As part of their new monthly Wisdom from Mom Bloggers series, Babble.com just published a wonderful list of 25 Tips for First-Time Bloggers. Don’t let that post title fool you though; it’s packed full of great tips for any blogger, not just the newbies. And I’m not just saying that because I’m one of the bloggers they polled for input.
In fact, even though I am one of the contributors, I learned a lot from reading that list and put a few changes into effect immediately. (Thanks, fellow Mom Bloggers!)
It’s funny, it doesn’t seem like all that long ago when I was the new kid emailing more experienced bloggers for feedback and guidance.
And in a glorious full circle moment, two different bloggers reached out to me just this week for advice. One of them even forced me at gunpoint into the back of her minivan so she could serenade me with a Chicago song and smell my ponytail while I “put the lotion on.”
Fine, only part of that story is true.
But can you blame her for wanting to know “my secret” to blogging success?
I obviously have some skillz.
I can make fart sounds with 9 different body parts, sometimes all at once…sometimes without even trying.
Even my 2nd grade teacher Mrs. Rankin knew I was destined for something more than just the lead role as The Conductor in The Dental Hygiene Train.
But good blogging takes more than just the ability to write stories. It also takes commitment, dedication, technical savvy, a willingness to embrace television as your babysitter, and in my case, a complete lack of decorum.
If I had better PR skills, I might call that “transparency.”
But I don’t. And apparently, after 41 years of searching, I’ve finally found a place where my untreated chronic verbal diarrhea is somewhat acceptable to more than just my mother.
Now, it goes without saying, “a good blog” means different things to different people. In other words, you say tomato, I say vagina.
So when someone asks me to tell them how I became “a famous blogger,” I’m not sure if I should say thank you or look around for the camera crew from Punked.
You see, I’m still evolving as a blogger too. I don’t know the difference between SEO and REO (Speedwagon). I haven’t the faintest idea how to use my camera or make a media kit or do a giveaway. And I vacillate daily about my “brand” and how to find a balance between authenticity and professionalism…particularly given my colorful vocabulary and penchant for scat photography.
I look at the more “PR friendly” blogs with envy and think, “Wow, I wish I could get a free Elfa closet system from The Container Store in exchange for a blog post! But they’d never pick me because I would just say how much I FUCKING LOVE MY ELFA CLOSET SYSTEM SO HARD THAT I WANT TO LICK IT.”
And who wants to pay for that? Nobody. That’s who.
So basically, I guess what I’m trying to say is, I really don’t know what “my secret” to success is. Or even what defines “success” in this mixed up crazy blogosphere.
If you want to be a good blogger, just be yourself, and work hard, and network, and be kind, and try not to let the demons in your head sabotage your dreams too much. If you do those things, you’ll probably be awesome. I guess. Whatever that means.
Oh, I’m sorry. Did you want something more specific?
How about this…
Blogging is a lot like sex:
• it gets better with practice,
• experimentation is encouraged,
• wine is fine but liquor is quicker,
• sometimes an apology is in order,
• and sticking a hamster in your anus is never a good idea.
Well then go read Babble’s blogging tips. I wish that list had been around when I started three years ago…it probably would have helped me to avoid a lot of hamsters.