Window on my world — 01 January 2013

bloggers_block-1I could have entitled this post . . . and why won’t the blog just write itself, for my New Year resolution that I must spend more time writing and less fiddling with the nuts and bolts behind the scenes of the blog has been broken in under a day.

First I caught the vomiting virus and two days after that came a cold. No work, no London, nothing to write about. Now here’s the thing: You go for months with loads of inspiration and then you’re under the weather for a few days and suddenly it all stops.

I am scratching my head staring at a lone cursor blinking in the middle of a blank white screen. So why do bloggers put themselves through this? I started nearly 4 years ago as a little light distraction and after trying various platforms and blog names within a short time I realised that not only did I have something to say about London you, dear reader, were willing to contribute with comments, suggestions and occasional guest posts.

On the 4th anniversary of CabbieBlog next month I’ve scheduled my 21 tips for bloggers, one of which will be that you don’t beat yourself up trying to write on a regular basis. Better to have one good post than 10 bland ones. So why am I worrying because one bi-weekly post is missed?

The attraction of blogging is writing about a subject you live – in my case it is London – and sharing your passion with others from around the world. Look at the map at the foot of this blog for how spreads over the globe CabbieBlog’s readers are.

The problem is exacerbated is your chosen blog is about an unchanging subject – say chewing gum through the ages. But for London, which seems to reinvent itself every 10 years, the opportunities for writers are endless. I know of at least 20 top London bloggers (see my blog list on the right) and curiously many are not born and bred Londoners.

So why would anyone want to put themselves under pressure to write regular posts? Many just start a blog with a few well chosen pieces which become less and less over the first few weeks and then after a month the passion to communicate goes away and www.chewinggumthroughtime.com becomes another dead digital spot which even the author seems to forget exist.

For others – myself included – writing is a feeling of catharsis. It costs nothing to put pen to paper and even the most obscure topic will be read by someone in the world who might even reply.

So this week I plan to return to London, its streets might not be paved with gold, but I know somewhere there will be a nugget to write about.

Watch this (blank) space.

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Gibson

(4) Readers Comments

  1. Ah, been there my friend. It’s funny the pressure we bloggers put ourselves under to deliver posts at regular, but arbitrarily decided intervals. And do you know what? When I’ve got stuck, or felt less inspired than unusual, or not posted for a while, nothing bad happened. Kind readers didn’t hassle for more or stop following my blog in droves. They just welcomed me back when I did post again…and I’m sure your readers will do the same; I certainly will!

    • Thanks for the kind remarks . . . and Yes, Accidental Londoner was one ofthe blogs I had in mind when mentioning that some of the best are from ‘Out of Towners’.

  2. People blog for many reasons but you can perhaps divide blogs roughly into two groups, “professional” and “hobbyist”. I count as “professional” those blogs that support a business or an association or retails news, etc. Such blogs obviously need to be updated regularly or risk it being thought that the organization is in decline.

    Hobbyists have an easier time of it – or should have. Some hobbyists are driven and feel they have to update to a regular pattern and thereby make a rod for their own backs. I early decided to avoid that and resolved never to apologize – as some do – for a period without posts. It is my blog and I decide how to run it. If I don’t post for a while, then that’s my business. I blog because I enjoy blogging and if I were to set myself too exacting a schedule, I would no longer enjoy it and that would be the death of my hobby.

    I agree wholeheartedly with your proposition that one good post is worth ten bland ones. That is true both for the blogger, who will feel great satisfaction at writing a good piece, and for the readers who will enjoy the good post too.

    I suspect that many people today keep up with new posts by putting their favourite blogs in an RSS reader or some similar device. They read new posts as these appear and don’t need to go around all the blogs looking to see if they have updated. In that case, if a blogger has not posted for a while, this may not be obvious to even the most dedicated readers. All they know is when a new post pops up for them to enjoy.

    A blogger such as yourself with a keen and knowledgeable interest in London and its inexhaustible supply of stories and topics of interest, need not fear running out of material or inspiration. The occasional blank period – whether for reasons of health or otherwise – is only to be expected, but it will soon pass and then it will be “business as usual”. You have a blogger’s talent, sir, and need only trust in it.

    • Yes many of our readers will only pick us up from our RSS feeds and don’t sit at home fretting if they have not read our musings for a period of time.

What do you have to say for yourself?