Friday, May 4, 2012

Nobody Reads Your Blog

I laughed when I found this sticker on one of my walks this week. It's by a street artist named Curly, whose stickers I've found in both London and New York. And while it's not quite true, in my case, it's a sentiment any blogger can ruefully appreciate.

When I first began blogging, I suppose I had hopes of developing a following -- and I did develop a small one, for which I am thankful. But I also quickly learned that I am a tiny speck of plankton in the huge ocean of the Internet, and eventually reconciled myself and my blog to a life of relative obscurity. I am not the kind of writer who gains fame on the Web, being snarky about celebrities and offering cutting political commentary. I'm just writing about my life, which -- let's face it -- isn't all that different from many other lives.

Whenever I'm tempted to grow frustrated about a lack of readers, I remind myself that I kept journals on paper for many, many years. And no one read those. Blogging is the same creative release -- not a path to notoriety. That's why this sticker made me laugh, rather than cry!


37paddington said...

this made me laugh! i so relate.

when i first started blogging i used to daydream about being one of those Blogs of Note (remember them?) until I finally realized how absolutely exposed I would feel, given the nature of my blog. I think a sweet little community of committed friends who actually grow to care (as I have grown to care about you) is actually more perfect. adulation is nice, but the generosity of those who read my blog is unmatched anywhere. it makes me feel humbled and grateful.

The Bug said...

I love it! I would be TERRIFIED to be a blog of note - it's scary enough that my Aunt Vivian reads the thing. Ha! However, I love getting comments & seeing people connect with what I say.

Sometimes I think that I'm just tired of the whole thing - but then I think, I wonder what Steve's up to? And I set off to read all my usual suspects :)

Lorianne said...

I think blogging comes naturally to those of us who have kept journals. The whole point of keeping a journal is to record things for your own recollection, and to practice your craft. You might say that journaling is its own reward, and that's what I find about blogging, too. It's great to have a handful of like-minded folks who read what I post...but really, I blog (just as I journal) because it feels good for me.

Elizabeth said...

That made me laugh, too.

Like, Angella, I once yearned to be a Blog of Note, but since I've started blogging, nearly four years ago, the small community that has grown up around it has been an amazing one of inspiration, camaraderie and real affection and love. I have found that when I post about very controversial things -- either in the disability community or about religion and politics, the traffic bumps up considerably -- people are just drawn to conflict, I imagine!

Sharon said...

Wonderful post! Although I started my blog long before the "Julie and Julia" phenomenon, I have to admit the possibility of creating something that would snowball into book offers did cross my mind. But, it was only a fleeting thought. You are so right about being a tiny speck in the giant blogosphere. I’m truly thankful for the wonderful group of followers who’ve chosen to follow my daily musings and leave comments of support and admiration. They all feel like close friends even though I’ve never met the majority of them. They’ve added a new dimension to my life and for that I’m thankful.

mouse (aka kimy) said...

i relate 100%

the sticker is a great find!

thanks for sharing your musings for the select than love, love, love shadows and light.

Gary said...

I read this post as I was getting ready for work this morning and although I didn't have time to comment, it made me laugh. One of the reasons I started my blog was so my family could keep up with me and I could document my teaching life in pictures and words. Over the years blogging has opened up so many opportunities and brought fabulous people into my life, like you. And you can never tell for sure who is reading or what that person is getting out of it. So few people take the time to comment.

Thanks for the laugh. It feels like a playground taunt doesn't it?

Steve Reed said...

Thanks for the comments, everybody. I guess we can all relate on some level. I appreciate all of you, and I'm so glad you come around to check up on me. :)

I agree that being a "Blog of Note" would be terrifying. I much prefer my smaller, dedicated following. And Lorianne makes a good point -- that journalling is actually for ourselves and our memories, a purpose that this blog also serves.

Gary, I started my blog partly for my family, too. But I think they only sporadically read it! And yeah, I think the sticker is meant to be taunting, but humorously.

Ms.M said...

The first thing I thought was "Hey that is not true, I read it!" So when I started blogging I desperately wanted others to read my oh so fabulous ideas. Now, almost 2 years later, it's just a number. Now my blog is like a journal for me. A record of what I do throughout the year with my students.Personally I it doesn't matter how many people read it, as long as the one who do take something of value away from it. So I don't sweat it any more. Actually I have fallen behind on blogging lately. :/ I hope once summer is here and I am free I will have more time and inspiration. Funny that I need a break from teaching to get inspired about teaching.