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Why bother to blog? July 21, 2012

Posted by ourfriendben in wit and wisdom.
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Our friend Ben was blindsided this morning to receive my weekly e-mail newsletter from a normally rational source and discover that he was recommending that everyone create their own blog on WordPress, whether they actually had anything to say for themselves or not. Mind you, Poor Richard’s Almanac is hosted by WordPress, and we love WordPress. My reaction wasn’t triggered by WordPress, but by the concept of filling cyberspace with yet more pointless verbiage. He suggested that, if you couldn’t think of anything else to say, you should write book reviews. 

What the bleep?!! Those of us, like myself and Silence Dogood, who are actual authors would prefer to think that people are reviewing our books because they find them interesting, engrossing or relevant, not because they’ve been told they must have a blog and come up with some kind of content to post on it. Why should anybody bother to blog in the age of YouTube, Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram, anyway? You can just slap up some photos or a video and get thousands of likes within seconds. Book reviews? Please.

Of course, wordsmiths like us were born to blog. Blogging may have begun as a way for people to reach out to their families and friends, a function that Facebook now fills. But for folks who actually have something to say for themselves, blogging remains a vital, relevant means of communication. You put it out there, and people react, and you learn and grow as a result. And for professional writers like me and Silence, the discipline of daily blogging is invaluable. It’s a wonderful way to start the day, warming us up for the bread-and-butter writing we do for a living the way a warmup session preps professional athletes for the field or court.

We love blogging, we love hearing from our readers and interacting with them, and we love WordPress. We think blogging has made us stronger writers, more creative, more able to rise to the challenge of our profession. Having to come up with something to say every day that you hope someone else will want to read is an ongoing challenge to us to keep on top of our game. Every morning, we try to rise to that challenge. We try to give Poor Richard’s Almanac readers something thought-provoking or practical to take away in thanks for their taking the time to read our posts, though sometimes we just can’t resist posting about something we think is fun or funny.

Our friend Ben just doesn’t get blogging because you “ought” to be blogging, not because you have something to say. Why? What’s the point? Fellow bloggers, why do you blog?

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Comments»

1. Daphne - July 21, 2012

Well I blog for a lot of reasons, but the reason I started was weird. I am so NOT a writer. I find it hard and time consuming. But it was a challenge to myself. As I get older I find challenging my brain a useful process. It is very similar to exercising my body.

Hi Daphne! I think that’s an excellent reason for blogging! It’s why I try to pick up new-to-me languages and guitar, and to force myself to play chess. Whatever it takes to keep the brain going!

2. gardenjoy4me (CanadianGardenJoy) - July 21, 2012

Hello there : )
Long time no comments ? LOL
This is a great question as to why each one us us blog .. the reasons should be as varied as the responders ? I would think.
I can’t believe I started way back in 2007 .. it was just a trial to see what it would be like .. now it helps me keep track of my garden progress, keep connected to other gardeners, and just for fun !
I’m not out here to deliver any great wisdom .. in fact just the opposite .. I can be just darn silly ! .. blogging is for entertainment for the most part I think .. either our own or to amuse a collected audience .. it is amazing what kind of comments and people take the time to stop and say hello. I really enjoy that part.
So .. why do I blog ? .. hum .. because it is fun .. plain and simple!
Joy … wink wink

Hi Joy! Wonderful to hear from you!!! And yes, it’s amazing to me that people ever bother to come onto our photoless blog and take the time to even read what we have to say, much less comment. But it’s certainly not a surprise that they head to your blog to enjoy your fabulous photos and get inspiration from your beautiful garden!

3. narf77 - August 1, 2012

I love this post. I started my blog to keep in touch with my aging mother who lived alone on the other side of the country and it grew from there. I am a frustrated writer and blogging killed 2 birds with one stone. I love being able to tweak my words and dabble in my 15 minutes of fame online. I don’t really care if the masses flock to my blog, I just want my dear constant readers to get their proverbial monies worth and at the end of each post sit back satiated with my verbosity for the week. I blog because I can (initially) and I must (now). Life is good because I blog. I can share my world with like minded people because I blog. I can head off into the ether after girding my loins with the carefully tended blogs of others and the secure knowledge that the path that I am about to tread has most likely been navigated before and someone out there has blogged about it. I blog, therefore I AM ;)

Ha!!! Oh, Fran. You ARE, therefore you blog! Given the complete dearth of photos and endless verbiage on Poor Richard’s Almanac, I especially love the auto-sent spam messages that inform us that our blog is good, but could we please add more content since our posts are too short? But maybe these folks aren’t spammers but the authors of the Oxford English Dictionary…

Diana of Elephant's Eye - September 9, 2012

my spam says = OY, why don’t you add photos?

Came back to your blog as I was searching for an objective look at ‘top-ranked’ blogger Pioneer Woman. As ever, I got happily lost amongst your ‘all these words’. That comment on one of your posts sparkles in my mind down the years we have blogged together.

Why don’t YOU add photos?!! Sheesh! Too bad nobody bothers to actually look at a blog before spamming.

Anyway, many thanks for the kind words, Diana! I’m so glad you continue to enjoy PRA. Comments like yours give me the enthusiasm to go on when I begin wondering if I’ve lost that creative spark after blogging all this time. You’ve even inspired me with a new post topic! (Yet more words… ) Thank you. And may Elephant’s Eye continue to prosper despite its apparent lack of photos!


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