Between Livejournal and WordPress it’s been around since the back end of 2005. I suspect blogs age like dogs, and therefore this place is about 112 in human years. Thing is, now I’m having a crisis of confidence.
Don’t get me wrong, I love blogging (or at least the reading/writing part of it, less so the SEO side of things), but I’m now getting fairly convinced that I’m not going to achieve any critical mass with it. And I’ll confess to the sins of pride and envy; I want to be read. Every blogger does, it’s why we do it.
Of course, people do read my stuff, and believe me, it’s appreciated. I guess I just got a bit depressed when I looked at my stats and realised the bulk of them were robots from Russia.
I’m also having a bit of a creative block, which isn’t quite the same as writer’s block. I know why this is – I’m not reading enough, and you can’t be a good writer without reading – books, comics, magazine articles, other blogs, liner notes, whatever. Why aren’t I reading? Well, a) Twitter addiction, and b) looking at my blog statistics and being taunted by the aforementioned spambots. And given that the Twitter thing is at least partly motivated by getting ideas for the blog, I think I can diagnose my problem – I’ve become so caught up with the business of blogging that I’ve lost sight of the important stuff – the writing, reading, commenting, learning, communing.
(Search Engine Optimisation is like the One Ring, shiny and tempting and dangerous, and so every now and then you need a couple of short dudes to metaphorically throw your computer into a volcano, releasing you from its thrall.)
I know this sounds like I’m about to quit, but I’m not – at least I don’t think I am. I get comments saying they like what I write and that keeps me going. Sometimes it feels like a bit of a struggle though, and that’s not how it should be.
(I’m also aware that describing blogging as an occasional struggle should invite ridicule from anyone who’s going through a really tough time at the moment, blogging from a warzone or revolution or something. But you know what I mean.)
So how do you do it? How do you keep the creative juices flowing? How do you avoid the sparkling lure of your analytics page? How, how, how?!