Blogging Insights 3.0 — 1

“If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” vs “Break the mold”: which of these do you believe, pertains to your blog?

I think both things could be true, but neither currently is. I remember when I started out, everyone from WordPress to other bloggers assured me I needed a theme. A focus. I was assured a blog about nothing in particular was doomed. It wasn’t true.

I did well early on. In a few months, I had a substantial audience which for about 10 years grew. It began to shrink after I decided it was time to relax and not push so hard. I’m sure both things are related.

Like me, alone, up a tree

I never wanted a focused blog. I’m eclectic. My taste in art and music is varied as is my reading. After years of professional writing, I know what I’m good at and what I am not good at. Moreover, I refuse to build a blogging cage and lock myself in it. When you write for a living, you are always forced (because they are paying you) to do what you were hired to do.

Blogging was my break out. For the first time in my life, I could write whatever I wanted. I was boss-free. No schedule. No deadlines. I could write a lot, a little or not at all. I was free.

Having never set a format for my blog, there is no mold to break. I’d love a new template, but I haven’t found one I like as much as the one I’ve got, so I’m sticking with this until WordPress creates something I like — if ever that happens.

A solitary cardinal

I wasn’t sure if this would be a photography or writing blog. It turned out to be both. That’s fine. Does it need fixing? Some might say it does. It’s certainly not up-to-date, whatever that means, but I’m not up-to-date either.

This blog reflects me and my life about as well as anything could. I don’t see why I should fix it unless I see something that needs fixing. I’m happy where I am. I’m not getting big numbers these days, but I’m not working stats. I’m posting less frequently but anything could happen.

After so many years, it’s okay to feel content. There are other things in my life that need attention. I’m dealing with life and this blog. I think I’ve found a good balance.

Categories: #Birds, #Blogging, #Photography, Anecdote, Cardinal, Word Prompt, WordPress

Tags: , , ,

23 replies

  1. I scrolled down and read all the comments as well as your answers to them.
    A great discussion!


  2. OMG ! Except for the fact that you were a writer by profession and I never was, this post reflects my feelings and thoughts about my blog quite perfectly.
    Like you, I have not been able to restrict myself to a blogging niche. I like to write whatever strikes my fancy. Stats were important for me in 2018, in 2023 they are not at all a priority.

    I could go on and on….


  3. It’s amazing that you can write and share your varied interests on your blog. It’s true that you don’t need to narrow it down to a niche if you don’t want to. I certainly enjoy all your posts. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you. I couldn’t even imagine what niche I would occupy. I don’t have a singular focus in my life, my art, past or present. So in the end, I did what I enjoy and it worked out. I suspect that this is what inevitably happens, EVEN when people start out with a specific focus. Eventually, you’ve said everything you had to say about that theme and you want to move on. Since I had no theme, I never had to officially move on. The beauty of going focus-free is you can move from one subject to another without having to announce that you are changing your blog. I really enjoy writing, but there’s a huge difference in ME from when I started in my early 60s to now as I approach 76. I had a lot more energy then. I couldn’t keep up that pace even if I wanted to — and I don’t want to. I’m happy to move more slowly — even if I am not riding high in the statistical whirlwind.

      Liked by 2 people

  4. Well stated, and I think a lot of bloggers need to read this post. I haven’t wrote a lot in months, as I heal from complications from back surgery. I castigate myself for not writing, especially on the Christian blog site for devotionals. So, thank you for reminding me that blogging is not meant to be a cage and that what others think isn’t important. I hope to find a balance soon and restart my writing, but if not, I will let it go.

    Liked by 1 person

    • This is supposed to be fun. I think a lot of us feel compelled to keep on doing what we have done because we are “expected” to do it. But when it isn’t fun, when it feels more like work than it should, it’s time to rethink not your blog’s presentation, but YOU’RE relationship with your blog.

      I’ve been tempted to let it go, but I do write and if I don’t blog, it becomes a diary which to me is a waste of time. But cutting back? That wasn’t hard and at this point, given all the other medical stuff going on with both me and Garry, it turned out to be a pretty easy choice. Sometimes, life really does get in the way. There are many things you can ignore and avoid. Life isn’t one of them 🙂

      Heal and feel better!

      Liked by 2 people

  5. I think the best blogs are the ones where the blogger starts from the perspective that they will post things that please themselves and leave others to decide if they also find them pleasing. Yours does just that and it works! So if it works for you and it works for your followers, there’s no need to change it 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you! I have rolled with the waves, writing about whatever was most on my mind. I did intentionally cut back on political stuff because I felt I’d said everything I had to say. I still occasionally stick my foot in that water, but mostly, I don’t. It’s not that I don’t care, but I have nothing new worth saying.

      I think when we talk about “changing” our blogs, we forget that first an foremost, we need to occasionally examine our relationship with our blog and how tightly we want to wrap ourselves in it — and if maybe we are beginning to neglect other things that more urgently need our attention.

      I’m okay with where I am right now. I know my “numbers” are way down from where they have been for the past 10 years, but I don’t think I need to prove anything. Whatever needed proving, I think I’ve already done it. I may change my mind, but one of the great things about not having a “format” is you CAN change your mind.

      Liked by 2 people

  6. To each his/her own, they say, and this is so true. This blog is yours, and we love every word and image!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Hi Marilyn I love blogs like yours where’s there’s a bit of everything and it shows something of the person writing it with a photos to break up the paragraphs.
    I started my to showcase my travels but then covid came along so I had to switch it up a bit. Thank goodness for the challenges. I keep thinking of changing the theme but haven’t found one I like more.
    Keep at it Marilyn 😍

    Liked by 1 person

    • The new templates on WordPress are very complicated and I really don’t understand how they work, so even when I think I like it, I have no idea how to add widgets and other stuff. So I’m staying with what I’ve got, which fortunately, I like.

      It’s good to take a look at ones own relationship to blogging periodically and decide if maybe you are pushing too hard or maybe other things in your life need attention too. I needed to do that because one of the things that needed more attention was ME 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Your blog is just perfect as it is.

    Liked by 2 people

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