Note: This is the first of my blog entries to recognize that I made it through a year of blogging. Next week I’ll feature blogging experiences from other bloggers to continue the celebration. If you are a blogger and you want to contribute some words of wisdom about blogging or share with the world why you love blogging, shoot me a short message via the comment form on my About Me page by no later than Saturday June 9, 2012.
It’s hard to believe that it has been a year since I first created this blog and posted an entry. That’s right, June 4, 2011 was the date of my first post entitled Writer’s write. And I need to write, right? I had created the account with WordPress before Memorial Day and sat down the night of June 4 to design my blog and put something on there.
My first entry was written off the top of my head. I sat in front of my computer and just started typing out why I wanted to write, and why this blog was an important tool to make my writing happen.
Prior to creating my WordPress account, I had been thinking about creating a blog since 2006. 2006! For one reason or another I kept pushing it to the wayside. I spent time traveling around by myself now that I had graduated and got that first professional job out of college. I got involved with the Steinbeck project. I started a new job. I wanted to buy a house. You name it, I kept making up excuses why I can’t possibly start a blog at this moment.
Off and on I’d peruse blogs to get ideas on what exactly bloggers do and what I could do if I were a blogger. I even checked out a book from the library about starting a blog. Everytime I did some research about blogging, it seemed the advice was always the same – you should have a clear idea about the purpose of your blog and be able to identify what sets your blog apart from other blogs. And I…just couldn’t wrap my brain around how to do that. After all, I just wanted to have a home on the internet to noodle around with my thoughts. I wasn’t interviewing for a job which is exactly what evey blogging resource out there made it sound like you were doing.
Finally, after going through a stressful period of buying a house as well as an even more stressful period of time at work I just decided to do it. So with only a vague idea of what I’d be publishing on my blog, I put together my declaration that I was a writer on WordPress for anyone to see. When I logged in the next day, to my surprise I already had a comment and a like. That gave me confidence to keep at it. Two days later I drafted a short story about an rather scary experience I had while commuting to work which became the basis for my Commuter Chronicles posts.
Still, I struggled my first two months of blogging. I didn’t find it easy to come up with ideas for blog posts and I was so worried about whether my posts were gramatically perfect and agonized over what information I should share publicly. Not long after I started this blog I answered a forum question on blogging via Linkedin and the blogger used those comments on their website. Reading my answer a year later, I can see that my blog has evolved into something a bit different than what I originally intended, and that is okay. But last summer, I really felt that I needed to narrowly define my blog and instead I just stifled my voice.
About the time I really became frustrated with my blog, grandmother became really sick and my family needed my help in figuring out not only how to navigate the information her doctors were throwing at us but also how we were going to take care of her whenever she would eventually be released from the hospital. I spent all my free time either visiting her in the hospital or spending my evenings at her house after work. My blog and a good number of other things were put on the backburner. I probably could have used the blog as a way to work through some of the issues I was facing at the time, but as I already felt the blog was a source of frustration for me, I couldn’t get myself in the right mood to work on the blog.
“Time management is everything because time flies whether you are avoiding your goals, achieving your goals or just fumbling around.”
The last line of your blog says it all! I have felt the same way at times.
So, let us know when you are once again sharing your ideas out loud.
I couldn’t believe that my last blog post from five months back received a comment but it made me stop and think. I was avoiding my goals. Yes, I was going through a rough patch in my life, but I also knew I needed an outlet and I already had a blog out there.
Finally in March when I was getting my bearings back and had become used to my new routine, I decided to try my hand at blogging again. When my grandma passed away last month, it was very helpful to have this blog available as a creative outlet.
I started utilizing photos I had taken more prominently into my posts. Beginning with Shopping Cart Pirate Ship, I figured out that I didn’t need to always write lenghty blog posts. Pictures do tell stories and I decided to implement this via Photo Friday. My Photo Friday hits generated a good amount of interest for this blog and I started to approach blogging differently than I did last summer.
In many ways it feels odd for me to celebrate the one-year mark when March 2o12 is when I really took ownership for this blog and felt like a real blogger. But I do like to think of the prior months as growing pains which have made me a better blogger today. I’ve strayed a bit from my original objective to use this post to talk about the writing process and post drafts of pieces I’m working on. But that is okay. I like the blog I’ve created and I know in time I’ll make it even better.
I also want to take some time to thank my fellow bloggers and readers of this blog. Your support over the past year has meant more to me than you’ll realize.
Here’s to another year of blogging.