My Wee Blog: Put the Kettle On

tea timeBy 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.

teapotsBlogging 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.

oliviaThanks 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.

Related post: Another Update

15 thoughts on “My Wee Blog: Put the Kettle On

  1. Your kids are very wise and witty–and your husband quite a visionary too it would seem :-) Your blog is a lovely spot to visit so don’t go changing! I always have to correct my posts after publishing XO!

    1. Thank you Jackie! You’re so kind to me :) It was my husband who suggested I submit my first article to a magazine which they subsequently published. He has a seriously big brain and a knack for getting things right! (I get my copy of Silk for the field dogs tomorrow! Can’t wait!) xx

  2. Ah Olivia others are enjoying your blog so you must be doing something right. It is always a pleasure to read your posts and you are right, it is the personal that people enjoy reading, although sometimes when I post some of my more personal posts, I hold my breath as if diving into a pool, while pressing ‘publish’.
    Keep going as you are, your blog is one I love to read.

    1. Hello Tric! Thanks so much. I really appreciate your thoughts. Sometimes blogging makes me uncomfortable. I know the personal posts are best, but I do worry about sharing too much of my children’s childhood. Perhaps in years to come they may take issue with it.

  3. Oddly I think some of my earlier posts were my better ones. I was more focused whereas these days I have too much to write about. Philosopher mouse picked out one phrase, I’ll highlight another few words: story, feeling and personality. Unsuccessful blogs don’t have these three key components.

    1. I try to write something which I think I would like to read myself..maybe laugh at myself a bit too. I definitely tried too hard in the beginning but I’ve loosened up now. It still feels strange to let people into my mind and my thoughts, even though I only write when I’m in a good mood. I don’t publish some of my posts where I’ve become too cynical or negative.

  4. Thank you for all the encouraging comments and thanks for publishing my guest post Time thief! This has been so much fun. Sorry for the delay in responding – we’ve gone camping earlier than planned and WIFI and electricity are hard to come by! :)

  5. This looks like a great read. I will definitely give a follow and some reading for her.

  6. ” bloggers are looking for information and/or human connection, and if the writing is honest, readers will return for more.”

    People are always asking make a popular blog – you gave them the answer, Olivia. (and love the caveman blogging comment by kid)

  7. Don’t even think about deleting those early posts! That’s history. They’ll remind you and all your readers of how you began and how far you’ve come.

  8. I love your writing, Olivia. All of it. Is it a twin thing? is one example of what drew me to become a subscriber. Baby proofing guide is another example. And, I’m looking forward to what your children’s fiction dabbling will result in. Thanks so much for introducing yourself to my other community members in this guest post on one cool site.

  9. Great choice for a guest blogger! I love Olivia’s blog and was lucky enough to start following her from my beginning. Great post Olivia. Keep writing from the heart girl. :)

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