Last week one of my favorite bloggers, V in the NW, wrote a post in response to The Bloggess, who wrote a post in response to Asha Dornfest, in which there was a call to return to blogging. This was my favorite part of Asha’s post, and what I’ve longed for, for a while now:
I’m talking old-school blogrolls and comments again, not for building influence or traffic, but for re-energizing community. Between us as friends and colleagues. Between us and our readers. We all miss that, but there’s nothing stopping us from doing that again. The currency wouldn’t be dollars or page views or virality. It would be the connections between us, once again. Not going back — this isn’t nostalgia. I’m suggesting the 2018 version of blogging and *real* online community.
I started blogging in 2007 and it was out of a need to connect with others and because I thought I had something to say. Back then, my obsession was with weight loss and so that’s the community I found myself in, and never had I seen such a supportive, encouraging group of people (mostly women, with a few guys thrown in too). When my focus shifted away from dieting, I found it difficult to write, because I thought my audience was still mostly women who were on restrictive diets who really weren’t interested in reading about mindfulness (or maybe I just didn’t know how to write about it in a way that would resonate with others), and also because I think this type of blogging was falling out of favor. Facebook was taking over the world, then Instagram and YouTube, and now it seems that Podcasting is the New Black. I think a lot of bloggers took to these social media outlets to post their thoughts in a new way, which is fine, but I just never had any desire to do that. I found it hard to write a post and send it out into the ethernet, not knowing if my community was still interested, or even there. And I will admit that when my favorite bloggers went silent, I stopped seeking out new bloggers to follow. I let my own involvement in this community slide, so I’m part of the problem too. (Side note: special thanks to those of you who have stuck with me since the beginning. You know who you are and I appreciate you still to this day. ❤)
But here’s the thing: I still love to write. I have a private online journal that I sometimes post to when I’m not sure that what I’m writing is appropriate for my blog, but really I just don’t post much anywhere anymore. But I miss it so much! I miss crafting an idea into well articulated words, I miss turning my jumbled thoughts into a paragraph that clarifies exactly how I feel. There is a certain high I get when I can finally express exactly what it is I want to say in exactly the way I want to say it. Kind of like finding that puzzle piece that you’ve been looking for for an hour and locking it into place – it’s a small thing but feels so victorious!
And the community! – it was so fun to read someone else’s blog and comment and know that they would read your blog and comment, and soon you became invested in these other lives and they became invested in yours and at one point in time, I knew, knew without a doubt, that if I called some of these women at 2:00 in the morning with a problem, they would absolutely answer the phone for me. THAT is community. (And that also is an extremely long run-on sentence but I don’t care. I said what I said.)
So, I am answering the call! I want to build up this community again and I invite you to help me – list your active blog in the comments below, and if you had a blog that you haven’t posted to in ages, dust it off and list the name here and we’ll come visit you. Maybe you always wanted to start a blog but didn’t have the nerve…now is the perfect time to begin! Go start your blog and come back here and tell me what it is.
Let’s make blogging fun again. Let’s make it a place where we can get inspiration and support and encouragement from one another. Let’s spend less time reading each other’s blurbs on FB/IG/Twitter and more time reading each other’s paragraphs. Let’s get to know each other again.