Is blogging dead? A conversation with a fellow blogger in which she mentioned that blogging was dead has stuck with me over the past few days. They say Mommy blogging is on its way out and the blogging market is over-saturated. Some bloggers literally recoil with disdain if you refer to them as a “mommy blogger” as if you’ve intentionally insulted them.
I don’t think blogging is dead at all but I do think that there are varying degrees of success in blogging, just like in anything else and some are definitely written better than others, some tell better stories or are more interesting. I read blogs for different reasons; humor, well-written stories, relateability, interests and to learn how to do something but what keeps me coming back are the people behind the blogs. If I like the person, I tend to love the writing because I am invested in what they have to say.
I came to blogging late in the game; my girls were 2 and 4. I’ve been at this consistently for almost 5 years. Honestly, I had no idea what blogging was before I started my own blog and I only did so because I wanted to build my online presence for my writing portfolio. I was too exhausted to have started when the girls were babies. I could hardly find the time to shower, never mind write about my adventures in motherhood.
I started my blog at a point in my life when I was a mother. I was a writer who had children so the term never offended me but there was no way that I was going to let that moniker limit what I was going to write about. After all, it was my only “me” space. I wish I had started my blog when I was single and dating but then it would have been slightly x-rated and it never would have survived the transition to motherhood. You all would have all been, “You raise your kids with that past?” It would have been like the Sid Vicious chronicles.
I don’t think blogging is dead or dying but growing and evolving. I am getting more inquiries than ever to write for various brands and publications. I think what is more likely happening is that people are starting blogs with either unrealistic goals or no clear direction and then finding themselves bored or disheartened because they never achieved any level of “success” and quitting. But success is relative.
If you are going into blogging with the expectation of making a lot of money…back away from the keyboard now because unless it is all about the money and you are willing to sell your soul to the SEO gods, you want no part of this world besides no one wants to read that mess. If success is building community, telling your story and creative fulfillment than I say write your heart out. Open up those veins and bleed all over your blog because if you write it without filter, readers will find you. If you are a writer and you crave a constant creative outlet and you want to be acknowledged as a writer, blogging is a great springboard to getting your writing out there. Blogging has made it possible for me to make my living doing something I love. I don’t think blogging is dead but I think that blogging is being redefined.
When I started blogging, the community was filled with other bloggers who were doing exactly the same thing; trying to survive motherhood and navigate the muddy waters that lie between who we once were with are who we were becoming. Blogging was about human contact; not SEO, traffic and no one ever considered how viral something would be as a qualification whether or not to write a post. We clung to one another for dear life. We needed and wanted the companionship with other women and men who understood what it was like to go from a career to spending our days with tiny people who spoke a foreign language. The shared loneliness forged a bond between us all.
We visited one another’s blogs, we commented, we were invested and then as time went on the kids got older, we found ourselves parlaying our blog into paid work and then no one had time to comment anymore. It became about sharing and liking and tweeting. We wanted our fellow bloggers to know that we were still there but now we had deadlines and after school activities and ambassadorships and press trips and we needed to maintain our own blogs. Blogging is not dead. It is simply growing beyond what we thought it could once be.
New bloggers are entering the space every day. The difference is not that new bloggers are not coming, or that blogging is dead, it is that we bloggers who have been at it for a while have changed and evolved and we are looking for the next step in our blogging career but no longer have the time to engage like we once did. If we want to maintain connections and not become obsolete in the blogging world, we need to engage. Blogging can’t be an unrequited relationship.
Writing is how I process life. I can’t quit blogging. I won’t quit blogging because I still want those connections and need that creative outlet. Blogging has become more than just words on a screen to me. It’s become part of who I am.