In November I took up Blogging U.’s Blogging 101 course as well as NaBloPoMo in an attempt to kick-start my renewed blogging venture. Was it a success or a failure? What did I learn in the process?
As happens so frequently with new hobbies, it started out well, with lots of enthusiasm and commitment. Then more pressing tasks like work (the kind that actually produces a pay check), household chores and year-end social functions demanded a lot of my time and distracted me. Then I missed a day of posting and started to fall behind on assignments. And once you lose momentum, it becomes easier to put things off until the next day, and then the day after, and the day after that… You know how it is.
I completed about 50% of the Blogging 101 assignments. NaBloPoMo count: 12 out of 30 days of posting.
What I’ve gained:
- I visually improved my blog with a new header photo as well as a new background. Some advice and suggestions from bloggers at the Blogging 101 Commons were a big help in this regard.
- I discovered some new blogs, interacted with other bloggers more than ever before and, in the process, passed the 50 follower mark to end up with 78 followers today.
- 167 visitors and 445 views during November.
- I have a small collection of draft posts and outlines that will (hopefully) soon be ready for posting.
What I’ve learned:
- Writing takes time. You don’t always have it. You need to put in effort to make the time you need to meet your writing goals.
- Other aspects of blogging (reading and commenting on other blogs, fine tuning the look of your blog, finding images for your posts…) also takes time. You don’t always have it.
- It is hard to “write on demand”. Sometimes you just have nothing to say. Or at least, at that moment, you can’t think of anything.
- Writing prompts can be very useful. It can assist getting past the blank stare at the screen.
- Once you have an idea in your head it is easy to start writing a post and get a decent outline or even a rough draft done. It is not so easy to finish it and get it ready for posting. Through November I started various posts and wrote the gist of it but quite a few of them are still sitting in drafts folders waiting to be finalised and polished. It’s a bit like crochet: it is easy and fun to start a project and do the actual crocheting, but tying off the yarn ends, working them away and stitching together the pieces of the work is a chore that most will like to be able to avoid.
So, success or failure? Success, I would say, or at least decent progress, despite not having completed the course assignments or published a post every day of November.
Now to tackle 2015.