How I Got Started Blogging (or Filling my need for public approval) ;-)
Unfortunately, I can’t remember exactly what started my blogging. In fact, there’s a lot i wish I could remember.
Background: Since i was a kid writing with big purple markers, I’ve always journaled. Not so much consistently, but it was a place to vent and record life.
Somewhere along the line (1999ish?) I met Geocities and fell in love. “You mean, my own public arena for talking to no one and everyone? And it’s free? Surely you jest!” I wish i could remember my old location (before Geocities was eaten by Yahoo!)… it’s gotta be in my piles of papers somewhere. a log in or something…
Anyway… my Geocities site served both as my static info pages and my not-yet-a-blog-but-a-single-page-of-dated-entries area. It was dinky. and I loved it. I mean, come on, what 17 year old in the early days of the internet wouldn’t have been completely thrilled!? [ps, it just NOW occurs to me just how different a 17yo's life is online today than it was in 1999... not even 10 years ago...]
Now, it is clear to me that i wanted to matter, so i was public. But honestly, it was all for myself. I didn’t actually care if anyone ever found or read my site.
Then, on Saturday, April 14, 2001 I met Blogger. I don’t know how. But the rest is history. It was essentially a dumping ground for stuff i found online or did in life and wanted to save/share, a venting place for personal stuff (conveniently forgetting it was public, since i was convinced no one read it), and a place to hone my arguments and writing skills. My blogging was quite frequent in college, having all that time to ponder and pontificate.
Then, on Thursday, March 15, 2007, i moved to my own domain, where you are now. I’m still fighting to figure out what i want blogging for- especially now that i don’t have the kind of time i used to (which might be why twitter is my other boyfriend, when i simply don’t have time for blogging…).
Blogging as dumping ground for stuff i find online… now i use delicious
Blogging as recording short happenings/thoughts… now i use twitter
Blogging as the space for my rants… still the space for my rants, when there’s time
Blogging as a place to keep my photos… Flickr!
Blogging as a place to keep friends updated… *cough* social networking ala FB or MS
How did i gain an audience?
Beats me. It wasn’t ever intentional until recently. Now that i’m involved in an industry, i do care to hear what people think about topics i talk about- and the only way to do that is to have people hear you. So now, i plug my blog whenever i can and comment on other people’s blogs (though, not enough). But still i’m shocked (and pleasantly surprised) when people comment… i always assume no one reads this. :-) I started the blog because i felt i had something to say and thought the world should care. Possibly the same reasons why i twitter. a lot.
What advice would you give to new bloggers who want to make a name for themselves in the biblioblogosphere?
I don’t want to suppose i have any authority to actually answer this question since it’s still something i struggle with but here’s my thoughts:
1) have something to say that someone might care about too. or find interesting. or be able to laugh at.
2) make yourself heard. this means by involving yourself in the conversation (on other people’s blogs, on your blog, by tagging and commenting, etc). this also means by plugging yourself. often.
Perhaps 50 ways to take your blog to the next level can offer additional advice…
I’d like to say “stick to a topic(s)” but i still use my blog as my free-for-all public forum. I try to keep it to library/tech/customer service issues because i have an inkling that’s my audience, but every once in a while i slip. and i’m okay with that.