almost 7 years! I must admit that the whole ‘link party’ thing just isn’t for me. It all feels a bit fake and I’d rather people read or comment because they want to, not because they have to. Controversial I know! And sometimes not playing along with these things makes me feel a little invisible. The following I have has been built up organically as it were and therefore slowly but there’s a loyalty that comes with that too that is priceless to me. I’m just happy to blog alone in my own little bubble for the most part. I’ve made the most amazing friends through my blog and being able to look back on so many memories is what I love the most. It’s a funny old world the blogging world though, isn’t it? I’ve seen it change so much over the years.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. shinnersandthebrood · · Reply

    Love your honesty here and I can totally relate to the early burnout. I’m definitely a ‘slow blogger’. Hats off to people who can publish 4 or 5 times a week but I ain’t one of them. Once it starts becoming difficult or stressful or not enjoyable then I’ll have to seriously question what I’m at (not that I haven’t already questioned what I’m at! Ha) Personally, I love the feminist voice on your blog. And you have prompted me to finally read Amy Poehler’s book which OH got me for Christmas last year and I never got around to. #notfromalinky #readingbecauseiwantedto

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Haha love your hashtags – thank you ! Hope you like the book

      Like

  3. I hear you Beth. I reached burnout and something had to go so I abandoned a lot of social media, meaning my numbers are down quite a lot with lack of promotion. 6 months into blogging and I realised its veered off into a direction I hadnt intended and dont necessarily want for my blog. But I enjoy blogging and the opportunities its given me. I plan on taking a well deserved break over christmas with zero writing and zero social media for two weeks over Christmas. When I return to blogging in january I have a new plan for me and my blog which will take on the slow blogging ethos (hopefully). I’m exhausted churning out four or more posts a week and its time to reign it in. I love that i have my own own virtual space, a handful of readers and that I can loosely contemplate my life there. Though I may not comment, I read every single one of your blog posts 🙂 To quote Shinners #notfromalinky #readingbecauseiwantedto

    Liked by 2 people

    1. You deserve a break Geraldine – you’ve done so much this year and now you have your expanding family on top of everything ! I look forward to continuing to read your blog next year and it’s been a real pleasure getting to know you this year and being my pal at all our networking (?!) events

      Like

      1. Same here Beth! It’s been so great getting to know you. Hopefully we’ll get to meet up again next year and “network” 😀

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Funny you should write this as I was pondering over the topic all weekend. I’m trying to think of the blog as just a hobby that has allowed me to be creative and also to meet a small group of really lovely people, but everyone wants some recognition for their “creation” I suppose…. On the days when the tumbleweed is blowing past, it can all feel a bit pointless.
    Link parties….. So there are some nice supportive, encouraging ones and then there are some where people don’t observe the basic etiquette of returning your comment, which just renders the linky a bit pointless really. They’re a great idea, but I’m a bit sceptical about how meaningful they are at the end of the day. I agree with (Mostly) Yummy Mummy above that I’d rather people read or comment because they want to, not because they have to. But then again, when you find a supportive linky, it’s exciting to have all the comments come in and you do make some friends. Anyway, my objective now is to enjoy my own ‘bubble’ with the lovely little circle of people I’ve met and not worry about the ‘glory’ or the stats….. I think that’s the healthiest way

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Blogging is mainly a hobby for me. I enjoy writing and connecting with other people. I know in order to make it as a blogger you are meant to post several times a week but I feel good if I manage to post more than once or twice a month! I don’t like if it feels like a chore. And I’ve gone through phases where I rarely blog but then other times when I have lots to say. I love the slow blogging article 🙂 I think I probably came across your blog initially because of one of your feminist posts

    Like

  6. Thank you for this it echoes a lot of what I’ve been thinking recently too. I’ll be honest blogging isn’t what I expected it to be at all. It seems to be an ‘industry’ generated by bloggers for other bloggers! Linky parties have completely finished me off tbh!

    So I’ve also decided to regroup and concentrate on what I love best which is rabbiting on about stuff which means a lot to me and probably not a lot to everyone else!!

    Like

  7. Nail has been hit on the head with this post. I ask myself this when I’m suffering from writers block and the like and I always answer with “because you love to write”. Yeah the stats might get me down sometimes but I soon tell myself to not be despondent and keep doing me x

    Like

  8. Reblogged this on ourrach.

    Like

  9. I am gonna take a look at this slow bloggin!

    #ablogginggoodtime

    Like

  10. ohmummymia · · Reply

    I need to check that Slow blogging in fact I just open it in next tab. I’m blogging about 4 months and I think that I’m doing something wrong because my figures are not amazing and I don’t want to be stressed about it
    #ablogginggoodtime

    Like

  11. Lucy At Home · · Reply

    I love this! I’m 7mths into blogging and I’m having to admit that I need to slow down a bit – as your blog grows, so does all the admin for it. I love the encouragement to keep blogging but do it on your own terms. #ABloggingGoodTime

    Liked by 1 person

  12. I am super interested in this concept of slow blogging….cause i can’t keep up with 5 kids, a job, a husband and dog, and blogging….not to mention the stress of trying to up my follower EVERYWHERE all the time….#stayclassymama

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s funny isn’t it ? All of these deadlines and targets we’re placing on ourselves – but we could change it all an instant if we wanted.

      Like

  13. “I started blogging in part because I just needed to DO SOMETHING” – I think there are a lot of us who feel that way. I started my blog when I was on maternity leave because I was desperate to have something that was just for me at a time when I was giving everything I had to my newborn. Like you, I don’t have as much time to blog as I used to and yes, it’s starting to have an effect on my stats. But so what? I’m down with this slow blogging business. #ablogginggoodtime

    Liked by 1 person

  14. My son is currently going through the ADOS process as we speak and I’m anxiously awaiting the outcome which I have written all about in my latest post. He had his final assessment today. I started blogging for the same reason as you. To reach out to others going through the same thing and to raise awareness. I also find it helps me to write down everything that’s on my mind, a little bit like self therapy. I only write one post a week because that’s all I have time for but to be honest, for me that’s more than enough. I could never try to make living from blogging because I just don’t have the time or the dedication but it means I don’t become obsessed with it. I can honestly say, hand on heart, that I have never checked my stats. I do like joining linkies and getting comments though. I guess blogging is my hobby.

    #stayclassymama

    Like

  15. Such a good post, we’ve got to keep doing it for US, I always loose my way when I focus on stats etc, but I do care about readability and getting my post out there… I guess there’s a fine line, but you’ve got to enjoy the work! Happy blogging #stayclassy

    Liked by 1 person

  16. I’ve never heard of the term “slow blogger” but that is definitely where I fit in! I write one post a week and it’s pretty niche in that so far I’m only writing about autism. Unsurprisingly my blog has only a few followers but a lot of them are a few years behind us on the autism journey so my hope is that by sharing our experiences I can help make life more understandable and maybe even a tad easier for some of my readers. I join up with two linkies #SpectrumSunday which is for any SEND (Special Educational Needs and Disabilities) related posts and also #ablogginggoodtime(where I found your post!) which is co hosted by Catie from “Diary of an Imperfect mum”, I like reading her “glimpse into our autism” series. I find that with commitments to family, friends and work I don’t have time to join in with any other linkies. I hope you enjoy the slower pace – stay in it for the long run.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Catie is excellent. I’ve found reading about other people’s experiences with autism very helpful – especially since I don’t have many people to share with in real life

      Like

  17. Do you know I ask myself this all of the time. I’ve actually written a post about it for next week (must be something in the water) in which I compare blogging to a marathon! I love a bit of cheese. I have stopped even looking at my stats because that isn’t why I write and I am pretty sure they must have gone down but hey-ho. I’ve seen lots of people burn out by trying to do it all. It can be easy to let blogging take over your life but you have to remind yourself to take your time. I have become a little frustrated by certain aspects of blogging but I still enjoy the writing which is why I started in the first place. I am going to have a look at the slow blogging, that sounds like something that would really appeal to me. I have just dribbled a load of words over your brilliant post – again! For what it’s worth I love your blog. How is your journalism course going? Has that changed how you approach your blog? #stayclassymama

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think ultimately you have to do it for yourself , and for the love of Writing , and to practice your writing – otherwise it just becomes a chore. I think at the beginning you don’t realise what opportunities exist for bloggers and so because they’re there you think you should want them…anyhoo we all do it for different reasons don’t we, so we must suit ourselves. The course is going well – it’s a different kind of writing , the blog is pure me where you obviously need to be more objective in journalism. Great to get feedback on my writing tho.

      Liked by 1 person

  18. I try and get out two posts a week and can’t imagine being interesting enough to have much more to say than that. The one thing I’ve learned about blogging in my short year and a half is that stats can fluctuate wildly. Sometimes something just hits at the right time and there’s a big spike, sometimes you’re yelling into the wind. #blogginggoodtime

    Liked by 1 person

  19. This is great, Im not too good at blogging super regularly, but I love doing it, its coming up for a year for me, your right you don’t know who you’re reaching, I definitely have spurts when I have more to say than other times, and am just getting used to scheduling. I started off wanting to write more about parenting as a Christian Mumma, and how that impacts my life. Some posts I like to keep light, others I write what’s in my heart and I have found that they have had the most impact. xx #ablogginggoodtime

    Like

  20. I blog because I’m journalling what we get up to, and that’s how it started 5 (I think) years ago. I’m proud of it, I write what I want, and yes I write mostly daily, but that’s because I have a lot to say. But my blog is my hobby and always will be (with a bit of pocket money). But even after 5 years my stats are still pants. My plan for this year had been to reduce the days I published and do less work but grow my blog, but I just do things when I want.

    I think my dance blog is more my slow blog. I blog 1-2x a month. I had thought I was going to do that one professionally from the off, but I don’t have the time so I’m slack with it #ablogginggoodtime

    Liked by 1 person

  21. I blog because I thought it would be lovely for my family who are spread out across the world to have an in sight into what we get up to. #ablogginggoodtime

    Like

  22. I am sort of in your same boat. I began blogging in late August and didn’t know (nor do I still) what the hell I am doing. I do not want to prostitute myself but I am doing this primarily TO MAKE MONEY in the long run. i am a 42 year old woman who was an independent, single, working woman for a good portion of my life. While I do not regret my decision to drop out of the workforce to raise my twins, a part of me HATES no longer bringing in an income.

    SO, I am learning the ropes. Another “slow blogger,” I suppose. Maybe this is partially out of fear of failure or to temper my expectations, but I want to do it right.

    I appreciate other bloggers who are unafraid to speak their mind, whether others will agree or not, so I will be following you! Keep up being ballsy. 🙂 #stayclassymama

    Like

  23. I never heard of slow blogging before but I like the sound of it, and think I’m doing it without even realising. I don’t normally post content unless I think it’s worth it, although sometimes even that is hard. Blogging is something I do in my “spare” time (haha like I actually have any spare time) to relieve stress, and sometimes make a bit of money. I agree who needs more stress, it definitely should not be from blogging! Thanks for sharing with #StayClassyMama!

    Like

  24. I’m two blogs in, the definition of slow blogging. Looks like I’m in good company!

    Liked by 1 person

  25. I always wanted to write and take photos. Instead I’m a nurse because I am the eldest and I have always done what’s expected of me! I blog so I can write (poorly probably!). I have loads of unfinished blogs on my phone/computer/laptop. I don’t have time to commit to it, and I have zero clue about a link party! But every now and then someone reads my posts and that’s enough for me!

    Liked by 1 person

  26. I’m burning out after two posts. I thought I’d have a lifetime of material! Sticking with it though. I won’t quit until I’ve got 67 adoring fans!

    Liked by 1 person

  27. Hi, I’m blogging to create awareness of the discrimination facing disabled people, as well as trying to jump-start my writing career. It’s hard work but hopefully worth it!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m sure it will be worth it – small steps to begin with can bring big change.

      Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: