Whither Sturm und Mom?
I’m not sure what’s going to happen to this blog. I just realize that a this puppy’s been gestating about as long as a baby. Is this thing my 7th kid? I don’t’ know. But I DO love list posts, so I thought I would summarize myself in one.
5 Truths I Learnt in 9 Months of Blogging
1. Consistency is (often) way more important than brilliance.
People want what they want. When I started blogging, I thought I would write commentary on social issues related to Motherhood. That proved waaay too time consuming for a hobby. I also felt uncomfortable writing about religion, like I was wearing my mother’s interview clothes to a party of older people, thinking that would make me fit in. Since I’m not a programmer/chef/expert about anything, this leaves general purpose Mommy blogging. But, having going through all these permutations over the last few months, means that anyone who liked my blog in the first month, probably hates it now. Successful blogs are uni-purpose.
2. As far as a money-making opportunity, you’re better off working at Starbucks
As Wordtabulous wrote, we’re doing this in some way to be discovered, and that’s okay. But just like that small town gal with great gams and a big heart, there’s a million others out there. As far as I can tell, the business model behind most “Make Money Blogging Guides,” is to sell the guide to other people who want to make money on the Internet. Besides, most well-read bloggers are constantly referencing their lack of cash, so if they can’t make it, don’t count on anything other than an occasional free product sample to review.
3. Blogging is more about community than writing
If you want a widely read blog, you must promote yourself via whatever Social Media you can get your keyboard on. You must also seek out others with the same “brand”/message/genre and start trying to entice their readership to check out your page. If you have a product, like a book or a consulting service, that you are already trying to promote, then this is just another day at the virtual office. But if, like me you have forgone real paid employment to spend time with your kids, this can become a shockingly draining hobby.
4. If the real you wasn’t popular in Highschool, the Internet isn’t going to change that
Blogs are driven by one of two things — information or personality. If your high school personality was more Square Pegs than Beverly Hills 90210, it doesn’t get any better on line. Sure, you’ll find more people who see things your way — but the majority still won’t. This isn’t good or bad, but it is the truth. Not only that, a lot of what will be kicking your stats is total junk. Pages of inspiration boards as you seek the perfect Fall lipstick. Rants about how some organic snack doesn’t meet some standard in Europe so it shouldn’t be sold here. Nasty tales of what you did to someone’s daughter at a bar last Saturday night. The cream may always rise to the top, but so does the garbage on Lake Michigan. (Sorry for the Goodtimes reference.)
5. Blogging will teach you something about yourself that you didn’t really know…
…and with that knowledge you can do something that you really need to be doing. You’ll learn what style of communicator you are, get used to being critiqued by strangers, learn how to tailor your ideas for an audience, and some of how the Blogosphere operates. At the very least, you’ll figure out what doesn’t work for you. With that, you can go forward to accomplish what will make you most happy.
I finally realized that I have been put on this Earth to succeed at something. This isn’t being selfish, it’s being who I am. I really like writing and explaining complex ideas with words, and I don’t really like the spotlight. And I want to earn some money before I die. I’ve finally accepted that I’m driven, and rather than being a character flaw, it’s my DNA. By accepting this, I can manage my life to reflect my values, rather than just fumbling around wondering what’s wrong with me.
Being a typical, wacko INTJ female I couldn’t just publish a Gone Fishin’/Closed for Renovations post as I took the summer off to get my head in order and this blog back on track. But you probably are used to that since you’ve all been here before. Which is awesome. I couldn’t wish for a better group of commenters, and “Like”-ers, and Facebook friends and all the rest who have taken time out of their lives to give this a read. You are all the best, or as Princess would say, “Bestest in the world. Even better than McDonald’s!”
Have a great summer, folks! Take it easy and God Bless!