How is your blogging going? I only ask because mine is decidedly creaky and I know quite a few of my ‘go-to’ bloggers have either stopped or are taking a sabbatical.
A few weeks ago I decided that as we weren’t planning to go away this summer, I’d get back into what used to pass as a habit – well you can see for yourself how successful that turned out to be…
I’ve been giving the whole blogging thing a lot of thought, particularly in view of the impact of Twitter, Instagram and the like. Personally I’ll admit to loving Instagram. I use it almost as a cross between a nature diary and a journal of my work-in-progress with the odd historical jaunt here and there. It’s so easy to use, I generally post pictures from my morning walks while I’m eating my breakfast. And I rather enjoy a quick scroll through my feed to catch up with what’s happening amongst my IG friends. It feels like a very friendly and supportive community.
I’m also a Twitter fan, although I tend to use it as much as a tailor-made news feed as a way to keep in touch with a variety of lovely friends I’ve made there.
So where does that leave blogging? It seems to me that in many ways, Twitter and Instagram have taken over the role of the ‘what I’ve been up to’ post. It’s much easier to Tweet or post a quick photo of the relatively mundane, than to sit down and blog about it days later.
But we bloggers are a thoughtful bunch, and not everything that needs to be expressed comes instantly in 140 characters. I know that many of us write as much for ourselves as for readers, and we feel compelled to do that for a whole raft of reasons.
Having thought about it now over several months, it seems to me that there is still a very real role for blogging as a means for us to find and use our voices, whether it’s exploring aspects of our inner landscape, debating with ourselves as much as with others, or raising issues important to us and hoping to reach a wider audience.
Social media is a great way of showing the ‘now’, but it’s not so good at explaining feelings, and that depth of exploration is much better suited to blogging.
I miss the voices of those now quiet bloggers whose insights, questions and experiences gave me pause for thought and sometimes even caused me to act.
Maybe we don’t need to recount at length the tiny minutiae of our daily grind – or maybe we do – but I believe we do need to tell our stories, talk about the things that are important to us and let our voices be heard.
I intend to try harder to get back into the habit and I hope if you’ve been resting, you might join me too.
25 thoughts on “Blogging?”
Please carry on! Much as I enjoy your pics via instagram/twitter, I love to read the longer pieces that blogging allows.
You’re absolutely right when you say that some of us blog for ourselves as much as our readers. I’m not very good at anything ‘arty’ but I get a definite kick from putting words to screen…and for some reason I don’t mind that I’m not very good at that either!
Thanks for your thoughts Anny, and please keep them coming 🍒
Thank you, yes I’m definitely going to get back into the habit – I’m much better at ‘new school year’ resolutions rather than ‘new year’ ones. I’m sure that anything that gives you a kick, or makes you feel good is probably a message from somewhere inside that it’s what you need and so we should all try and listen to those messages – and by the way, I think you write really well indeed!
I know exactly what you mean about ‘new school year’ resolutions. Even now, when my youngest child is 23, I still get a small charge of excitement when I walk through a stationery department at this time of year!
Thank you for thought provoking words Anny. I’ve been quiet for a while too, partly busy, partly poorly, partly just out of the habit. Must try harder!
Oh Kath I hope you’re feeling better now, best wishes to you. Part of the problem I have is that I can’t get settled with a particular blog reader, everything I’ve tried is not quite what I want, so I get out of the habit of reading. I’m still not sure how to address this, but it’s partly making time to do it – I shall see what I can do.
I think it’s to do with the speed of change. When we started blogging it was practically cutting edge, but now that it’s been joined by phone-friendly applications like instagram and twitter it’s about as cutting edge as a jam roly-poly. Almost as counter-cultural as writing a letter.
I love the idea of re-embracing jam roly-poly, I think we should have our own bloggers’ Great British Pudding Off…
Very timely post, I could have written something similar myself. Instagram is quick, simple and fun. But as you note not good for more reflective postings, not that I have done many of them recently. I tend to find blogging useful for helping me to clarify my own thoughts on issues, and re embroidery, to keep a record of what I have been up to. All very personal, and of limited interest to others. Perhaps blogging is more useful for reflections on work in progress and less of a record of work done. Time for a bit reflection! Thanks Anny
It’s something I’ve really pondered over as I’m sure you do, the things that strike me are that even though some bloggers are into very small niches (probably describes us), you just don’t know how important some of your output might be. I know we don’t command thousands of visitors, but if you inspire or educate or amuse even a few people, that might be very important – a bit like the old starfish analogy (you know the one?) – I find your work in progress posts very interesting and they all contribute to the community of embroiderers – that’s important. I think perhaps because so many of us are shy or quiet or just plain rubbish at commenting, many erratic bloggers think nobody cares what they write, whereas in fact they may well be doing something very useful, they just aren’t receiving feedback to tell them so. And perhaps that’s also why Twitter etc do well, because it’s easier to ‘like’ than to comment on a blog. I hope you keep on posting, and I’m going to pay more attention to commenting. Best wishes Ax
Reading the comments as well as your post, I think we all need to be a bit better at telling bloggers we like their posts – and particularly now that Instagram and the like have taken over the “now” stuff, we need to tell bloggers when we like the slower, more reflective posts. Personally, I use blogging at least partly to “think aloud” about things..
On feed readers – have you tried Feedly? I find it nice and clean and simple.
Absolutely, I couldn’t agree more, even though I’m a major culprit. I did try Feedly once, but can’t remember now why I stopped, perhaps it’s time to try it again. I used to like Bloglovin, but went off it big time. Now I use DIGG, but it makes commenting a slower process, you have to enter the site then Blogger sites get very messy. Anyway, that’s my next step – schedule reading and responding! Thanks x
Happy to help if you struggle with getting started with feedly Anny. Just let me know at email@example.com
I have the impression Blogger sites are always messy if you don’t use Blogger yourself…!
I definintely agree there is still a place for blogging…. It can be a place for deeper reflections, ‘real’ writing, etc. Just hard to find the time for those things if we’re always glued to our phones on social media… something I am sometimes guilty of!
Yep, that’s me too. But I guess accepting that is the first step to trying to change the balance – well it’s a good theory, now all I have to do is put it into practice 🙂
I have taken a break from blogging as Instagram seems to suit me better, but I do still so love to read blogs. I’m not sure if I’ll return to mine, some days I decide I definitely will, then I change my mind, so I’m just leaving it sitting there at the moment until I decide 🙂
Hi Chloe, I know what you mean, the urge definitely ebbs and flows I agree. Your work lends itself very well to Instagram and I think it’s a brilliant choice. I need to get better organised with reading and commenting on blogs – it’s something I’m in the process of doing. These days I mainly read blogs on my tablet or mobile, which works well enough, but it’s a pain when you want to comment, which I think is a reason why IG and similar score better, it’s a lot easier.
An interesting ponder on the subject of blogging, glad you’ve decided to give it another go. Most people seem to ‘pick it up and put it down’ in the same way I know I for one do with keeping a journal and it’s definitely time consuming. Perhaps ‘Nature’ is an area more suited to the blogging medium than some other subjects. Because it stays put it’s interesting, and easy, to look back and make comparisons with happenings at similar times in previous years and makes a useful reference source for things I forget the name of! Definitely easier on a PC though.
I tend to agree that Nature is a good fit for blogging and for me being able to read blogs like yours is a wonderful thing, I’m definitely being educated as well as entertained, in fact I think the whole internet has made a huge difference because it’s now so much easier to find out more about what you’re seeing without having to consult huge reference books in the library. I like to keep my nature notes here, but Instagram is a brilliant way to keep a daily record and that’s mainly how I use it. I suppose that quite a few things have changed for me since I first started blogging and the blog is bound to evolve too. I’m definitely sticking with it.
I have been thinking about this too Anny. I love Instagram, much more than Twitter or Facebook, and think it is a great platform for sharing and recording and a very warm and supportive community. Blogging for me is something very different and is to do with sustained reflection and conversation. Sometimes I have a bit of a drought but I try not to stop completely, not even when I am really struggling for something to say. I think that if I stop I might stop for ever and I really don’t want to. Blogging fulfils something quite special for me and I would hate to be without it.
Yes, I agree with you entirely. Blogging fulfils something different for me too. My absolute major problem however right now is how to stay up to date with the blogs I follow. I discovered today that I had missed several of yours, and I’m sure there are others too. It’s the issue I have with reading and commenting across different blogging platforms and with three different devices. I really must crack this urgently! Best wishes to you and if I ever stumble upon the answer to the question of balance, I’ll let you know 🙂
Your nagging, is of course, of a far gentler kind! I loved this post, and meant to comment, but was rushing somewhere or other, xx
We share a life! Let’s be happy to meet like the proverbial ships…
Gosh! I can relate to the blogging dilemma you express here. But I do love my blog and am doing the utmost to keep it relevant. And so glad I’ve found yours! Lovely to meet you.
Hi Hilary, many thanks for commenting – could you send me a link to your blog, I’m not sure what your URL is and I’d love to pop by and say hello there.