I go back and forth on blogging. On the one-hand, stories of a content-rich blog built over a long period of time that ends up bringing unexpected volumes of traffic are appealing. On the other hand, the challenges of maintaining yet another extension of yourself, along with not knowing exactly what your goals are and what it is you are trying to accomplish, tend to tip the scale in the other direction.
I originally started blogging six years ago with a much different mindset than that of today’s. Back then, blogging was this very popular and hyped means of expression everyone, at least in the tech world, seemed to be doing. I felt like I was missing out, so I made one of those infamous New Year’s resolutions and starting posting daily. Laughingly, this lasted only about two months. For some strange reason, I felt like a blog article had to be written EVERY day. And, of course, this quickly turned into a burden. That burden, topped with the fact that I had no clue or reason for doing it other than because it was the popular thing to do, caused the inevitable discontinuation of my blogging.
Fast-forward a couple of years, I picked it back up again. I felt I had abandoned my readers (however few they were 😏). But, once again I had the wrong motives in mind; and, needless to say, round two didn’t last long either.
So, here I am yet a third time, feeling I should do something with this thing. I mean, what is a blog really? In the modern, TwitteringFacebookPlusCheckingIntoPinterest-era, is a blog really necessary? In one of my previous posts, I was considering the back-then-fresh concept of micro-blogging, wondering if writing full-blown blog articles would be trending into minority status. We can definitely see now that the majority of the online population would rather micro-blog (if that’s even a term nowadays), save a select few of niche experts and popular celebrities. Well, I take that back, there are no doubt millions of blogs. But, compared to the almost 1 billion Facebook users and millions of Twitter users, most of which I imagine write something at least once a month if not more, taking valuable time and effort to write something of a small novel isn’t exactly the most tempting of things to do.
Blogging is still relevant, I believe. A lot has been said of this, especially in the business-sense. Slowly building a reader-base to whom you can then market products later on and get valuable feedback surely has its place. And besides, some people were just meant to write. An advantage of blogging and the flip-side of micro-blogging in its current state is that you don’t feel hindered by a limited set of characters when you have a message to convey. Moreover, it also provides the potential to gain a broad, relevant visitor base if the content is well-focused.
Another benefit is content ownership. I often wonder what kind of lifespan tweets and Facebook posts will have, given that we are relying on someone else to keep our content for us. Not that blogging is any different in regards to who is actually hosting your content, but there is definitely more of an ownership feeling when you have instant access to your files via FTP or other means.
One of the understood rules of effective blogging is to keep articles short and to the point, so I’ll quit talking about the point and just go ahead and make it: I want to begin blogging again, but this time without the hindrances that led to my stopping in the past. Those hindrances being: 1) Feeling like I had to blog daily or at least very often, 2) Not having a goal or reason for my blog, and 3) Applying rules for myself to follow in each article. The third I haven’t mentioned until now, but simply put, I don’t want to feel like each article has to have some profound message or meaning behind it. If I feel like writing something publicly that needs more than 140 characters to say, I’ll just blog it.
[Nice conclusion paragraph here… ] Nah, I’ll just go ahead and post this and get the blog ball rolling again.