The one where I realise that this is my 100th blog post

Oh the pressure! Best make it a good one then.

Christ woman. It’s 3am.

Let’s just get it out-of-the-way and move on, shall we?

Should I try to say something…profound?

Possibly.

But there’s probably no need.

If you’re reading this, the chances are that you already know far more than I do about the blogosphere.

So instead, I’m just going to do what bloggers do best.

Spoiler alert: Be self-indulgent and reflect.

You know ~ on that new-age-old debate about how blogging is brilliant; but how it can also be pretty bleak.

The mystery of why some posts do well, whilst others bomb.

On how best to attract and engage followers.

Or how to attain that elusive Freshly Pressed status.

And whether any of it should matter a jot if you’re truly writing for yourself.

Spoiler alert: No, but yes.

There have been a million posts penned on all of the above this year alone.

And annoyingly, having been sucked in to reading pretty much all of them, I’m still none the wiser.

I remember in my first month of being a blogger, I got four views.

Four!

I’m still not sure how I achieved four.

They may well just have been me, myself and I.

And moi?

I had no Twitter and was so terrified that friends and acquaintances would discover what I was up to that I barely even dropped a search tag in.

It felt like a dirty little secret, fraught with the possibility of ridicule from the real people in my life.

The post itself was utter magnolia, sweet and toothless. Not me. But I needed to start somewhere to make that first tiny little squeak into the abyss.

It was exhilarating. Battery draining. Ultimately crushing. But I had done it!

Today, almost 2 years on, my stats tell me I have 2,040 followers.

Sometimes my posts snarl. And that is me.

This is a liquorice all sorts kinda place. It took about six months to find my voice, yet I still feel like a rookie. I don’t think I have a genre, but perhaps you would disagree.

I don’t like to set up rules around here.

The funny thing is, I still almost never tell people that I have a blog. To most, I’m “just” a SAHM. But running a blog can be a serious addiction.

I guess on the plus side, relative anonymity means less fear about upsetting or offending the many morons I meet along my way.

Many of these people end up featuring here – either embodied factually or fictionally.

Mostly factually.

Ooh. Imagine if they found out…

I digress.

Whilst modest in the grand scheme of blogging, my follower numbers amaze me. They are also a source of great frustration, mainly because there’s still the odd day where my page views net out at a big fat zero.

How can that be?

Admittedly, on the occasions this happens, it’s usually when I’m not on top of my game: either posting infrequently (because I have nothing to say), or at odd times of the day or night (when the urge to scream hits me and I just can’t resist hitting publish on my rawest emotions).

And then it’s like everyone is asleep.

The longest silence.

Sometimes, I think my rashest posts are my best. Other times, I enter a shame spiral.

Either way, I will never press delete once a post is out there.

Self-censorship sucks. But I have held back, just once.

I’m biding my time.

There are other times when I will sit on a draft and edit for days, but not often.

I think I need to get better at that.

But I don’t always want to read your perfect. Sometimes I just want you, being you. Warts and all.

My lack of routine is partly because I’m sceptical that there is a magic formula for achieving stellar heights.

Many of the WordPress megastars would disagree with me on this, I’m certain.

They are the founding mothers and fathers of online journaling and so of course they have a gazillion followers and are great at what they do.

But.

Many also dole out lazy blogging advice, that doesn’t work, for their hits.

And, the more time we spend reading these virtual myths on methodology, the less time we spend reading and writing the good, creative stuff.

Guilty as charged.

Personally, I prefer quirky, less mainstream blogs because I love to interact on a more human level with other writers.

But then, were I wandering around aimlessly trying to make friends at a rock concert, finding quality kinship could be tricky too.

And let’s face it, we would all choose fame if opportunity knocked.

Many of the big guns also swear by publishing to a set weekly schedule.

In fact, this is probably the #1 bit of advice I see on my travels through the undergrowth in Reader.

I dunno.

By the by, I never notice when I’m reading if others publish to a schedule, even the best of the best of you.

Therefore I don’t think I believe in it as a strategy.

Ergo, my destiny is probably that of David to Goliath forevermore.

Don’t shoot me, but I’ve always felt that there’s a certain arrogance in the unspoken assumption that we’re all just sitting about waiting for those scheduled twice weekly offerings to hit our boxes or we’ll go cold turkey.

Unless you’re hosting a weekly linky or something, that is.

That’s why I’m just going to press publish on this.

Nonsense or not.

Now.

Well, almost.

A quick obligatory welcome to new followers (I hope this post doesn’t scare you away) and thanks to you longer standing/suffering ones.

Here’s to the next century!

[image: liltinglillies.com]

Muddled Manuscript
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32 thoughts on “The one where I realise that this is my 100th blog post

    • Thanks Sarah! Totally agree. Now we’ve all got data packages on our phones I think blogging behaviour has changed totally. I don’t remember it before the platforms you mention and (almost exclusively) blog from my phone in fact. Thanks for reading! X

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Congrats on 100! What’s viewed and not sometimes makes no sense and I’ve concluded it just depends on which way the wind blows as there seems to be no reason behind it. Your postings are always special and I look forward to your limited editions. Don’t tell the others but you’re one of my favorites. 😉

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Congratulations on your centenary post! I have no idea what makes some blogs go stratospheric while others amble along. I read what I enjoy and find interesting and most blogs I read I either stumbled upon or read because the author visited my blog. As a writer, I write about what I want and when I want to. Given I write about my own life, there can be no schedule or predictability. I write when there’s something worth writing about – in my opinion obviously. So the formula eludes me and I’ve not given it much thought. What I can tell you is that whenever and whatever you post I always enjoy your writing.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks Laura. Like you, I have to have something to say before I say it. Perhaps I can’t schedule because I don’t have enough time on my hands to be prolific but I do feel that blogs that can churn out 2000 word essays daily tend to be the ones I tire of, good or not. Reading behaviour on here is curious – but that’s just humans for you I guess. I often wonder how people stumble upon me to begin with!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. The primary reason I encourage people to follow a schedule is because writers improve through lots of reading and writing.

    If you don’t write often enough it’s hard to get better at it.

    Eleven years in and I know that there is no rhyme or reason to how some of this goes. Our best work is ignored and our worst praised. Who knows why.

    Congratulations on your 100 post, here is to the next 100.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. I too would like to think I have a blogging schedule, but some weeks I do and others, it just doesn’t happen. Sometimes reading all those advice posts just makes you feel inadequate. It’s best to go your own way and publish what you want and when. Congratulations on reaching this milestone.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you! Is your schedule for your own self-discipline or do you think that there’s a pattern to readers’ expectations now about when you’ll post – or is it just right place, right time? Interested. Agree about sometimes feeling inadequate. Plus often wonder how those who are prolific in advice posts find time to write creatively too! Thanks for reading & sharing your views!

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  5. I recognise a lot of these thoughts, though you sound way braver than me – I still consider myself fairly magnolia on the blog. I’ve also been blogging for two years – no idea how many posts I’ve written, I may have to check now. I don’t have a set schedule apart from my weekly #WhatImWriting post on a Tuesday. I used to always post on Mondays and Thursdays too but I found it tiring and it started to get stressful and I thought ‘what’s the point?’ I’ve realised that I’m never going to have one of those massively successful blogs but also that I don’t want to. I mostly just blog what I want, when I want. I can’t figure out any rhyme or reason to any of the stats stuff so I’d rather just focus on what’s most important to me – the writing and the community. congrats on hitting 100 and thanks for linking to #whatImWriting. xx

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    • Thanks & love the linky! It helps me share to schedule but must admit I have more often than not pre-posted at random recent time before hooking up. I’m sure you’re braver than you think, or at least have built on your first post’s “voice.” You have a lovely strong inner monologue so far as I can see so were kindred spirits! Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

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  6. I think blogging ‘success’ is often down to how many hours people plug at their blog and social media for, I remember back in my previous blog days (when I used to spend a lot of time on it too) a ‘big blogger’ at a conference saying she spent three full days a week on her blog. Three days a week! It all depends on what you want blogging to be. I don’t really consider myself a blogger any more because writing has replaced it, but blogging helped me set off on the writing journey. In fact there are a lot of similarities between the two. Congratulations on post 100!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Wow! Three full days a week! I guess that’s when you would be wanting to create some kind of commercial gain from all that input. And how frustrating trying to do that in the busy market place, I bet! Thanks for easing and sharing your experiences!

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  7. Loved this! I *think* your hundredth post is the first I’ve read, but it certainly won’t be the last… I’ve been blogging for coming up to two years now, and I still have no idea what I’m doing. I find myself going round in circles with all of the ‘great’ advice out there that I feel I should be following, but like you there’s just so much that leaves me cold, and I’m definitely happiest typing to my own tune.

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    • Hi Sophie, aww thanks so much! I’m totally with you on going round in circles with blogging at times. There’s this one forum I visit semi-regularly where my posts always do consistently worse on average than certain other participants who vote eachother up as standard. I’m not saying I’m great & deserve better. But. They kid themselves! I’m sure half the time bigger bloggers just make stats up to add gravitas. It’s a big confident voice that gives them the edge I guess. Hopefully see you again soon!

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  8. Congrats on your 100th post (although it’ll be more by now;-))
    I’ve been inconsistently blogging for four years and I have…
    Fifteen followers.
    Wow.
    That’s more than I was expecting.
    You’re totally right. I prefer the online truths about people, the little insights into their minds and hearts than the waffle about how to make to readership soar or 10 things you’re doing wrong on your blog. As if you can do things wrong on your own blog!
    Loved this post. It reminds me of thought doodling… Lots of little thoughts chained together into a coherent whole.
    Keep going! X

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Chrissie. It’s taken me a while to understand that there is no rhyme or reason to these things. And I still have days where I get frustrated that I can’t generate more interest in topics I’m passionate about. I think it will be fun to read posts back in years to come and get a sense of where my head was at over the years. Thanks for reading!

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