The Problem With Blogging

Someone once told me that the problem with blogging is that you tell your best stories long before you become popular. I  remember trying to come up with some sort of witting reference to premature ejaculation, like premature blogulation. Not only was it terribly juvenile it just wasn’t clever and so I let it go and the conversation moved on to more exciting topics.

However it wasn’t the last time that it would come up in conversation nor was it the last time that I thought about it.  At one of the Twitter meet ups someone compared blogging to the early stages of a relationship. In the beginning you find your partner to be stimulating. In addition to being physically attracted to them you enjoy spending time and listening to their stories about themselves and their thoughts on life. Over time you get to know them so well that you that the shine wears off and you begin to be bored by their stories. They aren’t funny or insightful any more, just mundane.

I probably should give the storyteller the benefit of the doubt, but I found that description to be sad and shallow. In a good relationship the two of you grow together and that helps you to continue your partnership. I see blogging in the same way. You and I are companions on a journey that we are taking together. Sometimes we will be quite happy to be together and others less so. There will be moments where we may be bored or less interested in the stories that we are hearing. There may be times when it will be necessary for us to spend some alone time so that we can come back together refreshed and with our batteries recharged. That is ok.

As I sit here I can’t help but think of someone dear to me who I first came to know through words. In the beginning that was all we had, words. There were no pictures or in person meetings to cloud our perceptions. We had nothing but the words we used to express our thoughts and feelings. It forced us to get to know each other on a deeper level than might have happened had we met through other means.

Most of us will never meet in person. We won’t go out to eat or watch a movie together. There won’t be telephone calls in which we spend time catching up on what is happening in our lives. Instead we’ll congregate here and swap stories. That doesn’t diminish or denigrate the importance of the relationship because in some cases we will grow to care about each other. Even though we never interact outside of this cyber home we’ll come to identify and relate to each other. We’ll feel badly when the other is hurting and share words of comfort and encouragement. It also likely that we’ll celebrate a victory or two together.

So what I am saying is that I don’t see there being a problem with blogging, at least not of the sort that was described to me. If this works the way that I want it to we’ll form a community that gathers inside my cyber home. As the host it will be my job to facilitate the discussion and keep things going. I don’t mind because I like this. I need this…writing that is.

I can’t properly express how much joy I take in my chosen art form. I can’t tell you how much it helps to clarify my thoughts, feelings and ideas about life. If there is one thing that I know about blogging it is that you only last if you like it and I do. So if I have a problem with blogging it is really based upon my need for it to pay more so that it can transition from hobby into something more.

BTW, if you are new here you should know that it is not unusual for me to update this several times a day. There are no guarantees or promises that I will, but unless something changes it will be updated frequently.

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  • http://TwentyFourAtHeart.com Twenty Four At Heart

    I’ve been consumed with 4-5 weeks of house guest and I’m so confused. New blog – why? Ok, I will try to go back and read what’s going on ….

    • Jack

      It was time to make a change.

  • http://ninabadzin.com Nina

    Good points here!!! And something I’ll keep in mind . . . vicious circle though . . . how do you get an audience without giving them the good stuff right away??? Sigh.

    • Jack

      I don’t believe in one way of blogging. There are lots of different ways to build a readership. But I think that if you are good you can provide good content from start to finish. If it isn’t compelling than you need another hook to secure those readers.

      That is why I sometimes bash the “bloggers” who rely upon contests to grow and maintain their readership.

  • http://crys-cry.blogspot.com/ Cry

    So true

  • http://liayf.blogspot.com Seattledad (Luke, I am Your Father)

    It’s like natural selection. All those premature blogulators get tossed aside and only those who take it nice and slow, and preform consistently get the girl. I mean the readers.

    • Jack

      Ok, you just made me chuckle out loud. Good thing that the kids are asleep, don’t want to explain this one. ;)

  • http://sandiegomomma.com San Diego Momma

    This….this…this is how I feel.

    But you said it first. And better.

    • Jack

      Nah, just said it differently than you might have.

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  • http://lance-myblogcanbeatupyourblog.blogspot.com Lance

    Maybe I’m stubbornly punk rock on the subject, or just stupid, but I think blogging or writing gets is better the more you do it, regardless of popularity. I started in 2005. My current blog began in May of last year. I think what I’m offering is better than before.

    Bob Dylan once said (paraphrasing); “Good writers write from experience or observations; great writers write from both.” I believe the more experience you have with the subject(s) you choose to blog, it helps with your observations and opinions.

    I don;t think blogging is like sports where you are only as good as your last game or performance. In blogging you are only as good as your next piece. I have two irons in the fire to get paid for my silly internet hobby so that may be fueling my positivity but good blogging, I think, has nothing to do with popularity. I hope this blog gets huge, though.

    Hi Jack’s new blog.

    Lance

    • Jack

      I am in agreement about writing getting better as you go along. There is a reason why we talk about practicing. It is part of why I tend to blog so frequently. I want to be able to call upon my words at a moments notice and have them respond.

      In regard to good blogging I think that we need to define what that means. Popular doesn’t have to be a synonym for good and oftentimes it isn’t. I have seen very popular blogs that were so poorly written I was embarrassed for the author.

  • http://www.didactic-pirate.blogspot.com Didactic Pirate

    Nicely said, Jack. It’s interesting how strongly we can sometimes bond with people we’ll likely never actually meet. Funny how words work sometimes.

    • Jack

      DP,

      On my old blog Psychotoddler (whose toddler is probably 13 now) talked it about being targeted socializing. I think that there is a lot of truth in that. Reach out and click someone and you are in a new world.

      But I can’t help but wonder sometimes if the words we write portray an accurate portrait of who we are in person.

  • http://www.threegirlies.com Lynnie

    I love this! I have not been blogging very long but I know I started to find what you are describing here. We move so much in the Air Force I get sort of lonely and blogging really helps…not sure why….but I like the sound of “companions on a journey”. Thak you for sharing!

    • Jack

      Hi Lynnie,

      Welcome. I think that blogging provides a way to connect with others so I can understand why you would find it to be comforting. Please come visit again.

  • http://www.rockanddrool.com melissa

    i remember when i first started blogging. i read a post that said that many bloggers burn out after 3 months. clearly we aren’t in that particular statistic. i love blogging too. there are some days when it becomes a burden. then? i just tweet.
    great post, as usual.

    • Jack

      I fought going on to Twitter. For a long time I refused to even look at it because I was afraid that it would become another time suck. I was right and I was write. It is quite enjoyable and it provides some balance to blogging.

  • http://www.poopandboogies.com William

    Interesting post. Bloggers only last if they like it….once it becomes work well then the relationship starts to break.

    • Jack

      That has been my experience. Work is something we do because it provides a means to an end. Therefore blogging has to be enjoyable or provide some other compensation for your time, otherwise you won’t make it.

    • http://www.whithonea.com Whit

      I resemble that remark.

      • Jack

        :)

  • http://ivyleagueinsecurities.com Aidan Donnelley Rowley

    It is clear to me that you love blogging. I do too. Thoughtful post.

    • Jack

      You clearly do. It is part of what is fun about your blog, there is joy in your writing.

  • http://lickthefridge.com Jared Karol

    Great post, Jack. The way you described the relationship I can totally see happening, and I’ve only been doing this for a couple months now. I hope In several years time, I’m still doing this just like you are, and that I’m able to write as similar post.

    • Jack

      Hi Jared,

      Enjoy the ride- be authentic, be open and be real. If you do that and enjoy it you will be just fine.

      • http://lickthefridge.com Jared Karol

        Thanks, Jack. Good advice.