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Inside Soul-Searching

On Being an Inconsistent Blogger

You know this of course but I love blogging and hazard a guess that I always will. I rarely stick at anything but this is a hobby that I find enjoyable, inspiring, therapeutic and as if that weren’t enough, it scratches my creative itch too.

Despite being an avid blogger for six years now, consistency is not my forte. I continue to blog when and if I feel like it, the subject matter being whatever takes my fancy at the time.

 

In 2018 I loved having a nosy around people’s homes and managed to publish a whole 10 posts in my ‘At Home With’ series. I started well but tailed off towards the end of the year, mainly due to my lack of organisation but also other people’s busyness.

I’m currently contemplating whether this is something that people want to read about but the fact that Caro’s gorgeous home is one of my most viewed posts in 2018, makes me think it could be. I would love to get your feedback. .

Another thing I’m not great at doing, is analysing my blog statistics. I know that Google Analytics should be my friend but my heart will always be in the writing and not in the page views. Occasionally I consider them and dabble a bit in improving my SEO (the bit that helps you appear in a Google search) but again, I’m not committed enough to see it through.

The thing is, I’ve decided that’s okay. Writing is my first love and building a community is my second. It might be slightly interesting to find out what is my most viewed post of 2018 and even my second most viewed post but what floats my boat, is discovering the ones that created the most conversation.

Fancy a look at my top 5?

1. First up is a post that I wrote on a bleak day in March when I was struggling to find my place in the online world, wondering if the blogging market is too saturated and if my musings even have a place.

Tell the negative committee

Of course I’ve revisited this topic on a regular basis but mostly I have realised that the blogging market needs people in every age bracket. The 52 comments on this post totally inspired me and helped me get my mojo back, so thank you to anyone who took the time to comment.

2. At number two, is a post that has been viewed the most times – over 2000 in fact.

I wrote it on my eldest daughter’s 18th birthday and it’s about parenting a child with mental illness. Writing this post wasn’t easy, mainly because I started this new blog in a bid to ‘find myself’ – the me beyond motherhood – but I felt compelled to share a small part of our story. I wanted to write from a parent’s point of view, in the hope that it might help other parents going through a similar situation.

Having read the 49 comments that this post received, I would say that my instinct was correct. Although this situation isn’t resolved for my daughter and in fact she is currently going through a very difficult time, I am glad that I wrote the post when I did.

3. Many of you will know that I’m a fan of home improvements. 2017 was heavily influenced by ‘Project Garden Room’ and I finally got around to sharing it with you in February 2018. The 27 comments you all left, told me that it was a positive addition to our garden!

bar in garden room

I can honestly say that our family life has been enhanced tenfold by the addition of a garden room and in answer to your question…we still use the jacuzzi at least twice a week.

4. Early on in 2018, I had a little word with myself about self care and how important it is to sometimes be a bit selfish. It would seem that many of you resonated with this post as it caused quite a stir. I think we all agree that putting yourself first sometimes, actually has a positive effect on everyone around. Here’s to more self care in 2019!

5. Last but by no means least, was a post I wrote in September all about keeping the plates spinning. Anyone else find that the ‘back to school’ malarkey can cause all kinds of overwhelm? Of course the main message in this post, was that we are not superheroes and that dropping plates comes with family life. I was pleased to see that I’m not the only one smashing plates and hopefully encouraged some of you to drop the guilt too.

Keep Commenting!

I’ve heard it said lately, that the community spirit has gone out of blogging. As it’s one of the things I love most about this online world, I’m determined to try to keep it alive.

Based on my findings from 2018, I think the key is to write a thought-provoking post, then add a question at the end. I try my hardest to respond to all the comments which can sometimes be hit and miss but I think it’s important if someone has taken the time to read and then add their view. Often the comments can be incredibly heart-felt and I appreciate every one.

If you’re a blogger, have you taken the time to look at your most popular posts? Do you consider the page views or number of comments to be an indicator? 

Inside, Outside & Beyond

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22 COMMENTS

  • michelle twin mum

    I need to do this, I kep thinking of post ideas but I’m really enjoying this downtime right now, so I am going with it. Happy New Year Suzanne xx

    • Suzanne W
      AUTHOR

      Definitely embrace the down time, Mich! Happy New Year to you all too. xx

  • BLEKE

    Suzanne,

    I’d gathered that your family was going through a difficult time, but didn’t know it was to do with your daughter. You are very much in our prayers and thoughts.

    • Suzanne W
      AUTHOR

      Thank you so much. I appreciate your thoughts and prayers.

  • Lisa

    Parenting ‘adults’ is so much harder than I ever imagined. I am always encouraged by your posts in some way or another. Thank you x

    • Suzanne W
      AUTHOR

      So pleased to hear that Lisa and I cannot agree more about your first statement!

  • Nipa

    Hi Suzanne,
    I started blogging just over a year ago. Like you, I needed to create something for myself, after years of focussing on my children (and teaching/coaching other children too). I too have been inconsistent and have not paid enough attention to statistics. It’s partly because I’m still overwhelmed by the technical aspects of blogging, but partly because I often underestimate how much my children still need me! To answer your question, I think page views are important from a “business” perspective, but comments/ connections are my reason for blogging. I think most “experts” would tell you that inconsistency and a lack of regard for statistics are poor blogging habits. I just wanted to tell you that I’ve had more “twinning” moments and written far more comments on your blog than any other. I hope the new year brings you and your family peace and joy. xo Nipa

    • Suzanne W
      AUTHOR

      I know the experts would say that Nipa and I’ve gone through phases of trying to adhere to it but it just makes me feel under pressure and all the joy goes out of it for me. I’ll never make it my full-time business. Thank you so much for taking the time to say what you did about my blog and it’s been great getting to ‘know’ you this year, albeit virtually! xx

  • Sarah MumofThree World

    Like you I find that my thought provoking posts are the ones that get the greatest number of comments – usually from my lovely regular readers who have been so supportive over the years. They don’t get the most views, but they’re often the posts that I’m most proud of.
    Looking back about five years I used to get far more comments than I do now, but I think that’s down to the way blogging and the community has changed so much.

    • Suzanne W
      AUTHOR

      I think we are most proud of those posts because our heart and soul have gone into them. I probably still get a reasonable amount of comments but not as many as I used to – there’s so much online information to draw people in these days, it’s difficult to be heard!

  • Plutonium Sox

    I don’t really feel like the community has gone out of blogging if I’m honest. Early on in my blogging endeavours, I really needed a community because we were going through a tough time as a community and actually, I didn’t really find that many people out there that I connected with. More recently though, I’m chatting a lot to other bloggers and meeting up at various events and the community spirit is better for me. I always enjoy your blog and often feel compelled to comment, so you’re definitely getting it right from that perspective. I look forward to reading more in 2019.
    Nat.x

    • Suzanne W
      AUTHOR

      I guess what I mean is, I hear people saying that people don’t comment as much and they just converse on social media. That’s true to a degree but I want to try to keep an open dialogue on my blog where possible. I’m not great at getting to blogging events so chatting online is important to me 🙂 xx

  • Jean

    Hi Suzanne, yours is one of the few blogs I still read regularly and I enjoy the variety of posts. Keep being inconsistent, it suits you, and best wishes to you and your family for the new year x

    • Suzanne W
      AUTHOR

      Thank you so much Jean, I really appreciate your loyalty and comment. Happy new year to you all too. x

  • Gail

    Yours is one of the blogs I really enjoy reading Suzanne. I like that there is a bit of everything so it covers lots of bases interest-wise. Like you, I struggle to get myself motivated to looks into stats etc., as I feel it takes the joy out of it a bit (plus, I’m hopeless technically)! It is of course nice when people read and comment though. Look forward to reading lots more from you next year. Oh, and keep being as inconsistent as you wish! xx

    • Suzanne W
      AUTHOR

      Thank you for the ‘permission’ Gail! I just find stats boring and that’s probably another reason why I’ll never be world-famous. I’m more thank okay with that, in case you were wondering 😉 xx

  • Tracey Williams

    Keep doing what you are doing Suzanne, and for me the comments far outweigh all the SEO and page views. You write from the heart, take beautiful pictures, and are honest and inspiring. Hopefully we get to meet in real life in 2019. Lots of love to you and your family xx

    • Suzanne W
      AUTHOR

      Thank you Tracey. I know that my images leave a lot to be desired (I only ever use an iphone and definitely need lessons on lighting!) but I try. I also enjoy it and for me, that’s the main thing. xx

  • Catherine

    I enjoy reading them too! And sometimes I find out new things about you even though as your sister I should really know them already!

    • Suzanne W
      AUTHOR

      I probably share more on my blog than I do in real life and we just don’t see each other enough!

  • Suzanne I am sitting in a hotel room having spent the last couple of days trying to sort out my eldest’s university accommodation and having only looked online fleetingly over the last few weeks of Christmas and New Year decided to dip into twitter and found your post. I am so close to quitting and walking away and actually needed to read something from an old pro about why we all do it to keep me on track. It is like an addiction. This time last year I was in the early throes of cancer and my blog took me through it to be honest and now I think where to now but it really doesn’t matter if it is not regular it is more about quality for me and you reiterated that so perfectly . As for stats- what are they? Thanks for your pertinent reminder of what matters.

    • Suzanne W
      AUTHOR

      Wow, what a comment! This has really made my blogging year tbh, Jo. I find blogging hard sometimes, wondering if I’m doing it ‘properly’ but I’ve finally accepted that the only person I’m really doing it for is me and that’s fine. I would encourage you to do the same. You’ve clearly had an awful 2018 and blogging helped. It’s certainly done the same for me over the years. I’ll take that!

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