Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Flying By The Seat Of Our Pants And Telling Our Own Stories.

I have been blogging for over three years now and I've come a long, long, (did I say long?) way from my very first post back in December of 2008. 


In fact, it's been kind of awesome to watch my voice grow from "the girl wet behind the ears with one year of marriage under her belt and a husband on the road" to "a wine-dependent mom of two under two," and I've truly been blessed by the blogging community to connect with so many amazing readers over the last three plus years.  


By no means does any of this make me a blogging expert. As a matter of fact, I don't personally know any blogging experts. Aren't we all flying by the seat of our pants and sharing our own story?


I do believe that alone entitles you to make your own rules and do with them what you will. Follow them, break them, change them, etc. 


However, I will say that there is one cardinal rule to follow when blogging. And that rule, my friends, is something I'm sure many of your mothers have told you time and time again. 


If you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all.


I've become a bit disheartened lately with some of the "Rules of Blogging" posts floating around. I will admit, some "rules" are very funny. Many, however, read like personal digs. 


Who wants to sit down and read a post and constantly be second guessing themselves, "Are they talking about me?" "I do those things.. I've written those posts before." "But I like link-ups!" 


The truth is, whatever your niche, your readers read you because they enjoy the heart you put into your posts. If that happens to be a compilation of pretty Pinterest pins and quotes? So be it. 


If your thing is link-ups galore? There is clearly a market out there for you. 


I host a fair amount of giveaways. Due to schedules and time constraints, some months are giveaway heavy and others may not have any giveaways at all. Regardless, I enjoy trying new products and sharing those with you that I truly believe I can stand behind. Have I lost followers over it? You bet your tush, I have. Do I try my hardest to balance giveaways with personal content? Of course. But not everyone sees it that way.


The truth is, I've learned to not let it bother me. It's the nature of blogging. 


Do you think some of the same single/newlyweds read my blog now that I'm a mom of two? Of course not! Who wants to hear about the Toddler Wildebeest all day? And mom-i-forms? And mom-friends? And mom-etition? And  any other word I can preface with "mom-?"


You don't have to read every single blog that comes across your computer screen. It took me a while to truly understand this but it's true. Why do you think I refer to my readers as "Loyals?" 


I don't have much else to say other than make your own rules. Feel free to follow them one day and change them. Go on and break them, if you so wish. 


But don't forget.. 


Blog for you. Share your story and above all else? Be authentic and accountable.



33 comments :

  1. And this, my dear friend, is one of the many reasons I love you!! You know you have inspired me and you have helped me find my way in the little world of blogging for sure, but you have always kept your honesty and integrity as your highest standards and that is something few bloggers do! Love ya mama!! Xoxo

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  2. Amen, sista! Wise words from a wise Momma! Xoxo

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  3. Great post! Some would say I started as a "bride blogger" then moved to "newleywed blogger" and now "mommy blogger" but I just post about my life and I know I've lost AND gained followers as my content has changed and I'm okay with that because I blog for me. I think this is great advice!

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  4. Love! You're so right. If people don't like to read what I have to say, then don't click on it. I blog because I want to, not for everyone else!

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  5. Love! You're so right. If people don't like to read what I have to say, then don't click on it. I blog because I want to, not for everyone else!

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  6. There's been so much of this going around today, but I have to say that yours is my favorite. I'll definitely be a "loyal" of yours for quite a while.

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  7. Love this. I must not follow the blog that has been talking about "blog rules" but I couldn't agree more with this post.

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  8. I'm with Ashley up there...blog rules?

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  9. I do agree with you. My whole theory is to remain true to yourself, and that's all you can do. If you want to do sponsored posts? So be it. People may not read them but the bottom line is part of that is income for a family, so anyone who dislikes content about such things don't have to read. I know for a fact there are multiple women who have had to unfollow/not read my blog because "i post too much about my daughter" and it was upsetting to them because of a struggle to get pregnant. I hate that somehow I'm hurting them, but this is my life, and I'm documenting it. Not at all trying to hurt someone. So i agree--do what you want, but be respectful, kind and courteous in the process.

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  10. Amen. We've talked about this a lot lately. But people just need to write their blog and stop worrying about how and why and what other bloggers are doing. And the "rules?" There are no rules. We all have our own little corner of the internet.

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  11. If my post earlier this week offended you, PLEASE know that was not my intention. Honest to God, I thought I was missing something with the sponsored posts. I now understand more, thanks to texts/comments/emails from some sweet bloggers. ;)

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  12. Love this! When we started our blog I kept worrying: will giveaways every Monday get old? & will people get annoyed that every Friday we talk about our favorite thing? Then I started thinking- who cares! There are two of us blogging together &if this is how WE like to stay organized then this is what we will do.

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  13. Also, Julie & I often don't tell each other what we will be writing about so I get excited to read my own blog to see what she comes up with. Sometimes I think we just take turns reading each others post and no one else reads the blog.....& I'm ok with that because we enjoy it!

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  14. Thanks so much for posting this. It's good to read as a new blogger :) Hope all is well with you guys--loving all the baby Mac photos!

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  15. I hear ya loud and clear honey and I couldn't possibly agree more :-)

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  16. I'm glad I haven't seen these "rules". Those people would lose me as a reader.

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  17. Amen. It's like people forget that no one is forcing you to read! I am sure some people could care less about my pregnancy but I like having it documented for ME!! I go back and refer to it and I'm shocked anyone cares enough to read. But I welcome them with open arms. And? Blogging friends are like real friends ... They evolve over time.

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  18. This very post is why your Loyals come back, to see what else you have to say. If you don't have your own voice and focus on what matters to you, it will be evident in their blog and writing. Do what you love and the rest will follow!

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  19. This is great. Well said. I love your blog and reading about your crazy toddler and can't wait to hear more about your precious new addition.

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  20. Well said! Now that I am pregnant, most of my posts seem to revolve around baby. I realize that everyone out there isn't interested in seeing my growing belly and that's OK. But, that is what is on my heart and in my head 24/7. I look at my blog as a journal of sorts. I am blogging for me, first and foremost. Couldn't agree more!

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  21. I find myself being annoyed with certain types of posts but you're exactly right... Just don't read them! Pshhh! I have been reading blogs for so many years and it also took me a while to realize that I don't have to like or read every one I come across. I do think it is so interesting to see the different cliques of bloggers and the different "rules" that they follow. But that is always going to happen... We humans tend to gravitate towards those that think like us, do like us and act like us. Anyway, as a non-blogger I certainly have a different perspective at times but always try to look at all sides. :-)

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  22. Right on! If you don't like it, don't read. If it offends you, don't read. Annoys you, don't read. Now go have fun snuggling with those boys.

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  23. Okay, seeing as how I was in a big blogging funk (I've been blogging for 5.5 years) I decided to start following a few new blogs with hopes of making some new connections.

    Yours was one of the blogs I quickly connected to because I also have two boys 21 months apart. When I saw you writing about your second pregnancy it reminded me so much of myself those two years ago.

    But now I can relate to the way you write about blogging as well! Sometimes I get so caught up in the stats and how many readers I have. When really, I'm just a writer and all I want to do is tell my story. Thanks for reminding me of that today.

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  24. AMEN!!!!! i wish everyone felt this way!

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  25. Couldn't agree with you more. I have only been blogging for a little over a year and there was definitely a period when I was worried about whether I was writing the right way or about the right topics, but I finally remembered why I decided to blog. And it had nothing to do with making others happy or conforming to their standards. Thank you for sharing! BTW....I started following you recently on Instagram...those pics of Baby Mac are absolutely amazing!

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  26. I hope EVERYONE reads this post! Blog for yourself, and no one else!

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  27. I find that most of the time, the people posting the "rules" don't tend to follow them... And seriously? rules? I didn't follow that ish in school, I'm sure not following rules now. Rules. I hate the word.

    Blog what you want. If I don't want to read it, I click "mark as read". That's the great thing about having fingers. I can do that.

    This subject makes me stabby. I miss the old days of blogging when this crap didn't come up.

    PS: does it make me a total stalker that I can almost remember your first post?

    Don't answer that. I'll be singing Sting's stalker anthem in the corner ;)

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  28. If the blogging world were fully of more APs, we'd be a much better place. :) I cannot stand the blogging rules, and as much as I tried to find the humor, I just see it as insecurity and jealousy towards others. Authenticity is something we should all strive for; you're right when you say people read us for our hearts, wherever they lay. Thanks for being you, and I'll always be a 'loyal'!!

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  29. i love this post! i've been blogging since early 2008 (holy cow, i just realized how long that is) and feel the exact same way. it started as an outlet as i missed writing and has morphed into so much more!

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As always, thanks so much for reading ILYMTC. If you have any questions about a post or want to get in touch with me (or any of the cast of characters here at ILYMTC) email me at iloveyoumorethancarrots(at)gmail(dot)com.

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