Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Why I will never be a professional blogger

I follow quite a few blogs in my trusty Google reader. Sometimes I feel overwhelmed by the number of posts that come through during the day. Luckily, I can star them and come back to them... anyway, the point is - I follow a few blogs where the writer is a full-time blogger. She makes money by blogging. And has many, many followers (hundreds of thousands in some cases!). And it appears that these professional bloggers get some sweet perks out of the deal - free stuff, amazing products to give away... as long as she promotes it on said blog that has 10s of thousands if not 100s of thousands of readers/followers.

Doesn't all of that sound good? Not only the free stuff, but the popularity/fame that goes along with it. Seems to me that many of these writers end up with book deals at some point, too (not a given, I'm sure, but many of the most popular that I've followed).

So about once a year I explore the idea. Research how to get more traffic on my lil ol' space on the internet. I spend a couple of hours on it and then decide: its just not worth it (to me). So here are the reasons why I will never be a professional blogger (okay, right now anyway... maybe when all three girls are in school and I'm super bored I'll rethink this idea):

* as if you haven't noticed... blogging regularly comes in spurts for me. at some point it becomes a chore and when that happens, I check out entirely for a month or more at a time.

* I have a problem sticking with a specific theme or point of view. My thoughts are pretty random based on what I'm reading or doing at the time that I'm blogging. many of these blogs are centered around themes: photography, cooking, gift giving, baking, minimalism, crafting, etc. Can't seem to focus my energy or passion enough on one specific topic to make it a "theme" for my blog... which means there is no specified target audience.

* I like to read blogs in my reader... and then I don't leave comments (unless it is someone I personally know). leaving comments is one big way to build readership and eh, i'm too lazy to do it. besides, on the most popular blogs, there are so many comments that i can't imagine the writer, let alone the readers wade through every single one of them to find a new blog... my guess is that readers click through and eventually follow blogs that are highlighted in a post - not through comments.

* along with being lazy about leaving comments, i'm also very lazy about hyper-linking anything. in my intro paragraph to this post I could have - and should have - linked several blogs up there for my (few) readers to find. yeah, i just don't feel like it most of the time - writing takes up enough time, finding all of the links and them placing them just right in the text takes up too much of my time for me to care.

* researching ideas sounds like a whole lot of no fun to me.

* i'm not uber confident in my opinion about many things. actually, i'm fine with my opinion on things, but i don't like to create conflict with other people regarding my opinion. in general, my opinion about ANYTHING is this: I have enough responsibility in making decisions for myself and my family... I certainly don't want the responsibility of making your decisions or decisions for the rest of the world. I have thoughts on public/private schools, daycare/SAHM, liberal/conservative, CRC/non-denominational and any other topic out there... however, they're just my thoughts and i have no desire to try to argue someone into thinking the same way as I do - conversely, i have even less desire to prompt someone to try to argue me into thinking the same way as him/her. I like to discuss and toss about ideas - i don't like "my way is the only way and you are wrong if you don't agree". I don't like it that people in my life gasp when they find out that I'm moderately liberal (which assumes then, that I'm also moderately conservative), or that my family goes to church on Saturday night instead of Sunday morning or any number of decisions that our family has made. Suffice it to say - if you know me well enough, you can assume that my/our decisions are well thought out and carefully made and you need not worry about my salvation simply because we choose to go to church on Saturday.

Wow - did I really go there? Totally not intending to, oops!

* along with being lazy about leaving comments and hyper-linking, I'm also lazy about including photos. ugh... the tutorials that people do and post are awesome. I love the cooking tutorials on some of these blogs, but the thought of doing them myself? makes me want to cut my hand off with a butter knife. and posting them... the time it takes to upload them and put them in the proper order - no thanks, i'll iron instead.

So I guess I'll never have more than a few readers and I'm okay with that. Since this is my space to "get it out of my head" i'm content with not writing to the masses.

how about you? any thoughts of going pro? if not, why not?


Jen 9:08 AM  

I'm actually looking into it~not so much for all the ad space and all of that but for a specific amount of cash. I have a friend who is a nurse and keeps a blog about her experiences. She makes $300 per month for 3 posts per week. We are in a position where I need to get creative about bringing in cash and this is one more small way I can without paying for daycare.

That being said, I'm with you. I'm afraid to commit to being required to blog. I also am a spurt blogger~I have months with 20 posts and I have months with two posts. I'm also like you with the sharing of ideas. I love a good natured discussion but that often can't happen~especially online without tone of voice and body language to temper the discussion. I have no desire to become Pioneer Woman but a few extra 100 bucks per month would sure help!

Amy 10:08 PM  

I thought about this too and looked briefly into it. I wanted to be a writer when I was a little kid and one of my aunts said she always thought I was going to write books. The problem was when I got to high school and took writing classes. I loved the writing assignments but HATED proofreading, fixing grammar, etc. It took all the fun out of it for me.

How do you be a professional blogger? Where do you start? I, too, am probably way too lazy to pursue it. I am at the computer way too much as it is.

I guess I would pursue it more if I knew it would generate income. Getting published is so difficult. I have submitted articles to magazines and the Banner bought one of my articles, but have not published it. I would really like to write a book on raising PK's, but I think I need to be older and wiser since I am not into the school or adolescent years yet.

Skooks 12:23 AM  

I think it can be a very fine line. You have to be really good with your regular content to bring in the sponsors. But then you also have to maintain your integrity with whom you choose to partner with and endorse on your blog so it's not all about money and "stuff". I am not huge by any means, but my readership is going up. I have been offered a total of 1 endorsement/review deal by a large corporation and I have to this point ignored it. I think I could figure out a way to make it "fit" in with my content, but I'm not sure I want to have to figure a way to make it fit, you know? I'm not really into huge corporations, but I also don't think they're evil. So maybe it could work? Whatever. I can see only taking deals for products/companies you believe in, but you really have to seek out opportunities and put a ton of time into building your name and getting yourself out there to up your readership. I have seen people who have a total of 4 blog posts and have Google ads on the side along with boxes that say "Your ad here". Are they kidding? Seriously, who's going to buy ad space when you have 4 piddly posts about how you really want to blog for money so that you can stay home with your kids? You MUST start with and stick with EXCELLENT content. About something. Anything. That is the most important thing. And you have to keep it regular or you'll lose readers. If those things don't sound appealing, forget the whole thing. If they do, get to writing. I think you're a fantastic writer and whatever subject your writing on at whatever moment in time is working for me! ;)

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