Me and my blog

So. Me and my blog. After a love affair lasting 15 months or so, I’m feeling a bit like I don’t know what to do next with it. Reading around, this seems to happen to a lot of bloggers a year or so in – some shut up shop completely, some change their blog name or focus, and some seem to come through the bumpy bit and carry on.

I started out because I’ve always loved writing. I was always going to wait until I was good enough at something (anything!) to justify writing about it, but eventually I was inspired by   Jennie Edspire’s journey to try and create a family memory box – you can read my very first post here.  Fifteen months along and I’m not sure, really, that the blog is either a memory box for the kids, nor has it evolved into anything else – except a random collection of rants and musings.

To be honest, I would like to write more about my kids and our experiences as a family – the reason I don’t is because I’m very aware that even in the most measured way, I am compromising their privacy in a way that they may not choose, both here and on social media. This was brought home to me in a big way a few weeks ago when I Facebooked a 15 second video of my six year old singing and dancing to Let It Go after she was supposed to be in bed. I posted it because I thought it was cute, and didn’t think anything else of it. But the next day she came home from school very cross because one of her friends had mentioned it to her – not in a negative or mean way, just that they’d seen it – and asked me the perfectly valid question ‘Why would you put a video on the internet without checking with me first’? To which I didn’t really have an answer.

In fact, a lot of blog fodder goes by the wayside because of privacy/respect issues. The ups and downs of our primary school journey; work conundrums; the ‘marathon-not-a-sprint’ that is marriage; the rather hilarious Neighbour Wars; wider family shenanigans – there is so much stuff bubbling in my head that I’d love to work through by writing. I am happy with my decision not to share the details of all of that, but it does leave me wondering what the hell there is to write about when all the interesting stuff is off limits!

I also started the blog because I wanted to get better at writing. Reading back, I do think in some ways my writing style has improved – I certainly cut a lot of wittering out now, and yes, I almost always delete my first paragraph thanks to this post from Her Melness Speaks. But equally my more recent posts don’t seem to fizz with the energy that my earlier efforts did. And I have never really crossed the boundary from short, ranty posts to writing in more depth, something I would very much like to do, but am terrified of even trying, though I have made a start on trying to raise my game by signing up to do some book reviews with Mumsnet. They’re not very good, but at least I am setting myself a challenge.

The other thing that’s getting me down is my blog stats. Yes, I know I shouldn’t be worrying about numbers, and shouldn’t be comparing myself to others, and nor should I be setting myself unrealistic goals, but that part of my personality is too deeply ingrained now to root out. And at the end of the day, I write to be read and I’m not going to pretend otherwise, to myself or anyone else. And though my stats are slowly, slowly inching upwards, I am nowhere near the realms of respectability in blogging terms. And I can’t help feeling that if I was writing anything worth reading, the climb upwards wouldn’t be so excruciatingly slow and gruelling.

This feeling has been coming for a while. The question is what to do about it! I don’t want to stop writing, and nor do I want to lose the tentative links I have made with the blogging community. Perhaps I should take a break for a while and use the time to figure out what to do next. I really don’t know.

To be continued, one way or another!

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22 thoughts on “Me and my blog

  1. Aww this posts speaks to me in so many ways. I know EXACTLY what you mean about everything you have said. Not wanting to jeopardise privacy, my daughter did exactly the same thing once, not writing about the good stuff…. my blog would probably be read the world over if i shared some of the shennanigans that go on here lol! It’s a tough one, I guess the thing is not to worry about stats especially, if you love writing you should continue without a shadow of a doubt and focus on a niche in your life maybe that you enjoy and write about that? I’m always thinking of what I can do with my blog but never bloody do it!!!! oh well…….. probably not helpful but I did really enjoy reading this post and your writing is brilliant xx
    Carolynne @ Mummy Endeavours recently posted…Reception Class School TripMy Profile

  2. Brilliant post and exactly how I feel now. My musings Blog developed for the same reasons as you – I love writing and wanted to record some memories too. The Recipe Resource fulfilled the need to create and design and my newest Blog has become an outlet for even more. Partitioning worked for me – I don’t really do PR so it hasn’t mattered that I’ve subdivided my site hits in this way. Might work for you?
    Kate Thompson recently posted…Coming up for AirMy Profile

  3. What you’re going through is indeed very common. In seven years of blogging I’ve been through this phase at least five times. On each occasion I’ve kept ploughing on – in some cases I’ve refocussed, in others I’ve closed down certain avenues, and twice I’ve taken the plunge and set up entirely new blogs. It’s an ever evolving process with me.

    The one thing you should never do is to mistake not having thousands of visitors every day for bad writing. My observation as a keen amateur who thinks a lot about the process of writing: some of the most popular blogs out there are brilliantly marketed and contain interesting content but are let down by pretty mediocre writing. Conversely, some blogs which have small audiences are brilliantly written – often by people who only have a few hours here and there to write and don’t have the time to promote themselves on TwitterFace+.

    Having followed you for a while, well, there’s a reason I do. You’re interesting, you’re honest and you have a pleasing style. So you can cross one of your concerns off your list!
    Tim recently posted…A better dad: One year onMy Profile

    1. I think a lot of bloggers go through this, I’ve been blogging 6 months but I know the day will come where I wonder what the hell am I doing. I’d say take a little break, as long or as short as you need, your loyal followers will understand and then when your ready and have a new lease of life come back even stronger, your followers will still be here and it may bring new followers in too x

      JustJulie | Beauty Blog
      Julie recently posted…6 Months Blogging | What I’ve learnt about Blogging and Helpful TipsMy Profile

    2. Thank you, and thank you again – I have really valued your support and interest in my journey so far. It’s a massive boost to my confidence to have a real writer read and comment so regularly!
      LearnerMother recently posted…Me and my blogMy Profile

  4. I’ve also been there and wondered once or twice whether to just shut up shop but I could never bring myself to do it. You can see the times when I’ve been disheartened because I don’t post as much.
    I don’t know how, (so I can’t offer advise) I’ve just always come out of it and been grateful I didn’t delete it.
    Maybe you should just take some time away and see how feel in a few weeks/months xx
    Shell Louise recently posted…Silent SundayMy Profile

  5. I have been blogging for a few years now . I dont think it should be all about stats , sometimes I get a little disheartened as im on blogspot and places not want that , think its unfair I work just as hard and on own domain . x

  6. First of all, well done on your first 15 months. Committing yourself to writing for that period of time is an achievement in itself.

    I wouldn’t worry about blog stats. Writing a blog is a bit like marriage – it has its ups and downs and it’s definitely a marathon, not a sprint. You might see other bloggers getting lots of opportunities, but they may well have been plugging away for years to get there. The best thing really is to concentrate on your writing and also to nurture the communities you build on social media. It doesn’t matter if you only have 5 followers on twitter – if you chat to them regularly, it’s worth so much more than someone with thousands of followers who hardly engages with any of them.

    Oh, and I totally get the whole privacy issue thing. There are some things that are completely off-limits on my blog too.
    Laura recently posted…An exciting announcementMy Profile

  7. I’m 3 years in and also going the whys and what’s. I think we all go through it at some point.
    If you enjoy it then just carry on doing what you are and don’t worry so much about stats….you need to remember who you are writing for, if it’s you and the kids then the stats don’t matter. They will come with time
    Clare @ Emmys Mummy recently posted…Kids Playarea Makeover #AsifbymagicMy Profile

  8. I’ve been blogging almost two years now and when I felt like this I set up another blog. My other blog is all about the renovation of my home and I’m loving writing on it as it is so uncommercial compared to my parent blog. Some months I write nothing on it and others I can write 3 or 4 posts. I don’t feel pressured to do anything with it and love to look back to see how well we are doing. I still love my parent blog so I couldn’t completely move on from it but needed a little something else for when I felt fed up of it and this worked for me. Ps none of my blogs have particularly good stats!! Hope you find your answer soon looks like everyone has great suggestions for you here x
    Carly Markham recently posted…I Went To Britmums Live!My Profile

  9. Congratulations on 15 months! I write about most things, but not too personal. I do share pics/stories of our daughter but she can’t tell me not too yet! I would never post certain things, nude, partly dressed etc. Apart from that I just write what’s in my head. You are very talented, just write about what makes you happy snd you will do well x
    you baby me mummy recently posted…Baby is 15 months old todayMy Profile

  10. I think this juncture is part of literally everyone’s blogging journey… I would sincerely say, take a break from social media – that’s what helps me realign my own thoughts that make me second guess what I do! Exist in isolation for a bit not knowing what the others are upto…easier said than done, I know…but try it, I mean it sincerely. The thoughts and focus come back. Like you, I don’t write a great deal about my children due to privacy/security issues etc, but there’s so much you’ll find to write about, as an adult, and a parent. Wishing you the best…you WILL triumph over this slump 🙂 X
    Kanchan@ The Intrepid Misadventurer recently posted…How I write..(and all that jazz!)My Profile

  11. As someone who has been blogging forEVER, my advice to you would be do not sweat it. Blog for yourself no one else and the sooner that you get over the stat issue the better. I only ever check the stats on posts I do for clients. It really is hard once you realise just how much information you are putting out there, but write like no one is reading and give a little bit of yourself every time you do.
    Jen aka The Mad House recently posted…Why I want to be an organ donorMy Profile

  12. I think all of us bloggers feel like this about our posts. You want them interesting but worry about privacy. Maybe write posts about everything, but keep the private ones private so you can at least have them asa record in the future. As for stats, because I have just gone self-hosted, my stats are starting from new for last month. But am not too fussed. After all, will higher stats make you happy? Will it make your blog mean more? What would it bring you?
    Californian Mum in London recently posted…My Kitchen Story in LondonMy Profile

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