(UPDATED: October 15, 2011)
Some people love blogging; others don't. Some enjoy blogging for what it is, but some others don't really know/care what makes blogging great. I've taken on this challenge because I've grown fond of blogging and enjoy what I do. To show my love of blogging, I decided to post this blog entry to offer my thoughts on blogging and some of the different issues I sometimes see people have when blogging.
This blog post tackles blogging issues and ideas people have. In no way are any of my blogs (including this one) any serious successes. These are just opinions of mine to help express points the way only I can. The main goal of this blog post is to motivate other bloggers to enjoy blogging and all the nuances of blogging. I want more people to enjoy this lovely hobby/profession called blogging, and I want to do so by offering my own personal insight.
--- Why I Blog ---
^ from: blogging4jobs.com - I "heart" blogging! Do you, too?
Why do I blog? That's what you're going to find out in this section. Perhaps this will encourage you to blog more or better enjoy blogging.
I blog because I like expressing myself. I might have developed my blogging interests by seemingly typing a lot of letters and words endlessly until I have enough to post anything that makes even remotely makes sense. So you can say that I make a "wall of text" to become something that becomes a blog post (or a post for an online forum). It may not seem realistic to begin a blog post like this, but as it is said- diff'rent strokes for diff'rent folks. With all due respect to Blogger/Blogspot offering their "Blog This!" tool, I prefer typing up loads of text rather than randomly post links to certain sites to make blog posts. I have no problem doing a lot of typing. I've done this for years; what makes now any different?
Why do I prefer telling stuff through typing on a keyboard rather than writing stuff into a notebook? It's personal preference. I am more into typing than I am writing. Also, I can use technology to better correct errors than have to rely on dictionaries and such. I am in the realm of online media because it is the only medium for which I feel I can contribute something in my life to other people. It is the medium I feel most comfortable working with. I've lived a sad life, and so the realm of blogging and making videos are my two highest callings. And so... I make the most of all I've got.
All I have is a high school diploma and an Associate's in the Arts. Never worked for anybody's job. Considering how many gray areas there are in pursuing my past dreams of a Bachelor's Degree in Broadcasting and Journalism, I decided that I concentrate more on blogging and making online videos. I feel this is what I can most contribute to and work towards just about every day. Also, I had planned on being an entrepreneur in trying to map out what I thought would be my road through college. It may just turn out that I become fond of and engage in blogging and videos. I always say my work is "casually professional." For everyone new to me and my online work, "casually professional" means that I do my work casually, but with a professional mindset. I feel obligated and have responsibilities of giving my online audience something to read and enjoy every time I post something to the Internet. I have no problem sitting on my bed in my room typing up text to post online. When I am really in the zone, I enjoy typing up material to publish online for my international audience. Also, all of my content is completely original. I don't copy-and-paste from other sources just to make my blog posts. I do post pictures from other websites while making sure to give credit. Even in my old blog posts, I am editing them to include picture credits and proper captions for them.
Oh, THAT is another reason why I blog- because I'm on the Internet, and people use the Internet. You have to think like a catering business. Caterers provide food for whatever audience is being serviced. Do you want to feed your finest material to your consumers, or do you want to sell your consumers short by offering material less than acceptable? You see, I am a caterer to the entire online world. Over 170 nations have visited my blog since I started keeping tabs on how many different nations and countries visit. On my best days, I get blog hits from as many as 20 or 30 countries daily. An international audience is important to me because it means that people around the world find something to appreciate about my blogging work.
I have too many obligations and responsibilities as a blogger. These reasons alone are the biggest reasons why I blog. I am happy when others are happy with my work.
--- How Should I Blog? ---There are three kinds of blogs based on the majority of content:
OPTION 1: My Blog is Mostly Text-Driven.Most of my blog posts involve a lot of reading. I was never a good student, and especially not a good reader or formal writer. I do still prefer typing lots of material because that is what I am most comfortable doing in expressing points in blog posts. If you have the time to type things up, feel free to type stuff up. From an efficiency standpoint, text-driven blogs load faster than those that rely on pictures and other embedded media.
OPTION 2: My Blog is Mostly Picture-Driven.Usually among fashion blogs (for example), the dependency is on pictures to express points and tell stories. You'll need to be part of some sort of picture-hosting service (like Picasa, Flickr, Photobucket, ImageShack, etc.) to share your own pictures. Or, you'll have to rely mostly on pictures from other sites. The problem with pictures from other sites is that pictures may be copyrighted. If you try to use them, you may get your embedded image blocked.
OPTION 3: My Blog is Mostly Driven by Both Text and Pictures.Use text to set the tone of a blog post. Use pictures to help express points from text better. My blog is a lot more along the lines of this feature. I rely more on text than images. Though, I use images to better describe items and add some substance to posts. I just don't rely on pictures to tell points. I prefer text because I prefer to be understood when I talk about something. You can say, then, that I use pictures and video in moderation unless the blog post is clearly driven by pictures and video.
So what kind of blogging suits you best? Consider one of the following and build your blog accordingly.
I will now address common blogging complaints I see people have. Click "Read More" if you are not reading the full blog post, or disregard this section if you are.
--- Responses to Common Blogging Quotes/Complaints ---Each heading to this section refers to a common comment or complaint about blogging. I want to answer these issues by offering my own comments. Maybe I can help you to enjoy blogging more as well as change some of your perceptions of blogging. Key word: MAYBE. It will be up to you whether ot not to accept my advice/suggestions or not.
"I need to blog often."You can blog daily, weekly, or even monthly... if you want you to. The only time I think you should be concerned about blogging often is if you represent some company or if you HAVE to blog often because it's part of your job. It is not the end of the world just because you don't blog every day. You want to blog REGULARLY, then. Don't, however, take too much time away from blogging to where people feel like they've seen everything and don't have any more use trying to visit.
There is no argument I hate more than the good old (sarcastic) "living online." This is the feeling that nobody knows about you because you're only online. I thought about this as I look at my Facebook fan page. The only thing close to an accurate description of me is "Public Figure." However, only family and friends of mine know and have seen me. So since I am only known online to most people, I sometimes think about trying to expand my "Public Figure" some more to where I become better recognized and respected.
And it isn't like I am invited to speak at conventions and at other places around Houston. It isn't like I have booking agents or anything to make these things happen. I am not really sociable either, so I often don't accept event requests to go to various places on Myspace or Facebook. I do wish I can come across more people who actually read my blog and enjoy my work. It is sad to say that when you live in a city of about 5.6 million people like Houston is, and only so few actually read and respect your work. It is not like I am any celebrity figure. Maybe that's a by-product of being low-key.
"Blogging is taking over my life."Take me- I'm not in college (not sure if I want to return to college to get a Bachelor's), I don't have a job... so the only thing I can positively contribute to the world are my YouTube videos and my blog posts. So blogging IS my life. I sit at home typing up material to post online for people to (hopefully) read. Do you think I seem bored that I don't really have much else to do with my life?
Don't blog as often if you think blogging is taking over your life. Just blog whenver you like rather than feel like you have to post something new every day. Also, it helps to blog when there's something you actually and honestly want to share. Don't just post anything random. Put some thought into posts and use a combination of text and pictures/video (if you choose to include pictures and video for your posts) and let your creativity shine.
Blogging: Hobby vs. Profession.Blogging is a hobby for me, but I take it professionally. I do this with a professional mindset because I have an obligation to service my international audience with quality content. I feel every blog post of mine has to serve some sort of merit or good prior to release. That is something else about blogging- I do NOT post random posts. I don't post something just to get cheap attention. Some people post material for attention anyways. That's why lots of material become wildly successful. Maybe I am TOO professional- to where I don't really have fun with what I do to where I feel happy releasing something. Basically, I am trying to avoid being famous for something other than good. Bloggers who feel like their work is so good that it is profitable, those are the ones who at least go with Adsense at the very least. Even still, I care more about offering material to the masses than making money online.
I take my blog like a hobby; execute it like a profession. My job is to impress you with my own thoughts and mindset on things. I work alone for the most part because I feel I am the person best qualified to push my material the farthest. Because I work alone, I decide what I want to blog about next and when to release a post on it. I am under no pressure by anybody else to post something to make them happy. I work on my own schedule and march to the beat of my own drum. However, I do value my loyal readers to offer their input of my work. Some loyal readers even contact me via Facebook and even my email address to make edits or discuss certain things.
Blogging is both a hobby and a profession for me. I may have Adsense and Amazon Associates, but I really profit from readers reading my material and sharing my material with the world.
"Hardly anyone reads/cares about my blog."You know how much I call my blog as an "international blog?" Part of the reason is because I regularly get hits all over the world every day to my blog. The reason why I enjoy talking about an international audience is because people the world over actually hit my blog. On certain instances, a country that rarely visits my blog sometimes shows up. I am happy when more people visit from around the world. While I love my own American audience as well as a Canadian audience, I am more interested in having an international audience. I want to know if my material can be loved in other nations in addition to my own. Some days, there are more American hits than hits in some other nations. I sometimes have a lot of people within the United Kingdom and continental Europe (mostly central Europe) visit. Regardless, I do get a fair share of international hits based on reports I read on my blog online. Some other blogs with FEEDJIT (or some other service) have certain blog hits that the least recent hit was either a day or two ago. My blog is doing well getting traffic when the least recent blog hit is no older than three hours ago.
"I'm a bad blogger."People often say this because they don't post often. Please- you are NOT a bad blogger because of this! You are only a bad blogger if you don't post from the heart. You are a bad blogger if you simply care more about spamming the Internet with spam rather than with something useful. Again- blog whenever you feel like on whatever you feel like. You are NOT a bad blogger just because you don't post in a while. Please don't say that. Think of bloggers who just post a bunch of random crap, expecting people to care. Think of bloggers who copy other peoples' content and pass it off as their own (plagiarism). THOSE are the bad bloggers.
There are friends of mine in the blogosphere that I wish would get more people to read and enjoy. It isn't because they are friends, but because I want them to have a much-visited blog. Basically to offer peace of mind. Let me share with you a blog of a respected friend of mine online.
--- A Quick Shout Out ---
One of my blogging friends is a young Filipino girl own blog called "Ericaritish." The young blogger has aspirations of becoming a writer. The issues in her blog mostly pertain to life issues as well as questioning certain aspects of life. She regards my own work highly, and so I want you to read Ericaritish. Making note of one of my blogging friends is proof that my work means things to people. People value my work and see me as an inspiration. I appreciate you following and reading my blog, but do me a favor if you will. Because my friend values my work, I want you to offer her blog some traffic. So please visit Ericaritish right here on Blogger/Blogspot and help support this young friend of mine whom has writing aspirations.
Of course, many other blogs I have love and respect for are featured in my blog roll in the sidebar, including Ericaritish. If Ericaritish is reading this post, I want to thank you for your words in your blog post called "Reformation" on Ericaritish. Much appeciated.
"I've lost interest in blogging."Every one of us have callings and varying levels of interest in all we do. Not everyone can blog often, nor do they have the desire to continually post material on a consistent basis. That's perfectly fine. I have actually lost interest in making videos for personal reasons. I have not, however, discontinued YouTube. It means I still enjoy what I do and just await the proper opportunity to return to something I've previously devoted to.
You may have read a Famous Person blog post I did regarding "thatjapanesegirl" on YouTube. She's a video blogger (or vlogger), and she seldom contributes to her Blogger/Blogspot blog here. I mentioned to her that she should make videos while offering extra commentary in blog posts. Some just don't have the interest or the endurance to blog. That's okay. How much does blogging mean to you? Do you feel you have an audience credible enough and important enough to you to continue blogging? If so, try to blog more often. Losing interest is a perfectly human deal. Just be sure to come back to blogging when YOU feel ready to do so.
If you enjoy blogging and do it well, just remembering you have fans should be enough motivation to continue blogging. Remember- don't alienate your fan base or sell them short. Keep your readers interested. If people had the time and patience to read my longer blog posts, then I know there are people willing to read through all of my blog posts as well as visit any links I supplement.
"I am not profiting (financially) from my work."Only worry about this if you consider your blogging to be so important that making money is a priority about your blogging. Otherwise, keep up the good work blogging from the heart. It takes other people to really see something in your blogging work to where you actually generate revenue. One site I strongly recommend you check out if you are serious about profiting from your work is www.problogger.net. I don't consider any money aspect of blogging because I care more about expressing myself in blog posts than profiting.
If you do use certain services for which to make money for your blogging work, be sure to follow all guidelines to avoid being in violation. But again- only care about this issue if making money is of equal or greater importance to you than posting blog entries. This includes services like Adsense, Amazon Associates, Chitika, Nuffnang, and services like that.
Two services to go with to be safe are Adsense and Amazon Associates. Adsense simply allows you to post ads in your blog based on traffic. Be sure to follow all guidelines in adding Adsense to your blog or website to avoid being in violation. Only consider Amazon Associates if you want to offer items to your readers based on content in your blog. Also, Amazon Associates is more recommended if you specifically do product reviews and things like that.
"I am not getting as much engagement and involvement."This is a problem I honestly face. As much as I get traffic to my posts, not as many people want to comment on my work. I do benefit from using a variety of add-ons for my blog. Here are some of the many things I use:
• LinkWithin is a big boost in providing related readings for my blog posts. Unfortunately, I wish I had better control over thumbnails for blog posts.
• DISQUS is better for commenting than Blogger's/Blogspot's default system. I am, however, facing an issue where I receive suspicious comments (yet legitimate ones) where someone posts a blog entry simply by searching something similar to "blog comments powered by DISQUS." I have been warning people that I am starting to crack down somewhat on suspicious comments where someone just posts a comment to one of my blog posts by searching "blog comments powered by DISQUS" or something similar. And if ANY post has a suspicious link attached, I will delete that comment no matter how legitimate the comment is and block the user who posted the comment. I appreciate all comments; I'm just cracking down on certain suspicious ones. (my DISQUS blog post)
• I recently enabled StumbleUpon so people can use the popular service to share my content on StumbleUpon. And... if you're interested, StumbleUpon me at
• The wibiya wibar is great in allowing my visitors to access other parts of my site as well as enjoy using other things to make the site more accessible. (My wibiya blog post) However, I've recently retired wibiya for John's Blog Space.
• I feed my blog through Twitter using Twitterfeed. The same material is fed to my Facebook Wall and my Facebook Fan Page's Wall. NetworkedBlogs is also utilized exclusively to my Facebook Fan Page's Wall. I am considering using something different to post my material to my Facebook profile page's Wall.
These are only a few things to consider in trying to get more involvement. I've even set up a newsletter that I seldom send to my readers.
One last resource... it won't help you get more blog involvement, but I have been using NoteTab to make preparing blog posts MUCH easier. I am taking code from Blogger/Blogspot to use in making my own code to make my own blog posts without needing to rely on using Blogger's/Blogspot's interface as I type. To learn more about NoteTab, visit my blog post about NoteTab.
Don't just visit my blog and read a post- get involved! Don't be shy! Post a comment on anything you like (just remember- no spam, personal attacks, etc.). Share my blog post(s) with others. Subscribe to my blog if you haven't done so. Follow my blog with Google FriendConnect. If you have Facebook, PLEASE "like" my Facebook fan page. I provide ALL of this for all of you because I want more involvement from my readers. If there's something I need to edit that I'm not aware of- contact me. If you enjoyed the blog or a blog post, let me know by posting a comment. Let me explain something- I follow about 180 blogs as of this blog post. The ratio of blogs I follow to people who follow John's Blog Space is like... 33/180. So as many visitors as I get daily to my blog, only so few actually follow my work. This is sad to me. Either I have to do more to get more Followers, or not as many people love my work enough to where I have more followers than I really should for my work. Then too, that also explains why I don't get as many YouTube videos and not enough subscribers (though 385 or so is not bad for going on 2.5 years on YouTube). For some odd reason, I just can't get as many Facebook fans, Google Followers, or YouTube subscribers. My work is loved, but not loved enough to get more followers and fans. It's sad...
If I find any more common quotes/complaints/problems people make about blogging, I'll post and respond to them in future edits. Hopefully, my insight has helped you to blog more often and enjoy blogging. I enjoy what I do despite my flaws and shortcomings. I hope you find it in yourself to start or continue blogging for as long as you like. Most important thing to remember-
Don't blog just to put yourself out there; blog because you want to do this long-term and because you love sharing your mind through the means of blogging.
Thank you for reading!
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