I’ve been blogging for just under 2 months now and when I decided to take the plunge, and become part of the blogosphere, I don’t think I fully realised what an emotional rollercoaster that would be. Truth be told, the image I had in my head before starting this consisted of me as a modern day version of Jo from Little Women when she would write in her attic room late into the night, as the words just flowed endlessly and effortlessly onto the page. There may also have been a teeny part of me that had visions of my blog becoming such an overnight success that it would inevitably lead to a book deal, as was the case with Julie Powell in Julie and Julia. Needless to say, the reality has been a wee bit different. The work involved was ten times more than I expected, the words sometimes need to be dragged out one by one and I’ve noticed the addition of a few new anxieties to my already over-active mind…
1. An obsession with site stats
At first I was thrilled with the fact that I could keep track of how many visitors I had and got a real kick out of seeing the different countries my readers were from listed in the stats. That’s still the case but if there was a support group set up called Site Stat Checkers Anonymous, I would need to be first in line. There are days where it goes like this:
- Breakfast check-in: Hmm..the numbers are a lot lower than yesterday but it’s still early. Hopefully they’ll go up.
- An hour later: Oh, one more visitor! Great! Still not as good as this time yesterday but I’ll check again later.
- 15 minutes later: Ugh,still low! This is not a good day! Why is no one visiting the blog??
- 20 minutes later: Calls/emails friends wondering why the numbers are so low.
- After the 10th stats update of the day, friends start to wish they’d never encouraged me to start blogging.
2. What do I write?
There are times where I know instantly what I want to write about and there are others where you may well see me staring off into space with furrowed brow, muttering potential blog topics to myself. Do I write a review? But I haven’t finished anything. Maybe I should hurry up and finish my book so I can write one. Or maybe I should do a discussion post. But then what to discuss? A summary of books I like? A more general reading related topic? Maybe email my friends and ask for ideas? Although, after the 10th stats update of the day the chances of a reply are slim. Then hallelujah, I come up with a topic, spend a looooooong time working on it and wait to see what people think. Oh. No comments? Not even from my mum? Really? I was so sure that this was a good idea for the post. Maybe I’m just a terrible writer.
3. How often do I write? And when?
I didn’t have much of a plan in terms of how I was going to tackle writing the blog so I spent some time exploring the many incredible blogs there are out there. Some people blog everyday – should I do that? Hmm…how would I come up with daily topics and how would I fit writing them in with everything else? I’ve got a lot on today but I really need to write a blog post – if I skip it, what would that do to my visitor numbers? Should I come up with a schedule for posting or just post whenever the mood hits? What would that do to my visitor numbers? Have I mentioned my obsession with my site stats yet?
4. Amazon Wishlist Overload
Okay, getting one recommendation after another for potential new book obsessions might not actually be something I’m anxious about. It is, in fact, one of the very bestest things about being part of the book blogging community. Having said that there is a very good chance that one day, in the not so distant future, I will have to declare bankruptcy after having bought so many books based on these recommendations. At least I’ll have plenty to read though! 🙂
The truth is that all of these anxieties are actually worth it – though when my friends receive the emails warning that the post isn’t one of my best or the sobbing, unintelligble, phonecalls when the site stats are low, they may well disagree. Getting to spend this much time writing about, talking about, and reading about one of the things I love most in the world has been such an amazing experience. After a long break from writing it feels good to do something like this and what’s not to love about getting to spend time with my people – the bookaholics. 🙂 If you have any tips on how to deal with blogging anxiety though feel free to share. Both me, and my poor friends, would thank you.
Have/do any of you suffer from blogging anxieties? Would you also like to join Site Stat Checkers Anonymous?
Any new blogger stories to tell?