Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Question: Should Blogging Be Fun?

Have you ever clicked on the "Next Blog" button way up there in the navbar of most Blogger blogs? Try it. It's pretty interesting. You get to see a huge variety of personal type blogs. What really struck me, though, was the number of abandoned blogs. Blogs that hadn't been updated in months, even years.

It just goes to show. Having a blog, and keeping it updated and vibrant, is harder than one might think.

I was responding to an email last week and the following thought sprung to mind: sometimes I am just elated by something bloggy like a comment I receive or a good post I've written; yet hours later, I'll find myself struggling to even begin to write the next post. There's a tension between loving what I'm doing and NOT loving what I'm doing. Does this spell the end to my blogging? Am I doomed to become one of those blogospheric casualties? I don't think so. I certainly hope not. I mean, think of any good marriage. Do you know of any happily-married people who smile incessantly and live in a constant bubble of bliss? Neither do I. Sometimes there are moments of doubt and strife. This is common and normal, right?

And so it goes for blogging. It's not 100% ferris wheels and picnics.

Take, for instance, my newly-designed Tutorials-At-A-Glance page. My husband was showing my blog to someone a while ago and noticed that when you clicked on the thumbnails on my old page, you got an error message. He sent me a concerned email telling me my Tutorials page was broken (I guess he cares...)! It wasn't broken... It just wasn't as straightforward as it could be. So he made some suggestions for improvements. Now I knew it would take a ton of work to change. But I heeded his advice and began making those changes. Yeah... And what a nightmarish hell-job that was. It took me days and days to get a grasp on the html, start a fresh page from scratch, re-organize, and get it up and running. And there's still some tweaking to be done. But it's essentially there now.

Did I enjoy this task? NO! Not even one iota. Am I glad I did it? Yes I am. Because now I have a more navigable, better organized, easy-to-update Tutorials page. I learned something. I pushed my boundaries. And that feels good. It was worth it after all.

I think the time has come to be realistic. Blogging can be darn hard. Especially if I care at all about my content and about making my site any good. It takes time. It takes a hell of a lot of creative energy, effort, sweat, maybe even a couple tears now and then. I love it. I don't love it. Welcome to something worth doing, Michele!

So. In answer to the title of this post: Should blogging be fun? Yes. Darn tootin'. Absolutely. No question. But ALL the time? No. NO! And it would be silly to expect it to be.

Note: The above "tiles" are recycled foam meat trays which I have etched with designs originally created by my three children - Elle, Dia and The Boy - when they were little, and painted with layers of liquid acrylic paints.


  1. I think you are absolutely correct in saying that if you want something worthwhile and something that brings you great joy, you are going to have to work at it. Nothing easy is ever really going to give great joy because it feels like a cheat. Working hard and having that effort repaid with readers comments and people linking to you makes you feel satisfied with a job well done.

  2. I have always blogged for ME. If I were doing it to get "customers" or a "follower", as so many sites suggsest, it would become a chore, but for me,it's fun and it's what I want to share.

  3. Great post, Michele. I agree. With everything. It should (most of all) be fun! And it's true that blogging sometimes requires sound thinking, good planning and hard working, but I enjoy it and will continue keeping my blog alive. Forever? I don't know. I guess until I feel like it.

  4. well said. and great art, too! I thought they were stone carvings. have you ever printed them on fabric?

  5. Gina, I agree with you. A blog is such a personal project. You must do it for yourself first. That way it stays authentic and the fun keeps flowing.

  6. Hi Brenda, not on fabric but we have done some foam tray printing onto paper. It works surprisingly well!

  7. "There's a tension between loving what I'm doing and NOT loving what I'm doing." I couldn't have said it any better, Michele, and I couldn't agree more. I love my blog and the people I have met through it, but there are times when it feels like a chore or I get in over my head and wonder what I was thinking. I'm guessing it will never get any easier, so I'll just keep doing it until I no longer love it.

  8. Nice pictures ! And yes , I agree with you ,it is always like the necessary balance between doing and telling about what you do , the more you tell, the less you do , and blogging is a nice way to show what you do , it makes you want to do more , but then you don't have the time , and yet you want to tell about what you do , and well , also learning about blogging is learning , and learning , learning is a great goal ... Well , I see what you mean , I think ...:)

  9. You're right Gwen. Blogging can seem like a chore sometimes. I guess what I was trying to say with this little rambling is that perhaps that is normal and we should accept it... As with anything worth doing, there will be these low times naturally. But I say, don't give up. You - you're one of the bright stars imo - and I love what you share with others through your blog.

  10. Most of the time blogging is fun for me, but I do get to a point where I need to take a break every once in a while. I've discovered that I need to keep my life balanced. If I do too much blogging it can weigh me down and then I feel guilty for not spending time with my family.

    By the way, your new tutorials page looks amazing! The work paid off! I've been trying to figure out how to get my tutorials page looking nicer. I guess I will have to delve into the world of html- yikes!

  11. the tut page - fantastic! I don't have one, so lazy of me. (Bad blogger, bad!) I salute all the hard work that went into it! And completely concur with the love/hate relationship to my blog. So much fun! So much work! But the fun and sense of creative accomplishment far outweigh the work, so that's why I'm still into it. Selfishly, I am very happy that you feel the same way. Yr blog just keeps getting better, and I want you to get so much out of it that you'll continue delighting us for years to come.

  12. Oh - the tiles are really cool! The drawings are perfect for that stonework look - such a great way to preserve them! And much easier than actually carving them into a cave wall somewhere. Unless you have a cave in the backyard, petroglyphs are not super practical for the average crafter, hee.

  13. Wow, first, I gotta say the meat trays are great! I truly thought they were ceramic tiles while reading the post.

    As for blogging, I hear ya. It's hard to keep up with. I'm a lot less diligent about it. I chose to separate my crafting into three different blogs when I started to help others navigate. Only my general craft blog gets any regular attention. The other two are just there mainly to inspire. One hasn't been updated in months, the other in years. :) But, I will eventually. They are not dead. Just hanging out, waiting until the next big wave of inspiration.

    I hope you don't give up the blogging anytime soon. Yours is one blog I stop by frequently. You do a wonderful job. You hard work is greatly appreciated, at least by me. :)


  14. 1. you have THREE children? Didn't know that!
    2. i love blogging but it isn't always fun. the spam comments from porn sites annoy me, but so does word verification.
    3. agree whole-heartedly that it takes hard work, thought, genuine care and creative effort. All for no pay.
    4. gladly, there's no sign of stopping us.
    5. those tiles are gorgeous.

  15. It's very frustrating when I want something pretty stuff in my blog but I just don't have a clue how to make it happen. I hope I learn more some day...

  16. The tiles are lovely..... I love blogging but it makes me insane finding time and content. I had many followers but lost them due to me taking a break..and now to get them back? Not sure I have it in me...

  17. Those meat trays designs are fabulous! I never thought of using those! Thanks for the inspiration!
    Absolutely blogging should be fun. I'm having a ball with mine - yep there are bits that I have to do that get put off, and put off, but eventually done! It's like cooking a fabulous meal - I love the cooking process - and of course the eating, and enjoying all that with others - but the dishes do eventually have to be done! Thankfully nothing with blogging is as bad as having to wash dishes though!!! (my pet hate!!)

    Jill @ Creating my way to Success

  18. I L♥VE your 'tiles'.

    You had me fooled, thought they were made of metal.

    So creative I can't hardly stand it, Michele.

    I love to blog, I love to read blogs.


  19. Sometimes a chore but most often fun is how I'd characterize blogging for me. Luckily (?) I don't do it for the money - I do it for me and I am always delighted when others want to hang around for the ride.

  20. Your tutorial page is looking awesome!!! Love you post!

    My relationship with blogging is one of a love/hate kind. Sometimes I doubt all I post about and sometimes I don’t care what my visitors think, ha ha! I would love to go back to blogging more about random stuff instead of all the sewing and quilting, just like I did in the early days of my blogging-career. I’m happy not to depend on my blog for business/income, I have no sponsors and no obligations.

  21. I totally agree with you, and I love your children´s masterpieces

  22. Oh wow, oh wow, do I know what you mean! There are times when coming up with a post is like pulling teeth. I used to only post stuff I made, then I found I was making stuff just to have something to blog about, which was a perfect recipe for burn out (probably what happened to all those abandoned and neglected blogs!). I certainly hope you don't burn out Michele! You are one of the best :)

    On a side note --just saw your tutorial page and I'm seriously jealous. My half baked version isn't nearly as nice but I dont know if I have your patience. We shall see. Just the same --well done my friend!

  23. Dear Michelle, even if I don't have a blog, I understand your feelings. I just would like to tell you that among so many reason you might have to do it, there's people like me that are thankful for your website. I've been crafty since I remember and it's such a pleasure to see somebody like you, doing those amazing works and sharing the techniques. I'm so glad I've found you because what you do is exactly what I always try to do, recycling from my bin (but you do it so professionally!). By the way, where did you learn all that???
    Thanks again.

  24. Congratulate your child. They are artists like the mother. and yes, the blog is great but sometimes it is hard to keep. a very big kiss

  25. Hey Lovely!!!!!
    I am in Love with your Tutorial page..I WISHHHHHHHHH I can manage mine any day! I am still having no page for tutorials :( pretty sad..huh..well you are having an Inspirational blog sweety!
    Your husband is really Caring, so he suggest you the best!
    I was reading somewhere that a blog is like a personal diary, so the owner can write several things easily about Life,style, moods, happenings & hobbies..so its totally FUNNNN :)
    You know i think about leaving blog land several times(because of studies burden) but the sweetness of my lovely readers is not allowing me to do so :) haha..so Lucky to be a BLOGGER!!! hmmmm

  26. Interestingly, magazines have a fixed number of issues per year. TV shows have seasons. But bloggers? We rarely take a break. Creative batteries have to find time to be recharged, and there is nothing in the world wrong with following your ebbs and flows. Thank you for a needed and well-said post!

  27. Blogging keeps my mind active. It makes me pay attention to things around me and to try new things. I told myself I would post on my blog every other day...that way I would not stress about blogging...but seems like after I got started I have something to post everyday. Blogging is MY entertainment and in the process I hope to share with others. I love your blog. Those tiles look like very high end art creations. WOW

  28. Wow! It appears as if your thoughts resonate with a lot of readers!

    The blogs i follow are the blogs that are written by bloggers like yourself who do it because they love it.

    Everything you have said is true - pure pleasure and very hard work. BUT what is really amazing is that writing a blog because it is what you love doing will eventually lead you to better understand yourself! And that is always good!


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