What I look for in a blog

I posted a few weeks back about my experiences of blogging so far, and not having a niche, and lots of other potentially whingy stuff about followers and the like. I’ve seen a few things in the past couple of weeks that have made me revisit those thoughts – not in terms of myself, but in terms of others. What makes other people’s blogs attractive to me.Blog image

The first thing was this post from Misha Khan. I was drawn to it via one of her tweets, and she sums up a lot of what I feel about blogging. It’s the writing that I love, and writing is kind of different to being a blogger. And that’s ok.

The second was a Twitter exchange with Suzie81, based on a post I’d made about it being harder to make a success of a blog (in traditional “success measuring” terms) without a niche.

Twitter screenshot

Suzie commented that I should go with how I feel. Which is exactly what I’m doing anyway, as I can’t do anything else!

And the third was this from fashionbeautyacne, which sums up what I tried to say previously about numbers and followers and whether they’re that important. The answer to that one, I suppose, is what you want from your blog personally.

Niche blogs seem by far to be the most popular. I suppose some people want consistency, and like that in depth knowledge/opinion on one subject.

Me? I’m the opposite. I’m nosy. I want to read about people and their lives, their everyday comings and goings, their thoughts and opinions on everything. Not the fancy “I wore this and went here and received XYZ from such and such PR”. Sure, they’re ok in moderation. But being a bit of a cynical, critical and slightly bitter person (I’m nothing if not very aware of my shortcomings), they piss me off. Do they make me jealous? Maybe! (ouch).

I’m not a model, a clothes horse, a beautician or a professional photographer. I’m too self conscious to pose for photos to share with the world. I’m not knocking anyone that does. But I have too much of the “who do you think you are” mentality to do it myself. Sure, I’ll share pics of myself here and there. But I couldn’t build a blog on it. I couldn’t go to a public place and pull a multitude of poses then add filters and whittle down scores of snaps to just a handful. I don’t have the time or patience. It’s also just not me.

And perhaps that’s the reason I gravitate to blogs that I do. Because humour and experiences are way more up my alley. I like to read anecdotes. What people have been up to. What people think about a current issue (doesn’t have to be deep). Look at pictures of clothes, not 7 very similar perfect pictures of a person wearing those clothes. Read about travels and days out. See real accessible people talking about real accessible stuff, like a bargain lipstick or a new pair of sandals.

Maybe I’m just too old for the aspirational stuff. I’m never going to be flitting around to fancy locations in fancy clothes that have all been sponsored.

But that’s the beauty of blogland. There’s something out there for everyone. And that can only be a good thing.

On that note I’m going to name check a couple of blogs. Both of which I have found very recently, and both of which I genuinely love and look forward to new posts appearing.

Ellen Marie Writes. Lists. Always in 10s. Always brutally honest, with humour and real life language. Love it.

Disasters of a Thirty Something. Real life laugh out loud experiences. I love reading about funny stuff happening to people.

I see a lot of myself in both of these blogs – both content and writing style. Which leads me to believe I’m a blog narcissist. I actually want to read about me! (tongue firmly in cheek here, for anyone not getting the humour).

Oh, and apologies for sounding like a bitch! II’m really not! But I always promised myself that the blog would be true to me, and I like pondering stuff on here. I’d love to hear other people’s thoughts too.

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20 thoughts on “What I look for in a blog

  1. DeeJourney of a Fab Mom says:

    It’s so hard to find a niche.. I totally get it.
    Maybe you can check out my blog also in your searching. (Excuse my shameless plug)
    But seriously. I’m funny. I’m deep. I’m real. transparency is important. And so is the truth. For some though, that can be a bit much and i totally get it.

    Dee

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Beth Blacker says:

    EXACTLY!!!! As in this is exactly how I feel. I will never be able to put myself in a nicely wrapped box with a big bow on it and say “Ok, I’m here…and this is what I am sooooooooooooo good at.” I started my “real” blog earlier this year after closing my baked goods company (long story…if you like wine we can chat about it one day via Skype) because I have always enjoyed writing and think I do it a pretty good job at it. I joined a ton of blogging groups, linky parties, etc and quite frankly just find the majority of it all exhausting and not at all beneficial. So instead I am focusing on starting to do free lance work. I will maintain my blog but I can’t get into a bazillion affiliate links or become a “brand ambassador” for a bunch of products that I will never use. My time is needed elsewhere…like snuggling with my dog 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    • This, tatt and the other says:

      I think the key is that blogging and writing are two different things. For me having a blog is an outlet for my writing. For others blogging is a way of life.

      I’d say a lot of bloggers are looking to the likes of Zoella and Sincerely Jules – “successful” bloggers in terms of followers and brand affiliation – and wanting to blog for those reasons.

      Liked by 2 people

      • balletandboxing says:

        That is such an important distinction (writing vs blogging). It’s taken me a few months to accept that despite all my vanity, I’m just not down for the time-investment to properly blog-network. I want to write, and hopefully eventually my readership will grow organically.

        Liked by 2 people

      • This, tatt and the other says:

        I think that’s a great attitude to have. Building up a blog brand takes a lot of time and effort! Which is all well and good if you have the time and want to put the effort in. But this is only a part time hobby for me and an outlet for my thoughts.

        And at least this way I don’t have to suck up to PR people or pretend to like something when I don’t!

        Liked by 1 person

      • balletandboxing says:

        Exactly!

        It also frees me up to write whatever I feel like, without worrying if it is off-topic. My blog is a reflection of me, rather than of a specific topic, and so, by definition nothing is ever irrelevant! No writer’s block!

        Like

  3. Trudy says:

    Good post! I just found you through Opinionated Man. And not to tell you who you are but isn’t everything you talk about basically a lifestyle blog? I ask because that’s what I call myself because it’s all life, what you do, how you spend it ,where you go.Especially when it’s multi-dimensional, which I hope we all are and not the parts that are pretty and on film. I also don’t take pictures of myself and focus on clothes because that is definitely not me and makes me way too self conscious.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. EllenL says:

    I totally missed that you name checked me!!! SUPER FLATTERED… And then I went and changed my blog. But don’t worry. It will still be real me in real speak. Maybe even more so now. Yay.
    PS. Was totally going to write a 10 things I love and hate about blogging and most of what you wrote was going to go in that list. You saved me a job. You can have that list! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Karen Hampton, writer says:

    Glad I found you (thanks to Opinionated Man), and you speak truth to the masses. I don’t have a particular niche to fit in. I like humor, history, life’s memories, fun things, just a wide variety. I blog to express my feeling about the various things that strike my mind. I write my books because I have stories to tell. So I totally agree that the two are very different, but I enjoy both of them. Look forward to reading more from you.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Ann GrubbsnCritters says:

    Hello! Found you on…gosh! I don’t remember ; likely links after links on tweeter. Am wIth you on humour and experiences. More authentic. Niche blogs are more relevant for me. The interaction are usually better and more personable too. Unless blogging is a full-time job, it’s hard to keep up to interact with followers if you hv a big base. Having a small following is definitely ok by me. 🙂

    Lovely to meet you. 😊

    Liked by 1 person

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