And what happened to me? You probably didn’t notice (what with the world going upside down and all), but I haven’t been around. I had been disheartened for a while with blogging . . . and then 2020 happened and I truly grasped the meaning of being disheartened.
It is bananas out there.
I don’t like it. I don’t want to deal with it. And in the words of Gollum from LOTR, “We hates it!” I’m a very sensitive and empathetic person, so internalizing all the sadness and darkness that is happening all around us comes natural to me. Like many people, I’ve been down. And when I’m down, I take a step back and hide. I’ve been avoiding social media as much as possible and enjoying the little moments with my kids. Because love conquers all (you know how that goes).
But anyway, that’s not what I wanted to talk about, so I’m moving on. Back to blogging.
When I first got into blogging in 2008, it was because I loved the idea of using it as a journal. As a way to connect with people who were going through the same struggles and as a way to encourage AND find encouragement. I wasn’t alone, and neither were they. It was the first time I had the courage to write for others to read. At the peak of my journey, I thrived and remembered what it was that I loved about words: they have the power to unite, to inspire, to connect, and to give life.
What I’ve noticed, however, is that blogging now is . . . different.
There’s an obsession with numbers. It’s all about making money and gaining numbers: clicks, followers, shares, comments, sales, etc. If you don’t use SEO across your whole post, use the exact title and subtitle font for Google to track, take an 80-hour course on keywords . . . and update that knowledge weekly, then you’re “blogging wrong.” There’s obviously nothing wrong with it. I’m just accepting it is not for me (though, I never tried hard with this because #boring).
You must write professional content. There’s an expectation that a blog post must serve a purpose: educate, inform, inspire, sell, or entertain. All good! It makes perfect sense. Most posts (sadly) are “recycled ideas” . . . things someone read five minutes ago and decided to put their own spin on, and then someone sees that person’s topic idea and runs with it to sound like an even bigger pro . . . and so on. (Not plagiarism, just writing on the same topic with the same purpose of informing/educating.) That’s a whole other thing, but as far as purpose, I keep seeing “educate” & “sell” more often. What do you see?
It makes me feel that if you don’t write popular “articles” like a professional writer does in a magazine or newspaper (remember the paper kind?), then you’re doing it wrong. I admit, I got caught up in trying to write article-like content for a while and did like it (I just dislike the pressure to get it perfect) . . . because as with anything else, there’s nothing wrong with it. I’m just accepting it is not for me.
You’re trying to just . . . talk? Like a journal? On a blog? Whahhhh? No. No. If you want to just write about your day, week, share your journey of ANYTHING, or vent . . . well, that’s not blogging. Didn’t you know? You must create a YouTube channel for it. But even that is now old . . . so instead, you must go on Tik Tok and do your thing there. Or live stream them and share them on your stories. But you’d better be super creative (so you can grow your numbers), because otherwise . . . you’re doing it wrong. I considered it, but you know what? I’m just accepting it is not for me.
You must be an expert. In combining the above points, it is all for nothing if you can’t prove you know what you’re talking about. And if you say it, back it up. Makes sense, I’m all for it. I love reading blogs from experts in their fields. (Personal exaggerated opinion coming up.) It just seems that you have to prove you can talk about things with complete experience and expertise or . . . you’ll get canceled. I’m an author, but I’m always learning and looking to better my craft. So I feel like a fraud when blogging about writing because I’ve seen too many people called out for sharing their experiences (in various topics/fields) if they don’t have a million awards and titles and certificates to show for it. I can’t even, but even so, this one actually, is still for me. BUT! I won’t put pressure on myself anymore to write about writing or being an author ALL the time.
So there you go. Those are the reasons I’m disappointed in blogging. I had more but can’t remember them. And since I want to write with no pressure, I’m not going to stress over what I forgot. Heck, I’m not even sure if I want to continue blogging. I’m a writer and I have books to sell, so you’d think I should keep at it for when I have to market my work . . . but nah. I don’t want the pressure of hitting all the right points of “how to blog properly” so it can keep messing with the love I do have. And the love is simple: put words down.
With blogging, I’ve been feeling like I have nothing to say. Or rather nothing worth saying. That I have nothing others want to read or care about. I got caught up in the expectations. A lack of likes or comments, the wrong use of keywords, the lack of expertise on any specific topic, the lack of “article writing” passion, and the fierce insecurity to be in front of a camera for video content. They all got to me. And I let it.
The trend says those are the things that need to be done . . . otherwise you’re doing it wrong. And hey, I admire everyone who does it . . . it takes a lot of energy and creativity. I’m just accepting it’s not for me. 🙃
What’s for me? Well, glad I asked . . .
My words. My thoughts. My path. My journey. Which, if you really knew me, you’d be scratching your head because I’m not one to get personal. I like my privacy and I never want to share too much. I just don’t need to. But that’s probably been my problem . . . In making a conscientious effort to protect my privacy, I haven’t infused enough of me into my posts for me to feel great about it. I suppose that’s why I miss podcasting; it was more freeing. Either way, within reason, if I continue blogging there will be more of me.
Look! More of me:
And if you tend to follow all the blogging rules,
I’d like to ask you . . . you, the person, not the public persona:
What other things would you like to write about?