I’ve been blogging for a little over two years now. You would think I would have been a best-selling author and have publishing houses begging for my signature on book deals by now. But alas… it’s been a slow journey. I have no complaints though. While my personal life has seen better days in the past few years, blogging has been like the first sip of morning coffee. Warm and comforting.
Of course, I’d be lying if I said there were no low points of being completely uninspired and unmotivated. But even at those times, I always knew that I had a little niche that was all my own. I had a small following of people who gave me the satisfaction of having clicked on my blog link even if they could have cared less for its content. Every single view that shows up in my blog stats gets a celebratory smile of gratefulness and satisfaction even till today.
And so, for all the ups and downs of this blog, here are some lessons I managed to take from it:
1. WordPress is the best platform for bloggers. And I’m not just saying that because I’m dying to get Freshly Pressed. (HINT, WordPress. Hint)
2. I’m a much better writer than a speaker. Which means if you are a regular reader of my blog, you’re getting a much better deal out of me as a writer than my real life friends get out of me as a verbal-diarrhea-inclined noise box.
3. The best blog posts I’ve ever written were borne out of social tragedies such as imbeciles on public transit, embarrassing myself in front of attractive men and dating disasters, rather than Google search results for ‘best blog post ideas’.
4. To write well, you have to write what you know. If all you know is how to unsuccessfully run a small business of selling stolen articles, then starting a blog filled with posts on why this a bad idea from your jail cell may be the best idea you could have ever had. Knowing your niche is key.
5. You may be a good writer when you start writing. But you will be a better one if you keep at it… and then maybe even a great one someday without even realising it. But one thing’s for sure, regardless of whether continued blogging makes you a good writer or a great writer, it sure will make you an expert typer.
6. For some bloggers, writer’s block is just another word for fear or stress. But for me, more often than not, it’s another word for laziness.
7. I have the best blog readers in the world.
8. If you can capture your reader’s attention in the first paragraph, then it can be said with a significant amount of certainty that you’ve got them hooked for the rest of it. If however, your way of capturing attention is by posting a nude photo of yourself as the first paragraph then maybe blogging is not for you.
9. Sometimes, the difference between a great blog post with 40 views and an average blog post with 250 views is a catchy blog title. Actually, that’s ALWAYS the difference.
10. Rome wasn’t built in one day. And your blog will not be a smash hit in 3 months. Unless you get Freshly Pressed 15 times in a row. In which case, you’re probably awesome and I’d want to be featured on your blog and ride that wave with you.
There are other lessons that I have learnt but that would throw off the perfect number 10. If you are a blogger, I`d like to know what you`ve learnt from this whole experience? And if you are a 15 time Freshly Pressed blogger, make yourself known.
UPDATE: Dear Everyone,
On March 13th, 2012, over a month after I published this post, WordPress actually Freshly Pressed it! I was only (half)joking about getting Freshly Pressed. And now I am overwhelmed with all the sweet and encouraging responses this is getting. I cannot thank you all (and WordPress of course) enough for this. Please know that every single one of your ‘likes’, views, follows and wonderful comments got a VERY happy “celebratory smile of gratefulness and satisfaction”. (I haven’t stopped smiling). I will try my very best to respond to all of your comments. Thank you all so much once again.