I am following suit again and blogging about my blogging experience and my take on things related to blogging, another great prompt from Opinionated Man. or was it Confessions of an Average Mom? The web is spreading!
I started online blogging way back in the hay-day of AOL, remember them? I blogged about my daily life there, about my experiences as a horse farmer in southern Maine. I recently discovered a hard copy of the old blogs from AOL, which I had conveniently printed out. I say conveniently because I have long since lost my user name and password to that site, and I believe I do still have a profile on there, which is now FAR outdated! I’ve pondered how to reconnect to AOL a few times with the intention of deleting my profile. I never have followed through though, because I have no idea HOW to!
Originally I started blogging as a way of venting and also to allow my “friends” on AOL to get to know me a bit. I had stories to tell and kind of wanted an audience to see if any of them were interesting enough for others to want to read. Reading back over them, I can now see that my writing has matured quite substantially over the years since then. I stopped using that platform in 2008, and never have figured out my old user name and password!
Then I started a Youtube channel in March 2009, yes 6 years ago this month! Happy Vlogging Birthday to Me! I enjoyed Youtube, or YT as we’ll now call it so I don’t have to type it out a million times, because at that time it was a fast connecting community of people video blogging – or vlogging – about all kinds of personal topics, and less about commercial production like it is now. I built an audience on YT, mostly of other LGBTQ people because much of my vlogging was about issues and subjects that would interest my LGBTQ community.
When I started blogging on WordPress (WP) I had to basically start over in building a new audience, this time of readers instead of watchers. I used YT to sort of promote the start and continuation of my written blog, mentioning it in my videos as I saw fit, by linking the two sites wherever possible. As of late I haven’t been “vlogging” very much, in lieu of the fact that I enjoy “blogging” more. I’m never going to be a video star, but I am and will continue to be a published author.
WP has been a great experience, and I like the platform because it looks and feels more like I am truly a writer — which I tentatively call myself in moments of self-confidence. In my opinion actual blogging “sites” such as WP or rival Blogspot/Blogger, and others seem to be primarily about reading and writing and not about building the most beautiful or interesting “profile” like sites such as AOL and Facebook are about. The difference clearly is that those are “social networking” platforms, and while WordPress has some social networking ideas behind it, it’s mostly about the writing.
It’s been like a game of connect-the-dots in a way. I’ve been trying to build an audience for my wares, which in my case is about my writing and my writing is about my experiences and opinions about things that are parts of my life. I try to write about things that I know about, and if I don’t know enough about something but wish to learn more then WP becomes my jump-off platform for gaining the knowledge that I need to write about whatever it may be.
Probably the best blog I have read about how we are weaving “intricate webs” through our interactions and blogs is by a young woman who has a blog called Confessions of an Average Mom. In this blog “Blogging about Blogging”, she really lays it out very clearly how we each benefit from the other through influence, inspiring one another, reading, and feeding of of one another’s creative energy as we each build and share our audiences.
My blog has gone past the point of being “directed” toward the LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer) community these days. Now I write for a wider audience, for my any and all readers who fall all across the human spectrum of identities. I think I used to limit myself by thinking I could “direct” my writing to just the LGBTQ crowd. While lots of what I write is from the perspective of a Butch Lesbian, it’s not all about my being queer anymore…it’s about my life and my world these days. I know that I do have a fairly large following by my community and by supportive allies. That still matters to me, but it’s not all that matters. I just want to have a diverse audience, and want to make my writing better, more interesting and sometimes hopefully helpful to someone.
I’ve gained some great insight into blogging from Harsh Reality’s Opinionated Man who seems to be the super blogger and has some great, thought provoking, inspiring and even aggravating at times, posts on his blog. I wish I could think as fast as he does!
I have much admiration for many of my fellow bloggers such as ButchCountry67, and A Boy and Her Dog’s Jamie Ray, as well as from many others other than the ones mentioned above. I tend to follow most of my favorite bloggers on a daily basis, because for me reading and writing is a daily activity, it’s not a hobby or a sport, but more something I have to do daily or my day just doesn’t feel complete.