Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Non-Social Blogging

Blogging Questions????
It was not my plan - it just happen. Over the past 3 years I have become a pretty good "non-social blogger" and it is not something I am happy about or proud of.


Blogging has been a gift to me - a place to be me - to express what is on my heart or bottled up running around my head. Blogging has changed my life, and honestly, helped me to heal and become whole.... the person I was created to be.

I recently read this quote:
"‘Social media is about engagement and interaction,’ he says. ‘It’s more about community and posing the question, rather than having all the answers.’” (From a blog called Mashable, supposedly one of the best all time bloggers)
 I do really like the concept he writes about. In thinking about it, I have probably been highly guilty of "having all the answers." At least more so, in the earliest of years... but probably do still to some degree. I figure what are you writing about if you don't have an opinion or know about the topic, but that must not be "blogging".

What is really strange is when I am in person I like to listen and learn about others. I am about 95% better listener, but still have a way to go. I will not deny I am on the upper end of talkers... I love talking with people... not with myself... (but I do occasionally talk to myself, I am not sure I answer myself)

I love to learn so I read a lot... I have books everywhere about me. But as most readers, I have discovered that the more you learn the more you know how much you don't know. This has been growing more and more as I get older... dare I even say wiser... or just old lady since I am nearing the 50 mark.

And really, it is not that I am a know it all. I just usually have an opinion on most things, and I am definitely discovering that my opinion more and more needs to be refined, evaluated, and re-adjusted in a perpetual pattern.

I usually write "a slice of life" telling what I see/observe, experience, feel or learned. Isn't that blogging?

Maybe I haven't learned the art of engagement and interaction, but I would like to begin to do this more. I think I am more of a teller, an informer, a reporter... especially in writing... than being an engaging, interactive conversationalist.

So what do you think? How do you build a sense of community on your blog? What have you done or how do you approach post to interact and engage? And should I ask, what do you see that cuts out or limits a social atmosphere on my blogs?


3 comments:

  1. I too have trouble with generating community on my blog. I started out the same. A place to share my thoughts, to heal, and now I am trying to make it more interactive. I use questions and try to think about my readers as I do so, but I will be honest - I have only had slight success. I am more of a listener than a talker in person. I don't know if that has anything to do with it or not. I don't know how to draw my readers out of hiding to a place of discussion. Any tips would be delightful. For now, I just know I need to be more mindful of writing posts and of commenting on others blogs as well. With my daughter starting Kindergarten next week, I've let that take a back seat for now.

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  2. Jamie, Thank you for your detailed comment. I will check out your blog. I have found an ever greater silence with twitter. When I first started there, it was like stopping by for a cup of coffee any time of the day and getting instant replies from new people. I loved it... now it is buy this, check out my website, go here, more for info and marketing... what a bummer that was. It is no longer fun. Maybe someone needs to start gabber in its place... for simply talk, advice, questions, sharing, laughing, praying, and caring.

    It seems social network gurus take over all the new, fun stuff and make it into a business of some sorts... always angling to improve themselves or building a platform. What ever happen to not using people, and just enjoying people for who they are.

    Again, thank you for sharing.

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  3. I've been re-evaluating my blogging habits since I've taken more steps toward writing professionally.

    After witnessing years ago time-wasting, petty conflicts initiated by highly social bloggers, I got rather disgusted with blogging in general. I didn't want to be known as a blogger, and I didn't want to blog about personal things anymore. I didn't want to risk becoming paranoid and narcissistic by exposing lots of personal things in the blogosphere, which is what I perceived to be happening to other bloggers.

    (I've often cringed at the overblown, fancy pants blog posts and comments I wrote as a teenager.)

    Thus, in the past couple of years, I've essentially diminished my blogging to only cross-posting excerpts of my polished, professional articles published at various outlets.

    However, due to garnering page views being part of my job requirement at WT Communities, I've been advised to not cross-post until well after the article has been out, lest Google News get confused and page views split between my blog and the Washington Times website.

    This has caused me to re-think the use of my blog. I try to be far above the fray in relation to commenters on my column, but I often see comments that ask reasonable questions and deserve answers. I've decided to (when worthwhile) make posts on my blog that follow-up my column and respond to legitimate questions. After all, I really do care about my readers, and this is where souls are involved.

    Being "above the fray" doesn't mean that I have to hide out in an ivory tower, acting too stuffy and important to listen to other ideas. But it does mean that I must have the discernment to answer legitimate points.

    I'm also planning to send out an e-newsletter every time that I publish an article. The newsletter will be a simple e-mail that contains links to my columns as well as my blog posts and other items of interest.

    This should increase site traffic, which will serve as a means of income as well.

    Anyway, I've never made it a goal to become a "social blogger", but I don't want to be an anti-social blogger either. Site hosting and internet cost...we need to get as much out of them as possible and be contributors!

    ~ Amanda

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Blogging is relational; I would love to have a comment from you.