Why Bother to Blog? To be better?

Why Bother to Blog? The question came from MargeKatherine whom I have  just met online in this wonderful cyberland. I still do not really know if there is an etiquette about referring to someone else’s blog without asking them first, but I am saying nice things. Thanks for the question MK and for the blogs of yours I have read so far.

Early Learning Bloggers to be.

I expect the answer is for as many reasons as there are bloggers, so here is my personal answer, from then to now.

I still feel new to blogging. I started last summer because I was lonely in Shanghai where I was helping to care for my grandsons. But they were actually at kindergarten from 8am – 4pm and we had an ayi who did all the cooking and cleaning and laundry, and my son was home from work by 5.30, so this life being normal in Shanghai, what was totally abnormal for me was having nothing to do. Except of course going out and about and seeing the wonders of a new city (new to me and pretty new to itself too with all the development going on). Except of course only being able to share it with other family and friends by email – I don’t do Facebook much anyway and this was China where Facebook is blocked by the authorities The Authorities.

So I thought I would keep a Diary. Then I realised I could keep it online, tell my friends the address, and not have to write emails which had started to look like Christmas letters, one size fits all. Then I discovered sites which helped bloggers go online. I am a very technical person, who created my own first website in 1997 – look at that date – 1997. It took hours and days and weeks, and it was meant to be professional, to indicate an ordered existence others might wish to consult and begin conversation with. HA HA HA No-one looked at it because no-one did online then. And, although it was online, it was quite formal, not conversational. So I did other things, updated it sometimes, forgot to update it, etc.. Then the software I used went out of date. Been there, done that, I thought.

Suddenly in Shanghai, I found I was in a world which had leapfrogged right over me. Blogging is the easiest thing in the world to do now, and better still, all the comment and reply and uploading is there with a finger click. No tech needed, though you can be techy if you want. And, it is better than Facebook, because there is room for the story, the day-to-day event, the serious thought, the photo, the fun, the poem, the just a little bit because you are tired today.

I started three blogs, one The Diary, for the family and friends as I thought, there are more ‘others’ than family and friends reading and following.  One for poetry, for me to hone my writing. And the third was to be the serious one. It is still waiting to happen. I think I really only need one, still learning how to use it.

What has changed since the beginning? Within a week I got a real reply – to one of the poems – from a real person I had never met. She heard what I said. WOW – and thanks again speccy. I read her stuff, I met others, I read others, I wrote more, I stopped being shy and began replying . (Then I had to go techy again as China blocked WordPress, but I discovered there is another online community of helpers, those who create the VPN systems, and I did not have to be technical after all.) I found I could not write everything I thought because I did not know who would read it. I can really only write about myself, originally a no-no as that was classified as selfish, but it is far more selfish to write about other people without their permission. Who I am and how I feel and think – it is out there and people can engage or not as they choose. It may be a strange thing to say, but I am hoping that being a blogger has made me a nicer person. It certainly makes me think about what it is I am thinking.

You all know this is what happens, you write, you read, you find yourself smiling, wondering, laughing or crying, responding. Always learning, seeing observing. This is the most important thing I have to say today.

Online meeting is REAL. Do not let anyone say it is only virtual.

It is just like other kinds of meeting, some is truthful and honest, holds some kinds of values, same as yours, different from yours. Some is just not trying to share values, there is another agenda. Some is fun – but not all that is fun is healthy and not all that is healthy is fun. Like in real life, stay away from the poisonous and dangerous if it happens to cross your path. Or stand up against it if you can, WordPress helps with a complaint system. We can write about poetry politics science literature art philosophy feelings whatever we want, at whatever level we are in the mood for. I read another blogger’s tale of online betrayal and felt for her. We can respond to another, reply etc.

So, I am a blogger now, and it is another wonderful way to connect with the world and the people in it and keep on finding things, whatever is there. What I do with it, and how I do it – that’s down to me.

Thanks again for the question MargeKatherine.

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9 thoughts on “Why Bother to Blog? To be better?

  1. Wonderful! I recognize so much in this post …about creating a web page back in 1997, the time it took, how serious I was about it and most of all; how nothing happened with it! Even bought a domain name for it!

    I recognize the feeling you describe when you received your first comment … I never forget that! 🙂 That was probably what got me hooked.

    I too, have had several blogs. For instance, when I travelled to my homeland, last Fall, I made up a separate blog for that — bascially because I figured there would be a lot of photos taken, and I’d have them all in one place, and not fill up the quota in my regular, fluffy blog.

    Thanks for the linking. That’s generally appreciated by most people … the more linking, the better search results …or rather; the higher ranking.

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    1. Hi again We are clearly both online at the same real time though I guess in different timezones. This reply to my bother to blog will rank as one of the great repliesI’ll remember, as well as the first. I have just looked at some of your photos and if I am looking between the lines/pics properly I feel you are out and about in this wonderful world with a lot more photos in your head not taken. I certainly like those you do take. I do a lot of walking, and cycling, and as you now know, drink coffee. And the travelling is mainly because 2 of my sons took off and got themselves each a wife and family on opposite sides of the world. (China and USA east – twelve hours time difference). they, or the caffeine, keep me going. I hope we will ‘meet’ again, Elspeth

      those who seek new land have to spend a long time out of sight of the shore [Andre Gide]

      https://elspethc.wordpress.com http://triformy.wordpress.com

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      1. Yes, I’m in Canada since eight years … right on the north Atlantic seaboard. If you’re in Edinburgh now, that would be four hours’ difference. The photography is a newly discovered interest for me, considering I’m 56 and only have been shooting for three years. It was the digital cameras that did it for me.

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  2. Hello Elspethc,

    Thanks so much for pointing to my blog! Yes, I welcome the mention and adore your words. It seems we are all drawn to blogging for one reason or another and for me … somewhere deep inside it was a way to connect with my grandson for that day when I am dead and gone. He will read my words, see the blog posts, view photos of us and himself and smile with a head full of great memories.

    And in the storytelling, I am learning to share more of myself, of my trials and tribulations, I stir up my comfort zone and engage with a wide range of amazing people. I live in and love Colorado and love taking photos and including them when the moment is right.

    It’s all good, isn’t it?

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  3. It’s typical of blogging that when I first saw this post I wandered off to MargeKatherine’s and left a long comment there, forgetting to do so here!!

    I’m so glad I happened across your poem all those months ago 🙂 You always make me think and wonder. And I’m pretty sure you’re real. You’re not going to tell me you’re only virtual are you?

    Blogging, for me, is about communicating and learning about others and, yes, myself. I’ve started to look more closely at the world around me, I look for humour and joy, and how to report on the everyday everyday.

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  4. Reblogged this on elspethc and commented:

    WordPress today wrote about the value of comments. It made me want to look at what I had said before – so I decided to reblog this post from six moths ago. I am more than ever appreciative of fellow bloggers and their comments, almost none from the originally intended audience for the blog.

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