simplyjan

A Simple Look at a Not-So-Simple Life

If I Were to Start Blogging Today, I Would. . .

I have been blogging for over seven years now, so you would think that I would be enough of an expert by now to have something wise-sounding to say about the whole blogging practice. I’m nowhere close to being an expert, but I guess I have learned a few things that are worth sharing.

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1) That whole anonymous blogger thing? Yeah, probably not gonna work. I wanted to blog under a pseudonym and be totally anonymous – an anonymous pastor in an anonymous denomination serving an anonymous church in an anonymous town while raising three anonymous children. I have to say, the whole total anonymity thing lasted all of three weeks before parts of my identity slipped through. No one who knew me well knew for a long time that I blogged, but if anyone was looking for it, they could have found it without too much trouble.

2) Write on a regular basis. I am so not good at this. I go through spells when I write regularly. I go though long dry spells when I feel I have nothing to say. That is one of the reasons my blog has not grown in proportion to the length of its existence. That is one of the main reasons I love the May WordCount Blogathon. It gives me the extra motivation to stick it with it daily.

3) Don’t over-apologize. When I switched from Blogger to WordPress, I re-read all my old posts and was appalled by how often I apologized. “I’m such a bad blogger.” “I’m so sorry I haven’t posted in awhile.” “I haven’t forgotten my blog. Just been so busy lately. I’m sorry.” Geez. Get over yourself, girl! Just blog!

4) Remember what a blog is, and what it isn’t. A blog is a public forum. Some things do not need to be discussed in public forums. For me, a pastor, I don’t need to talk about a problem parishioner, or my pastoral pet peeves, or share a story that isn’t mine to share. As a mother, I need to respect that my children may not like certain things about them out there for the world to see. As an individual, as much as I would like to vent freely, I have to remember that once words are put out there, I cannot take them back. There are definite boundaries to observe. Back in the day, blogs weren’t so popular and we could get away with a little of that. No more. Don’t do it. A blog isn’t a diary, nor is it an online therapy group. Blog wisely.

4) Be yourself. I read some amazing blogs written by some amazing people. Some are great theologians. Some are accomplished writers. Some are so funny. Some are experts in the field of ___ (Fill in the blank: leadership, parenting, finance, creativity, publishing.) I’m no different from the middle school kid who wants to be as well liked as the “in” group. But I have to remember, I am not any of those people. I am me. God made me who I am for a reason and it’s my job to be the best me I can be. Yes, imitation can be one of the highest forms of flattery, but my blog is not the place to imitate. It is the place to be solely and completely me.

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14 thoughts on “If I Were to Start Blogging Today, I Would. . .

  1. Nice post! Smiled as I read about your anonymity thing – I kept it up for a while ,and as I didnt promote my blog with friends or family, it felt like two different worlds. But all that has collapsed along the way….

    • I still don’t promote my blog as widely as I could, but that will probably change pretty soon. I think it is all about finding confidence in our voices. Working on it!

  2. Good things to remember. Thanks! –Wendy

  3. I guess I’m guilty of the diary thing…lol but it just the way I am…

    • I probably need to clarify what I mean when I say diary. If a diary is where we spill our deepest, darkest secrets and gossip, then a blog should not be a diary. If a diary is where you record life experiences and epiphanies, then go for it! I do that, too.

  4. I have struggled with the blog being a public forum and walking the line between being honest and being hurtful. As one of teachers says, it really is about your intentions. Yeah, I think the whole anonymity thing is losing ground especially when you have a friend who knows some of the same people and is a compulsive blogger. You have a lot to share with people and I love that people are reading you. Just don’t even think about getting published before me. 🙂

    • Lol! It’s a losing cause, for sure! No big deal! As for publishing, I would probably have to put together a publishable project first, so at this point there’s no danger in me getting there anytime soon. (Although I am starting to work toward that, so heads up! Lol!)

  5. revmommy on said:

    Nothing much to say but, “Me too.”

  6. “I’m no different from the middle school kid who wants to be as well liked as the “in” group.” I have a little bit of that girl still left inside. Blogging has been an interesting exercise in authenticity. Learning to be more “me” but perhaps a better or wiser me. I like how it makes me process life experiences before putting it out there. And I love how it leads me to very awesome people. 🙂

  7. I appreciate you and your blog, and have followed you for years! Also, like you I used to blog anonymous, but I could be found out if one looked closely. Then I got outted when I joined the Christian Century blog network, so I closed down any posts that seemed to be rants or just not stuff I wanted out there, and now I try to monitor carefully what I write about. I hope I do so well enough, but sometimes the fact that no one comments on a post leaves me thinking that what I have written must be really stupid. Oh well. I enjoy reading your blog.

  8. I’m an apologizer – so I found your words funny. It’s annoying when other people apologize so we shouldn’t.

    Great post.

  9. how interesting. my blank fills with ‘photography’. i have started my blog not quite three months ago, and since you’re obviously in the know, it seems i was off to a decent start.

    thanks for sharing of your experience 🙂

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