I just can’t help myself. It’s the first time we’ve met, and I’m already admitting to you that … I’m an addict. There, I’ve said it out loud (well pixelated it actually) so now it’s out in the open.
I do hope you don’t hold it against me.
And why wouldn’t it be addictive; it seems everyone is doing it.
This habit I’ve acquired, consumes an incredible amount of time, energy and effort. It fuels my passion; it fills any gaps that crack open in my life, stretches me beyond four walls and helps overcome my fears.
Blogging. There is no better way to express yourself, share stories, spread ideas, vent frustrations, rant, rave and connect with other people, building relationships that often spill over into real life.
Done for pleasure, profit or just inspiration, blogging isn’t only an avenue to share yourself and interests, it’s also a wonderful way to find like-minded individuals – across the globe.
I’ve befriended people and learnt from experts that I’d otherwise never have had the opportunity to meet: where it not for blogging entering my life.
It’s a wonderful way to build a community, find your voice and be yourself. It actually teaches you more than just skills, it can give you back your spirit and direction.
But the true power of blogging is that it gives voice to people who are not normally heard.
And those voices are getting louder, with an estimated 170 million blogs worldwide, it’s definitely not going away soon.
What’s it about?
In the end, blogging is just writing. And writing is just talking on paper or pixel.
For many, their blogs are the first time they’ve written or produced a project (voluntarily)… ever. That’s huge.
Blogging (especially mummy – or mommy – blogging) is all about a renaissance of personal expression. It’s people being able to publish their thoughts, views, fears and frustrations in an uncensored environment.
It’s about independence – you can write about whatever you want.
There are no official rules for what a blog must be about. It’s up to you as the author to provide the content, direction and soul of the site.
When did it start?
The term blog is the shortened form of the words web log. They arrived on the digital scene as part of the flood of web publishing tools in the late 1990s.
They are commentaries on just about any theme going – from being a mum, food, craft, fitness, daily diaries and creative projects through to business or technology and entertainment.
There are now blogs and blog communities for just about every subject imaginable.
Blogging began its life as the personal journal of the 21st century. Instead of tightly held secrets being bound up between the covers of a hidden book, these online journals were (and still are) open for all to see and read.
That is an intrinsic part of their addictive nature.
What’s mummy blogging?
When it comes to mummy blogging it seems everyone is doing it.
Some do it because they missed having something ‘for me’ when they became a mother – as work had always filled that role. Others find parenting an incredibly isolating experience and they decided to write an uncensored version of motherhood.
Whatever the reasons, they are all right.
What started in the early 2000s as an online niche of mums (and moms), it’s boomed into a massive global phenomenon, although Australia is in its infancy compared to the USA and Britain.
Overseas, mummy bloggers have developed into such a force that they are recognised as having serious political, social and business clout. Marketers and brands are now courting them, for coverage of their products.
Although some shy away from the term mummy bloggers (preferring the term lifestyle bloggers), all have unanimously (and often unexpectedly) discovered an online community who in return for their candour have encouraged and reassured the authors.
That’s what makes it worthwhile.
Yeah but really, why blog?
The blogging world delivers new, real and very different experiences for each person.
This is my theory. I’ve spent more than a year studying, learning, playing and stumbling and getting back up each time.
For me, my blog has become by laboratory. It’s my teacher, my confessor, my mirror, my gauge and my friend.
I do some of my best thinking via my blog.
I’ve created a place where I can share my ramblings, scribbling’s and thoughts; where readers can leave their comments, add things and open a conversation with me or amongst themselves.
The subjects I blog (writing) are quite tame, my words are simple and my voice is real.
Sometimes I blather on about nothing and sometimes something. The passion for it washes over me in waves – I’ve been dumped, I’ve paddled while it just ebbs at the shore, it’s even run dry. And that’s OK – I’m making my own rules, remember?
The strange thing though is that ideas keep feeding into one another and wherever I go my curiosity and blogging compass point me to another opening for things to post.
The truth is blogging is very real. It’s casual – you can do it in your undies – and people are strangely more attracted to it for that nakedness.
Make of it what you want.
But make it all you, warts and all and have some fun.
Your turn …
Have you ever toyed with the idea of starting a blog? What would it be about? Share your ideas for a blog in the comments.
Footnote: This is part 1 of an ongoing series on blogging. Stay tuned for the next one on “How to start a blog.”