Blogging

Is Your Life All About Blog Content?

October 22, 2009

Would you like to participate in a little conversation with me today, because I would love your personal opinion on this topic since I never thought much about it until recently when reader Rose Deniz left a rather intriguing question on my more personal blog, Haus Maus. I will answer her question below but would love your thoughts on this too if you’d like to share.

Is Your Life All About Blog Content?

“Do you feel like sometimes even your alone time is not really 100% alone because you talk about it on your blog? Sometimes I feel like I am not truly by myself unless I do something quiet and unspoken. Just curious if this affects how you view your alone time at all, while enjoying it you might be thinking about it being material for a blog post. It’s not really a criticism, just a curiosity because these days life is so transparent with blogging, although I think you do a great job about talking about the personal without revealing everything.” Rose Deniz, Turkey.

Rose, thank you for this great question. When I first started blogging, I was constantly searching for blog content. Yes! I was obsessed with finding something new and fresh, something that may not have been seen or heard about before. Then, as the number of blogs grew, I quickly realized that there were thousands of other roving reporters out there and that I needed to find balance. So, instead of constantly looking for the next topic or product to blog about, I decided to not function solely as a content provider and to actually add my own personality, life and interests to my blog while still highlighting the work of those who inspire me. So instead of hunting down stories, I tried to think of ways to make my own life better so that I could lead by example. I want people to respect me as a person, and to know me as a real person, so this meant being 100% myself. My friends in real life who read my blog tell me that it is just like having me in their office whenever they read it, it feels and reads just like me. And this is the highest complement one could ever give me. I want my blog to reflect my authentic voice and passion. That way, if you ever meet me someday, you won’t be disappointed! :)

But you want to know how I’m able to have a life outside of blogging and if I do certain things merely to blog about them. Yes and no. Yes, in that I have a life outside of my blog. There are many things that I am involved in that I do not share publicly on my site, whether it be a cause I’m passionate about, a charity or project I’m involved in that does not relate to decorating, etc. I don’t share everything on my blog or through other social networking channels because it’s vital to me to keep part of my life between my family, close friends and I. Whenever I feel like blogging about something I did during my personal time, and if it involved a friend or family member, I always ask them for their permission to use their name on my site and if they are comfortable with me sharing it or sharing a photo or two from the event. For instance, I wouldn’t attend a friends’ wedding and then blog about it showing all of the photos that I took without first asking for permission from the couple. But then again, I doubt I’d blog that anyway because I want some things in my life to be between me and those closest to me. I view my readers as friends, yes, but I also know that there are some out there who are not my friends and who may not at all care about my personal health and welfare and I’m cautious to not expose every detail about my life since those people lurk and it is them who I don’t feel should have access to certain parts of my life. Not my loyal readers though, and if I were in a room with any of my readers I would share even more freely, but being on the web I have to be somewhat careful.

And no, I don’t do things in my life solely because I want to have something to blog about but I do think it’s okay when people do that because we all need motivation and blogging can be a real motivating source. But, I’ve been known to do this at times when I felt like I needed some motivation to do something. I’d blog that I planned to do this or that and then, because I told thousands of people I felt accountable to do it. Like clean out my china cabinet, which I plan to spend this Saturday on since I finally have room in my schedule to do it. Yeah I know, I told you guys I’d do this two weeks ago. Sigh. I love this about having a public space to write, there is accountability and it feels good. We all need to feel accountable, knowing people are waiting to see something we’ve promised to deliver is a huge push to actually do it.

To wrap up, is your life all about blog content? And is that okay, if it is? Or do you sometimes feel stressed out? For instance, do you do things just so you can blog it? I think in many ways this is healthy but I can imagine some scenarios where it may not be. What are your thoughts? Does having a blog help you to own up to your life? Does blogging make you feel stressed sometimes because you think you’re not as good as those blogs you follow who seem to have incredible homes/jobs/ etc.? Do you sometimes exaggerate the truth on your blog in order to impress readers? Where do you draw the line on your blog when it comes to sharing your personal life?

(image: holly becker for decor8)






129 Comments

  • Reply Traci October 22, 2009 at 11:16 am

    My blog is fairly new. It is a hodgepodge of things I enjoy, things that bug me, thoughts, typical days for me, etc etc. No one has made a single comment about any of my posts, therefore I often feel that it is a waste of time. However, I try to think of my blog as a sort of diary. Years from now I can look back and reminisce, see how I’ve grown, what I’ve learned, how I’ve changed, and so on. I read other people’s blogs and am envious. I so wish that I could make my blog into a money-making career, leading to something bigger and better! For now, I just try to have fun with it and do it for me. :o)
    .-= Traci´s last blog ..It’s hump day! =-.

  • Reply The Antiques Diva October 22, 2009 at 11:23 am

    I loved this post! Recently I went to the Berlin Vogue Night of Fashion – on private invite to back stage shows with Hermes & LV – It was a sensational night, but that day I had a headache and truth be told I wasn’t in the mood to go out. However, I couldn’t turn down free champagne & limo rides – as I struggled into my dress and popped a few extra headache pills before bopping out the door, my husband asked, “Are you SURE you feel up to going out?” My response, “I HAVE TO DO IT FOR THE BLOG!!! Think what great content it’ll give me!!!” We laughed over it later, how many things we do “for the blog”! I definitely find myself rearranging my life for the blog, taking pics during dinners I wouldn’t other wise, and going to more antique shows than I would if I were only running a tour company and not blogging too. My Blog definitely dictates my social life… and a sign of a good evening is when my husband whispers, “That was bloggable!” Do I ever feel my privacy is invaded? That I have no private moments? ABSOLUTELY NOT! I hoard moments, Sunday afternoons spent in pj’s with my husband, pig-out fests on Ben& Jerries, moments giving into temptation where I rent & watch an entire season of my favorite American TV shows…. There’s private me and there’s public blog me. We’re 2 different people, with 2 different lives – the private me has the advantage of living both her own life and the public me’s life!!!
    Good post today!
    Toma
    .-= The Antiques Diva´s last blog ..Last Minute Diva – USA EDITION – Hunt Slonem Auction =-.

  • Reply Green Wedding Photographer - Laura October 22, 2009 at 11:24 am

    Wonderful topic Holly! I used to write consistently on my personal blog, and I would be sure to take pictures of things I was doing in my life just so I had something to put on the blog. And it was fun… but that’s fallen by the wayside lately. I don’t think my current life (aka sitting at my computer editing photos) is terribly interesting blog content. So… I just focus on my photography blog and talk about how cool my clients are instead. :)

  • Reply Mary October 22, 2009 at 11:32 am

    I have the opposite problem with my blog life. I go throughout the day thinking, “This would make a great blog post” or “I should write an article about…” and then I have trouble finding the time during the day to actually write. Of course, who knows if anyone is really reading sometimes, right? LOL!
    .-= Mary´s last blog ..Jewelry Giveaway! =-.

  • Reply Christine October 22, 2009 at 11:36 am

    I understand what you meant when you said that at the beginning it felt like you were constantly hunting for the next post. When I first started my blog I was the same way and it became tiresome. I came to the conclusion that my purpose for starting a blog was to have an outlet for myself. A place where I could post about the amazing things I have found and what inspires me. In the process, I have encountered some amazing people who have opened my horizons to new things. So, in a way, I do think that blogging has brought a new facet to my life mainly because of the exposure I’ve had to other bloggers and their inspirations. My blogroll is evergrowing!

    In regards to posted about your private life as a blogger. There are blogs out there that are inspiring to me because I love the personal stories that the writers share with their readers and the pictures they post. They move me to get out there and try new things. Personally, I do not post everything I do on my blog. Mainly because I don’t want to get into the habit of constantly having to take photos so that I can “post this on my blog”. Rather, if I happen to capture a moment that makes me happy to share it, then I will. If not, there are certain things that I’d rather keep to myself.
    .-= Christine´s last blog ..Image of the Day: Into the Blue =-.

  • Reply anke October 22, 2009 at 11:36 am

    I’m glad to hear you don’t only eat ice cream to blog about it! :D
    .-= anke´s last blog ..Bang Art Magazine / Horoscope #4 =-.

  • Reply BakerGirl October 22, 2009 at 11:37 am

    I originally started my blog because I was in a huge state of transition and upheaval after graduating from college and going right into the job market in the middle of a recession. I knew there had to be other twenty-something who were feeling the way I was and who could relate to me. I would say that I go about my life and don’t do things necessarily to have something to blog about. Usually, it’s when I’m in the middle of doing something fun or interesting that I’m like “Hey, I think I’ll write about this on my blog”. However, most of my posts are for me and they deal more with my thoughts and feelings on topics that are common for people my age. I’m not reporting by any means (except when I share my purchases, but those are fun :-) ) and I don’t feel pressure to seek out topics to blog about. I think that has alot to do with the fact that my blog is more about a period in life than a specific topic. I like to think of my blog as a stream of thoughts/ opinions and I enjoy hearing what other people my age think.

    There are somethings I choose not to share and there are somethings I wonder if I should share but I do because it gives me a sense of release. I never use pictures or names without permission and tend to stick with letters for peoples names when telling stories.

    Is my blog a bigger part of my life than I ever expected? Yes.
    Do I feel like I lose my time to it or over share…No. Not yet anyways.
    .-= BakerGirl´s last blog ..I Love Getting Packages! =-.

  • Reply Petina October 22, 2009 at 11:40 am

    Hmmm…Interesting question. I’ve been writing my blog for a year now. I really enjoy it as a way to interact with fellow design lovers and other bloggers. I own a small store and so it’s always nice to get feedback and support. Content for my blog is mostly about my store, designers that inspire and the people and places that i love around my hometown, Melbourne. I must admit it does get a bit stressful sometimes trying to come up with an interesting post. You look around at all these amazing bloggers that are so witty and write so well. Or always show amazing pictures on their blog. I guess for me, I won’t write about something unless I really love what it’s about. I don’t really talk about my family and friends as a lot of them aren’t really part of the design world.

  • Reply Sami October 22, 2009 at 11:43 am

    I don’t blog, but I love reading yours and a few others; decor8 is the ONLY blog I check every day (really! :)

    Blogging is not something I will ever do. I can say that because I know I wouldn’t be consistent about it, and it wouldn’t take too long for me to resent the obligation. That, and something about always having to interact with people…I just couldn’t do it. But I am oh-so-happy that you do it! :)

  • Reply April (Everything Little Miss) October 22, 2009 at 11:43 am

    Hi Holly,
    This is a great question. I have both a personal blog and a professional blog. I treat them differently, but I think my personality comes through in each.

    I don’t seek out activities with the sole purpose of blogging about them, but I sometimes find myself thinking “I can’t wait to blog about this!” When I do put myself out there (via my blogs, twitter, facebook, etc), I think about what I’m saying more than I would if I was just chatting with a friend. For example, I try not to complain to the internet (I slip once in awhile!), because I don’t want people having that impression of me. I guess I’m just saying that I enjoy sharing, but some things (including my complaints) are my own. I often find that blogging cheers me up on a bad day, because I make myself look at only the good things that happened. :)

    Holly, you do a great job of injecting personality into your posts, and that’s why I enjoy them. You share enough so that I don’t wonder about who you are, but I never leave feeling like you’ve over-shared. I hope I leave my readers with that sense as well.
    .-= April (Everything Little Miss)´s last blog ..lost in thoughts #28 =-.

  • Reply Alicia Hanson October 22, 2009 at 11:43 am

    For me I try to keep it fun and try to spread the word about something I like and think others might enjoy too. I definitely have lots of things that are private and will stay that way.

    .-= Alicia Hanson´s last blog ..Ceramic Fun =-.

  • Reply tricia @ danish dessert October 22, 2009 at 11:48 am

    I started my blog in April as a creative outlet, I always felt like I had a lot of ideas and things that I wanted to share and blogging has been my way to do it. Since I started blogging I have gained a lot more confidence about myself and my own ideas. There are so many great bloggers out there who are amazing role models, like yourself :) who do what they love most in life. Reading blogs and blogging myself has shown me that I really CAN do anything. If I want to start a design business, I can do it, and I know plenty of people who could give me great advice. I do like to keep certain things private, and I don’t feel like I do things just so I can blog about them, sometimes I just have “off” days where I don’t really feel inspired, or I just didn’t have the time to blog. I try to be myself on my blog, and I think my personality shows on my blog, however, if you were to meet me in real life I am usually shy at first. Also, on the accountability idea. That is a HUGE motivator for me! I am the type of person where I have lots of plans and ideas, but unless I set a date to put these plans in motion, they won’t happen for long time. Since I started blogging, I have actually done a lot of things in my own home that I probably wouldn’t have done otherwise. Overall, I think blogging has helped me grow and understand myself better that I ever would have before.
    .-= tricia @ danish dessert´s last blog ..back in action… =-.

  • Reply Kelly October 22, 2009 at 11:49 am

    It would be a bit naive to think we are reading about every lazy breakfast and quiet sip of tea you have. I think you balance it all very nicely — and if blogging is what gets someone to take their camera out and document a trip to a fabric market or their neighborhood cafe, then I think that’s a positive benefit. There are lots of photos I would not have taken without my blog, and they are all treasured parts of my past now. To me, when I do decide to share details of real life it only enhances my enjoyment of them at the time. By pausing to arrange things into a mise-en-scene and photograph them, I become more aware of how I’m spending my time and may notice beauty in a situation that I thought was dull at first.

  • Reply sweet fine day/Jenna October 22, 2009 at 11:53 am

    lol, this post seems to sum up my life right now. My blog was started to help market the business. It’s evolved now in the last year and half to something different (really, how much can you write about baked goods at the end of the day?). The blog is quite personal in nature and I’ve been questioned by a few readers and friends alike about the personal nature of some of the posts. Honestly, I don’t mind that my life is so transparent on the blog because in the end, the blog has become an important part of my life for me – I need to write. There are times when it feels weird to know that strangers “know” so much about me, and it feels narcissistic to write about your life, and and sometimes it feels strange when the kids get recognized on the street. But, it helps me gain perspective, organize my thoughts and reflect on the day. I wasn’t tracking stats or anything and didn’t realize maybe, just how many people were reading the blog until I posted an entry that became a bit controversial (you take a few negative comments with all the good ones). I’ve gotten a lot of support and encouragement from readers about our business and find that communication and feedback so invaluable right now, particularly since I work from home (you can understand about that, holly!). In return, I get many emails from people who say they visit because either they are starting up a business as well, or maybe they are also raising bi-racial children, or maybe they are home-sick for NY and love looking at the photos and they can relate to so much of what I am saying. As for living to blog…interesting. Never thought about it that way, but it does actually motivate me to get out of the house sometimes! But in all seriousness, the blog has supported my interest in taking pictures and provides a place for my photos. It’s a comforting space for me. I am honored to share it with anyone who cares to visit.
    .-= sweet fine day/Jenna´s last blog ..the girly nails mean so much more than you know =-.

    • Reply decor8 October 22, 2009 at 11:57 am

      I’m really LOVING your feedback, I’m reading as I watch Slumdog Millionaire (never saw it before) and eat Chinese on my sofa (it’s 7pm here)…. I love these reactions, so amazing.

      Jenna – I love your blog – keep sharing!!!!

  • Reply Georgina October 22, 2009 at 11:54 am

    Hi Holly! I wrote a message on Facebook but I wanted to write my opinion here too. I guess that like all the things we do, our blogs are just a part of our lifes. I’m not thinking all the time that I have to post about all the things I do in my life. And that’s healthy.
    I dont know if people could know me at all reading my blog. They could feel what kind of person I am, what kind of things I like to do. On my blog I post about my art, and that’s a piece of my heart :) So I hope I could transfer that feeling on my blog. My friends and family say that my paintings and the things I do are: “so Georgina”, and first they make me laugh and then I think it’s the better complement.
    Hugs!
    Georgina
    .-= Georgina´s last blog ..? =-.

  • Reply ericka October 22, 2009 at 11:56 am

    I have seven blogs in total(jubella.com, ymib.com, bohemianplates.com, inspiringmama.com, coppersweets.com, craftyhues.blogspot.com, and stylegypsy.com) and they are a DIRECT reflection of my everyday life and thoughts. Having little corners in the virtual world helps keep the categories of my life inspired and in order. i cook everyday, so why not inspire others with recipe ideas, etc. I think that there is nothing wrong with your “personal” life fusing with your blogging life, to me they are reflective of each other and in my opinion a blog is a tool for inspiration for not only the blogger but the readers. I do sometimes plan trips with the thought of blogging it..it just adds an extra perk for me! & i love both sides of including personal and informative, so i may just try a new ice cream with the hopes of sharing a new product…hey..we both win..lol.

    And although I have 7 blogs I make it a rule to NVER post just for the sake of posting or for gaining traffic, i only post when my heart and energy is in it. so if i am not feeling very fashionable, i wont post to my fashion blog, and vice versa. i use to compare my content and traffic to others and then i snapped back to reality that “repeats” will indeed happen and it’s ok, because we are all reaching different people..the world is large enough for us all. I think this is an excellent topic Holly..thanks for the convo!

    • Reply decor8 October 22, 2009 at 11:58 am

      Ericka – No lie, SEVEN blogs? Wow! I was writing at Cookie but they’re no more, and I still blog for Real Simple, and my other blog Haus Maus and then, decor8, so that’s like 2.5 blogs and I sometimes feel like my head will pop. How do you run 7? Wow!!!!

  • Reply Jessie October 22, 2009 at 11:57 am

    Excellent topic! I think that writing a blog encourages me to live a prettier life for the photo opportunities it provides. If I’m alone at home having a cup of tea, would I necessarily set it out on fine china with pretty little teacakes and crocheted doilies? Probably not… but no-one would want to look at a picture of a chipped mug on my messy kitchen counter, so I make it prettier… for the blog. I don’t think it’s not authentic just because I’ve essentially styled my afternoon – because still, I’d be using my china, my doilies, my handmade cakes… Instead, I’m grateful for the opportunity to beautify my day a little bit!
    .-= Jessie´s last blog ..It’s my bag, baby! =-.

  • Reply Jessica October 22, 2009 at 12:05 pm

    I have been blogging for almost 3.5 years now and my blog has shifted quite a bit in the amount of personal content I share. In the beginning, my blog was a means to get me writing regularly again. Naturally I went looking for material in my life that was easy to reach: i.e., as a fairly new mom, motherhood was pretty much #1 on my mind. I was also going through treatment for non-Hodgkins lymphoma so I had the whole cancer thing on my mind a lot. I was under a lot of stress, called myself Stressica, and so named my blog after my nickname.

    But as time went on, I grew in new ways and did not want to limit myself to hard topics. I did not want to be known as a mommy cancer survivor because I am a lot more than that. So I branched out in my blog content to things that inspire me and my photography began to reflect these inner changes. This year I have really intentionally focused on my content and limited the personal stuff, without removing my personality.

    I am still a mom and I am still a cancer survivor. Those parts of my life are still big but my blog is much more a reflection of my interests than my daily life. I do not go through my day looking for my blog content the way I did in the beginning. My blog is my happy place, a creative escape from the harder parts of my life, and the blogs I read fill different parts of my creative spirit.

    The place where it is hardest for me to find balance now is behind the camera. I am so in love with my camera, it is hard for me to put it down and enjoy wherever I am without constantly wanting to document it all. It’s a blessing and a curse I guess. :)
    .-= Jessica´s last blog ..Withered, A Short Story =-.

  • Reply ericka October 22, 2009 at 12:09 pm

    LOL, well, i only post when i have the focused energy, it only becomes stressful when i make myself feel that i have to post something everyday..i just go with my spirit and post accordingly, so if it has been a while since i have posted, i make sure my next post is fun, interesting, and worth the wait..lol. and so far my readers understand(i am also a sahm of 2..soon to be 3 in may!, so my readers understand my limited time and stay with me in light of my sporadic blogging:)

    ps: we watched slumdog millionaire saturday..it’s an amazing story..my favorite movie..enjoy!

  • Reply Marianne October 22, 2009 at 12:15 pm

    I only have a “small” blog. It is fun and addictive. I have a full time job and no time to blog every day! I blog about things that have my interest and also about my personal life, but to a certain degree. I value my privacy and other people’s privacy even more. So, not even my boyfriend appears on it. If I mention him, he is named H. Nobody has ever seen a picture of him.
    I don’t do things just to be able to blog about it. If I do something that might be interesting to blog about, I will.
    .-= Marianne´s last blog ..{Vintage Printable} =-.

  • Reply aimee October 22, 2009 at 12:16 pm

    Right now my blog is an extension of my life, but my it isn’t my whole life.
    I have often wondered how people manage more than one blog, and family, and still have time for themselves. My blog is a comfy spot where I can be creative without restrictions, I can be myself and connect with people. I hope it never feels like work.
    .-= aimee´s last blog ..Halloween :: A Hauntingly Magical Celebration =-.

  • Reply Susie October 22, 2009 at 12:17 pm

    The ideas in this post are swirling around in my head a lot lately so thanks for bringing them to light. It’s great to read the responses from other bloggers too. My blog started as therapy and I would say it still is serving that purpose. I was on maternity leave with two small kids and needing an outlet for all of these ridiculous, only funny in retrospect, stories about my life as a mom. I loved the challenge of squeezing out a quick story with the twenty minutes I had while my husband gave them baths…that kind of thing. Then as I started to explore this idea to leave my day job and follow my dream to work as an artist, the blog morphed into a kind of exploration about what it means to be a stay/work at/from home/studio mom/artist. I do find myself thinking a lot during the day about what I will post next and oh, this would make a funny post. I’ve started adding photography so I’m always trying to figure out how to photograph my kids or what we’re doing without exposing them too much. I definitely filter my blog. The stories are crafted. So it’s not a true journal in that sense, since it’s public. But I find that with parenting and self-exploration, as with many things, a lot of others are sharing a similar experience. And there’s comfort in knowing that. I hope that’s what my blog provides to my readers…a little comfort. And some chuckles…that’s what I’ve gotten from so many wonderful blogs out there…

  • Reply 3wordTweets(laura) October 22, 2009 at 12:19 pm

    Holly, thank you for your continued authenticity! I enjoy both your blogs but HausMaus is a little gem. I started on Twitter as I’ve been considering how I’d like my blog to look, and feel when I do start it. You just gave me excellent “food for thought” in an area I’d really been mulling over. Thanks for such a thoughtful post.

  • Reply Ashling October 22, 2009 at 12:21 pm

    For me my blogs are about expressing myself, my interests and things I like. It is my true personality. I dont open up very much to people only those very close to me and I differ alot from my friends in ways. I enjoy the simple things in life. None of my friends at home have blogs and some of them have no interest in the things I am into like nature, crafts, interior design, reading, writing, the countryside, taking photographs of random things I see, etc but they are still my friends. I cross stitch, like hedgerows, collect thimbles which alot of people in their mid 20 don’t generally do. My blogs allow me to explore all the things I like hence two of my blogs are related to All things nice from my everyday life. I love exploring other peoples blog and getting inspiration from them.

    All things nice…
    P.S I love Slumdog Millionaire Holly, its sad to think that people actually live in those conditions though, it makes us really appreciate what we have :)
    .-= Ashling´s last blog ..Today I like… =-.

  • Reply Susie October 22, 2009 at 12:22 pm

    And how great is Slumdog Millionaire! I watched it last week and thought I was the last one in the world…

  • Reply laura trevey October 22, 2009 at 12:22 pm

    Great discussion! I love blogging about things that inspire me, as well as my own personal work. My blog is a stream of consciousness that pours out of my head. I find it exhilarating to express these thoughts to others on a daily basis… and hopefully give others some ideas to use in their daily lives as well!
    .-= laura trevey´s last blog ..Tis the Season, Original Watercolor Painting, 9 by 12 =-.

  • Reply nichole October 22, 2009 at 12:26 pm

    Holly –

    This is such an interesting topic, and one I think about especially when I get busy and I actually feel “pressure” to blog. That pressure is silly, really, because my blog is just a lifestream/personal blog, but I know how I feel when my favorite bloggers don’t update … HEY! where’d they go?!?

    99% of the time I enjoy blogging because for me it’s a space to connect, share my thoughts, etc. I agree with Jenna that it’s also a way for me to explore photography and helps keep me motivated to get better.

    There have been a few occasions when I ran for the camera to document something “for the blog,” but more often than not, it’s just that I take my camera with me everywhere and have a ton of photos.

    The blogosphere is such a part of my life, and I am so happy that bloggers share their finds, inspirations and links. It’s like one big happy conversation that I am happy to be a part of.
    .-= nichole´s last blog ..Can you take A-Ha seriously? =-.

  • Reply Fiona October 22, 2009 at 12:28 pm

    This is an interesting question. I don’t blog, but still think sometimes, “This would be great material for a blog post!” Ha!

    What interests me about the question, though, is that I have been pondering the loss of traditional community. In most areas, people don’t know a ton of their neighbors. I am a mother of a young child, and I thought I would make new friends from that (and I have, but no close friends because I find that people are just constantly too busy to get together, whether it is work, traveling, other activities). I am also guilty of getting too busy myself.

    People used to know each other from the neighborhood, church/temple, and day-to-day activities, and I think a lot of that is slipping away. I think most of the things that are shared now are sports, popular culture (why celebrities are of so much interest) and the blogosphere/twitter/facebook. I don’t think that’s necessarily bad, but it is different.

    In real life, I have about two friends I’d discuss design with, because everyone else would be bored (and one of those friends, I met online). In the blogosphere, I have dozens! I also like to “get to know” the people behind the blogs. I have always thought that you, Holly, seem like a genuinely nice person.

  • Reply kira October 22, 2009 at 12:28 pm

    You know, for awhile, it was. And I have two, like you…one for my creative life, and one for my silly fangirly life. But lately, I’ve found there are many, many things I don’t blog and many things I’d LIKE to blog but just don’t have the time for! I think a balance has to be made, and that once found, blogging is much more rewarding. I blog my artwork and journals, and used to create a page just to blog it. But now, I have such a backlog of pages and topics to blog about, many things just never make it online. And I’m happy this way. :D Thanks for the interesting post — I read you every day, just haven’t commented before!
    .-= kira´s last blog ..{aside: kurt halsey on a chilly autumn night} =-.

  • Reply abigail October 22, 2009 at 12:42 pm

    I sometimes feel like the person who writes my blog isn’t me, but some character who does the same stuff I do, but is less cranky, dresses better, is more interesting and more organized.
    Rather than thinking about my life as being about blog content, I like to think about it as a good motivator to do the things I want to do, but sometimes don’t have the energy for.
    I posted photos of a room in my basement when I decided to clean it up, I wrote about wanting bangs so I wouldn’t chicken out getting them etc.

    btw, Rose and I went to grad school together! saw her at a wedding last month. she’s great.
    .-= abigail´s last blog ..shuttered =-.

  • Reply BODIE and FOU October 22, 2009 at 12:44 pm

    Hi Holly
    Great question!
    I think like you when I started blogging, I was very much trying to find something interesting to say, something new but it meant a lot of research and time spent head down on my laptop rather than quality time with my partner and my little girl so I’ve stop pressurizing myself and stepped back a bit.
    At the end of the day, I started blogging as a way to share things and people who inspire me and it’s more like my own ‘little black book’ than anything else. If I like a piece of design, a place, an hotel, a shop, a designer then I tend to put them on the blog so I know where to find them when I need to.
    I also want my blog to be my ‘creative window’, my own mood board of all the things I love but at some point, I was writing so much to keep it interesting that it became a burden rather than an enjoyment so I took a few weeks off.
    I did feel guilty to start with and then thought people would stop reading it and then I just let it go…
    If blogging was my full-time job, I would cherish the time and enjoy doing some research but at the end of the day, I also run two busy interior online shops so some days, if things are really busy on our websites and I have to focus on the business side, then the blog gets put on the back burner.
    I’d rather do this..not write for a few days or few weeks but then write something that I truly feel passionate about when I go back to it.
    In the past, I tried writing just for the sake of it but it doesn’t work for me. I don’t feel inspired, I think when I force myself I write boring things (not that I’m saying that I normally write very clever things but at least when I follow my heart, I’m feeling inspired).

    http://bodieandfou.blogspot.com/

  • Reply lindsay October 22, 2009 at 12:45 pm

    I try to keep my blog personal and reflective of my interests and style, yet, I don’t want to put too much of myself out there. It’s nice to have a place to collect thoughts and inspiring pictures, sort of my own online evolving mood board. I search my own blog all the time for a photo of item, a room, or a recipe…blogging comes in handy if you’re forgetful :)

    Personally, I find bloggers who twitter, facebook, & flickr their EVERY move to be nauseating. If someone is enjoying dinner with their husband or drinks with girlfriends, why are they on their blackberry typing about it, instead of engaging their company? Hmmm…

  • Reply Kim October 22, 2009 at 12:46 pm

    My blog is an extension of who I am, but my audience only gets a glimpse. I would never share very personal information with the masses. I do not participate in any activity just to BLOG about it, I only do things that I’m truly interested in. If I feel information this can be shared, I might mention something about it, but not reveal absolutely everything. Writers in general have to be genuine and open themselves up for criticism (and hopefully praise) – that’s the nature of the beast. However, our true audience understands that sometimes our posts will be serious, perhaps funny and may actually tug at their heartstrings merely because we are able to do just that – open up and tell our stories. Take heart. As long as you feel good about what you’re writing about and stay true to yourself – you don’t need to explain it to anyone.
    .-= Kim´s last blog ..Where Wo{men} Create =-.

  • Reply Lise M. October 22, 2009 at 12:56 pm

    Hi Holly,

    What a good question! I just started my blog earlier this year. In the beginning I was only focussed on finding the right content and in addition to that I was defining my own writing style. But now I really start to enjoy blogging. I found my personal style and now I am able to combine personal experiences with more ‘topic driven’ stories. My lovely readers across the globe are a big support to me and I feel a kind of connection with other lovely blogs that I read almost every day (like Decor8:-) It is good to see that the blogosphere is starting to become professional. Blogs are becoming a great information source for other media. So my motivation to continue my blog is growing day by day. I even got some lovely tips from other bloggers on how to professionalize my blog and attrack more readers. However there is still loads of work in progress if you know what I mean.
    If you have a minute please take a look at my blog and feel free to comment if you see any opportunies to improve Urban Style Vibes.

    Have a lovely evening!

    Lise M.
    Founder Urban Style Vibes
    .-= Lise M.´s last blog ..Simply, Stylish, Swedish =-.

  • Reply Jamilyn October 22, 2009 at 12:58 pm

    I just started my blog this month. At first, I was nervous about what to post. Then I began posting every day, even though no one was reading it. It was a way to express myself creatively. I also enjoyed finding things that I love and posting about it. I try not to get to personal with posts about family and friends. It is mainly about decorating and searching for that one special thing to enhance my home.
    I do find that it motivates me to get out there and do something, so that I can write about it, or start a project so I can post it on my blog. I think it has been really great for that.

    I think one has to be careful not to burn out to quickly wutg writing and searching all the time. I do think that making the blog reflect you will make it more appealing to readers. It also helps to keep your eyes and heart open to what is special in this world so you can share it with everyone!

    Thank you for the great post and questions to ponder on….jamilyn

  • Reply Joann October 22, 2009 at 12:59 pm

    This is a really thought-provoking question- my blog is fairly new, however, now I’m beginning to think of another one I want to begin. Alone time is absolutely necessary for me. It is renewing, refreshing, inspiring, and energizing. Bloggins is such a small part of my day, but I want to make it a much bigger part of my day. I want to reach out to others with topics that may be of interest, but more importantly that may be useful, helpful, encouraging, and compassionate. It is how we choose to use our alone time that makes the difference and I think that for bloggers at any level, there must be a balance. I could easily put in twice the amount of hours I do at my job, but over time, I’ve learned to find a better balance between my work and my home and family.
    If any of you are spending too much time at any one thing, burn-out will quickly follow….
    I love so many of the blogs I follow and find – they inspire me and teach me a great deal about things I might not otherwise experience. This form of media has enormous potential still untaped, but it needs to be used wisely and in moderation.
    Thank you for this question…it will make many of us stop and think.
    .-= Joann´s last blog ..Want a great new recipe? Spiced Toffee Bundt Cake =-.

  • Reply Jamilyn October 22, 2009 at 1:00 pm

    Love your blog too! :)

  • Reply Taylor October 22, 2009 at 1:04 pm

    Wow, what an awesome post! I identified with you when you said that you want people to not be dissappointed if they compare the real you to the blog you. So true.

    I started my own blog because I went back to school (for interior design) and though it is only a 2 year program, it will in the end have taken me twice that:( I needed a way to document not only what I am learning but how my personal taste and style is evolving. Because of this recession and the effect it had on our family I need to keep my full time position (reason for school taking so long). That leads me to reason number two for starting the blog: my job is stifling, boring, and rigid. The people I work with are wonderful and truly like family at this point but because of the line of work, there is no room for creativity there…so I blog to actively pursue creativity on a daily basis. So yes, I do search out things to blog about and I often attend things or make things knowing it would make a great post. This has helped me get out of my comfort zone on more than one occasion so I feel like blogging is helping me grow as a person.

    I want to add that I am so, so, so, so, thankful for those of you who blog about your careers in interior design, photography, art, etc…and definitely the personal aspect of your lives too, because you give me a taste of what I am striving towards and that gets me through the days when I feel like I should just give up. To me, that means that transperancy while blogging is quite important. I strive to make sure that while I carefully edit the kind of personal info I dish out, that I don’t hold back a detail or perspective that could potentially be “just the thing” someone out there needed to see or hear:)

  • Reply Mathias Eichler October 22, 2009 at 1:06 pm

    Didn’t read all the comments, but one thought popped into my head:
    How is blogging different from running your own business. Especially a startup.
    I blog, run a small retail store and a newspaper in Olympia, WA and design websites. I need to do all to try to feed my family and yes, it never stops. But I fail big time, if I don’t find those moments of Zen when I can completely shut off and do nothing for awhile. Last Sunday I totally spontanous took the family out to a National Park hiking and it was one of the most precious moments of the last year. We all loved it and I am fully recharged. And ready to blog about it ;-)

  • Reply Brooke Medlin October 22, 2009 at 1:08 pm

    This is such a great topic! I used to feel so obligated to my blog – if I didn’t remember a notebook so I could write down something interesting someone said so I could look it up and blog about it later, if I got busy and didn’t blog about something that happened on the day it happened, when it was ‘fresh’, etc. I felt like if something interesting happened, it NEEDED to go on the blog. Had to. Because what if nothing interesting happened for a week some time in the future? GASP. I needed a backlog of stuff.

    Yeah, so, it wore me out. I wasn’t enjoying it. I stopped blogging as much, because I felt like it was forced. And, then, my camera was out of commission for a few days, broken. I PANICKED. How would I shoot photos of both my work and my life, for the blog? I couldn’t. For the first day, it felt like every pretty, interesting, photographable thing jumped out at me. And then I started really enjoying just being an observer. Just watching things, and being out and about in the world instead of constantly feeling as if I had to have something to say about it. It was nice.

    So, now, I blog less, but I enjoy it more. :)
    .-= Brooke Medlin´s last blog ..Your Buttons Are Numbered – $2.50 =-.

  • Reply Shannon of ** Happiness Is...** October 22, 2009 at 1:32 pm

    I was just listening to an NPR story about how in this day and age, people feel that nothing is worth doing, unless it is shared. I agree to some point, but like others of you have said, sometimes private moments not shared are more meaningful.

  • Reply Amy October 22, 2009 at 1:54 pm

    I had two very eye opening experiences that really made me sit back and think of the content of my blog. The first was that my new day job boss was going to my blog several times a day. Reading , judging, trying to figure out if I was really working – I don’t know. I was posting on this blog for 3 years my life as a watercolor artist – inspiration and challenges as well as my art. And perhaps some was too personal for a boss. The Second “shocker” was when a neighbor showed up at my house at 7:30 in the morning because he wanted to talk. He had been reading my blog since early in the morning and couldn’t believe such a beautiful person lived just two doors down. I was freaked out to say the least. I had given his wife my business card several weeks prior and had no clue who he was. I have since posted very little on that blog and have started a new one. Lulasgift.blogspot.com. Which is anonymous and I have to say – sadly so.
    A blog is just one side, one image of you. The purpose for me was simply to encourage and be encouraged. So when I think about my blog and write on it my internal editor is louder and stronger than it once was. Perhaps it needed to be…

  • Reply Erin @ Fierce Beagle October 22, 2009 at 2:04 pm

    My husband is a police officer, so there are certain things that are off-limits for me to talk about, and that’s okay. That being said, I try to be transparent when I write. I use our real names and talk about real things. But there are certainly aspects of my relationships (friendships and family) that never get talked about.

    In my opinion, a good writer/blogger can convey depth of personality without constantly oversharing. In fact, that might be the mark of a good writer/blogger in my opinion.
    .-= Erin @ Fierce Beagle´s last blog ..Bodies in Motivation =-.

  • Reply fat mum slim October 22, 2009 at 2:12 pm

    I don’t do things just to blog about, but I will blog about ‘some’ things that I do.

    I need to keep some of my life private. I like to share life as a Mama and what that entails, but still not all of it.

    I’ve just had a week away from blogging, and I LOVED not thinking about blogging for a week. It was really like taking a week away from work.

    It’s making me evaluate my blog and how much time I want to invest into it.

    This post is more food for thought. I feel I still need to find that happy place. Where I feeling anonymous in a sense, but still true to my authentic self. x
    .-= fat mum slim´s last blog ..My Wish For You. =-.

  • Reply Perideau Designs October 22, 2009 at 2:13 pm

    As a fairly new blogger I struggle with this a lot. I used to find myself searching for the cutest kids clothes, or hot spot to blog about. In the end it didn’t reflect who I am. So then I started to blog about more personal subjects such as my family and found I am more received on that aspect, or people just feel more inclined to comment on how cute my daughter is or this or that. I’m still floundering trying to find my way, my niche. And I do know not everyone wants to read about my new products every day or participate in a giveaway. Frankly I don’t either. I’m always curious as to how the “popular” blogs find their information. Do they search the internet endlessly, do they get numerous submissions? How do they do it? And I’m so amazed at the effort and time those “popular” bloggers have to put forth interesting content yet have the time to spend with family and friends. I guess having a full-time job, family, and side business doesn’t lend itself to that, huh?

  • Reply Odetta Donners October 22, 2009 at 2:15 pm

    I like to write on my blog, but even I try to avoid information which can harm somebody’s life or business. But blogging is a very nice way to meet people who are sharing the same interests. It’s a good way to get feedback. It has given me so much. Receiving nice selfmade cards and art. Making people happy by sending my selfmade cards and art. I live by the rule “To respect and be respected”.
    .-= Odetta Donners´s last blog ..Lay-out gemaakt door Jolanda Simons =-.

  • Reply amanda October 22, 2009 at 2:15 pm

    this is an interesting topic. i never thought about it before. i startet my so-to-call design-blog after you and me met in berlin last year. and honestly i didn’t know where it will lead me, nor do i know now. but i love looking at all these other blogs out there and they inspire me so much! it’s not that they share certain aspects of their lifes with us(readers) but it’s how they see things. it’s how they put things together. and i think the way how they show it they show us(readers) a part of their personality. i look at thoses blogs to actually see how they set things or how they write about things(i am german so, to read how thei describe is very, very helpful ;-)). and what i find is that they all share their lifes. a few more a few less. it depends on themselves.
    i, for myself, don’t share a lotof my personal life on that blog. just because i don’t “feel” it right now. but i realise getting so much positiv feedback helps a lot. i don’t think it’s wrong with sharing a few things of your personal life. i think it’s always good to ask people i.e. friends and family if they want to be a part of it. but thats because of security towarts them.
    and i agree with you, that blogging is a source of motivation. since i startet blogging i realise it feel good to write and this thought help me through writing my thesis! which is a really good feeling for i got a writersblock for such a long time.
    but i am not sure about doing things only to have something to blog about. it’s sounds kinda wrong to me, but if it helps others it is fine.
    anyway, i like-no-i love your blog(s). i read decor8 well, obviously for your great sense of decoration and i read hausmaus because i think it’s great to see how it feels for a foreigner to live in germany. i am german so it’s pretty interesting whats the diference and whats not :D
    .-= amanda´s last blog ..ninexmuse-jewellery =-.

  • Reply Arabella October 22, 2009 at 2:17 pm

    Interesting – “alone time”. I’ve blogged in various ways for a few years, as a rare bookseller, a stranger in a new country etc. and kept a private persona. I also read a lot of blogs. Sometimes though, I have to step away from the screen; I become overloaded with the opinions, thoughts, feelings of others, and tired of my own! When I step away from bloggging I immerse myself in my books but visit sites like yours for stimulating/calming colour ( I realize you do much more, Holly, than cast a colour palette into the ether!) but during the alone time I’m happy just to look, if you understand.
    .-= Arabella´s last blog ..I’m Outta Here =-.

  • Reply andthenshe October 22, 2009 at 2:22 pm

    I just actually started a blog, but I want it to be something personal. I want to see if there is anybody out there my age going through the same thing. Or just bring some laughter and some new idea or project into someone’s life. Hopefully I can keep it on a level where I don’t have to reveal all personal things about me, but as it is just starting we will see!
    I do love your blog though, it was one of the inspirations to make me start my own!

  • Reply Restless Mama October 22, 2009 at 2:30 pm

    What a great question and I think it’s actually going around the blogosphere a lot more lately.
    I’ve recently decided to slow down on my blogging and really keeping more parts of my life just personal. So I’ve started journaling again to keep so that when I feel like writing something it just goes in my secret journal. ;o)
    I’ve also started to make my blog more of a photo website since I’m getting back in touch with my first true love – photography! So I’m pretty excited to see where my blog goes now.
    I love your content though and very thankful that you share your wonderful ideas with the public.
    Cheers,
    .-= Restless Mama´s last blog ..[Sigh of relief] =-.

  • Reply Kristi @ Addicted 2 Decorating October 22, 2009 at 2:30 pm

    This is an incredible topic, and one which I’ve thought a great deal about lately.

    I’ve been blogging for a while now, and for so long, it felt like drudgery. I’m an interior decorator, and I have a passion for decorating, so I knew I wanted to share that passion, but blogging just wasn’t clicking with me. I felt that, as the “professional” decorator, I had to have it all together, and people wouldn’t read what I have to say if they thought I didn’t have everything together. Well, keeping up the facade was exhausting.

    Lately, I really do feel as if I’ve experienced a blogging renaissance in my life…I’ve found my voice. And the difference for me was just getting real with those who read my blog, so in a way, allowing more of who I truly am to shine through. Sure, I’m a professional decorator, but I don’t know everything, and that’s okay.

    Yes, I decorate for others all day, but I personally live in a tiny condo that’s been “under construction” for three years now, and with unfinished projects in every room. I’m the plumber with the leaky pipes, and that’s okay! I no longer care if people know this, and actually, since undergoing this change in mindset and sharing this information more freely, people have been much more responsive to me. It’s so refreshing.

    I’ve also found that the “accountability” aspect is so revitalizing for me!! Over the last four weeks or so, I’ve shared projects that I’m working on around my condo, and the last four weeks have been some of the most productive in my life! It’s so incredible to have a little cheering section, encouraging me and cheering me on towards my goals. Heck, I may actually FINISH this condo at some point with the encouragement and accountability I have now.

    In fact, I’ve enjoyed it so much, that just this past Monday, I decided that I’m going to start hosting Progress Report Monday on my blog each Monday, so that others can share the projects they’re working on (big or small), and also receive the encouragement and cheering on from others…and others can join in the celebration when the project is finished.

    Wow…I’ve rambled…but yes, this is definitely a topic close to my heart lately. Of course, there are many areas of my life that I guard from public sharing and scrutiny. I try to be real and open, while staying on the topic of decorating and design.
    .-= Kristi @ Addicted 2 Decorating´s last blog ..Virtual Room (re)Design Giveaway from Kristi Linauer Interiors =-.

  • Reply Nancy October 22, 2009 at 2:31 pm

    I feel very similar to Traci who posted first. My blog is still relatively new and I very often feel discouraged and disappointed with the lack of interest. Having said that, there is no rush and I am still experimenting with a lot of different things. I,like so many others, use my blog as a sort of online sketchbook, a space where I can collect images whether the subject is fashion, art, design or just random little things that I have discovered and fallen in love with. I am still finding my voice and learning what works for me and what doesn’t. BUT, sometimes I feel like… is anybody out there?

    So, to (finally) answer the question(s)! Is my life all about blog content? No, but I do occasionally find myself thinking… would this go down well on my blog? Will it fit with the theme I’m trying to create? Would it intrique people more or increase readership? At this point in time, it doesn’t cause me any stress but I can understand how it potentially could. I think “overwhelm” is a better word for me. Nothing in the blog world stresses me out, but reading great blogs with wonderful, inspiring, consistent content can be overwhelming when your own feels meek in comparison. I wouldn’t change anything though. I believe I will find my way and wouldn’t for a second want all the amazing content on popular blogs to disappear. Afterall, we all had to start somewhere.

    Lots of love,
    Nancy
    xo
    .-= Nancy´s last blog ..Peggy Wolf =-.

  • Reply eva October 22, 2009 at 2:42 pm

    well i was waiting to be around 48 on this question. I have the only deco-blog in Greece. Can you imagine the loneliness i was feeling three years ago i started blogging? Really i think i write well, but at the beginning i was also feeling that i wasn’t writing well or not a good subject i picked up today etc. It took me about 6 months to balance and i had to quit blogging for 2-3 months in order to decide if i want to have a blog. Do you know why i started again? Because i found that even some changes that i did in my life for blogger’s shake were GOOD for me. I went more open to the others and i started to want to give more love and friendly feelings to every reader. I started to go to more happenings for my blog only, but not as a typical viewer, i really wanted to meet more people -NOT for one moment think that i am a lonely person, just the opposite- but one thing is friendly and other is social. When i started to be very sure for what i WANT to write and that i really LIKE, LOVE the blogging situation and met some readers that they told me they read me every day, then i started to write well. Now i have one more blog about blogs (blogrecipie) and i write as a columnist to the huge on line ermoumag.com and i am more than happy for this happenings in my life. Just for smile: When started Twitter i was saying “ok now what, are we going to announce everything we do?” now i find cute to announce something because have friends all over.
    .-= eva´s last blog ..post express from decorology: {piewacket, piewacket,rdekko} =-.

  • Reply Nancy October 22, 2009 at 2:52 pm

    P.S I forgot to say: I think it would be interesting if someone compiled a selection of their favourite bloggers on their blog. Either as a one off post or a series of ongoing ones where each established blogger gave a few words of wisdom, encouragement or just simply, some inspiration. What could we call it, hmmm? I think I might mull this one over!
    xo
    .-= Nancy´s last blog ..Peggy Wolf =-.

  • Reply Gretchen October 22, 2009 at 3:04 pm

    Thanks for bringing this up! I started my blog with the specific purpose of giving myself a reason to do creative things. I’ve realized that I do well when I am accountable and have deadlines, and I thought having a blog would do that. One year into it, I think I have maybe 15 posts…. but I haven’t given up.

    So yes, I started out blogging to make myself do creative things. I’ve realized that it can be good motivation sometimes, but the flipside is that I can end up feeling guilty if I haven’t posted in a while, or I can feel like my content isn’t good enough. I’m in the midst of the Unravelling class right now, which I think is helping me feel like I can just do my own thing.
    .-= Gretchen´s last blog ..Pattern Crush: Busybodies =-.

  • Reply Courtney October 22, 2009 at 3:06 pm

    I started my own blog in more of the reporter style, but it soon became harder and harder to write the posts, so I became more confessional, but that just made me feel silly. Lately it has been more about checking in with myself, and putting together a post that inspires me on that particular day.

    Sometimes I like to try to re-create feel-good moods that have transpired in my offline-life on my blog because I like to remind myself of happy feelings. I mean, I do things in life that I really love to do, and I blog about what I love, so sometimes they do intersect, but generally I don’t do things with the intent to blog about them. If it happens, it happens the other way around – I do something and then later think (or even think at the time) that it might be fun to incorporate it into a post. I feel kind of inauthentic and robotic otherwise (I have tried it, but it just didn’t work for me).

    But really, I think I only read blogs in which I can get to know the writer or connect with them on some level, so I enjoy reading bits and pieces of personal material. It helps me to remember that there are tons of other people out there somewhere beyond my computer screen. I like pictures, I like recognizing a familiar writing-style as I read, and I like feeling as though the world is a little bit smaller. And I think that knowing all of that, along with the evolution of my own blog, has made me much more thankful for what I have, which helps me to maintain a richer and more creative life.
    .-= Courtney´s last blog ..Thirsty Thursday: Gritty’s Halloween Ale =-.

  • Reply Tati October 22, 2009 at 3:14 pm

    I like to post about my work and things I like. Sometimes I blog about my life, but not all the time. Because of that I don’t live my life for blogging.

    I love Decor8, but now I’m subscribing your personal blog too.

    Hugs!
    Tati
    .-= Tati´s last blog ..I’m Going To João Pessoa! =-.

  • Reply bowie October 22, 2009 at 3:32 pm

    i find it so hard to reveal any kind of personal info on my blog (as im such a private sort of person) so ive always admired holly’s easy going openess at decor8.
    .-= bowie´s last blog ..ANTHROPOLOGIE – new london store =-.

  • Reply Rose October 22, 2009 at 3:35 pm

    Holly! Wow! I’m totally blown away you responded so thoughtfully to my question. It just goes to show what I’ve felt for years as a long-time reader that you are really you, very honest and amazing. When I wrote that question it was because it was near and dear to my heart and something I think about when I blog myself. In fact, over time I think I’ve come to reveal more of the personal things that I used to tuck away when I first started blogging. Back then I was selling product, handbags, and somehow it made me choke up and feel like I had to sell something even on my blog. Also, maybe revealing more of myself now in my blog comes from having two small children and feeling like blogging is this calm and centered place while the rest of my day or week is swirling around chaotically. If I can put something out there that others relate to, there’s a kind of camaraderie and support system.

    It has actually been nagging at me for a long time that many blogs do project the image of perfection. I find myself envious at times of the serene and clean worlds that I see in blogs, but having gone to art school (shout out to Ms. Abigail who posted above!!), I feel like I’ve gotten good instruction in discerning between a projected image and a real one. The people who are truly themselves stand out, and you’re one of them.

    I’m an artist, designer, illustrator and writer, so how things look really matter to me, but at the heart of it, and what has been a preoccupation of mine lately, is what is authentic? A great artist and writer will be able to walk that line between the personal and private and the social sphere. I think you are a model of that, Holly, and really one of the first to take blogging a step further. As you talked about in another post, sometimes walking into your own home and seeing dust and disarray can be so disheartening, and escaping into blog land can seem like a good fix.

    Sorry, now I’ve brought in so many other topics to this discussion. But just want to thank you for addressing my question so thoughtfully. I nearly choked on my wine (it’s 11:30pm in Turkey) when I saw my name! xoxo
    .-= Rose´s last blog ..Harika =-.

  • Reply Pixie October 22, 2009 at 3:48 pm

    I sometimes think about this. I don’t do something specifically to blog about it, but I do things because they seem fun, interesting or I want to try new things. If I can blog about it, all the better. My blog is a personal one mainly for my family and friends, but it’s still a blance of privacy and sharing that I work at.
    .-= Pixie´s last blog ..Haunted in Hoboken: A Halloween Blog Party! =-.

  • Reply Beach Vintage October 22, 2009 at 3:58 pm

    Great post. I guess it’s how you perceive what your blog is, mine is just that, a blog. If it were the end of the world as we know it in a few days, months or even years I would stop blogging immediately. It’s just an outlet for me and I enjoy it!
    .-= Beach Vintage´s last blog ..Project Day: Tea Towel Cushions Covers =-.

  • Reply Rose October 22, 2009 at 4:00 pm

    One more thought – I think it just takes time to develop your voice, and like a lot of the newer bloggers mention, in the beginning it can be harder to figure it all out and not be concerned with readership. To answer my own question that I posed to you, do I do something to blog about it? Typically not. Usually I get an idea I want to share and it goes from there. I’m usually walking around my house picking up toys when the idea strikes. Then hopefully I have an image or photo that illustrates it. One thing that’s more new for me in the last year or so is that I typically try to use all my own photography unless someone shares something with me or I find something I just can’t resist. And now I’m starting to include my illustrations and drawing. Thanks again for this post. xo
    .-= Rose´s last blog ..Harika =-.

  • Reply Jane October 22, 2009 at 4:01 pm

    Lord so many different answers! The really interesting question to me is how you can really really know someone through their blog and the answer is you can’t. We are all complex people and it is just one facet. Equally I have private thoughts, fears and dreams which noone not even my husband will ever fully know. I think we all keep things private.

    Having said that I find blogging a great writing outlet, and a way to meet like-minded people – a lot of my friends now live in other countries \ places so a lot of my communication is on line any way. And its also a reminder about the goodness of most people in the world. It is constantly inspiring.

    You are a very thoughtful person Holly and it showed in your post.. xoxo
    .-= Jane´s last blog ..Questions and Answers in a minor key =-.

  • Reply ira October 22, 2009 at 4:06 pm

    My blog is for my own pleasure, I blog about many things that I like to share with others. Pity tho other commitments in life make me won’t be able posting as much as I want!
    .-= ira´s last blog .. =-.

  • Reply Janice October 22, 2009 at 4:13 pm

    Great discussion topic, Holly

    A blog allows me to share interests with (hopefully) a like minded community. What I enjoy about blogging–the shared and varied interests and exploring new-to-me interests at the same time.

    I blog mostly DIY posts–usually something I created for another project that I decide also to share with blog readers. I love a great crafty idea as much as the next person–so I enjoy sharing and encouraging others to try ideas which are “doable” (very important to me). I do promote my store through the blog, but only in a way in which I would be comfortable receiving the same information.

    I give tiny glimpses of myself on my blog in my about me page, and other snippets a reader would pick up on such as I like to cook and bake, but there are other aspects of my life that would not find their way onto my blog…
    …such as my latest edition of my tea book. My vehicle was stolen and my beloved little tea and library book “books” along with it–the backdrop to a blog post when I shared photos of my newly started books.

    I do enjoy blogging and try and post whenever I feel “refreshed” as I think that is when I share best with my readers. I rarely think in terms of doing something for the blog, but I will admit it has rekindled my love for taking photos and noticing those things in my home which truly have meaning for me. I do make notes about topics, and project ideas that I think would be fun to share and if anything I think it has given me back some creative time that I had lost somewhere along the way. It is no DIY fest 24 hours a day over here-but I can dream about that possibility.

    I love starting my early morning reading blogs and always appreciate the time and effort that goes into preparing a blog post and in turn value those readers who “turn up at my place” for a few minutes of their day.

    Janice
    .-= Janice´s last blog ..dane chain =-.

  • Reply Nina October 22, 2009 at 4:26 pm

    I really connect with this post, I’ve been trying to find a balance between the life outside the blog and the blog itself. My boyfriend and I joke about things we do about whether or not they’re “blog fodder”. I certainly have found that having a blog and the desire to post about interesting things has led me to do more things in my life, such as going out to art exhibitions and vintage fairs when perhaps before I may have wanted to go but become busy or found an excuse. I find that now I try to go out and do more in life, and that I stick to it because my blog is holding me accountable (not in any real sense, it’s not sitting on the couch glaring at me).
    That being said I do agree that there needs to be an aspect of the person behind the blog, and writing about yourself and your own thoughts is a good way to do this. Initially I thought that if I blogged about myself people would find it less interesting. But then I realized that having a blog is about much more than who reads it and when they think, it’s about having that outlet for your emotions and creativity. It’s so important.

  • Reply leni October 22, 2009 at 4:27 pm

    i think it’s a little of both. sometimes you do things and realize after that it would make a great blog post. other times, you think of great blog posts and then have to do that something to post about it. as long as you dont say “can you take a blog photo of us?” when you go out with friends (similarly myspace or facebook photos) then you should be fine. a blog or your readers should not define your life. but your life does define your blog. remember that.
    .-= leni´s last blog ..Proposal Photos! =-.

  • Reply Janice October 22, 2009 at 4:30 pm

    For Rose
    Re: the image of perfection

    It is all in the cropping (of photos)
    and curating (of ideas).

    I was posting a project yesterday and cropping a photo–what the reader could not see on my desk was the following:

    stacks and stacks of file folders
    a roll of ribbon
    a self inking stamp
    a pair of sunglasses
    a flower frog
    several Sharpies, a highlighter
    scissors (3 pairs)
    stapler
    hole punch
    customer invoices
    felt pumpkins
    money orders
    stereo speakers for my computer
    pencils
    rolls of vintage ribbon
    a bottle of diet coke
    a box of kleenex
    …etc, etc

    My photo only showed a garland and a pencil which made its way into the photo by mistake.

    See, I can reveal myself on Holly’s blog (she brings that out in us!), but not my own…

    Janice
    .-= Janice´s last blog ..dane chain =-.

  • Reply Tara October 22, 2009 at 4:31 pm

    Oh Rose, I just got your email and had to see what this choking on wine was all about … lordy!

    On the topic of authenticity, Holly’s BYW course is all about this! That’s what I learned when I participated and it has made a HUGE difference in my blogging (thus the difference you’ve been noticing on the IC blog).

    In my experience I think blogging can be a valuable tool in finding yourself and your voice. Many blogging courses will tell you that you should find your “niche” and identify the purpose of your blog. Doing these exercises is a really beneficial way of finding out about yourself because you can get down to the nitty gritty of what you’re all about.

    I think taking the time to examine why you’re blogging and finding a way to connect with your readers is a very good way to learn more about who you are. Your authentic voice will come out of that effort.

    And a lot of times it’s about exploring who you are – take a look at your very first blog posts and the ones you’re writing today and see what you notice. I bet you’ll see growth and development.

    Now, back to the wine …

  • Reply Joan October 22, 2009 at 4:35 pm

    This is a good question because I have gone from keeping my blog strictly private to now having open access. I also do not allow unmoderated comments as I have had nasty people write hurtful comments on my blog. I use my blog mostly for me and my family as a journal. Nothing too personal goes on there, mostly everyday activities.

  • Reply Chris October 22, 2009 at 4:40 pm

    I just recently started blogging, and have been very careful to put only my artistic side out there. I am also a teacher, but would never blog about the classroom as it seems unprofessional, even though there would be some pretty entertaining stories.

    For the most part, I’ve kept it honest but not too personal — if that makes sense. But I just wrote this post http://copperleafstudios.net/blog/?p=513 about an impending job loss and becoming a full-time artist, and I was amazed at how much clarity — and peace — I felt by writing it. And the replies I received, many offline, were overwhelming and incredibly supportive. It’s the first I’ve really experienced the “connection” you can get with people through blogging. It was pretty amazing. While my life will never become an open book, I will enjoy sharing a few pages with my readers.

  • Reply Emily October 22, 2009 at 4:51 pm

    Great food for thought! I started blogging with a personal blog when I had my babies a few years ago. Back then I’d mix in my crafty and other stuff right in, used the same blog when I’d participate in a challenge or other creative efforts. Then I decided to start a separate blog since I like to do lots of photos for the family (who may not want to read about my love of ____) and I wanted a space to just talk about my creative efforts aside from my family. I do mix in a few personal things here and there, but I don’t go too much detail since my creative blog is public unlike the family blog. I do find sometimes when I am making things even dinner that I’ll think about grabbing the camera to make a post about it. I try to keep my posts real, not get too hung up on my numbers or comments. I love seeing new comments on a post though! The funny thing is that in my daily life most of my friends are not bloggers, would never write a blog, don’t understand why I write a blog, and many don’t even read blogs!
    .-= Emily´s last blog ..my sentiments exactly: organizing stamps =-.

  • Reply My Owl Barn October 22, 2009 at 5:31 pm

    Holly, this is a great post. It gave me a chance to know other fellow bloggers and it’s good to know that I am not the only one who struggles to make their personal life interesting for their readers.

    I am cautious at sharing my very personal details online. But I like to share things like the food I cook, presents I buy for my niece or the cause I started for the unprivileged kids. All these adds my personality to my blog.

    You are watching Slumdog Millionaire? I would love to know your comments on the movie. I am from India, and in my opinion this the one of the very few movies which represents India in it’s true form.
    .-= My Owl Barn´s last blog ..Abby Glassenberg’s While She Sleeps =-.

  • Reply Shanon October 22, 2009 at 5:33 pm

    I wish my life was little more about blog content, because I’d like to share more about the little things in my life. However, when I’m cooking, enjoying the late afternoon light, or visiting a new place, I’m almost always just soak it in without worrying about recording it for later use on my blog. I know that this is mostly a good thing, because it means I’m “present” in my activities. But once in awhile I’d like to share them, but I have no photographic evidence! Haha
    .-= Shanon´s last blog ..Two photos & Four things on my mind… =-.

  • Reply mary October 22, 2009 at 5:54 pm

    This is a great topic, and I loved reading everyone’s comments on the matter.

    I’m a pretty private person, so my blog (while essentially a photojournal) reveals literally one one-hundreth of my life. And the way I see it, it’s more of a way for me to express a hobby (photography) rather than any real documentary of my life.

    With that being said…I do feel pressure to present great photos to readers. And why not, right? When you put yourself out there, you want it to be the best it can be: whether it’s crafting a really inspirational post, or being the first to showcase an awesome artist, or posting amazing photos.

    There are so many amazing, aMAZing photogs out there who inspire me and push me to be better, every day. But sometimes, after browsing through fabulous Flickr streams or photo blogs, I look at my own surroundings and wonder how many more times I can photograph this or that; I think about how amazing it would be to have tons of props or and endless supply of friends with magazine-worthy homes. This sort of “subject envy” doesn’t really take over or change my life too much, but sometimes it’ll manifest itself in minor ways. Like taking my camera to places I wouldn’t normally take it to, “just in case”. Or making little road trips to potentially subject-worthy spots. And while I always enjoy fresh flowers in my home, it also typically means spending a few extra dollars each week on them. :)

    At the end of the day, I love taking pictures. So I chalk up any extra money spent or places visited as simply part of the cost of having a hobby. And it simply adds to my growing and learning as a photographer, because (of course!) practice makes perfect. But I do know that if I didn’t have a blog, a place to show my work, I wouldn’t be quite as caught up with taking as many perfect shots as I aspire to.

    But that’s a pretty nice motivation to have, no? :)
    .-= mary´s last blog .. =-.

  • Reply Rachelle October 22, 2009 at 5:59 pm

    I love the way you express yourself. Thank you…

    I have only been blogging for 3 months and it is strictly for a hunger project I am doing, so I blog daily about an act that feeds those in need. But I wanted to have a creative component to it so I bought myself a camera and made it a photo blog. It had been 20 years so this is where I have a hard time. There are so many AMAZING photos out there…so much photography that is stunning and I feel I can never live up…which is sad since this project is about helping others and being creative. I can see this will help me grow. Thanks for the moment of reflection…so important in life.

  • Reply decor8 October 22, 2009 at 6:03 pm

    I’m sitting in here in total awe, shaking my head up and down like, “uh huh, yes, totally”, as I read through all of your comments. We all share so many of the same feelings and thoughts on this topic and I’m very encouraged and pleased that you’ve all so openly shared your perspective… I am going to bed now, so I’ll be rising again early in the morning to see what comments were left overnight — keep ’em coming because I’m thinking maybe we can have these convos on the blog weekly again on Thursdays discussing topics that are close to home like this one…

    Would you like that? I’m thinking I could use it – because I miss hearing from you all on the deeper things. I guess it can’t always be sofas and art, right? This exchange has been great…so refreshing.

    Holly

  • Reply julie October 22, 2009 at 6:04 pm

    Being a new blogger I do think about what I will post about next, however I do not feel obligated to blog everyday. Some weeks the content comes easier than others. Sometimes I am thinking about something all week before I decide that I should write about it (like one of your talented calendar contributors from your calendar round up). I find that the less I think about it, the more I find the content comes to me organically.

    I don’t do things so that I can blog about them, however I do like the motivational/accountability (even though only a handful of people read me – it makes me feel accountable to myself!). Last week I posted about wanting to learn to sew because I have all of these lovely fabrics that I constantly collect and no skills to actually do anything with them. So currently my dining table is strewn with fabric and bobbins and my mum’s sewing machine, as I attempt to learn. It is something that I have always wanted to do so I am very grateful that my blog has given me the motivation to actually ‘do’ it. Yes, I can’t wait to take photos to share on my blog of my creations – however no more so than I will feel when I excitedly show my husband or family.

    On the subject of personal life on my blog, I am really still finding exactly what my blog is all about. I started with it being a design blog because that is where my heart lies, and where my training is – and also because I needed an outlet to express myself in this way because my day job is completely utterly unrelated to this side of myself. I have been working in this job for the past 4 years, my new husband and I decided that I should join his family business because we would be starting our own family the following year, so it just made sense. However over 4 years later, we are still waiting for our own family to happen and I feel stuck in a rut. My home is the only creative place for me and I resent my job. Luckily I get to spend the working day with my beautiful husband, for that I am very grateful.

    We have built three homes in the last seven years, and also renovated some properties for his family. This has been my saving grace – a way to express myself and feel fulfilled. However the last home (our current home) we built was an absolute nightmare of an experience. One which almost broke me.

    So now there are no more projects on the horizon, my blog is my new baby. I doubt myself often (yes when I read others blogs, such as yourself) however I know I am only a newbie and try not to be too hard on myself. I plan to blog until Christmas and have a little break, then see how I feel in the new year. I am trying to put a little more of me into the blog (without too much information) because I enjoy a little peek at others lives. I sometimes enjoy Haus Maus more than decor8, so that makes me think why. And I really enjoy The Happy Home – have you read it before. Belinda was very helpful to me in starting my blog and answered many questions, I love the personal aspect to her blog.

    I hope that my blog inspires me to pursue more creative endeavours and maybe others also eventually. At the moment I feel a little like this Einstein quote – it’s not exact,
    I’m going from memory:

    “I have no particular talent, I am simply passionately curious”

    Trust Einstein to be that modest! But that is how I feel, so many ideas and questions however I feel I don’t shine in one particular area. Hopefully my blog will help me polish myself up a little so one day I will.

    Well if you are still reading THANK YOU (I went on a little tangent like you do sometimes Holly – lol!), it was nice to read how all your other readers feel and to get a little off my chest also. And thank you for inviting your readers to do so. Jx
    .-= julie´s last blog ..pixel impress =-.

  • Reply la petite maison October 22, 2009 at 7:27 pm

    I started blogging to catalog objects, interiors, and projects that I love, and in turn share them with my readers. My blog also serves as an outlet for writing (I enjoyed creative writing growing up). I can’t reveal too much of my personal life however because of my profession that is no way related to my blog(can’t run the risk of my past, present, and future bosses attributing me to my blog!). You won’t see photos of me, or see my name on my blog. Hopefully I’m being authentic in my posts without sacrificing my privacy.

  • Reply Danica October 22, 2009 at 7:58 pm

    I am not a huge blogger, but I also don’t care a lot about Privacy (though I understand why others do and so it’s not as if I’ve discounted it from the Human Rights pile). I don’t care for privacy because a lot time ago I had the issue that all tweens have, where you feel like you don’t know who you are because the ‘inside you’ and ‘the outside’ you are different.
    So I decided to make them the same person.

    People don’t know everything about me, but what I would do (not what I do do) is/should be obvious. And what I would decide to do in a certain circumstance is much more important to me then what I may do in any given day.

    Besides, my partner knows everything about me, and I like to know everything about him. We spend a lot of time with each other, but it’s not a bad thing. And I feel to know the other person, is a much more intimate thing than to know what I did. So basically, I don’t track the times I’m alone physically, because I don’t care about it, rather I care about someone knowing what I believe etc.

    That said, I can’t be physically alone too long. I get bored. I need interaction.

  • Reply peggy October 22, 2009 at 8:10 pm

    Hi Holly!

    I remember reading Rose’s comment and finding it very interesting. When I first discovered blogs, I was leaving lots of comments and realized I was kind of giving away the store. So I decided to have my own blog so that I could have a source for self-expression. It’s been very fulfilling to me because I had been schlepping around paintings to galleries and always getting turned down. Then I realized I could have an online gallery, and I had a voice for the first time. People from all over the world were seeing my paintings. I haven’t sold any yet, but it really didn’t matter. The point was the self-expression.

    I read an interesting comment in flickr yesterday about being addicted to self-expression and it gave me pause. I had to think about that one. Am I addicted to self-expression? Maybe. But for the first time in my life I have a vehicle for my voice to be potentially heard. I’ve been silent my whole life. I found power in blogging about the presidential race, I didn’t feel helpless. I felt like I was participating. And yes, I see so much in my daily life as fodder for my blog, but that’s because I feel compelled to show people how I see the world. Again, is this addiction to self-expression? Maybe.

    Sometimes I get overwhelmed and I need to unplug. Sometimes it will be a week that I go without blogging. I have a notebook with ideas, and I get “behind” in blogging. Then I start to feel guilty. I have to stop and remind myself that blogging is something that I want to do. Not have to do. And it can be on my terms and in my time. I’ve learned in the almost two and half years that I’ve been blogging, that there are a set of rules in regard to blogging that have evolved almost by a collective agreement. I would like to propose a new rule. That we all agree that we blog because we want to. We enjoy it. I enjoy reading blogs. There is never a reason to apologize. We should not feel guilty because we need to take a few days off, nor should we apologize for a lack of posts or explain. Everyone understands that life is hectic and stressful.

    As far as personal information goes, I enjoy getting to know a little about the bloggers. I do worry of late, that I seem to prefer the bloggers to the real people in my life. But this has showed me a systemic problem in my life. I have never been around like-minded people and I think as an artist, I need that. I feel I have a connection and support for the first time.

    The downside for me is that I have blog envy at times. I worry that my blog is lame because my computer skills are not great. I worry that my art is not good, and yet I just keep putting it out there. And secretly, I hope to find a way to make money so that I can leave the hell that is corporate America.

    Thanks for this very interesting post. Sorry to go on and on.
    .-= peggy´s last blog ..Starbucks’ Art =-.

  • Reply amy October 22, 2009 at 8:11 pm

    i feel exactly the same. my blog is only 6 months old’ish and i am constantly thinking about it. should i delete it? does anyone actually care what i’m talking about? who am i talking to? i should really be taking pics of this moment to share, people are going to stop reading my blog cause i haven’t posted anything in days etc. etc. etc. it stresses me out! cause i love my blog and so do my friends but it feels like sometimes it owns me. i am getting better and better at letting things go, living for the moment and pushing blog thoughts out of my ever-wandering mind.

    i also feel guilty because i follow lot’s of wonderful blogs by artists, crafters, designers, galleries etc. so all i see is talent talent talent and i know my blog is not as spectacular! i am a graphic designer and am always being urged from readers to share my stuff (as they show theirs) but i don’t want to, i keep my blog as a collection of beautiful things not as a portfolio.

    so these things are close to my heart and you struck them!
    i feel good getting it off my chest, even having no idea if it will ever be read :)

    amy

  • Reply tara g October 22, 2009 at 8:30 pm

    great topic, holly!

    i just wrote a more personal post today on scoutie girl and received a comment thanking me for inserting information on my personal life into each days finds. i think that sharing who we are, what we do outside of scouring the internet for cool stuff, provides an excellent frame work for the work that we feature.

    i have made it a point to share at least one personal post each week, illustrating those posts with handmade objects that enhance the writing. however, i do reserve most of my personal “sharing” for other social media. i like people to feel like they know me but i want to keep the flow of my blog a certain way, as well. give & take – ebb & flow!

    thanks for starting this conversation – i’ll look forward to future discussions!
    .-= tara g´s last blog ..Pounced & Found =-.

  • Reply Restless Mama October 22, 2009 at 9:09 pm

    Yes! Weekly convos would be excellent!
    .-= Restless Mama´s last blog ..The filler post =-.

  • Reply april moore skelton October 22, 2009 at 10:03 pm

    I like you, Holly. You seem like the kind of person who enjoys considering every side of an issue and moderating debates, so thanks for opening up this question.

    I began blogging in 2004 and my blog is now dormant–I don’t even share its address anymore, though I continue to pay for the hosting. I like having the space there to do something with should I again find the time and desire.

    I am writing a book proposal now for which I am doing projects and I think it’s perfectly acceptable to have an outside source of accountability to help move you toward your goals. I am, to be honest, doing these projects for the book. But I want to do them anyway, the book just gives me good motivation to make stuff happen.

    On the other hand, I try to stay ever vigilant to the very real and tempting tendency to manipulate, exaggerate, or appropriate personal interactions for the sake of the book (you could just as easily stick blog in for book and it would be the same thing). As a too-silly and too-sad example, we can look at Balloon Boy and his fame-hungry dad, whose story seems to me not extreme, but a very real danger of our age.

    I think periodic checks with yourself are important: what are my “big” goals (mine are to conquer fear, to make improvements in my personal areas of weakness, and to learn to love more unconditionally–myself and others) and how are the things I’m doing supporting or inhibiting achievement of those? I know that sounds like new-agey mumbo jumbo but I think it’s actually very practical.

    The internet seemingly offers so many opportunities for acceptance, to be admired or famous or praised. Many women–I include myself first on this list (and men)–struggle with this, and buy into the (sometimes false) promises of blogs, social media, etc., to provide that acceptance or praise. In the end for me, it comes down to checking in with myself–making sure I’m TRULY blogging or writing or whatever for the right reasons and not because I’m seeking something that I can only give myself: self worth and acceptance. If my intentions and motivations are pure, to me there’s no danger of mining my life or the lives of those around me in an unfair way for blog or book content.

    Of course, I’m only human. ;)

  • Reply diana October 22, 2009 at 10:23 pm

    Hi Holly, Great topic and after I post this comment I’ll be reading everyone’s comments. My blog is used primarily for my crafting business and acts as a huge motivating force to actually get things done. I’m such a procrastinator and my blog has really got me focused on the things I need to do and accomplish by the end of the week/month. Like you I try to be as authentic as possible without giving out too much personal information ie, health and family. At times I find myself thinking “Oh, must blog about that” and then forget. My blog doesn’t stress me as I’m enjoying developing it as I develop my voice in blogland. I’m a person who has a million ideas a day and it is actually a bit of a relief to off-load somewhere such as my blog without driving people around me crazy. The only thing personality wise that is different in my offline/online life is I do like to swear in my offline life and I try to keep the pottymouth out of my blog as it doesn’t really match up with the cute kiddie prints and illustrations I like to do.
    .-= diana´s last blog ..October already! =-.

  • Reply Sakinah Abdul-Jaleel October 22, 2009 at 10:36 pm

    I am very new to blogging and definitely share the same concerns as every one else. One of my biggest challenges is deciding how much to blog about. I am sure all of you feel that you could talk design 24/7 I am no different, except that I really do! LOL! I am always rewriting my blogs because I think I am posting too much and I don’t want to bore people. I am beginning to track what my days are like as a new blogger and as a new interoir designer starting my own business firm. I just recently decided to put myself in the mind frame of giving workshops. In a workshop I wouldn’t expose too much of my personal life and at the same time I would want my content to be informative, entertaining, relevant, and short!
    .-= Sakinah Abdul-Jaleel´s last blog ..My interview with the most gracious Esther Crawford =-.

  • Reply Stacy October 22, 2009 at 10:43 pm

    I started blogging between freelance contracts in order to give me something to do. Having run out of projects, blogging motivated me to start/document/post new ones. When I feel stuck in a rut, finding a good blog topic can give me the kick I need.

    One thing I often do, though, is wish I had taken pictures of something after the fact so I could blog it! Sometimes I regret that my best meals don’t make it on my blog because I’m too busy entertaining to take photos, but at least I had fun.

  • Reply louise/artandghosts October 22, 2009 at 10:52 pm

    I thought i might add my thoughts on this, although i can only offer my own strange little perspective;)

    I do perceive a certain frenzy at work in the blogging world, i feel it, sometimes it is more apparent than others…..yet my own solution to this has been to narrow down my circuit of reference, ie, i follow closely only a limited number of blogs (yet i am eternally open to new stimulus when time permits!) and tend to only concern myself with snippets of my thoughts when writing my own blog posts.

    I tend to blog about the concepts or feelings behind my artworks, so this keeps the band pretty narrow. It has become a sort of tiny portal for me to share small parts of my world with others. Having been around the art/design community for about 5 yrs now, i have definitely noticed the ‘problem’ (if it is a problem at all, for some i believe it is a constant anxiety), and i do sometimes feel the ‘watered down-ness’ of things that you mention…….but i tend to keep a little bit of a distance from this, for i think there is a sort of barrier that it is wise not to cross, both as a reader and a writer of blogs.

    That said, i adore originality, and that to me is about essence, not content of dazzling displays. It is always a treat to me to discover heart and soul in a post, no matter what the subject matter being discussed.

    x
    .-= louise/artandghosts´s last blog ..To The Other Side =-.

    • Reply decor8 October 23, 2009 at 4:00 am

      Peggy – Sometimes yes I do, but I still just go with it though I’ve often thought of having a tumblr account for photos only.

  • Reply peggy October 22, 2009 at 11:17 pm

    P.S. – Sorry Holly. I forgot to tell you that I found this post and all the comments fascinating. There is one other thing I worry about on my blog – is that sometimes I feel I use too many words. Do you ever feel this way? Sometimes I think I may start a photoblog so I can concentrate more on my photography and stop talking so much.
    .-= peggy´s last blog ..Starbucks’ Art =-.

  • Reply Figen October 23, 2009 at 2:46 am

    Rose, thank you for your funny email and linking me to this article : )

    I started blogging a year ago, but I have been a dedicated diary-keeper, starting when I was 11 and writing daily until I was 28 after which I started writing a journal for my daughter to read when she grows up.

    I find there is a gigantic difference when something is going to be read by mostly strangers and when you write in a journal which simply gets tucked into your nightstand drawer. My blog focuses on sharing my hobby-cum-work which is a great passion in my life. I am quite meticulous about how personal I get. I don’t, for example, feel the need to share my relationship’s daily ups and downs or any personal financial problems, etc. on the web. It doesn’t even cross my mind to do so. But then, I didn’t set out with that kind of format in mind anyway. I think if you set out to use a blog as a personal diary then that’s totally fine – that’s your release, your need and your way.
    But, the only times I ever think about my blog content is when I experience something which I feel can and should be shared publicly and this usually involves either my craft, my travels or something beautiful I see out in the world. But, being female, it’s impossible to stay remote and obviously you cannot help but keep in the warm human factor!

  • Reply suzie October 23, 2009 at 2:46 am

    It is is good to reflect blogging and the (non)sense and the amount of time it is consuming from time to tome. So thanks for that post.
    And to answer your last question:
    I remember when I started blogging about my observations in Beijing (on my Beijing Notebook blog) that it helped me to discover more things in my new hometown ! I opened my eyes wide and I asked more questions to understand ! So blogging had a very positive aspect ! I learned much more about Chinese Culture and style etc than I probably would have without writing about it.
    .-= suzie´s last blog ..Palazzo Pizzo featured in German "1richtungsblog" =-.

  • Reply hinke October 23, 2009 at 3:52 am

    I started blogging a few months ago and this topic pops up a lot in my mind. It is difficult to find a balance in it. For me it helps to be more consious about the things I do ( even in my private time with family) it helps me to be more productive and it also helps me to make more time for working and getting inspired. Untill now I haven’t had bad comments or nasty people, at least that I’am aware of. What I like in other blogs is just that personal touch. Sharing a bit of family life and posts like this, that triggers me. I think I still have to find my own way in it…

  • Reply Silvia Silva October 23, 2009 at 4:50 am

    Hello,

    I am a Portuguese blogger and I have been doing it for some years now.
    For me, there is no stress in what blogging is concerned. I post in my blog little parts of my life, I do not pretend to turn it into a “soap” of my homelife everyday. It is about little moments, mostly images or thoughts that make me laugh or I find some beauty in them. Who knows my blog only knows a little of my life, because is not all there.
    I see it as a scrap book. A few years ago, some people had little notebooks where they had pictures, thoughts, tickets, holidays memories, etc…and they show it to their friends as little stories of their lifes. So, for me blogs are like that, the main difference is that this is open to the world. And for me this is more a way to do not feel alone, never, than the other way around.
    I love blogging, I do it just for fun, and I will keep doing for many. many years…for me it as form of generousity.

  • Reply Catalina October 23, 2009 at 4:53 am

    very interesting question!

    To blog is not part of a job to me, but even! I guess all of us go through this first state when we are discovering blogging and kind of “think life” in blog post terms but after a while we calm down and things become more fluent. This is my experience.

    I don’t like to get too much personal because even if in general people is respectful you can find any kind of persons there, actually as in “real” life. You don’t give your phone number or talk too much about you to people that you don’t know at all. So, to be careful is a rule to any way of expression.

    Strangely people who know me very well do not read my blogs :) just once in a while, I don’t know why…maybe because we share so many things already?

    To me, blogs have open so many windows to explore -and to explore myself, my creativity- that I had to be careful at some point for not staying all day long in front of my PC. Balance is a key word.

    Thank you for this! Interactivity is one of the most amazing parts in this topic!
    .-= Catalina´s last blog .. =-.

  • Reply Keryn October 23, 2009 at 5:08 am

    Rose’s comments are thought provoking and I’ve always enjoyed reading her blog. I’ve taken a break from my own blog as some days I was feeling pressure to discover new and interesting things to blog about and to be honest some days are just “ho hum” when it comes to managing a home based business, raising 2 boys and running a home. No one wants to hear about the daily domestic duties of my life!! So, I often blog about the nice or exciting things happening, a finished project, a trip away. I suppose it depends on whether one is writing the blog for oneself or for the interest of readers. I don’t have many readers, but its nice to have a collection of posts I can look back on for inspiration or reminder of times past.

  • Reply decor8 October 23, 2009 at 5:18 am

    Reply – Ha Suzie that’s cute but I am the German decor8 – I live in Germany!!!

  • Reply a pretty trip October 23, 2009 at 5:29 am

    I started my blog because I want to write – but I’m too scared. I have so many half started novels and bad short stories laying around my house… that I thought blogging would give me some confidence to put myself out there a bit. But… I love interiors blogs so much (and as I’m renovating my house) I’ve been drawn to finding photo’s and writing about all things pretty and domestic. Nonetheless, I enjoy it and I’ve learnt so many fascinating things from the blogosphere and its definitely brought out my creative side. Maybe one day I’ll be a published author.. and maybe by doing my blog I’ll find my way there. That’s why “trip” is in my blog title, I know it will lead me to where I’m supposed to go :)
    .-= a pretty trip´s last blog ..Take a seat… =-.

  • Reply Amanda October 23, 2009 at 5:39 am

    Really great topic Holly and some interesting discussion. I haven’t blogged for long. Initially I was petrified at the thought of putting myself ‘out there’, but have actually found that sometimes blogging forces me to take action, and for a relatively shy person, that is really good for me. I started the blog as an extra channel for my store, but actually find that it is the mix of personal and inspirational that keeps me going, and I mention the store very little or only in passing as a part of my day to day life. I love that I have another creative outlet. Of course sometimes, content is a struggle, but I’m trying not to let that be a reason to give up!
    .-= Amanda´s last blog ..happy long weekend! =-.

  • Reply Mary Poppins October 23, 2009 at 5:55 am

    Holly I hope you don’t mind if I link to this post. I find it a fascinating subject and one I have been thinking of very much. If I am truly honest I find blogging a double edged sword, Blogging keeps me motivated and I get many of my craft projects done because I know people hopefully enjoy looking at my pretty things, but then there is also much pressure to constantly think of things to blog about and I think the line between real life and blogging a little blurry. I also think blogging can be quite a competitive place to be sometimes, although I may be wrong but is a feeling I sometimes get.

    X

  • Reply amanda October 23, 2009 at 7:07 am

    i agree with you on having something like that on a weekly basis. it is really interessting so read all those thoughts of the other blogger. and, as you said before, on the general idea we all agree;-)
    .-= amanda´s last blog ..ninexmuse-jewellery =-.

  • Reply Mary Poppins October 23, 2009 at 8:38 am

    Hi Holly, I have linked to your post on my blog, I hope that is alright. I am getting the feeling that Blogging and all that comes with it is a very thought provoking subject.

    X
    .-= Mary Poppins´s last blog ..Is My Blog My Life…. =-.

  • Reply juliette October 23, 2009 at 8:42 am

    great post! I have two blogs, a private one for family and friends, and a public one, about my creative efforts and our apartment. Sometimes I feel bad b/c I post on the creative one more, but honestly, I think that’s ok. I just didn’t want to overwhelm a large percentage of my private blog readers with the inner tickings of my learning to sew efforts or where to put the couch. I post because I like to share certain things or want input on certain problems (such as how to decorate our odd fireplace). I definitely don’t go and do something just so I can create a post. I don’t feel that driven by my blogs.

    I did use to check my traffic a lot, and recently I just decided that for me it was just egotistical and dumb, so I only check every couple of weeks. I’m not depending on my blogs for money. I’ve met some really great people via the blogs thanks to shared interests, so I think being authentic is key.

    Being authentic doesn’t mean I have to blog my entire life’s details. I know who I am, and so do those closest to me. I think my public blog is more like a calling card – here’s what I like, if you like it too, come along for the ride!
    .-= juliette´s last blog ..Little Girl’s Bag: Take 2 =-.

  • Reply Katherine October 23, 2009 at 10:03 am

    Wow, such a fun topic & comments. I only recently started a blog (after having unsuccessfully following thru on a couple previously) & am still trying to find my footing, but basically it’s a way to hold myslef accountable in my creative journey. That said, I am also hoping it might provide an avenue to connect w/ others & build a sense of community.

    However, I can totally relate to some other commenters who feel like they’re talking to themselves because they don’t get alot of comments, etc. I figure even if no one else reads my blog, it will serve as a diary of sorts for me to look back & see, in black/white, how the journey has played out.
    .-= Katherine´s last blog ..my first art show =-.

  • Reply Amisha October 23, 2009 at 10:55 am

    This almost feels like telepathy. I have been mulling this topic of how much to reveal on the blog. I think I might be far too clinical on mine.

    I think it is an art form to figure out how much to say and finding that balance between saying enough for the post to be interesting and yet keeping some things to yourself.

    I think a you do a beautiful job of balancing that, I think that reflects on how talented you are :-).
    .-= Amisha´s last blog ..Buzz of the Week: Sketch Saturday =-.

  • Reply Penny Patten October 23, 2009 at 11:35 am

    I don’t do things just to blog about them, but I do blog about many aspects and parts of my life. The Tag line on my blog is: “Where Art and Life Meet” so my blog is a place that I like to display and talk about both. But I don’t include every thing for the world to see, some things are kept to my self, or within family. I think it depends on each individual, and why they chose to start a blog. For me it is a great outlet, and its helped me grow as an artist and as a person.
    .-= Penny Patten´s last blog ..New England Bloggers Mixer =-.

  • Reply Bettye October 23, 2009 at 11:51 am

    I was happy to read this topic…and all the great comments, from those who are new to blogging to those who have been doing it for some time. I’m relatively new and still trying to find my voice. I’ve started several..they sort of morph over time and I think it would be better started fresh! I blog as an outlet for myself as well as a way to (hopefully) direct attention to my business.

    I do see opportunities in the day to do or photograph something “for the blog,” and I think that’s A Good Thing (to quote whatsername). It’s so easy to go through our days and our lives, not REALLY noticing all the goodness out there…or say “I’ll come back/do that later.” The sort of immediacy of the blog MAKES me stop and take a closer look, or get more information, or take a photograph (or 20!), so that I can blog it. I’m prone to THINK about doing things and not actually DOING them, so the little push the blog gives me is a useful one.

    Bettye
    .-= Bettye´s last blog ..the return of moi =-.

  • Reply Annie October 23, 2009 at 1:19 pm

    Seems like this one really hit a nerve… great thoughts, Holly, and so many great responses. One of the things that sets Design Blogs apart is that they’re focusing on, well, design. Which is an expression of one’s thoughts & heart & taste, but ultimately we’re talking about inanimate objects. So, I think it helps to share a little bit from the heart that is infusing those designs. The weird part is the public nature of it all. My attempt to blend it all on my budding blog was the creation of certain categories (& sometimes corresponding days) for deeper reflection and others for fun elements & ideas. I’ve loved hearing people’s responses on this one. Do you think you’ll cover “blogging theory” in the e-class? I’d love to know how to strike a balance.

  • Reply Ange October 23, 2009 at 2:19 pm

    Love this insightful post! On and off, I”ll have doubts about blogging which has become too much of a part of me that I can’t quite separate it from my offline personal line. Sometimes I even find myself dreaming about blogs. Your views on this topic (together with the views of some others here) definitely help me to put things into perspective. Thanks!
    .-= Ange´s last blog ..Dressy Headbands =-.

  • Reply natalyn October 23, 2009 at 2:39 pm

    This is a great topic! When I started my blog in ’06, I don’t think I had a real direction or goal for it. As a result, I became discouraged easily and after about a year (and due to some circumstances in life) I just stopped. I picked it back up a couple of months ago, and am really enjoying it because it’s for me and it’s a way for me to catalogue my photos and inspirations. It’s also a way for me to remain accountable to myself when I start new challenges. I don’t usually get comments, but I know a lot of my friends read it. And if I gain more readers in the future, each one is just an added bonus.
    .-= natalyn´s last blog ..day 33. =-.

  • Reply Lucia October 24, 2009 at 12:57 pm

    Hi Holly,
    I can tell you something, I feel you write about what you love and this give us (readers) energy, inspiration and happiness. I have started to read blogs only some months ago and I love it. Yours is one that I check first every day. And usually I find beautiful things to look at. In the meanwhile you start to know the persons behind the blogs and this is also great. I find this is beautiful.
    Greetings,
    Lucía

  • Reply Lucia October 24, 2009 at 1:06 pm

    well maybe my post was not strictly related to what the topic was, but I had the necessity to post it anyway!! I´m not a blogger (I mean I just read not write blogs) so I just wanted to say what someone like me feels!!!
    Thanks for blogging!!
    Greetings,
    Lucia

  • Reply Laili Kafi October 24, 2009 at 11:28 pm

    I began blogging at the suggestion of a friend, and at first found it very difficult, both to find my voice, and to really understand the bloggosphere. I had no idea when I started what an amazing world of people, wit, and information was out there, and as I began to write, I realized there are so many people out there that are not just a source of information, but a source of inspiration. I find that as I have continued to write and ‘grow’ my blog, I have started to sew together a wonderful pattern of things that connect the various aspects of my life. Often, anything and everything in my day can be something I write about, and other times, I write about things I didn’t even think of until I sit down in front of my lap top…and those things sometimes even find their way back into my ‘day life’, so to speak. As my friend told me, blogging is about a conversation – and this is what has helped me to find a balance between what I write and how I write. I realized that finding and asserting my voice were equally as important as writing about something I am passionate about, thinking about, etc. And that I cannot make my whole life about one thing or the other. It’s this part of it all – the dedication as well as the ability to say when – that makes it a challenge, but also fun and interesting.
    .-= Laili Kafi´s last blog ..Margarido House =-.

  • Reply Rita Vindedzis October 25, 2009 at 7:24 am

    Hi Holly. As usual you’ve started a wonderful discussion here in response to Rose’s question. I’m sorry I’m only tuning in now, but as I’m up so early this Sunday morning I get to catch up with my blog reading. There are fabulous comments here and I’ve learned so much how for very similar and very different reasons we all blog. I started blogging because it was suggested to me as a way to enhance my art “business”. Honestly, it wasn’t something that I wanted to start at first. I thought it would be just one more task on my to do list that had to be crossed off everyday (and yes, there are times when I still feel like this). And there are times when I feel I’m doing something just for a blog post, usually when I’m on a deadline finishing paintings for a new gallery or show. But being a professional artist (this is my livelyhood) can be very solitary at times (hours and hours spent alone in studio) and blogging has been a great way to reach out and connect with people. It’s also been a way for me to express and share my different styles of art that I do. My paintings in galleries are somewhat traditional landscapes with a contemporary edge and at a high price point. I’ve also been doing smaller mixed media work to spread my wings and keep the creative juices flowing, and the blog is my showcase for these as well as smaller paintings that I do in different media. I post about them on my blog and sell them through Red Banana’s Shop (my Etsy shop) at a much lower price point. So as my blog is business oriented I still like to share what goes on in my world and what it’s like to manage all the different hats that I wear, but I don’t post about really personal private stuff. What I find challenging is to stop what I’m doing to take photo’s, especially when I’m in the moment painting.
    .-= Rita Vindedzis´s last blog ..Distractions, Distractions. =-.

  • Reply Mandi Johnson October 25, 2009 at 8:06 pm

    Wow! I could spend all night reading your comments. I must say, I do read way too many blogs, but I end up scanning them for visual inspiration. Your blog, however, I enjoy actually reading! I think you have thought provoking posts and also just simple, good conversation.
    I started a blog a couple of years ago because I was getting more and more into the online scrapbooking community. Blogging has turned into a full blown hobby for me and I can’t believe all of the people who stop by! I have always posted about myself, my work, my life, my family… so, I suppose it’s a bit different from the kind of blog you run here. After all my blog is called “Here’s Lookin’ at Me, Kid.” :)
    Sometimes, I will admit, I ask husband to wear a different outfit if I know that I will be blogging the pictures of our event later. haha And he teases me for it. I know it’s silly. I like to keep a certain aesthetic to my blog, because I want it to be a representation of my heart in every way.
    Even though the blog is about my life, I don’t share everything. I only typically share the pretty parts and parts that I think would be interesting to my readers. Although, I have met a few of my blog readers in person, and I totally agree with you- their saying that I talk exactly how I blog was such a sweet thing to hear. I begin to wonder sometimes… Do I really blog how I live? Because that’s important to me being an authentic blogger. But really, blogging has, in a way, changed how I live. I think I live a prettier life that I used to, because I’m simply more aware of the things I love and the things I don’t. Part of that comes with reading other blogs too. It’s a way to refine your life, I think. But that’s just my opinion. :)

  • Reply Emma October 26, 2009 at 12:38 am

    Goodness. I briefly read this post before leaving work on Friday and thought over the weekend ‘must put on a comment on there for Holly’ because this whole idea has totally resonated with me. Obviously it has with hundreds of others in the blogging community! I whole heartedly agree with your idea of accountability – I would hate to think that I do things in my life just because I have a blog, but sometimes I will find it pushes me forward to have new experiences, try new things, strive harder to succeed in order to help my blog succeed or have something or worth to post about. I don’t want my blog to be invalid – the last thing I want to not contribute anything of value or relevance to the blogging community. But accountability definately is a big topic re: blogging, like on the weekend I blogged about my mantlepiece re-shape, I don’t think I would have done it unless I knew I had posted on my blog a to-do list, and I am slowly getting through that list thanks to BLOG ACCOUNTABILITY.
    Good luck with the boxes on Wed-Thurs Holly ;)
    .-= Emma´s last blog ..{ 100th post – GIVEAWAY! } =-.

  • Reply shalini October 26, 2009 at 3:53 am

    What an inspirational post! When I started blogging in 2004, I found it a great way to share my thoughts, but as more and more bloggers started doing the same thing, I found that I had to write about something different and definitely something from my point of view. I’ve done many things for the sake of blogging, it was the push I needed to extend myself, and it’s been a great journey.
    .-= shalini´s last blog ..quote: time for everything yet nothing at all =-.

  • Reply Melissa October 26, 2009 at 9:43 am

    Thank you for this post! I’ve felt this way for awhile and just thought it was me. I try to find a balance – for the last few weekends, I’ve been trying to stay away from the computer so I can re-energize myself for the next week of writing. It’s hard sometimes because there are so many blogs I want to read, and I don’t want to get behind. It’s sort of like a vicious cycle sometimes, isn’t it?

  • Reply Arabella October 26, 2009 at 3:55 pm

    What a great question! And it seems to have sparked a lot of very interesting responses. I have just read them all in the last couple of hours.
    I am new to the blogging world, having just started a blog this month with my mother in law, but I have been reading other peoples’ blogs for several years, and I find it really interesting to take a small peak into other peoples lives. I feel that if you dont put any of yourself into your blog, it is less interesting to the reader. It is hard to find a balance though and I am still trying to find the best way to do that. Like several of the other people who have commented, I do feel that no-one is reading what I write, but whilst I am travelling and living away from my home country it is a good record of the present for me and something I can look back on in later life… and it keeps me entertained.
    I dont do things to blog about, but I do think about what I am doing and consider whether or not is is worth taking a photograph of to share. I try to blog about things that interest me and that I hope will interest other people.
    Thanks so much for sharing Rose’s question with all of us. It has been really helpful to read about how other people view their blogging.

    Arabella

  • Reply Maggie ~ The Freckled Citizen October 27, 2009 at 4:29 pm

    I’ve so enjoyed reading this dialogue – what a gem of a conversation. I’m fairly torn on this topic. I’ve had several blogs over the years, and they’ve all had really different approaches to personal matters. The first was a blog that focused on local and national politics, so when personal items were shared, they were really carefully presented. The second blog was a wedding blog that I kept while planning our wedding, which obviously involved quite a bit more personal matters than the first. After the wedding, I didn’t want to keep a wedding blog anymore, but I had to admit to myself that I really enjoyed the personal expression that the blog had allowed. So I started a third blog – what I hope will be my permanent blogging home – with the idea that it would involve the personal AND the political.

    How has this worked out in real life? It’s been a lot more personal than political, and I recognize that my concept of straddling two different audiences is tough in practice. I think the “must blog each day” feeling, which does strike from time to time, promotes a lot of fun posts that aren’t quite the thoughtful pieces I hoped I’d be doing – although I do still love the fun! But I must admit, I do find myself reacting quite strongly to the perennial overshare that I see on so many other personal blogs, including some friends of mine. There are thing you talk about with your girlfriends that are not things you should write about on a blog, in my opinion… I also dislike the clique-ish nature of the blog world, which seems particularly strong surrounding personal blogs. The way to avoid that, in my opinion, is just to be yourself – write differently, write about what you care about, have less silly conversations. And yet…

    I’m not sure how I’ll keep straddling fun “me” stuff and the newsy, issues-based things I really care about… but I do still feel like that balance is the most accurate representation of who I am and the blogspace I’d like to create. I’d also like to echo so many other readers here and say that YOU and your blog strike this balance really well. Thanks for hosting this conversation… great stuff to ponder.
    .-= Maggie ~ The Freckled Citizen´s last blog ..All pigged out. =-.

  • Reply Shuku October 28, 2009 at 4:42 pm

    It’s been really interesting reading all the responses that are coming up on this question of blogging! For me, blogging started as a way of keeping in touch with friends – in university, almost all my close friends were in other states or in other countries, and given I never had as much time as I wanted to write to them all personally, I figured I’d start a blog so they could stay in touch with the important things that were going on with my life.

    Gradually though, the blog shifted focus towards being both an outlet for making myself write, and also a place where I could work out some of the really difficult things and transitions going on in my life at the time. I locked my posts to a certain group of friends – the very close ones – and I do know that I got through several years of depression, gluten-intolerance diagnosis, and a spate of desperate joblessness and visa problems because of this core group of friends who commented on my blog and who stayed in touch.

    When I moved back to my home country after ten years living abroad, I started my current blog as a way to make myself focus on the good things – the things I was passionate about, the things I loved, such as art, crafting, writing, books, music. The transitional period was difficult, and this served as a way of being accountable, in a way – to consciously make myself see the positive side of things. I refused to post much in the way of negativity when I started, but again, the focus of the blog has shifted. It’s now primarily about my jewellery/crafting endeavours – I’ve just started to make jewellery for sale, so it’s a way of giving updates to friends and potential customers who follow my work. It’s also a way of giving voice sometimes to things close to my heart which I’m either working out, or which I feel strongly about – who knows, sometimes it might help someone else, or someone else might just have had the same experience and can help.

    I try to balance out the personal side of things (choir, choral competitions, poetry, occasional rants about certain issues) with the artistic side. I don’t feel that my privacy is invaded – I do moderate my postings, after all, and as much as I blog, I’m extremely private about many things in my life too. I’m still trying to find a balance between the two, but in the meantime, this is what feels right for me.

    –Shuku
    .-= Shuku´s last blog ..For The Love Of Lumps: Process, Part 2 =-.

  • Reply Des October 29, 2009 at 11:51 am

    Such an outstanding post. You highlight an issue that every blogger deals with. I think the strongest indicator for whether you’re blogging correctly is longevity. It seems like bloggers who aren’t really into their blogs don’t last very long. So as long you’re genuine and authentic, I think your blog will be successful. Thanks for starting this excellent discussion.

  • Reply Lisbeth November 2, 2009 at 4:07 am

    Thanks for a brilliant post. Lots of food for thought. Lots of interesting responses. I started my first blog some months ago. I decieded from the start NOT to write about my personal life. Hopefully I can still be interesting (and engaging?) to read, by taking a stand and writing in a personal way. My original blog about all things interior design soon split into several blogs, each focusing on different aspects of design. I truly enjoy the ongoing discussions with so many more than I can possibly meet at the same time in real life. AND I learn from each and every one. Cheers from Lisbeth in Sweden.
    .-= Lisbeth´s last blog ..Bellavien – inspirerande inredningsblogg =-.

  • Reply Melissa de la Fuente November 6, 2009 at 11:55 am

    Such a great topic and so many interesting responses….I am with you Holly….I try to run my blog the same way I do my life, in the sense that I just try to be honest & authentic. What you see is what you get….I don’t think I put all that much personal content in( out of protecting those around me ) but, what I do put in I try to always make honest, true and what I love. I find inspiration everywhere but, try to only let my own feelings dictate what I put out there. Does that make sense? I do try to treat others, on my blog, the way I would want to be treated. Thanks for such a lovely dialogue….
    xo
    Melis
    .-= Melissa de la Fuente´s last blog ..Melissa loves: Little Black Fences =-.

  • Reply Chloe C. February 4, 2011 at 4:44 am

    omg.
    have to only write about what is really going on.
    but have to say, so many wonderful people here.
    great post, Holly.

  • Reply Valentina February 14, 2013 at 5:05 pm

    This is such a good question and something to really think about. I am fairly new to blogging and I have started saturdaychat as a way to share experiences, places, things I love, simple as that.

    Christmas has been the time when I have realised that having a blog to share and write about places/market/shopping in London was as great as attending these events or doing all these great things the city was offering. At the time it did appear to me as an interesting discovery: it wasn’t just about “doing things”, it was about making sure that other people could learn about these things and enjoy themselves!

    With this in my mind I have been choosing topics and subjects to blog about. Every now and then I would question whether I should write or not about something: as an example I have recently met my partner’s parent, they live in South Africa and this has been such a big (and fun!) thing to write about! It took me a while to decide if it was ok for me to actually put this experience out there and why I was even thinking about doing this, what was the point.

    I guess the point is that sometimes we just want to “put a message in a bottle” and see if there is anybody out there who would like to read it and tell us what they think. It is not always about the people that know us and love us and it is not always about writing to ourselves on our computers either.

    It is “the village”, that sense of community that, I think, sometime is missing in big city such as London and although we might be lucky enough to have amazing friends in our lives (and I am personally very thankful for that!), we still feel like talking to an unknown audience and let it go without thinking too much…

    I find this fascinating and a great source of inspiration: reading about other people’s hobbies and experiences is great and makes the time we live in full of possibilities.

    As for anything else we define the boundaries and they are personal and subjective, that’s what make them unique.

    Have fun blogging everyone!

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