The Evolution Of A Blogger

Some tell me that I need to spend more time working on my headlines. They say it is a big mistake not to pay attention to them and that I’ll lose readers if I don’t. Others tell me that I am not working hard enough on my S.E.O. and that could compensate for my not focusing on headlines.

They may both be right and maybe I am working harder than I need to. Or maybe I am not. Maybe I am doing exactly what needs to be done to turn this blog into the vehicle that drives me to my next destination.

I try to remind myself that much of the joy lies in the journey and not just the destination. That helps me look at this as fun and not work.

Where I Have Been

This journey is something that I started 7.5 years ago. I didn’t know anything about blogs or blogging. Ok, that is not entirely accurate I knew that some people used a Weblog to write stuff in. But old Jack is the guy who used to hate being forced to keep a journal in school so I sure wasn’t going to do this voluntarily.

Yet, I did it. On a lazy day in May I went to Blogspot and set up a Blogger account. Sat down and wrote some posts that are truly awful. Some  of them are so bad that I dread seeing them but I keep them there. I don’t delete them because they help provide a guide to where I was and sometimes that is good to know.

I can tell you the same thing that a million bloggers say: I didn’t know this would be fun. I didn’t know that my love for writing had gotten lost or that blogging would restore it to me. I didn’t know that I would make friends, find work or capture moments in time here.

But I did and I do.

And because of that I decided to become more serious about some things. I moved to a self-hosted blog on WordPress. I spent time working on it. Took time to read and educate myself about things that would help and then did the best that I could to apply that knowledge here.

Where I Am Going

If you are among the 17 long time readers you have watched the transitions and growth. You have seen me work on new themes and witnessed my breaking my blog. You have hiked alongside and seen me sweat through some of the repairs. You may not have seen my face but if the words worked you read my smile.

You, the long time readers recognize my fiction. You know that anything that is labeled Fragments of Fiction is just that. You know that I didn’t really get arrested for that salami incident because it never happened.

Those little bites of fiction are part of how I try to keep my writing/storytelling skills sharp. They’re important to me because it is time for me to push harder to write and publish a book.

It is time for me to push harder to make the blog look nicer. I don’t want something that looks overly slick because they become sterile but I don’t want something that looks like it was created by a child either. So I am going to keep pushing, reading and practicing.

Some of that may happen behind the scenes but some of it will happen out in the open. There is a lot more to come and a lot more to say but I need to save something for later.

Questions for you

Do you have goals for your blog and what are you doing to make them happen?

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16 Comments

  1. Janet October 23, 2011 at 7:08 pm

    P.S. Thanks so much for going with the standard WP commenting system, Jack. It is ever so much better for the commenter. And, of course, CommentLuv is much appreciated as well.

  2. Janet October 23, 2011 at 7:07 pm

    Jack, aloha. Congratulations on the new look of your blog. This is my first visit since you changed it.

    Like you, I have goals for my blog, and, like you, I have been changing the appearance as well as tweaking what’s on it. It is definitely a work in process.

    Along the way, like you, I have discovered that I thoroughly enjoy the writing process and sharing my thoughts. Also, I absolutely love the people I am connecting with and building relationships with that will last for more than a blog comment.

    Look forward to exploring your new blog. Until later, aloha. Janet

    • Jack October 23, 2011 at 11:50 pm

      Hi Janet,

      I have been interacting with you long enough to know that you are sincere about the relationships. They really are great and they make a significant difference in our blogging experience.

      Always happy to see you here.

  3. Bill Dorman October 23, 2011 at 2:05 pm

    My only goal right now is to keep improving on my writing and staying engaged with my audience to see where it may lead. I’m afraid if I try to force anything ‘just because’ I won’t like it and it might not be fun anymore. I’m ok w/ fun for now….

    But, I know you have a different objective and I know you will figure it out.

  4. Claudia October 22, 2011 at 7:50 am

    Hi Jack,
    First of all, the blogsite is looking better and better. It has a clean and appealing appearance. Your patience and perseverance are paying off!
    Second, this post was a wonderful synopsis of your journey…thank you for sharing. My favorite line in this post was “You may not have seen my face but if the words worked you read my smile.” Perfect.
    As my Mom has always said to me…just keep doing what you do best…the rest will take care of itself!
    Claudia

    • Jack October 22, 2011 at 11:49 pm

      Hi Claudia,

      Thank you. It has been a bit of a roller coaster but I feel like I have learned a lot.

      I like writing about my journey because I think that many people relate to that and I like hearing about their journey.

      Those stories fascinate me.

      I think your mom is a wise woman.

  5. Brian Meeks October 22, 2011 at 6:56 am

    I have a goal. In about a week my life is going to change a bit. I am cutting back at work to focus on writing for 4 months. I will be poor, but I am working on two projects and need to get them done.

    A big part of this is getting my blog in order. I may need to hire some help, as I think my limited skill set won’t get me where I want to go.

    I love the new look of your blog and it has reminded me that it is time to get to work. Thanks Jack.

    Brian

    • Jack October 22, 2011 at 11:46 pm

      Hi Brian,

      i have faith in you. You are taking action and that is the most critical part of making good things happen.

      It is easy to talk and harder to walk, but you are walking.

      Thank you for the kind words, I appreciate it.

  6. Jim Genet October 22, 2011 at 5:47 am

    You’re real and it motivates me. Thank

  7. Julie October 22, 2011 at 4:56 am

    Whatever. “You shoulds” aren’t what’s needed. You will know exactly where to go, what to do, and what’s right for you…all in due course. If someone has a great suggestion, wonderful. Otherwise, ignore. Don’t let anyone, no matter how well intentioned, throw you off your path.

  8. Bell October 22, 2011 at 2:25 am

    Yes, I have goals for my blog. To meet those goals, I am writing everyday, reaching out to more and more people, seeking out guest posts, and reading about ways to make my content more engaging.

    I intend to a) build a platform/network/community b) share inspiration c)bolster self-development and self-discipline, as a writer and a person.

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