I can’t begin to tell you how many times friends, family, and acquaintances contact me to find out how to start a blog. Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m all for supporting others in their endeavors, however, many times these requests carry with them an air of “If she can do it, I can do it.”
Just to be clear, I am not the guru of blogging nor do I presume to know everything that there is to know about it. Although I have learned a lot in the almost three years that I have been blogging, I am constantly learning new things and trying to implement them. What I can tell you is that blogging is not easy and it requires a lot of work if you are serious about it.
Let me begin by saying that I have been very fortunate to know many great bloggers who have shared best practices with me and have made themselves available to answer my questions throughout the years. Bloggers, overall, are still a fairly secretive bunch in many respects. There are many reasons for that including the fact that a lot of PR Companies and brands often undervalue what we do and create negative competition among bloggers for limited opportunities.
Now, let’s talk about the work that is involved in maintaining a successful blog. Sure, there are free blogging platforms where you can write to your heart’s content without a care as to how many people are actually taking the time out to read what you wrote. If you really want to get noticed, you have to at least own your own domain and that costs money. After that, if you want to take your blog to the next level, you will probably want to self-host and that costs money too. See, there really is no such thing as a free lunch.
Forget about making the time to write posts regularly while raising a family and juggling a full-time career like I do, that will require superhuman powers at times. Right now, I am typing this with exhausted and bloodshot eyes that I can hardly keep open long enough to get my thoughts down. Many nights I go to sleep well after midnight in order to meed a posting deadline for a campaign I’m working on or just because I feel obligated to post regularly for my loyal readers. It’s all very rewarding but it definitely tests one’s fortitude sometimes…
Then there is actually loving to write which, in my humble opinion, definitely is important when considering blogging. Now I didn’t say you have to be a good writer because there are definitely not so good writers who have successful blogs that make quite a bit of money. I personally think that it is the will and love to write and to express oneself in the written form that supercedes all of the other requirements. After all, what good is learning all of the other aspects of blogging if you don’t have a passion for writing in the first place? Again, just what I think.
So, the next time that you contact me asking how you can start a blog, try not to undermine what I do in the process. Comments telling me how easy and fun it looks or how you feel anybody can do it take away from what I do. They detract from the sacrifices I make to keep this blog going including losing sleep, fitting blogging expenses into my budget, and spending tremendous amounts of time trying to get the word out about my little corner of the blogosphere.
Now that you have a better idea of what goes into blogging, if you still want to blog, you know where to find me. I am here for you 100%…
Image credit: Kristina B
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