A Blogging Conundrum
Or being a blogger when I could be a ‘blogger’
I see other bloggers; younger, older, of similar age to me; getting awards, having thousands of followers, doing really well for themselves — and that’s brilliant! But my negative, jealous mind makes me think — I am clearly out of my depth here. I am not one of these bloggers, because I am not nearly successful enough.
I’m trying really hard to get as much writing as I can done, whilst also look after a five month old baby, launch a copywriting business, plus general looking after myself and keeping the house clean. I’m fucking stretched thin, and it’s taking it’s toll on my physical health.
(But that’s another article in itself).
I suppose I just feel like I’m not doing the right thing, that I’m not writing the right kind of stuff, which deep down I know is ridiculous.
I may not be writing the right lifestyle pieces in order for brands to contact me, but I’m writing openly and honestly. I’ve written about my history with depression, being a victim of image-based sexual abuse, my sexuality, motherhood, and everything else. I am an open book online and there’s some value in that. At least, that’s what I tell myself.
I came into the world of blogging through WordPress. I followed bloggers who wrote about their thoughts and feelings, who discussed what had happened to them on any particular day and their reaction to those events. I read diaries of the anonymous. I read humour, sadness, hope.
I wanted to write that kind of stuff too, and so I did. My blog gained quite a few followers, and reflecting on it now, it was a messy pile of crap. Images were all over the place, there were fuzzy selfies in it, there was no ‘theme’ to my writing — except that it was all about me.
I killed that blog a few years ago (something I now regret as I would love to re-read some of those early posts).
I started a new blog — This Stuff Is Golden — with the idea that I was only going to publish pieces of writing that were helpful, insightful, motivational, inspirational, or all of the above. I wanted my writing to be useful.
That’s what I did, for the most part, until my depression and anxiety really truly hit me and I began writing about mental health a lot more, which consequently meant writing for myself a lot more.
Turned out that writing about mental health was not only therapeutic and helpful to me, but to others. Readership grew somewhat as I continued to write about my experiences with mental illness. I received lots of lovely feedback in the form of comments and emails. I still do.
And yet, however wonderful that is, I still feel like an outsider, like a fraud, in the world of blogging.
I cannot picture myself collaborating with a brand, reviewing a product, or any of the other ways bloggers make money. It just doesn’t feel quite right when I think about the initial intention I set out with my blog.
Even though I cannot picture myself doing those things, I am filled with jealousy and envy when I see other bloggers doing it.
I’m not sure what the future holds for my blog. I hope to keep it going, keep the intention of it going too.
Or maybe I’ll start listening to blogging gurus and grow my audience into its thousands, raking in a fair bit of money from sponsored posts and whatnot.
I just can’t decide what’s more important to me — my initial blogging intentions or being able to put food on the table*.
*= not an exaggeration, I’m living on my last few quid with only a little bit of child benefits coming in each month.