I first heard of blogging in 2012 and then started with a free platform. I can’t remember if it was my roommate of four years or my first ex-boyfriend who introduced me to this completely different world.
Three years later, I found myself buying a domain which due to my village girl-ness, I gave it up because I failed to find out how it works, how to sustain it and for my thousands of endless nonsense reasons and excuses. I finally launched a website and though I still haven’t gotten my act together yet, I was not willing to raise the white flag I have hidden somewhere and still trying my bestest to learn and create something just because I truly love it.
Nobody told me about its ugly side.
Blogging is another planet.
I thought blogging was easy. Maybe I got used to the fact that I was just using a free platform then that only required writing, posting and running. The only marketing I did was Facebook if I felt like sharing it. My readers were just my friends, acquaintances and family. To have a successful blog wasn’t in my mind. All I know was that, keeping and maintaining a blog help balance my mental health.
Writing is actually cheaper than therapy and I didn’t have to feel scared that people around me think I am a hopeless case. Plus, I have a creative outlet.
Bloggers are geniuses.
I have huge respect for bloggers. Imagine being the Researcher, the Writer, the Editor, the Social Media Manager, the Digital Marketer, the advertiser, the Brand Manager, the Graphic Artist, the Web Developer and Designer, the Photographer, the Model, the Video Editor, the Art Director, the IT guy, the Customer Service Representative, the PR manager, the Investor and the COO or CEO all at the same time.
This is what it means to be a blogger and I was so close to declaring that I was not. All I knew was I wanted to write about the emotions I have felt, all the things I have learned, all the places I have been to, restaurants where I have eaten, cute little accessories, shoes and dresses I have. I was wrong.
I remember on the same day that I purchased my domain. I felt so happy. I felt like I bought my own little world and I have it in my hands. My nightmare began when I looked at the blank page after installing WordPress. I was paralized. I couldn’t move my hands to start doing the dirty work of layout and design. Sure I have idea of how I want that world to look like but I didn’t know how to do it.
Sure I have articles but I would also need to polish them to make sure that my grammar will not make me gag, the photos needed to be edited, Instagram to be updated and Pinterest to be figured out while trying to understand what SEO, widgets, niche and plug-ins are.
I didn’t even know that Google Analytics exist and what significance it has in my new role as an aspiring blogger. Few hours after posting my first blog entry, I have to worry about responding to my only two readers who commented on the post and then answer their questions too?
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It’s a hard world to penetrate.
The rent to have that little space on the internet is not so high so there are bloggers who really make a living out of their websites and the competition is unbelievably high. Their dedication, talents, skills and intelligence is just remarkable. Not that I want to compete. Much as I want my website to grow and be profitable, I am more eager to be well versed in this digital world which doesn’t seem to show any decline in the future. I want to update my so obsolete technology program and I saw blogging as a good start.
People are good.
I joined Facebook groups of bloggers and surprised to discover that bloggers are good people. Despite how intimidating their websites are or how big their social media following is, they respond without any fee involved. They are good motivators. They support each other and that they are like-minded people who aren’t stingy with information. They respond in such a way I won’t feel dumber than I already do in terms of blogging. I remember asking a schoolmate for tips and suggestions but I was thrown to seen zone as if saying “who has the time for a clueless village girl like you?”
When I joined groups, a lady offered to be my Pinterest Virtual Assistant for free and won’t accept even goods from me. Only a review of her performance. I just couldn’t accept her offer for the fear that I will not learn how to do it myself. Knowing how bad my ADHD is, I am scared to be dependent and abuse the kindness I am being given.
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I became more open to criticism.
I think the only reason why I gave up blogging before was because I kept on doubting myself. I never believed that I have the ability to. I was always afraid of being criticized for my poor English grammar or my content isn’t good enough. Now, I will even share my latest blog post and ask other bloggers how I can improve it. Not for the growth of the blog but for my growth as a person and as a budding writer.
I am learning how to write.
I never realized how much I loved writing until I moved to Germany and all my friends are in the Philippines and Malaysia. Time difference was so hard to beat that I found myself resorting to journaling. I soon tried posting them as short Facebook entries. Few friends called my attention by suggesting to write a book that talks about my experiences on the road. But to write a book feels so heavy so I started with a blog. Sure my writing is not as good as I want it to be but I am learning.
The blogging world has lead me to other bloggers’ works and through their websites, I feel more inspired and motivated to take little steps everyday that will bring me to my dreams of one day becoming the “wordsmith” that I have always dreamed of.
For now, I will start with blogging.