The funk started because I began researching possible blog improvements, things I might do to improve the quality of, and the look of, my blog. I have a file of on-line articles and resources to help me do this. Once I've found an article I think is applicable to me, I save it and then try to implement what it suggests, and NOT screw it up. It took me one whole evening to correctly install social media links in my sidebar. Hubby was watching the hockey game, but he scurried into the den when he heard me yelp. I'd finally figured it out, and there they were... five lovely little icons, the right size, the right colour, and all linked miraculously to my social media accounts. Yah. "Those little things. That's what you're fussing about?" he queried. Huh. This from a man who can find his way through the wilderness of Algonquin Park without a compass, but who gets frustrated sending an e-mail. I ignored him.
So, some of my research has been very helpful. Some not so much. And some has made me wonder what the heck I'm even doing. Because reading about "how to have a successful blog," how to "grow my following" and "maximize my traffic" makes me focus too much on the number of page views my blog gets each week. Or doesn't get. And on the shiny, professional-looking blogs which have teams of writers and professional photographers, and not much content to speak of. And I know that I should grow up, and stop comparing my blog to other blogs. I know that I should focus on what counts. Like on the fact that I'm writing what I want to write, and learning a whole lot of other stuff along the way. And having fun. Which is the whole point of the endeavour, of course. I know all that. But still, it's hard sometimes not to question all the work (or play) I put into this little "retirement project" of mine. And wonder why I'm doing it at all.
|I wasn't qui-ite ready for this shot.|
|Okay, that's better.|
Then just when I've reassured myself about what I'm doing, and how I'm doing it, I read something silly, or poorly written, or downright dishonest that has been shared and re-shared on Facebook. Or I read one thing in particular, which obviously took the originator some time to craft, but which uses false and misinterpreted, or maybe simply misunderstood, "facts"... and which continues to be shared even though the claims have been debunked and I despair. I really do. And then a few days later, I read something written by a young person I actually know, which spins events into something that is so distorted as to be more fiction than fact. And I want to pull my hair out. When did we start mistaking prejudice for well-founded opinion... or even worse rumour for fact? When did we start thinking that "spin" is real? And let's not even get into the current palaver about truth and fiction, facts and "alternative facts." Because a fact isn't just something someone has written or said. It's a verifiable detail which can eventually help us discover a truth. As Hubby used to teach his high school history students: facts aren't facts until they've been verified by a number of sources. So yeah, that dishonest, misinformed stuff really annoys me. Deep breath. Rant over. I promise.
So. Where was I? Blogging. Right. I don't want you to think that I plan to stop blogging any time soon. Or that I'm looking for reassurance or praise. I just needed to get all this off my chest. And having done so, I feel quite a bit better. After all, I do this blogging thing for my own reasons, as I guess we all do. And those reasons don't include fame or fortune. Ha. And, you know, every once in while it doesn't hurt to re-examine why we do things. To reaffirm our purpose, and our values.
So I guess I just have to remind myself to be an adult. To stop looking longingly at what others are producing. To do what I do best, as well as I can. And to tell the truth, about whatever I'm writing, albeit with a little creative description.
Because Mum always said we'd not get into trouble if we told the truth. And, as kids, we mostly did... tell the truth. Well, except when it came to that trip to the bootlegger in grade twelve. We did lie about that. But it was for your own good, Mum. Really.
And I think I'm going to try to ignore at least some of the background noise on social media. That and un-follow a few people on Facebook.
Just for my own sanity, you understand.
Thanks for listening, my friends. Or reading as the case may be. Now... anything you'd like to get off your chest? Fire away.