7 things I learned in 7 years of blogging

I recently joined a blogging community on Facebook. {For other bloggers who want to meet new bloggers, follow this link.} One of the files is “Blogiversaries”. I’m sure you can guess what that is about. I went in search for my blogiversary. And mine is 24 October (I also remember that I did get a notification from WordPress, congratulating me on my blogiversary. I started to blog in 2008.

I have been blogging for 7 years now.

I decided that I want to post about lessons that I have learned about blogging. And since it has been 7 years, I am going to try and share 7 lessons I have learned.

  • Don’t feel guilty if you don’t post every day

For some reason, I have always felt guilty when I didn’t post every day. Something I have seen, though, is that the average amount of posts on bloghomes is about one per week. And I am yet to see someone post every single day!

I am coming to terms with the idea to post once a week; and to not feel guilty if I don’t post every day.

  • Write about what you like

Don’t try to figure out what people want to read. Find something you like, and blog about that.

If you like 15 different things, blog about it. If you like random things, blog about it.

People will find your posts interesting, or they won’t. {Remember, there are 7+ billion people in the world, so there are a huge amount of different tastes.}

  • You won’t necessarily attract thousands (or hundreds) of readers in the first year

Don’t stop writing after a year if you had three comments a month or four followers. Remember, it takes time to grow a following or a fan club.

I stopped blogging a few months after I started, and I am still trying to recover.

  • If you mess up, don’t stop

Here I am talking about those times that you post something that you know is “below average”. Don’t stop. You never know who like that post and feels like it is very good.

  • Get the help of Social Media

There are people who see blogging as social media. I don’t agree.

Every time you post a blog, share the link on twitter and facebook (at least). That will broaden your exposure to more possible readers.

  • Keep it simple (and shortish)

Many people who want to read blogs, don’t want to read a 10000 word document or something with 15-letter words in it.

Keeping it simple is actually a case of perception. A mathematician’s “simple” and a theologian’s “simple” and a Star Trek fan’s “simple” might be three different kinds.

So I guess what I am saying is: Keep your target readers (“market”) in mind when you write.

  • Blogging in a language that is not your mother tongue is DIFFICULT, but keep going

I am Afrikaans. So writing in English is a challenge. But I decided that I will keep trying and practicing.

  • Extra: Ask for help; look for tips

I discovered the Blogging Elite on Facebook. There are tips to blog. I am starting to learn from those tips, as well as other bloggers.

This is not one of the tips, but I feel like I have to mention it.

Whatever you post, will always feel personal. Even if it isn’t on the level of “diary-personal”, it will still feel personal. The reason for this is because you put in your time and energy into the project. Even if I post something “light”, it still feels very personal.

Planning a new business

I’m not a business man.

I’m not good at planning a new business.

I’m starting a series now on the topic: “Planning a new business”.

I have this long dream to start a printing business, focusing on printing photos on mugs and shirts (to start with).

Naming a business seems more difficult than what I thought. I don’t want to use my name in the business. It has to be unique. It has to be a name that is easy to remember. Any ideas for a good name? I will consider any name seriously.

A list of online reads

I am going to list some of the blogs that I like to read here.

You might see in one of the sidebars that there are such a list. That list will be (re)built at a stage in the future. For now, this will be the list. It will grow in time, because I do not plan to finish it today.

  1. https://mycontemplations.wordpress.com/ …….. He is South African, and a Theologian/Pastor, that is why he is one of my favourite people to read.
  2. http://www.jorymicah.com/blog/ ……. If you do not like to be challanged, stay away from this blog
  3. http://www.thoughtleader.co.za/ ……. I like this blog, because it is more opinions on news events, and not “hard news”, like other sites.
  4. http://www.dailymaverick.co.za/ …….. News in a less formal way. The opinionista sidebar especially have opinion pieces that are well-written.
  5. http://rachelheldevans.com/blog ……. She doesn’t blog too often, but when she does, I stop to read
  6. https://graceninjablog.wordpress.com/
  7. https://altacloete.wordpress.com/ ……. This is an Afrikaans blog that I recently learnt about, after reading a book by Johan Smith (“In die donker put”).

At least once a week…

I am committing to write at least once a week, on a variety of topics, from extra light to heavy, and about my bucket list or books or my love for coffee or movies. Whatever I want to write about on the day. And, as I start to enjoy the writing process, I will start to focus on fewer topics again.

Today, I want to mention something I have found interesting for a long time.

I don’t know if this is something that only “disturbs” me.

I buy a particular product, which cost R19,99. The till automatically give me a “cash rounding”, to R19,95 or even R19,90. But then I get change back as though the till says the price is actually R20. The till attendant doesn’t have a 5c or 10c, or he/she just keeps that 5c/10c.

I always wonder how much “extra income” that shop gets, just because they don’t have 5 or 10 cents in their tills.

Okay, it doesn’t really disturb me…