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Why I will never be a professional blogger pt.2

paint

It’s been a while since I’ve written anything about blogging (actually, it’s been a while since I’ve written anything, hasn’t it?), but today I thought I’d put down some thoughts that have been swirling round my head for a while. We’ll see whether this ends up very coherent I guess…

It’s probably obvious I don’t have as much time for blogging any more as I used to, I went back to work to a promotion after Ellis, and just the actual having two children is like an entirely different thing from one. Which is why I’ve gone down to three posts a week, and they are mainly pictures. In fact, at one point last year I really thought I might be done with blogging altogether, like I was maybe going to go down to two and one a week, and then just let it fade away to focus on other things. I actually have a half written blog post about this sitting in my drafts.

But then, somehow I found some enthusiasm again. I joined a couple of blogger groups on Facebook, and seeing everyone else be all energetic about blogging rubbed off on me. I definitely want to keep going, and actually I am really proud of my archives. I love seeing what’s been happening, and I actually use it as a filing system of sorts. When I recently did my permanent residence application, having the blog made it so much easier for me to figure out when I’d been out of the UK in the last five years (because that is absolutely essential for the Home Office to know apparently when I have lived here since 1999. But that’s another ranty post all of its own). And I just really like taking photos, and writing, and I know that without the blog I wouldn’t do that as much.

Colourful Fluid Drips

The thing is though, interacting with people that like to talk about blogging online also has it’s pitfalls. Because most people are in such a different place from me. There are people blogging to promote crafty businesses, students and young people between jobs or bored in low skill jobs with lots of time, people who’ve quit their day jobs to be professional bloggers even. It is SO hard to watch people do all this great work and promote the hell out of it and not compare yourself.

I just have to keep reminding myself that we don’t have the same aims. If I was really serious about growing the blog, I know what I’d need to do, at least in theory – specialise, write stuff that people search for, network more, do some SEO stuff, make relationships with brands, develop a brand myself. But the thing is, even if I had the time, I don’t want to do that. I like blogging in the old style, built around a person and all they are interested in. I want to talk about the things I want to talk about, because I like them (or hate them). I was never around when livejournal was at its heyday, but it sounds amazing. I miss personal blogging I really do, it’s all so boringly professional these days. I hope that even in its current minimum efforts incarnation, this blog gives a sense of who I am as a person, and that’s what I want to keep. I don’t want to be writing DIYs, or top ten things to do in Edinburgh, or top three ways to hyggefy your life or whatever. Absolutely zero shade intended if that kind of content’s your thing, but it’s not for me. That would be work, and I already have a job.

Drip painting

Or take instagram. I love instagram, and the random personal connections it’s fostered, but it’s just so commercialised now. So many automated comments, all that automated follow/unfollow shit based on hashtags. I’m not going to lie and say that I wouldn’t like to have more followers on there, and I do use hashtags, but not at the expense of losing the thing I like about it, which is being able to overshare random snippets of life, and have random conversations. Again, I know what the advice says – specialise, pick consistent colours and themes and stick to them. Curate a feed. I’ve watched several people do this and remove all personal content, and they’ve done amazingly, and I get it. No one goes out searching for accounts that mix children/sewing/Edinburgh/doors/sunsets/cats/knitting/food/flowers/yoga/streetart/coffee/city trips/cake. But those are the things I want to post about, and I can’t post about them in a particular colour pallette.

And I guess I just need to remind myself of all of this as I go through my online life!

Title because I have written about this before, possibly more coherently, here. Unrelated dripping paint photos are clickable for source

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Moira 27 March 2017, 11:11 am

    I totally agree. Limited time has stopped my blogging. Annoyance at the growing commercial nature of blogs has reduced my reading them (although you know good for them and all that). Love insta and gravitate to the uncurated. Love a good hash tag but rarely if ever use one to gain followers… usually I like/use hashtags for a giggle. Be true to yourself and what you want to do. I personally love coffe/cake/quilt/dressmaking/Edinburgh/kids/art/random/honest accounts the best

  • Señora Allnut 27 March 2017, 11:22 am

    oh yes, I agree about all that professionalization, which is ok for many people, but it’s not my kind of thing. I prefer to read about Real People, the things they love, even if I don’t love all of them!. But that makes my life more interesting!
    besos
    Señora Allnut recently posted..shoes & tightsMy Profile

  • jesse.anne.o 27 March 2017, 3:44 pm

    Agreed – I think there’s a huge difference between personal/interest focused blogs and pro blogs. I know it’s a spectrum, though. But it’s a bummer that the prevalence of the pro blogs means there are less personal blogs out there now because that form of blogging is modeled less. (Also thinking of all the personal blogs that went pro, even if they maintained a personal bent – like Susie Bubble, Tavi, etc. Almost like the personal-for-professional content kind.)

    I just try to think of it like any social media – it’s there when I want to use it but I and I’m sure others have no expectations.
    jesse.anne.o recently posted..Putting the gratitude in my attitude (a makeup post)My Profile

  • Helen 27 March 2017, 8:19 pm

    I’m obviously a sewing blogger and predominantly follow sewing blogs, so I can’t comment on other types of blogs. It really bugs me though when personal bloggers turn professional. It happens so often, and I just find it disappointing. For me, the blogs loose a lot of their appeal, and like you say, just seem to churn out content for content’s sake. I particularly hate the line “X reached out to me”. No. They just wanted some free advertising. I don’t have an issue with that (although rarely read those posts), but let’s call it what it is!

    Each to their own, and all that, but my favourite blogs are those where the blogger’s personality shines through, regardless of what topics they write about.

    I enjoy your blog and IG feed (which is a lot better photographed than mine!), for what they are. keep up the good work!
    Helen recently posted..Completed: Sloane SweatshirtMy Profile

  • Sadie 28 March 2017, 7:06 am

    I agree with all of this. I have pretty much stopped blogging (though I have been writing book reviews and some other stuff on my old LJ), and I have also mostly stopped reading, because it has all become so commercial and curated. I miss the old blogs that were just ordinary people sharing whatever they were interested in with the world – there doesn’t seem to be a space like that any more. (I do still very much enjoy reading your blog, though, so I’m glad you’re still blogging.)