By Guest Author, Olivia who blogs at http://putthekettleon.net/
My blog began as an online portfolio to home some of my published articles and to advertise freelance writing, but I discovered (Timethief told me) that new and regular content would improve my Google ranking and help my site become more visible.
At the moment my blog is mostly about parenting, but not the kind that gives advice on how things should be done or passes judgment, it’s more for sharing my experiences and recording poignant moments and my kids’ little quirks.
My husband had tried to convince me to start a blog, but I worried that I’d give it a try and give up quickly as I had read so many bloggers eventually do. On Linked In I asked which platform would be most suitable and an experienced writer pointed me towards WordPress. My final shove came when my kids started Montessori. In an effort to get to know their new teacher, I agreed to her offer of a Reiki healing session. After the session, she said I had lots of creative energy, but something was blocking my ‘voice’ and we needed to work on removing the blockage.
Well, I feel I’ve always been very vocal on all matters, however I took this a sign to take the plunge and start my blog which has certainly evolved since it began ten months ago. It all started rather pink and flowery, and I took it far too seriously. In some of the older posts I try too hard and they can sound contrived and possibly insincere. They make me cringe but I won’t delete them. They remind me of where I was, and how hopefully, with practise, my writing will continue to mature and develop into something more refined, enabling me to express myself concisely.
Blogging over the summer holidays is pretty challenging. My four-year-old twins are off school, so they’re with me all the time. If I spend too much time staring at a computer screen, they quickly let me know. A while back, my daughter asked ‘Why do cavemen not wear clothes?’ My son answered ‘Because they were too busy writing their blogs’.
Right now, they’re arguing over who gets to be the chicken. I cannot concentrate well with background noise and interruptions, so my blog has suffered, but I know I’ll get it back. I feel more confident about blogging and when the kids start school I’ll have much more time for it.
For me, there is a certain amount of guilt involved with blogging. I see other amazing bloggers create wonderful pieces on a regular basis and I feel like an imposter. On the other hand, blogging while the kids are off school means ignoring them to a degree and switching on the T.V. It’s difficult to find a balance, so I’ve given up feeling guilty.
Belonging to a group of bloggers has been invaluable to me. I’m a member of the Irish parenting bloggers group. They’ve taught me to loosen up a little and to become more personal. At first, I thought every blog post must resemble a polished magazine article with a clear focus. I’d fret over grammar and punctuation and being my own editor frightened me. In reading great blogs, I realised that the story was the focus, that the feeling and personality underpinning everything was more important. Mistakes can be corrected later, even after it’s been published, as long as meaning is not lost.
I’ve learned, within the parenting genre at least, that the personal posts which tug on the heartstrings draw the most response, and that they are naturally the most difficult to write. I think all bloggers are looking for information and/or human connection, and if the writing is honest, readers will return for more.
Thanks for publishing my very first guest post Timethief and for all the amazing blogging support. The chance to be on your stage has been so exciting! Try not to worry about your blog. We’re not going anywhere. Love, from one of your (many!) minions.
Be sure to visit Olivia’s blog at http://putthekettleon.net/ and have a chat with her.
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