Saturday, 8 October 2016

What I've Learnt About Blogging

Hello dear people! I'm a bit late to the Friday Reflections party, but I thought I'd chime in anyway. 

The prompt I've chosen is: Things you've learnt since you started blogging. 

At first I felt like I should not choose this prompt. After all, what do I know about blogging professionally? So I should mention that if you're looking for advice about how to get millions of eyeballs on your blog and make shit tonnes of cash I've got nothing to tell you. Oh wait. There is this: do the exact opposite of everything I did. 

I pretty much logged onto blogger one day and just started churning out journal like entries in a spectacularly ad hoc and lackadaisical fashion. Yeah, don't do that.

However, I still have a few things to say about blogging as a hobby. 

Here goes: 

DON"T write like no one is reading

I've heard the advice 'write like no one is reading' a lot.

NO. Don't do that.

Guess what? Someone will read it. Even if it's only your Mum to begin with. As far as I can gather it's still pretty much my Mum reading here. Hi Mum! 

All I'm saying is, it's not a really intelligent idea to write about anything you wouldn't be comfortable discussing in person or having family and friends know about you.

I do try to be as honest as possible within reason. But some things are better kept to myself. 

Don't write about other people's stuff

This ties in with the previous point. Some things are just not my stuff to blog about. Particularly because I have children. I'll admit that I've made mistakes in the past, but now I try not to blog about my boys. Or at least keep it to a minimum.  I don't post photos of them or use their real names here. Some people will argue that you shouldn't have to censor yourself and all that. But I think you need to be mindful of this. If you're still hellbent on writing about all and sundry in your life perhaps asking permission first is the way to go. 

Don't feel guilty about spending time and/or money on your hobby blog

If I had any other hobby you could think of you can bet that I would never even think twice about this. Many times people will be all superior and insist that they simply don't have time to be online. First of all, the time I spend blogging and on Facebook may be the time that others spend watching the footy or the entire series of Game Of Thrones on Netflix. I don't do those things. I prefer blogging or reading. And yes, Facebook. So what? To me, watching sport is just as boring as my hobby might seem to others. 

Plus, what's wrong with spending money on hobby blogging? 
The amount of money that Mickey Blue Eyes has spent on his various hobbies over the years must be in the hundreds if not thousands. There's been soccer, breeding finches (continuing), bonsai's, photography, astronomy, aquariums.. to name a few. Yet for a long time I felt guilty about spending a cent on this blog. Not anymore.

Related: I signed up to do the 
Blog With Pip and Blog Magic
 courses next month.  

Other things I've learned:

I am terrible at self-promotion

I really, really suck at this. Hopefully the above course will help me to get through some of these barriers. We'll see. I'm a total contradiction here: I dislike being the centre of attention but at the same time I don't want to be totally ignored. Otherwise what's the point? 

I'm a much better writer than I think I am

Self-doubt about my writing ability is still something I struggle with on an ongoing basis. But I've thought about it and realised that I'm not THE BEST writer and I never will be. BUT...I'm actually pretty good for who I am, my level of education and experiences in life. I'm some one who failed high school English, never went to university and has spent the past 15 years being a stay at home mother. Additionally, I'm also on the spectrum. Taking all that into consideration I am so much better than I think. I need to own that! 

On the other hand...

I'm a shit photographer

This blog is an assault to your eyeballs. Oops. Sorry about that! But I'm really crap at taking photos. So I just need to concentrate on what I can do and keep writing. Related: I don't have an Instagram account for this very reason. There's really no point!

I'm a technophobe

I don't really understand all the different technical stuff and social media platforms. I have a Twatter Twitter account but don't use it much these days.

There's always some one who's better than you

There's always going to be other brighter shinier better blogs and writers. There just is. The only thing I can do is just keep plodding on doing what I can do. Because not writing at all feels worse. 

I don't care about stats and 'likes'

Just as well. They're abysmal. But WHO CARES? I'm blogging for a hobby so I actually have the freedom to not worry about it. I may as well enjoy it!

I'm completely 'useless'

Apparently you're supposed to create useful content. Oops. I try to make my pointless ponderings as entertaining as possible. Beyond that, I've got nothing! Useless blogging FTW! 

It's fun to join in with the blogging community

I like joining in with blog link ups. For one thing they often provide me with a prompt. Otherwise I might run out of nonsense to blog about. As impossible as that sounds! Plus you can actually make online connections. On the other hand it's important to remember to not get too discouraged if everyone doesn't read your blog. It's impossible to read and comment on every single blog. 

I'll never say never

So far I've never even attempted to make money with this blog. Currently I still have no plans to do so. I have a sneaking suspicion that doing so may take all the joy out of it. However, never's a long time, so I'll never say never. I reserve the right to change my mind at any time. 

It's OK to have bloggy breaks

In fact it's probably a very good idea. This blogging caper can be very addictive! I need to get up and move a bit and try to be offline sometimes. Snorts. 

Let's not get too carried away...

Linking up (late!) for Friday Reflections .

What are your thoughts about blogging?


  1. Really interesting take on the prompt Ness! I've heard great things about Pip's course so I hope you really get lots out of it!

    1. Thanks. I'm looking forward to it!

  2. I agree with everything you've said here Ness. Most importantly you are a wonderful writer - so easy to read, entertaining and sympathetic. You have a real talent and I'd totally urge you to keep growing it. :-) And I will keep reading here because I too like The Carpenters (not as much as you do but I like them :-) )

    1. Thanks so much Brenda. And ditto - love your work!

      And I don't think anyone could love the Carpenters as much as me!

  3. Interesting list..I like the point- Never say never :)

    1. Thanks, and yes never is a long time!

  4. I love useless blogs! They're the best kind. You're a great writer and it goes to show, school results mean nothing and uni can be overrated. And I'm totally with you on not writing about others. I share a lot on my blog but rarely ever about others and if I do, it's with their permission.

    1. Me too! Useless blogs FTW!

      Thanks for the kind words about my writing. I agree - school results aren't everything and ask permission to write about others x

  5. I agree with you. Writing about others, writing like no one is watching is something that we shouldn't do. And yes blogging breaks are necessary! Liked your post!

    1. I'm glad I'm not alone on this. Thanks so much for reading x

  6. When we write from our heart, that blog shines through.