What is it about blogging?
No, I haven’t died, I’ve just had a bit of a hibernation of sorts. Sometimes I need a bit of time out to think through all my “stuff”. To sort it out and figure out where I am going. Don’t you feel that way too sometimes? No? Well, count yourself lucky.
Our local Aquarius magazine here in Dubai featured an article about blogging this month. Interesting and thought provoking. Yes, I am a bit of a thinker. Or perhaps just a major procrastinator. One of the things that got me thinking was why people and more specifically why I started this blog. My blog started out as Edwina’s Food Stories way back in April 2009. I started blogging about my experiences as a developing photographer. Food has always been a big part of my life. Cooking from scratch has always been a normal everyday occurrence for me. Whilst I was teaching it shocked and amazed me just what parents were putting into their children’s lunch boxes. Many times a gentle reminder of what is good for children and their learning and development was all that was needed to make positive changes. Some parents were not so receptive. This got me thinking that my blog could be a way to educate people about the health benefits of good food, especially for growing children.
My posts started becoming more about food and sharing recipes than about the process of photography. On October 21, 2010, Mezzaluna was born. Around this time I also discovered a very active Food Blogging Community here in Dubai. We have a collaborative blog called Fooderati Arabia where food bloggers in the UAE are posting for your viewing pleasure.
Then, all hell broke loose. I discovered that you had to be an active social networker if you wanted people to know that you are alive. That you had to Tweet and have a Face Book Page (not just a profile) to spread the word about your blog. That you had to get people to “like” and “follow” you. That you had to share the love by “Liking” and “Following” people back. That in order to get more hits (just like addicts) you have to comment on other people’s blogs and that way you create this whole reciprocal wave of following and being followed. I feel a little foolish just commenting on posts just because one of the blogging commandments say that’s what you need to do. I leave comments if I genuinely want to say something about the post. I do have to be honest and say that receiving a heartfelt comment on one of my posts makes my day. I do love and appreciate the comments I receive. Keep ‘em coming!
Having a beautiful blog using Macs iweb software was also not enough. The url was cumbersome and no one even knew of Mezzaluna so I had to get my very own domain name. Mezzaluna was not available, but My Mezzaluna was and as if by magic My Mezzaluna was born with it’s very own personalised domain name and everything, using WordPress as a platform. This was back in March this year. Whew I am exhausted just writing about this so you can imagine what I must actually feel like!
Getting back to the real reason for blogging. Why do we blog and why do we follow our favourite blogs? Having spent all of about nine years in marketing and sales, I know a thing or two about why people buy. After all is said and done and the chips have fallen where they may, people come back for more if you can add value. My blog has been bobbing along the waves of the blogosphere at times losing direction because I have allowed myself to be swayed by prettier blogs or blogs that are far more popular than mine. Along the way I forgot why I am here in the first place. Staying true to myself and adding value to the lives of others in whatever way I can, gives me pleasure and puts me in a place far less stressful than trying to keep up with the Jones’ (I am not actually referring to my real friends the Jones family by the way). For me, blogging is not about showing how pretty (or not) my photographs are. It’s not about telling the world what we ate for breakfast (who cares?). It is about sharing. Sharing what I know about food. Sharing what I know about how food can damage you and how food can heal you. Sharing and hopefully teaching ( I discovered that deep down in my core I will always be a teacher) people that cooking from scratch and keeping things simple adds to your quality of life. Sharing recipes that are simple and that take people’s allergies into consideration and therefore making someone’s life a little healthier. These are the things that matter to me. Being of service. Otherwise what value do you bring?
Who do we follow? I follow a few blogs. Not many. I have too much on my plate to spend hours surfing the net and looking at blogs. I try to have a life too. Unless they add value to my life I am not interested. I read blogs that either teach me, help me, inspire me, inform or entertain me. Why should I read about your chocolate chip cookies? What is so special about them? Do they add value? Are they gluten free or egg free? What is different about them? (By the way if you are reading this and you seriously have a recipe for gluten-free, dairy-free, egg-free and sugar-free choc chip cookies please let me know.) This is what I am keeping in mind each time I blog from now on. Staying true to myself and my mission; to educate people about food and health and share what I am doing to be healthier ( my fight against Candida is wearing me down by the way).
This brings me to the next commandment of blogging. Thou shalt Blog Regularly. What is regularly? Once a month is regular. Once a week is regular. So is once a fortnight. Or should it be more like a bowel movement? Daily. If I like a blog, I like a blog. I really couldn’t care less if they blog daily, weekly or once in a blue moon. I did not stop reading Zack Arias‘ blog when he took a long break to work on a new website. Nor did I stop reading Confessions of a Hungry Woman just because she sometimes has a two month break between posts. I hope those who read and enjoy my blog are not so fickle as to just give up on me if they don’t see a daily entry.
Now that I have bared my naked soul I hope you will too. What is it that makes you “like” a blog?
Just so you have something to look at before you go….