The Thing About Blogging
I love this blog. I love having a place to record everything that happens with S, a place to have a voice for single parents, survivors of domestic abuse, benefits claimants. I like to be able to write about the things I am thinking about.
And I keep a close eye on my stats. I keep a daily record of how many views the blog has had. I pay attention to where those visitors are coming from. I advertise my posts shamelessly across several social networks. My business card has a link to my blog on the back of it; my email signature includes a link here.
Why then, am I so surprised when people appear to have read something I’ve written here?
A few months ago a lovely lady in my local shop asked me, “are you Single Mother Ahoy?” and I almost fell over!
More recently, people have commented in person on something I’ve written, or complimented me on my writing style.
I think the only way to write a blog, and write it honestly and seriously, is to do the whole “dance like nobody’s watching” thing, and just assume nobody will read it. If I sat here thinking, “right, here I go, writing a post about being a parent/being on benefis/surviving domestic abuse for all those hundreds of people out there who might well read it” I would fret so much over whether people would like what I was writing, I’d never get to the point of publishing anything!
Also, there is the confidence aspect of it. I’ve never considered the tripe I blather on about to be really worth anyone else’s extended attention. When I started this blog a year ago, the only people were reading it were loyal friends and nosey locals; the friends wanted to support me, and the nosey locals just wanted some gossip. I suppose (despite increased views etc) I’d just assumed that over time both those groups of people had lost interest, and that now they were perhaps skim-reading the first paragraph at most, and then carrying on with their days.
So I tend to just plod along obliviously – and then get a shock when someone tells me they’ve read something I’ve written. Or they remember something I’ve written about, and carry on the discussion with me in person. My mind is literally blown every time it happens.
Do you find this with your blog? Do you forget that anyone reads what you post… or are you constantly aware of your readers?
I'm always surprised when someone comes up to me and says "are you a storyteller? I think I saw you at xxx..." Performing in public gets me noticed. But bloggy fame of any kind has yet to come my way. And I fear if I were to dance like nobody was watching, it would not be a pretty sight. ;-) Paula recently posted...A Barrel of Fun. Or Not.
Called out by name in public? That makes you a local celebrity ... :-) Other than ensuring I don't post anything which I wouldn't be happy to share with friends and strangers alike, I also try to write as if there is no one out there reading. I've always tried to write for myself first rather than worrying about writing to appeal to others, and some of the posts I'm most proud of are ones that have only been read by a small number of people. (It's always lovely when you hit gold with something that resonates with a wider audience though.) I have to admit I don't quite know what to do when people talk to me about my blog. With family and close friends it's not so bad, but I've had quite a few work colleagues and more recent friends spontaneously congratulate me on specific posts or my recent award wins and I think I probably get very red in the face with confusion/embarrassment ... The compliments are lovely, of course, but I really don't know how to respond. Tim recently posted...Silent Sunday 2/11/14
I've been very tempted to start blogging but always wind up thinking the same thing; what would I write about? When will I have the time? And really, who cares about what I have to say. I guess these may be questions you asked yourself before you started blogging. Good thing is you' re done it anyway and I for one find your writing interesting.