Do you ever look at yourself in the mirror and think ‘crumbs, who are you? Who is this person looking back at me in the mirror? (NB: Also related thought: Do I have early onset Alzheimers?’) Well, this blog post is a musing or two on ‘who am I’ and other big questions for new bloggers like ‘who are you?’
I’ve been doing this piecemeal navel gazing of late, as one of my lovely nephews is in the process of moving from the UK to the US, and it’s making me reflect on who I am now compared to 10 years ago.
I’m still honest, straight talking, braver, more strategic, my jokes are still terrible, I still strive to give back to the community as much as I can and I’m still as travel obsessed as I ever was, if not more! I’m still riddled with as many weaknesses as strengths, I still get indescribably nervous when meeting new people and I absolutely over-commit myself. I still don’t like matcha.
I’m often asked what kind of a blogger I am, and a definitive answer often eludes me. Every bit of blog setup advice advises you to find your niche; cooking, travel, foodie, expat, reviews, lifestyle, fashion, whatever. (For the record, I am definitely, definitely not fashionable, and I probably never will be. I couldn’t bring myself to spend £1,500 on a handbag because that’s a flight to New Zealand right there…)
I have never been one for settling on a definition – bar unfashionably random – and it kind of struck me that I do have a niche, one I seemed to have carved – it’s pretty well adventures of a London Kiwi, aka ‘stuff wot I love’.
Moral of the story? Be yourself and be passionate. Who else are you gonna be?
If you’re a new blogger and frightened of taking that first step DON’T WORRY. If no-one reads it but you, why does it matter? Make sure it’s something that you’d want to read, and much like cats to an open can of tuna, readers will come. I think some of the most important things to remember are;
- Put up some pretty pictures. Good quality images make a world of difference.
- Network. Network. Network. Other bloggers in your genre (even a made up one… I’ve surprisingly found a few awesome Kiwis in London!)
- Ask questions to other bloggers. Network, engage, share!
- If you’re really really nervous, test the water out with a guest post on someone else’s blog! Not every blogger wants to have them, but plenty do, just pop them a nice email and just ask them what they’d like from you.
- Put up a few more pretty pictures interspersed with your prose – pages and pages of text can be a little off-putting.
- Write conversationally – I often read my blogs back to myself or the cat or my long-suffering husband. Sometimes I get him to grammar check them (and have learnt to tell him not to tell me what to change, but to just change stuff).
- Don’t blog every day.
- You don’t have to write each post on the day you’re posting it. I write around half of my blog posts in a go as I find Sunday evenings are my most creative time.
- Write whilst the inspiration hits. On a train, in the plane, near a drain, whatevs.
- Ask for constructive feedback (from your nice friends).
- Use something like Bloglovin and read a variety of styles and genres
- Don’t be afraid to blog about something random, they are quite often surprisingly popular…
- It will take dedication and determination, but it’s great fun. Lovely people, fun events that you may not have gone to and beautiful photos you may not have been brave enough to take.
- It’s YOUR blog, do what you want to.
What is the best piece of advice you’ve had about blogging?