NaBloPoMo: what I’ve learned

Photograph: Capture +/Alamy
Photograph: Capture +/Alamy

Well, I’ve got one more post to write for NaBloPoMo and this is it. Endings can be bittersweet and this is no exception, though I think there’s more sweet than bitter in this situation. I’ve always been a 3-4 posts a month kind of person, so daily posting proved to be quite a challenge for me. There were definitely times when I wanted to quit, but then I’d tell myself, Suck it up, ninny! You’ve gone this far. Finish something in your life already!

So, I pressed on.  I posted some things I’m proud of and I posted some things that I may be tempted to go back and delete later on.  But I posted every. single. day.  I definitely learned some things about blogging in the process.

I have no idea where I want my blogging to go.  I have reflected on this quite a bit over the past few months, and even more so during November.  Sometimes I think it would be great to build my blog as much as I can and try to earn an income with it.  Other times, I see it as just a hobby and a way to document the everyday mundane stuff that only my family would really want to read.  At this point in time, there is no way that I could devote the kind of time needed to really try to make it take off.  I prefer to write things I really care about, use a few small strategies to publicize what I write, and if it gets attention, that’s great.  All I know for sure is that I don’t want this to feel like a job.

Daily posting messes with my creative process.  Ideas for great posts come to me when I least expect it.  The words pour out when I am really passionate about what I am writing.  I don’t really have control over when I will be inspired.  Posting every day feels forced and insincere to me.  I found myself writing half-passed posts that could have been much better if I had allowed myself more time to reflect rather than feeling the pressure to post something, anything.  Going forward, I will probably try to post 2 times a week.

A little fluff is ok.  While I wish I could write something profound every single time, I know that there are times when I just don’t have much to say.  It’s fun to write lighter pieces when I don’t have much to offer and it keeps readers engaged and lets them know I’m still here.

I love/hate to explore other blogs.  I do love to see what other people are doing with their blogs.  At the same time, I tend to compare myself to others and it does get overwhelming when you start to realize just how many blogs are out there and how easy it is to get lost in the sea.  I have to just remind myself to be who I am and try not to be too hard on myself.  I think that the most important thing is to be sincere and write about what you love and what you know.

Overall, I’m glad I did this.  I’m proud of myself for completing it, but dang, I’m glad it’s over.  Especially considering the time of year.   I have a lot of crap to do, folks, what with Christmas and a very special birthday coming up…

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