Thursday, July 7, 2011

Why I blog (and what's next!)

"So, you have a blog?"

"What do you write about?"

"Why would anyone want to write without getting paid?"

"Why do you blog?" 

Good question.
Seventeen months ago, I blogged because I was feeling stressed and depressed. Being the modern gal that I am, I shunned the old school journal and turned to the computer and a simple site called Blogger to hash out my feelings. Then I figured, I may as well try to get some people to read what I write. Maybe get a comment or two. So I joined Twitter. I publicized blog posts on my Facebook page. Then I made a separate Facebook page for my blog. I did a giveaway or two. I participated in blog hops. I joined a fantastic group called the Georgia Social Media Moms, where we share tips and provide ongoing support for one another.

Somewhere down the line, blogging changed for me.

Yes, I still use blogging as my outlet, to say what I need to say, to put my needs and questions out there in the universe. I continue to blog about my amazing daughter and all the trials, tribulations, and laughter that come from having her in my life. But now, is more than that. It is also a showcase for occasional creative writing. It is a way to connect with like-minded people with a willingness to share their experiences and memories. It is a method for practicing, and hopefully improving, my writing skills.

As my blog following has grown, I have grown as a blogger.

I am not afraid to insert myself into a Twitter conversation or speak up in a Twitter party because I know my ideas are welcome.

I am not embarrassed to post about my feelings and failures because I know someone out there has been through it too.

I no longer say, "I have a blog." Instead I announce, "I am a blogger."

My next big step? A blog conference.

When I first heard of blog conferences (and some of the price tags associated with them), I scoffed. A conference? Definitely not something for me. My sporadic reviews and advertising sales don't make up even a sixteenth of what I would need for a "real" income. Nor do I need them to be; that's not what my blog is about. Why would I ever go to a conference?

Now I know why. To meet other bloggers. To grow my skills. To remind myself how to network. To bust the walls of my social anxiety. To have some time away from home with people I can identify with. To be something more than "mommy".

I will be attending Bloggy Boot Camp Atlanta in late October, and I am beyond excited! I know some of the sessions won't apply to my casual blogging style, but they will be interesting nonetheless. I can't wait to meet the other bloggers in attendance. BBC Atlanta is going to be a great first conference, especially given my shyness/anxiety issues when I'm looking real life head-on. BBC uses an assigned seating approach that changes periodically, so we are never stuck sitting quietly on the edge of a clique of BFFs.

And it's in Atlanta, so I can come home to kiss my sleeping little girl before crashing in my own familiar bed.

Bloggers, why do you blog?

Anyone else going to BBC Atlanta?

**What this blog needs? More comments! Don't be shy! **

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UPDATE: To view my posts after Bloggy Bootcamp <-- click
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