This week’s questions over at Sunday Social are all about blogging firsts.
I found them a bit tricky, given this isn’t my first time at the bloggy dance. But they provided some great prompts for reflection.
Before I get to the questions, there were also two other posts I read earlier this week on this topic that gave me some really good food for thought at this stage of my “Third Times a Charm” blogger development.
The ever entertaining Rarasaur posted on Are you dead or alive? pulling the idea from another blog I was unfamiliar with – Midlife Crisis Crossover – who’s post was aptly titled: The Curse of the “Follow” Button.
Both bloggers – who like myself blog on WordPress – looked back on their first 177 followers (yeah – a WEE bit more successful than me with my I love you all 53 faithful and counting!) to see if they were still around.
They both basically found that even in less than a year, about half the people who were following them, basically weren’t anymore, because they were no longer blogging – had given up, moved on, or just disappeared.
Which of course leads to the question why. Why do you blog? What makes you stop? What makes you stay?
Having stopped twice in the past and now giving this a try for the third time, they are questions I’m interested in because I’m curious if I’m going to have staying power this time. Will I WANT to keep blogging? Will I find a reason to keep doing this or will I lose interest? All questions I don’t yet have the answer to – but if I’m still here at a year – I may come back and see if I can shed any light.
With that said:
1. What is the first blog you ever followed?
The first time I blogged – back in 2005-2007 – I blogged for a literacy organization I was volunteering for that ran reading circles for kids. I stopped blogging when I stopped volunteering.
One of the blogs I found and adored at that time; interacted with quite a bit back in the day; and still follow on Twitter – is Jen Robinson’s Book Page. She writes all about children’s books – which was of course wonderfully useful to me back when I was running multiple story times each week. And man! Does she have staying power – because she’s still going strong!
The second time I blogged – for about 9 months in 2010 – it was straight up baby blogging while I was on mat leave with my first daughter.
I found a few great mommy bloggers out there that were immediately welcoming, and still blogging now:
Adriel Booker: Back in 2010 she was Adriel at the Mommyhood Memos (I think that was the name) and once upon a time she even let me guest blog. Having just visited her blog for the first time in a LONG while – wow – she’s come a long way! It’s a fabulous blog and I’m going to start following again.
Capital Mom: The first local mom I found on the Internet during this phase. One of the bloggers I admired for obviously having discovered the secret to happy successful blogging. But I now see she hasn’t posted since June, so I’m wondering if she has hit the end of her “run” and, unlike U2, has found what she was looking for out of this bloggy thing.
2. What was your first blog post about?
I don’t remember for the previous two blogs. I would guess for the literacy one it was likely something very functional about volunteer tutor training. I also remember being interrupted during my initial post on my baby blog by the water heater scammers who come door to door.
This time around, my first post, entitled “And Then Will You Release the Hostages” was about trying to put my 3-year-old to bed and the myriad of demands that preschoolers make as they try to stall the inevitable. Not quite “Go the Fu*k to Sleep” caliber but I thought it was pretty clever.
3. Who left you your first blog comment?
Magena, from Children at Play.
4. Who was the first blogger you ever met in person?
The ever lovely Nolie from Nolie’s place. Not sure if she’d remember, but here’s the story:
I had just gone back to work after my first mat leave and my husband was home for three months with our daughter. While I’d been on mat leave, my husband had gotten into the, for me, somewhat frustrating habit of going for “a quick beer” after work each night to “wind down” before coming home. So while he finished at 4:00 – some days the “quick beer” meant he didn’t get home until about 6:30. This made for a rather long day on my end.
Anyway, when I returned to work, I was determined to enjoy the freedom of the “quick beer” after work myself a few times. There was a group I knew vaguely who’d go for drinks after work on Fridays. They’d send out this clever email naming where they were meeting up. So I tried to go. Twice. And no one was there. Either time.
Given I don’t really have scads of downtime to be wasted on being stood up, I found this immensely annoying/rude/you name it. And I blogged about it.
And Nolie replied offering to go for beer with me.
So we did. It was so great to meet a fellow blogger – and a much more experienced one at that.
And while I still enjoy a beer after work once in a while with a good friend or two – you know those relationships that are WORTH investing in – I never tried to go for after work drinks with that other group again. Ever. The end.
5. What was your first “blogging milestone?”
Not sure how to answer this one. So, I’ll tell you what tickles me pink at the moment as a still relatively new blogger (well, this time around anyway).
It’s when people tweet my posts. And it happened three times this week which is a new record for me!
I’m still trying to figure out how much to tie my Twitter account with my blog – and honestly – I also think I’m still a bit on the shy side about the fact I blog. I’m using my real name now – and linking to my Twitter feed – which I think are pretty big deal steps for me – but I have yet to take the “self promoting” leap of tweeting my own blog posts.
Then earlier this week, I read a few posts on BlogHer about how I’m of course doing this all wrong and should be tweeting the SH*T out of myself. But, I’m just doing this as a hobby, so I’m not yet convinced I need/want to do that.
Again, I’d be interested to check back on this blog post in a few months and see how my views on this have changed…
However, I’m going to leave you with my three tweet “badges of honour” from this week. Do check out their blogs – they are all fabulous!
Jen Kehl from My Skewed View
Deb from Urban Moo Cow (who I just discovered this week. She is hilarious)
And Lizzi from Considerings (who was actually the first person to ever tweet one of my blog posts ever – I remember how thrilled I was. Quite clearly actually, because it was less than a month ago 🙂
Now, if only I could figure out how to get my Pinterest account to show nicely in my sidebar (tried for a good half hour a few weeks ago and then gave up)…
Until next time!