Create: “Why I Started My Blog” Tag
I have created this tag as a way of reminding ourselves why we started these blogs in the first place. This is something that I absolutely love to do and it often ends up taking up quite a bit of time and effort (thinking of ideas/taking good photographs/editing etc) and I thought it would be fulfilling to outline the reasons why, to both ourselves and everybody else, we love to make our slices of the internet something we are proud of.
If you’d like to join in with this tag, just think of 5 reasons why you initially began, and continue to keep maintaining your blog. They can be as detailed or as short-and-snappy as you like, and here are mine if you need any inspiration!
1. I love to write
For as long as I can remember I have loved to write. It started off as wanting to write short stories, which developed into attempting to write a novel many times – when I say attempt, I mean I began writing perhaps one chapter and then gave up! – but I always found the process enjoyable. I began a blog on Blogger about four years ago, but was making life too difficult for myself by setting myself rules such as writing huge, lengthy posts which I found exhausting and uninspiring when of course, a couple of weeks in, nobody was reading them. Last year at university, after getting back into my writing mojo after joining the uni newspaper, I found WordPress to be a little more ‘me’ and on a whim started this blog. I decided not to give myself any rules and to just write what I wanted to write about.
2. To improve my career prospects
Honestly, part of what gave me a nudge in the right direction in terms of starting up a blog again, was a careers event that was held at my university. Focused on jobs in journalism and media, as well as many other tips, the people lecturing us basically said if we wanted to be taken seriously as a writer then we should absolutely, 100% have a blog. I am a worrier and a planner and as soon as I heard this nugget of advice, I stored it away and the next time I had the urge to write I decided it would be on my new blog. So perhaps not so much of a ‘whim’, but still, I realised that I had nothing to lose and if I could impress future employers by doing something I love then why not?
3. To do something that would make a (small) difference
For a long time I didn’t have something as a ‘hobby’ per se, and it really bugged me. I hadn’t managed to carry on learning any instruments and I hated sport. Once I got to university and joined the newspaper, I was inspired to carry on with my writing and wanted to have a little space of my own on the internet where I could make, hopefully, a bit of an impact. Even if just one person likes a post I’ve written it makes everything worthwhile and I love it. Don’t get me wrong, love for the writing comes first because for a long time I was writing to cyberspace with not a lot of response but ultimately, I did hope that one day somebody would care about what I had to say. That’s why people want to be journalists. They want to inform/teach/inspire/reveal through articulate articles and while I was enjoying my position as Deputy Features editor for the newspaper, I wasn’t able to write frequently enough for the paper to feel satisfied. I wanted to write when the moment struck or if I had a strong opinion about something that was relevant, I wanted to get it down at that moment without anybody proof-reading or double checking. Journalists and people who have careers in media are successful because they are current and ‘on it’. This speeding social-media-train doesn’t wait for anybody and I felt that the best way to be a part of it was to join in with the conversation on my own platform.
4. Enrich my life
This is something that I actually didn’t entirely think would happen before I started blogging, but I suppose somewhere in the back of my mind I hoped it would. I said on the #lbloggers chat last night that one of the things that blogging has brought me is the capacity to try to appreciate life more, soaking everything up – the smells, the sights, the sounds – and making the most of every experience both through photographs and just living it, so that I can write about them eloquently on my blog. This has developed over time, and I didn’t quite expect it to, but having this blog has definitely made me more aware, I suppose, of my surroundings: always on the look out for something interesting to write about. When I first started blogging four years ago (the time that failed) it was because I had experienced a few things that I just really wanted to share with people – don’t ask me why – and now, I realise, that the two go hand in hand. Wanting to write about different things on my blog has made me want to do different things as much as I can, made me look at objects in different ways (is that beautiful/strange – can I photograph that?), made me want to attempt more adventurous recipes and document them – all of these things that I just wouldn’t make so much effort for if I didn’t always have at the back of my mind: ‘think of ideas for that blog you love and want to keep fresh/engaging!’
5. Connect with people/Learn
Before I began How Does It Feel To, I loved reading magazines and blogs such as Liberty London Girl. Part of what made that blog a success was obviously the readers and comments Sasha received, and it inspired me that so many people she had never met were loving what she was writing about. This connection and interacting with like-minded people really appealed to me. Like I said before, I wanted to make an impact with my writing and again what I realised a little late to the game (didn’t really get into Twitter until the end of last year) was that I loved chatting to people, finding their blogs and learning about different things through all of these. Twitter has been a fantastic networking tool for myself and others who share the same interests and not only have I learnt about how to photograph properly (had no idea what ‘aperture’ and ‘ISO’ was until a couple of months ago) I have also asked fellow tweeters/bloggers advice on topics ranging from careers to moisturiser.
So there we have it! The 5 reasons why I started a blog and have carried on. If you fancy giving this tag a go, please, please do! I would love to read about why YOU started blogging. Did somebody inspire you? Where did the passion come from and why have you kept at it?