Blogging isn’t something that comes naturally to me. I’m a perfectionist, which sucks if you want to write more than one blog post per year because you’ll never put it into the world. Blogging isn’t about waiting until you have a perfectly polished gemstone, it’s about getting your work out there (well, not too out there) and can also be about developing ideas still in formation.
The truth is, I’m kind of afraid of blogging. I’d rather sit behind a pretty wall of words than be exposed in a raw vulnerable state. When blogging first became popular it was considered “lesser than,” books and magazines still the most valuable content. I wanted to put my writing out there in some permanent, aggregated way, but I also wanted it to be validated by someone else.
Blogging can be a way to build an audience and try out new ideas. Blogging appeals to me now because it’s entrepreneurial and you can write and publish quickly. You can see how people react online, creating a quick feedback loop that allows you to develop ideas or gauge interest in a topic. Sharing your ideas makes the work less lonely.
Tonight I went to Lit Cleveland’s “The Craft of Blogging” with Jill Miller Zimon, Nikki Delamotte and Darlene Norwood English. I was inspired by how Jill leveraged a political blog into all kinds of work, including speaking, teaching and writing; how Nikki published her first words on her blog and now works at Cleveland.com, in part because she has a keen grasp of writing online and social media; and Darlene’s personal blog that has powerful posts about embracing her natural hairstyle, how Sandra Bland’s death affected her, and other topics.
Over the past year, I’ve been blogging more. Maybe with the inspiration of these social media mavens I will complete my goal of writing a post a week this year. Or maybe I’ll just get sucked into the next season of Homeland.