Here is where you would normally find an inspirational New Year’s post all about resolutions and new beginnings. Really? When do I do normal? Instead I am going to embrace the old. To quote my friend Liz of This Full House, I am going to blog like it’s 2003. Back in the olden days where stories were told and if you wanted to know how someone is doing, you had to go read it on their blog not check Facebook, Twitter, Instagram etc, etc. (Or, you know, call or email them but that is not the point of this story.) Or as Carol of Girl Gone Travel says, It’s time to take back the blog!
When I started blogging way back in the stone ages when we had to use stone tablets and chisel out our posts (or as some people call it 2003), it was an entirely different world. I don’t mean world in the sense of the entire world but in the blogging world. We told stories. We had a community that grew to know each other because we shared stories about life: the funny, the silly, the serious, the real. And things changed. First there was the “OMG ADS!” phase that should have been a peek into what was to come. But oh no! Then the evil “REVIEWS” came along. (SELLOUTS!) But still we wrote. We shared. We ignored the noise. But wait! Then came THE TRIPS! People were sending bloggers on PAID trips to cool places. OMG! That is so awesome/awful/great/evil/coveted/hated. And let’s not forget the BEST LISTS! On blogs it could be somewhat easy to ignore if you wanted to for a while. But then Twitter and Facebook and Instagram (Oh my!) added to the noise. And some of the blogs that had stories I loved to read began to read like one giant paid advertisement. OR the stories were replaced with a short paragraph of “must update so here you go” without thought to content or writing. THE NOISE online became really, really loud.
And none of those things are bad. I am not against any of them or anti-anything (bloggish).
But oh the NOISE.
And really? Let’s be honest. I got lost in the noise. My stories got lost, too. Sometimes because they had to so I could fulfill a commitment. Sometimes because I would update on Facebook and ignore the blog. Sometimes because “Why bother? I’m not getting the fun stuff so pffffft on you!”
But mainly, the NOISE drowned out my voice.
It sounds cheesy, but I really had to step back out of it all and re-evaluate why I blog. Why am I on Facebook? Why am I on Twitter? Instagram? Pinterest?
Because I enjoy them. I really do.
But when I felt like I had to do it all, I got lost in the NOISE.
Looking back at the amazing opportunities I received, they all came from real writing on my BLOG!
I was signed with an agent…because of my writing.
I was invited to Washington DC with Dr. Drew Pinsky to talk to members of Congress…because of my writing.
I was asked to be a long term product ambassador with brands I respect and enjoy…because of my writing.
I was a contributor in two anthologies…because of my writing.
I received a person phone call from Gloria Steinem (complete with her personal home phone number for future use)… because of my writing.
I was asked to write for two national magazine publications… because of my writing.
I interviewed some amazing celebrities… because of my writing.
I was asked to speak several times at a few conferences to share my experience… because of my writing.
I was given the opportunity to meet some amazing authors I admire… because of my writing.
I made some lifelong friends when I shared my life on my blog… because of my writing.
I can go on and on about the wonderful opportunities and jobs I was offered because of my blog writing. Not because of snarky Facebook posts. Not because of 144 characters of charm. Not because of an artsy picture. (Though using those to share my writing help!)
I used to write here for the love of the blog. Then I did it because I felt I needed to write. Then I just didn’t.
But I am turning back the clock. I’m taking back my blog and using social media in the best way I know how to dim the noise and amplify my passion for writing.
FOR LOVE OF THE BLOG!
(Have a favorite post of yours? Share the url in the comments if you want a visit. I want to read blogs, too!)