When I started blogging years ago it was definitely an escape. I was lonely in the evening when M was studying for his law classes and I turned to the internet for help with my burgeoning knitting passion.
Along with knit one, purl two instructions I also discovered the world of blogs, the friendship, the camaraderie, the support, and the endless sea of words.
For a girl who can never get enough to read it was like being given the keys to an endless library that never closes.
Always a joiner, I started my own blog which I updated sporadically, taking more time to read than to write. And then, as I started on the road to motherhood, I discovered how comforting it was to blog regularly.
It was place for me to work through the ups and downs of pregnancy and early parenthood. As an added bonus, joining the mommy-blogosphere was a great way for me to connect with a ton of people living the same thing as me. It made me feel less alone, less scared, and better able to deal with the whole thing.
A stint of NaBloPoMo – blogging every day for a whole month – and I was a blogging regular. After that first month, I couldn’t stop. I blogged every single day for an entire year.
That’s a lot of blogging.
But, honestly, it was well worth it.
I cut back a bit after that year, often skipping Friday nights and always taking Saturday night off. Still a lot, but a bit more manageable.
All of that blogging has served to radically improve my writing style. It has helped me find my voice. It has given me the confidence to extend that voice beyond the blog. And even more importantly, it has granted me a priceless treasure trove of memories – a written history of the last five years.
While blogging first fulfilled a need to express myself and a need for a certain community, after a while I realized it could also be a stepping stone to another way of life. Blogging became less about journaling for myself and for posterity and more about becoming a platform for my future – a doorway to a freelance writing career, a window to the life of a novelist, the pathway to a life as a social media “expert.”
I never lost focus of the fact that I was still blogging for me, but I did get caught up in the “it has to happen” and “it’s so important,” and “I can’t not blog because the world will ennnndd” of it all.
Which, let’s be honest, is absurd. If I skip a night none of you think I’ve died or been abducted. And if I don’t tweet for a day or two none of my 5000+ followers even notices, let alone really cares.
This blog has served me well. It has helped me make new friends, grow as a writer, get an amazing job, and take part in incredible opportunities.
I’m not going to give it up. It’s too big a part of my life.
But I am going to relax my standards.
Instead of spending all of my energy blogging every night, I’m going to refocus some of that energy on editing my book. Because, while it’s important to me to have a blog I’m proud of and I value the blog community and all it offers, it’s even more important to me to see my novel through to the end.
So if you don’t see me in your blog reader every morning, don’t panic, I’ll be back the day after, or maybe the day after that. Odds are I’ll be happier and excited about the progress I’m making on the book. And who knows, maybe my blog posts will be so much better thanks to the reduced (self imposed) pressure to write every night that you’ll be content to just read them over and over again.
What? A girl can still dream, can’t she?