It’s Q&A time once again! Today’s question comes from formspring, and it’s a good one:
What’s your advice for someone who wants to start a blog but is too scared of not saying anything meaningful/too intimidated by technology/ too lazy to actually do it?
Well, this is really three questions, isn’t it? Oh what the hey, I’ll answer them all.
If you’re scared of not saying anything meaningful, I’d just like to invite you to read the past six years of Onward Hoe!, and then tell me why you think that blogging requires depth, insight and/or meaning to be worthwhile. I mean, if that’s the kind of blog you want to have, then obviously you’ll need to start digging deep into your heart/psyche for some powerful stuff. But I write about food and the gas it causes me to have, traveling and seeing water-skiing squirrels (ok I know I STILL haven’t done that), crazy dreams I have, and ridiculous things I find on the internet. Here and there, you might find something poignant or thought-provoking, but by and large, this really is not that sort of blog. And yours doesn’t have to be that sort of blog either. There are all kinds. Here are some examples:
- Humor Blogs – I hope you’re on one right now. I never really intended it to be put into a category, but I am told it’s funny, so there you go. A few other notable humor blogs are Cake Wrecks, Jennsylvania and Stuff White People Like.
- Parenting Blogs, which were originally called Mommy Blogs, but then daddies started writing them too, and it wasn’t PC or something to call daddies “Mommy Bloggers,” so we had to change it.
- Hobby Blogs – Do I really need to explain this?
- Political Blogs – These are the kinds of blogs I don’t visit.
- Pop Culture Blogs
- Celebrity Gossip Blogs
- Personal Gossip Blogs
- Travel Blogs
- Sports Blogs
- Religious Blogs
- Photography Blogs
- Blogs about blogging
- Marketing Blogs
Oh my gosh there are a million different kinds of blogs that don’t require you to have anything meaningful to say ever! Isn’t that freeing?? And here’s another little tid-bit to free you from this fear: There are well over 100 MILLION WEBSITES on the internet, so if your blog isn’t “meaningful,” it’s likely that no one will ever notice.
Too intimidated by technology, you say? Y’all. Blogging is SUPER-easy. If you can send an email, you can post a blog. I know I use WordPress software now, but honestly, if I were just starting out again, I would use Blogger.com. That’s where I started, and it walks you through every step of setting the thing up, so you literally don’t have to know anything about web design or html code or anything. You don’t have to download anything, you don’t have to install anything, you just have to do the writing. Amazingly simple. And if you need help, you can email me.
If you’re too lazy, well that’s your own fault. I don’t know that there’s a lot I can do to help you there as I’m pretty lazy myself, but here’s my thought: If you want to do something – like REALLY want to do it – you do it. We can all agree that sloth is my deadly sin of choice, and that I have a slight fear of commitment, but I’ve been blogging regularly for six years. SIX YEARS! The trick for me has been to not think too much about my commitment to the blog, but just to write what I think is funny or interesting. And I see a lot of funny/interesting things.
If you ever have moments in your life when you think, “Oh my gosh I have to tell somebody about this,” then you can blog. Like the other day, I was getting into my car to go to work. I had just eaten dinner, and I really wanted something sweet. I wondered if I had any candy in my car, and then I opened the door and saw half a bag of lemon drops in the console. And y’all, OUT LOUD, alone in my car, in a voice like Mae West saying, “Why don’t you come up and see me sometime,” I said, with regard to lemon drops, “Ring-a-ding-ding.” And immediately, I needed to tell someone about it.
Now, that is a story best told in person so you can actually hear me say it, but that’s what I’m talking about – moments when you think, “Who can I tell about what has just happened?” I have a lot of those moments, so I am rarely hard-up for material, and that is what provides me with the motivation to make it happen (nearly) every day.
If that doesn’t help you, then once again, remind yourself that if you start a blog and then don’t keep up with it, probably not many people will notice or care. At least that takes the pressure off.
So no matter what the reason you haven’t started a blog, I just want you to know that if I can do it, you can do it. If you really want to, that is.