Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Confessions of a Blogging Chicken

As most of you have probably noticed (since a lot of you have already entered my Meg Cabot contest) I hit 600 followers this week--which is just CRAZY to me. Part of that is because I have no idea what I'm doing--so I find it incredible that there's over 600 people willing to click that little button and become a follower. But...it's also because, for the longest time, when it came to blogging, I was a big, giant chicken.

For one thing, I'd definitely been trying to keep my writing habit on the DL. I think we've all gotten "the look" from our friends when we tell them we write, and we just know they're secretly thinking "Ha! Good one!" I'd been through that when I went to film school, and I just wasn't in the mood to go through it again. So writing was kind of my dirty little secret.

Plus...I just couldn't imagine anyone would ever care enough to read my posts. My positive, self confident self (said in a tone DRIPPING with sarcasm) kept reminding me that I'm nobody--just some silly girl in So Cal who rambles a bit too much and is struggling to reach the same goal thousands of other people were trying to reach. Why would anyone care about my journey?

But, EVERY writing advice article I'd read said I should be blogging, so I finally decided to give it a chance.  I created this blog in one evening, wondering if I was crazy the whole time. I accumulated a massive SEVEN followers--all family members, btw--and for about two months that's where I stayed. I blogged every day, and I'd get maybe one or two comments, and that was that.

As the days passed though, I realized I wanted more.

I'd been to other blogs. I'd seen the way the blogosphere was like its own community--its own support group--and I wanted to be a part of it. So even though I had no idea what I was doing, I threw myself into the deep end and did everything I could think of to connect with other writers. And the response has just been...overwhelming.

I still have a long way to go. I'm always pushing myself to write better posts, to reply to all of your wonderful comments, to visit more of your awesome blogs and read your posts and cheer on in your journeys (sadly revision took a huge chunk out of my blog hopping time lately. Sorry about that!). But starting this blog has still been one of the best decisions I've made.

I'll talk a little more tomorrow about why (I've learned to try to keep my posts shorter). But for today, I'd love to know:

Were any of you guys nervous or reluctant to start a blog? And what made you decide to give it a try?

32 comments:

  1. Hah! I think you know my answer. If you remember a post I wrote about a week or two ago. I started my blog by ACCIDENT. Ugh. I was so nervous. Still am. But with time, I'm learning how to find myself within my blog posts. I'm not there by far, but I also believe it's making me a better writer.

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  2. Congrats on making it to 600 that's an amazing feat! Whoo-hoo!

    Well, I guess I started becasue I just wanted to force myself to write more non-wip related stuff. If I didn't have a blog I wouldn't do it.

    I also desperately wanted to meet other writers. I live in Greece, so as you can imagine it's very rare to meet an English speaking fiction writer here.

    I so wanted to enter your contest, but I'm not in the US! :(

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  3. Congrats on 600!
    I heard about blogs several years ago at a book conference and decided to give it a try. It was a lonely venture until it finally dawned on me that I needed to comment on other blogs to get comments on mine. Yes, one of those "DUH!" moments.

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  4. Wow! 600 followers is beyond awesome! Congrats!!

    And, yes. I was a reluctant blogger. Total chicken.

    sf

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  5. I was nervous, and still am. I'm such a private person to begin with that putting myself out there is difficult. But I learned that it's also fun, which helps me keep going!

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  6. I started a blog because I had a lot to say and no place else to say it.

    (My word verification is "ended." I'm not sure what that's supposed to mean.)

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  7. I started blogging because I'd left teaching to write full-time (...without an agent or a contract, mind you), and I figured I needed to do everything in my power to get published.

    My blog didn't sell my book, but I can tell you my agent and editor both visited before talking with me.

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  8. Totally reluctant about the time commitment. I learned the ropes on a family blog, then jumped in with two feet (just barely). I've really enjoyed getting to know the writing/blogging community. It's great! So supportive.

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  9. I was scared to death to start a blog. I had never read a blog before for that matter. I had no clue what I was doing or what I would post. And, like you, my writing was a secret from pretty much everyone. In fact, it still kind of is. However, as fate would have it, I met Frankie at a writers conference here in PA. We exchanged emails and a couple of months later, she encouraged me to start one. She told me about the support and how it would help my craft, etc. So, I listened to her. I'm so glad I did.

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  10. 600?! That's awesome. I'm a new follower...so maybe 601 now :-)

    I resisted blogging because I had NO idea what I write and when I write. Now that I've begun, I'm addicted. There are so many great writers in the blogosphere. I've enjoyed meeting new people and finding out that I'm not alone in the trials and tribulations of this crazy industry.

    And, I've really had no problem figuring out what to write :-)

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  11. Congrats on 600 followers! I started blogging as a way to join the writing community while developing that online presence. It's been a great journey, connecting with so many like-minded people.

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  12. First of all- congrats on all your followers! Secondly- Great question! Yes, I was totally hesitant to start blogging. First of all because i wasn't convinced I had much to blog about. Secondly because I spend so much time on the computer as it is. But then one night before bed 'Creepy Query Girl' came to me and I though - yeah. Maybe I do have something to say.

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  13. Originally, I was a blog skeptic. I didn't see the point in writing about my boring yet stressful life, let alone the random thoughts that I have every two seconds. Then I started reading some of my friend's blogs and I got the urge.

    Stupid peer pressure that isn't even pressure because nobody is actually saying that you need to blog but omg it so feels like pressure because you're suddenly filled with the need to do it.

    3 years and I haven't looked back. Best decision of my life. ^_^

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  14. Congrats on 600!!!

    I thought about starting a blog for months but the only thing I could think of to blog about was writing. Writing about writing??? Seemed kind of redundant! But then I discovered other blogs about writers, books, and writing and I figured if they can do it, I can too! Everyone seemed like they were having such a great time connecting with other writers. I'm so glad I started blogging because meeting other writers in all areas of the journey has been so most encouraging and inspiring!

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  15. The whole social networking thing is hard for me..hard and exhausting. I have had to really look at what I hope to get out of it...what I hope to give back...and go from there! Sounds like you are doing a great job. Keep it up.

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  16. I actually wasn't nervous to start one. I had a blog a few years ago (not for writing) with a friend of mine and we had so much fun doing it! But I was surprised by the amount of support that the writing blogosphere offers one another... and impressed =)

    (And it led me to my CPs, so I'll be forever grateful of course!)

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  17. Do I even need to answer this question? lol

    I am so glad you started blogging! We never would have found each other!!! ;o)

    I blog now because it feeds a need but also because to be honest I like being a part of such an outstanding community. Your advice, posts, armadillos and now chickens have helped me through some rough patches and I am grateful every day that you decided to go for it! Plus I am so proud of you! ;o)

    Visit My Kingdom Anytime

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  18. I wasn't really nervous to start blogging. I think it's fun and I love to write! I actually used to have a running blog, but literally no one followed it. I got I think two comments in about 4 months of blogging. And obviously I'm not a runner anymore. But I was nervous when I realized that I cared about this blog and wanted people to read it. So I guess it wasn't actually starting it that made me anxious, but the moment I found I cared enough to seek others out like, "Hey! Read this!" (but not actually say that. Just seek them out and hope that, because I can occasionally be awesome, they want to read it on their own.)

    Congrats on 600! I think I remember when you were celebrating a much smaller number :)

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  19. Nervous to start blogging?

    Of course not. Only because I was sure no one would ever read it.

    Actually I'm only kidding, I can totally relate to all your points. It's a wonderful community and I have learned so much in just these few short months!

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  20. It's like reading my story.... minus 584 followers ;) And after one year, I'm still the same. I have a blog because I love them. Period. I like the look, the feel, hitting the publish button. I love it. Therefore I'm very careful as to how serious I take my blog. Otherwise I'd shut it down in a heart beat. Fact is, I'm not a great blogger, but I love it and that's reason enough to do it. For me.

    Great post :)

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  21. Nervous? Yes. Reluctant? Yes. I dove in for the same reasons you did - everything I read said it was what I should be doing. Best thing I ever did!! :-)

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  22. To stay more on point... Even though I'm crazy nervous after every single press of that publish button, I still do it. Even knowing that in a years time I've really only posted a hand full of really great posts, I still do it. It's just fun.

    There. Now I can be happy and continue on...

    PS Again, you deserve the followers, the blog is fabulous!

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  23. I had a blog a long time ago. Then I lost my password. But it wasn't much anyways.

    I was thinking about starting a blog for fantasy book reviews for a couple of days. I was reluctant because I assumed it would crash and burn like blog #1. It's been under a week and it's still up. I consider this an accomplishment.

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  24. Congrats on all the followers. I like your blog and come here often. I originally started my blog to have something to do until NaNoWriMo started last year. I was sure no one would really want to read my blog. While I don't have a huge number of followers, I do enjoy blogging now. I generally put of reviews of the books I've read. I too used to be a blogging chicken too, baak, baak.

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  25. I read writing blogs for a couple of years before I started my own. I just didn't think anyone would want to read it. But it's been so much fun making blogging friends and trading with new CPs. I love blogging.

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  26. I was exactly the same. I was reading that you should have a internet presence but I kept thinking that I'd have nothing valid to say and no one would be interested.

    Starting my blog was one of the best things I've done.

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  27. I'd read a grand total of 2 blogs and maybe 4 total posts before starting one. Crazy stuff :)

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  28. I started my blog about 3 months ago, and a day later blogged about how I nearly quiet. I called it Blogging Bipolar disorder. But I must be cured (for now) because I'm still doing it!

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  29. I'm still nervous, but hoping to start one this summer after school's out. I'm afraid I'll run out of things to say or that it will take too much time. I already work full time. I hope you'll post some advice on how to grow your blog once you start it. Congrats on hitting 600.

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  30. YES! I'm always sure that I'm terribly uninteresting. I put off blogging for a very long time, but like you, think it was a great decision. The friendships/support have been invaluable.

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  31. I'm a fellow chicken! At times I felt like I didn't have anything to say, but darn it, I do!

    A fun list of reasons, and the rest of us are glad you're blogging too!

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  32. You really summed that up well. I can't think of anything else to add. Why oh why didn't I start blogging sooner? It's like having pen pals (does that date me?). :)

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