There’s the uber exemplar. The blog pinwheels through cyberspace on steroid speed. If online success bore a currency, these bloggers would be the Donald Trumps on the virtual mountaintop. And there are those whose site (or gravatar) is attractive, who’re good at stroking egos or who trumpet outrageous claims. By common definition they’re popular. Do these guys leave the rest of us out in the cold? It can’t mean our blogs are not worth something. Every blog is unique in its DNA, takes its own road and speed, just as every child develops at his own pace. Is comparison among bloggers really possible on the long spectrum of content and purpose? A photographer’s gallery has a look and mission far different from my site, though mine also is a gallery – of words. Given that we’re all out to communicate, can we measure the success of a blog?
I started writing midway into February, but it’s been less than two months since I set up camp on WordPress. I backdated my earlier posts. This morning I found on my Stats report 100 wonderful subscribers and 2,120 aggregate hits. I’m not even active on other social networks (yes, I took the slow lane). Thank you for the support! I put on hold another labor of love, my original blog, to journal the personal journey. Head bowed, at the restaurant. See the menu photo? On the elliptical. At three in the morning. I did not know what a post could look like nor did I know how to tag. I wrote blindly. Up until a month ago, I didn’t have time to look at what other bloggers were doing. There came a tipping point where I discovered a community of readers coming back and pulling up a chair to stay. I haven’t made my way back to my other blog, enjoying the Conversation as I have. I am grateful for the welcome of seasoned bloggers pulling me up on higher ground, the deeply heartwarming comments and encouragement to keep up my work. A good many readers with a worldview diametrically different from mine who subscribed to bending an ear to my perspective. Even a mother who shared that she’s rethinking some decisions after reading my thoughts on motherhood.
I’ve seen a number of people pose the question why we blog. Some bloggers seek to share knowledge and enlighten. Their work offers a personal value of usefulness. Others want to make money, a legitimate wish. Many of us want to tell our story. I inform, perhaps even educate, on my food blog My Holistic Table. Its informational value is substantial. On A Holistic Journey, I express. Question. Sing. So how do you appraise the success of a blog? If you or your site is good-looking, if you’re hummingbird-chatty, good at stroking egos, or trumpet outrageous claims (because we all know notoriety begets celebrities, especially in America), by common definition you’re popular. But I would measure blog performance by art and impact. As much as I can, I want to leave my readers with something they can walk away with for their own journey, on or off their blog. My hope is not only to relay the narrative, as a nine-year-old can about his zoo trip, but also to open up dimensions of living that readers otherwise might miss in a way they can experience. Life expressed in all its colors. I can boast the most beautiful blog with appealing titles – in vain, if no one felt his visit was worth the time. To hear my work bears impact is so very fulfilling. On this note, I’d like to segue into a series on the writing process.
Feedback and support like yours take blogging to its potential. Lone ranging bloggers don’t make it far. It’s a communal enterprise. I could have kept the thoughts on my 30s in my private journal. But here we are at the coffee house. I think this gathering is what makes the stories live. I’ve seen blogs that boast stats more impressive than mine. But you know what? I feel successful.
24 thoughts on “The Profile of a Successful Blogger [The Art of Writing]”
🙂 I am really happy for you! And I don’t think that stats are a true measure of your impact on others… Or of your own creative expression. I like it! xox
Thanks so much. Just emailed you.
Hello. I just fully read your last two pages. You are a wonderful writer. Your style is excellent, and I enjoyed reading it. I know that the amount you put forth does not reveal the hours that you worked on it. Please keep writing, and rarely do I press follow, but I did with your page! Thank you also for coming by and commenting on my page. I am less experienced, and not as experienced in writing. I do enjoy it. I also enjoy a good read. Yours was.
I feel honored for the time you took here and your thoughtful feedback. I hope you can take away good things for yourself. I would love to stay in touch. I do my best to keep up with my readers but do feel free to send me any posts you would love me to see down the line — I am swamped, only getting busier, and I might miss it. Blessings.
Sharing is caring– Thank you for caring enough to share your thoughts with us. Each word crafted, selected, interwoven with cadence and care– a simple joy to read.
Cheers to the beautiful (and ahem successful) Wayfarer!
Thanks for taking the time to read and respond, JJ!
You feel successful? And so you should. Your writing is very good. I feel you do want to communicate something. I enjoy very much reading what you have to say.
I noticed you seem to be interested in home schooling. This reminds me that the wife of one of my grandsons is into this sort of thing. She has two girls, who are going to be five and six years old in July. This mother, Stephanie, also happens to be a writer. She and her husband adopted an alternative life-style. Not everyone in the family agrees with this. But I think they know exactly what they want out of life. For sure they didn’t choose a real easy path. However they are happy with the way they live. And I think this is what counts.
Aunty, I sure appreciate the commendation. We can all use encouragement. I would love to see Stephanie’s writing…I wonder if she would be open to reading mine and sharing hers. =) I believe the track I’ve taken, with my husband’s glad support, would qualify as alternative. Our boy (six today! WWWaaaahh) was born in our tiny apartment in a kiddie pool. As intended, to music. I nursed him ’til the cows came home and still am the only mom among the families of his peers to pack his organic home-prepared snacks for Sunday school. And I won’t talk further about the mainstream education I have turned from as a former teacher of the gifted & talented, except to say to Stephanie that I have a learning category here. On the chance you would get to these links, they are the first of five installments: the impact of technology on the developing mind. I use the Little House on the Prairie Days to springboard into the modern era. Thank you for sharing with me what you did about your family, and for helping to secure my wings. I will be in touch. =)
Thanks for this, Diana. I have a feeling, Stephanie might like this. I’ll look into it. 🙂
You’re the best! It’s all on her. If she’d like to share her work with me, I’m game. =)
Very encouraging piece!
Im so glad I found your blog- hope you dont mind if I check out your blog posts for a while— 🙂
Please stay. =) I hope you get to the one on invisible (Asian) women. I write a lot on mothering.
Here are some more thoughts:
Thanks for the support. Blessings.
Great ideas, Diana, & nice writing style! Loved meeting you at the Fair this weekend. Love your holistic journey with your son. He is one privileged little guy! I look forward to reading more. Keep up the great writing!
Crystal! I’ve been eyeing the chance to write you! I’ve been under [several writing projects]. It was wonderful talking with you. And there’s always power, good things when two or more heads come together, eh? You can count on my sticking around…we’ll talk more. Thanks so much for taking the initiative to reconnect and for reading me in your busyness. You have one serious operation going. Love in Christ, Diana
I love your inspiration and description for blogging You are right on target. Any purpose for venturing into a forum that can fill another’s need is a worthwhile endeavor. Nothing wrong if its financially profitable but I really enjoy forms of self expression that engages the mind and spirit.
really enjoy forms of self expression that engages the mind and spirit.
Thank you so much for such lovely, clear feedback.
These thoughts echo some of your later posts, that ironically, I read earlier. In another post, you speak of writing the truth, or perhaps, the Truth. I think that I am beginning to see an aspect of my writing that has been lacking, and one that will most likely take me some time to flesh out.
In what I have read from you so far, you seem to have a beautiful mastery of your style. Your words are clear, concise, and varied in such a way that begs for the reader to dive in. I think you’ve grasped what King was professing in bringing the reader into your work. And, while I have long been a devotee to Style as a pillar of writing, I am beginning to see that another key component may be as important as an elegant style.
I believe that something that I have been missing, and that you seem to display here (that is, on this blog), is voice. You seem to have addressed the question, “why do we write?”. More importantly, “why do I write?”. In my earlier work, I lashed out angrily at an uncomprehending world through angst-ridden free verse poetry. I knew what I wanted to express, and I cared very little how that expression arose. Through innate talent, and a good degree of dumb luck, my style could carry my voice through my words.
After I grew a bit more, experienced worlds of pain, and gained somewhat in wisdom, that young man’s angst evaporated, and silenced my voice. I knew how to express my thoughts, but I had lost my thoughts. I had lost the reason for writing. I am unable to answer myself when I ask, “why do I write.”
Fortunately, I am employed in a field where writing is critical. I recently wrapped up a one-year stint as a freelance food critic. Both the food critic, and my full-time technical writing have allowed me to continually practice my style. Unfortunately, my voice has been dictated through engineering principles or culinary criticism, and I have lost the motivation to express myself.
So, it is extremely enlightening for me to read your words here, and to have the opportunity to follow in your steps with a beautifully narrated guidebook. I am excited to read your thoughts here, and to step back and reexamine my own path forward in their light. It was not until this morning that I realized this lack of voice. It was not until today that I realized that I have no reason to unsheathe the mighty pen and have at the scoundrels of the English language. It is a humbling thought, and the ramifications extend well beyond the motivations for blogging. This lack of voice is symptomatic of problematic aspects of my life that need some urgent attention. That is something that I did not expect to find here on the blogosphere, and for that realization, I am truly grateful.
Thanks for the words, and keep at it.
I really ought to wait until the time I am fighting for this week permits me a response that might do justice to your amazing story. For now….unbelievable. Though it really should be of no surprise:
“This lack of voice is symptomatic of problematic aspects of my life that need some urgent attention.”
So much of what we say and do is really an outworking of what’s inside. Certainly so with writing.
I not only deeply appreciate your humble, honest, provocative testimony, I really am excited at what lies ahead. =) (In the moment, growing pains, I know.)
What interesting work…food critic (well, apart from the constraints of the trade). If you haven’t seen it (and sorry if you have):
For the incredible journey it’s been here, I’ve decided I won’t pull back to work on the food blog. But I hope you find the pages like the Wonder Yrs informative. You’ll see what I mean.
Yes, blogging and writing are interesting discussion, whether blogging is real writing and whether blogging helps or hinders conventional writing…how is the writing style affected or influenced in this age of rapid blogging…quick messaging and instant communication. Is the art of writing getting overpowered in the power of digital age…nice perspective!!!
I will never compromise my art in the name of blogging. You CAN have your cake and eat it, too, when it comes to blogging. =)
A useful blog. The opening paragraph was brilliant!
You’re the best. (Shhh!! Gosh. I have a few hundred readers who think they are, on this blog. SHH!!!!!)
Recently started writing again although it is is much more satisfying with an a actual pencil and paper. I think mostly as an outlet for me because of my newest profitable venture. When I say recently, as in, less than a month ago. This is the first blog I even cared to look past the preview.
Thanks for sharing this, and inspiring me to go back to my old writing theory….just being honest and passionate. Otherwise, my newborn blog would have become useless for everyone and unfulfilling for myself.
So glad you’re back in the ring. =) Thanks for sharing your journey. I have other posts on successful blogging if they interest. Tap any title to open up the sidebar and you’ll see BLOGGING under MY TOPICS. Thanks for the follow…and welcome. =)