For the Love of the Blog

The reasons we start are always different. We miss adult companionship after the birth of a child. We have a desire to connect with family in faraway places. We have friends that have turned a small piece of the Internet into a lucrative business. There are all kinds of factors that drive us.

Until one day we sit down at the computer and start a website.

The reasons are different but underneath those reasons, the motivation is the same. We have a need to create and it is a need that the Internet fulfils.

And that simple decision launches something that soon becomes bigger than we could possibly have imagined.

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Before we know it, we’re hooked. Because when we started, we thought that all we had to do was set up our website and a few social media channels and start writing and we suddenly realize that there’s so much more to it than that.

We find ourselves forced to acquire skills we never though we could. We teach ourselves to edit HTML code and CSS to make minor tweaks to our sites. We pour over articles on Google PageRank and SEO. We install analytics and determine our top traffic sources.

We spend large amounts of money on virtual products that make our sites more attractive and easier to navigate. We watch new social networks as they are launched, poised to make sure we show ourselves as leaders by being a part of the next big thing.

We find a community. We develop a huge network of friends that share our passions, understand our goals and motivate us to do better. We form bonds that transcend location and make connections that will last a lifetime.

We start to make money. Some of us make a lot of it. People may say we’re just “in it for the money” because of that. But we know that’s simply not true. There are hundreds of easier ways to make money. Ways that don’t require working twenty-hour days six days a week. Ways that don’t demand a constant connection to the never-sleeping monster that is the Internet.

We get tired. We feel invisible. We wonder why we’re doing this to ourselves.

What makes us different from the thousands of other websites out there? Is it even worth continuing to write every day, continuing to frequent the various social networks? There will always be someone bigger and there will always be someone better and there will always be someone bigger and better that’s so similar that we wonder what purpose we’re serving. What makes us unique?

We wonder if we should just quit the whole thing.

And then we keep going.

Because deep down inside we know that it’s not just about us. It’s not just about the work or the numbers and it’s not even just about the writing. It’s about building something that has a life of its own, a life that’s given to it by every reader that comments on a post and every Twitter follower that retweets a link they found useful and every Facebook fan that answers that question we asked.

We keep going because as hard as it can be, we love it. It’s challenging and organic and uncontrollable and sometimes infuriating and we love it anyways, too much to ever stop doing it.

We are bloggers. And this is where we belong.

35 thoughts on “For the Love of the Blog”

  1. Well written, Kat! Wow! You’ve hit the nail on the head with every.single.point.

    And I am glad that you are one of the great connections that I’ve made during my time blogging!

    Thanks for a great post.

  2. Kathryn, thank you so much for this. I have been feeling down and depressed, losing sight of why I blog in the first place which was to connect to people, share my feelings and life raising a child with disabilities. You are right it’s not about anything but blogging and the rewards come from being able to pop open my site and see it, It’s mine, I built it and it’s part of me. :)

  3. yes, it’s like my 4th child! it’s something I can be proud of, because even though there will always be someone bigger and better, I never started my blog to be biggest or the best in the first place. I started it for me. And when I started I knew nothing of html, or analytics or even giveaways. and look how far we’ve come. we made something out of nothing. we worked our butts off made that something successful!
    I’ve been meaning to write a similar post for a while, can ya tell? but now I don’t have to, I’ll just come read yours when I need it the most!

    1. Lol! I was thinking when I was writing this about how we sometimes refer to our blogs as our “other children” and how people wonder how that can be. But they really are! I LOVE that you were planning to write something like this too, Jen, and I totally hope you still do so that when we start feeling uninspired, we can read each other’s posts and get our heads back in the game! :)

  4. I love this post!
    I have had ups and downs and felt invisible but honestly, the community of bloggers and my readers keeps me coming back. To get even 1 comment , email or message saying I touched someone, or said something they felt or were afraid to say makes it so great! I think people often forget why they do what they do, yeah, money is great. But it is even greater making it , doing something we all love.

    1. Thanks Kim! That’s exactly it; I love that I can support my family with my site but that’s because I’m doing something I love! Even if I had an outside job, I’d still be blogging every chance I got. :)

    1. That’s so awesome to hear, Julie. I’ve been feeling uninspired lately and it’s good to know I’m not the only one that needed to remember why I do this. :)

  5. Great post, Kathryn! :-)

    My blogging started back on MySpace (I know!) and continued onto a private FB blogging group.. Eventually I started my own blogspot page. It is not anything special – I have very few followers, but I really enjoy having the space to get things off my chest.

    I am not always one who wears their heart on their sleeve – I have found blogging has allowed me to vent things/discuss things/share things that I may not have done otherwise. It’s therapeutic for me!

    I have also really enjoyed connecting with other bloggers and reading their own journeys through life :-)

    Thank YOU for all of the hard work you have put in to maintain such a wonderful space

    1. Thanks so much Soozle! I agree, blogging is amazing therapy and it’s always so exciting to connect with others in different parts of the country. I love visiting your blog!

      Thanks for being such an awesome reader and fellow blogger! You’re one of those ones that always inspires me to keep going. :)

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