Thursday, 7 July 2016

The Big Blog Question: What Do I Blog About?

Sometimes blogging becomes difficult. It becomes difficult because you, as a blogger, suddenly face a big blog question once again: What do I blog about? You first face that question when you create your blog and as you start to blog. It comes more easily to some people than others. Sometimes people know exactly what they want to blog about and they have a vast knowledge of the subject so blog posts just flow from their brains and through their fingers as they type. For others, it is a tougher question to answer.

It might be a tough decision to make because the blogger just doesn't know what they are good at or interested in. Or maybe they like so many things and can't decide which things to choose to blog about. Or maybe they feel that they don't have enough knowledge about the things that they like to actually be able to blog about them. Or maybe they are scared about what other people will think about their blog posts and are therefore afraid to blog about certain things. Or maybe they are perfectionists and they feel that they just won't do a good enough job blogging about certain subjects. The list goes on and on.

For me, it is definitely a tough decision to make because I love so many things. I am fascinated by and enjoy learning about so many subjects! I love doing so many things! I love making so many things! I love talking and writing about so many things! You get the idea... I am simply all over the place when it comes to living my life. I always have something to learn about or do. So you can see how it would be difficult for me to figure out what to blog about. I get worried that my blog will be too all over the place or sometimes there's just so many things that I want to blog about that I don't know where to start or even how to start. I have a list full of blog post drafts that only have a title that describes what the blog post would be about but nothing else. No outline. No text. No further explanation. No photos. No links. No labels/tags. Just the title. Because it's something that I want to blog about in the future but I just don't feel like writing that particular post right now or I just don't have an idea yet of what exactly I want to say.

I didn't even know exactly what I wanted to say in this blog post. Do I simply want to state the fact that I've struggled with this problem? Do I want to let other bloggers know that they're not alone if they have this problem too? Do I want to share tips on how to work through this problem? Or, do I  use this post to figure out a plan for tackling this problem that I have? How about I do all those things! After all, I've pretty much covered the first two already. Now onto the next two!

I'll start by making a list of the categories of all of the things that I love and enjoy doing/learning about/talking about (in no particular order):
  • Books and reading
  • Writing
  • Music
  • Arts and crafts
  • Photography
  • Cooking and baking
  • Health
  • Movies and TV shows
  • Nature
  • Outdoor activities
  • Animals and pets
  • Travel
  • History
  • Living a positive life
  • Frugal living

Ok, so I have a basic list of categories. Now I can add more detail! I can add lists to each of the categories. In each list, I can put the specific things that I like that fall within that category:
  • Books and reading: graphic novels/comic books, novels, short stories, poems, information/educational books
  • Writing: blog posts, pen pal letters, poems, stories
  • Music: playing piano, playing flute, singing, listening to music
  • Arts and crafts: drawing, watercolours, origami, loom knitting, making dreamcatchers
  • Photography: photographing... pets, my brother, nature
  • Cooking and baking: cooking with lots of vegetables, healthy cooking, baking cookies
  • Health: healthy eating, exercise, mental health
  • Movies and TV shows: way too many to list (hehe) but I enjoy talking about them and noticing things (especially since I took a screenwriting class when I was in university and can never watch a movie or tv show the same way ever again)
  • Nature: environmentalism, trees, plants, animals, landscapes
  • Outdoor activities: Geocaching, gardening, camping, hiking, walking, biking, swimming, exploring
  • Animals and pets: my dog and bunny and fish, birds... especially chickadees, bunnies
  • Travel: in Canada, in the U.S.A., in Europe, visiting museums, visiting landmarks
  • History: 1920s, early Canadian settlers, my own genealogy
  • Living a positive life: gratitude, self-love, happiness
  • Frugal living: natural DIY products, environmentalism, simple ways to save money

Now I can put certain categories together and place them under larger, more inclusive categories:
  • Arts: Writing, Music, Art, Crafts, Photography
  • Entertainment: Books, Reading, Music, Movies, TV Shows
  • Nature: Environment, Outdoors Activities, Animals
  • Living: Positive Life, Frugal Living, Health, Cooking and Baking, Travel, Pets
  • Learning: Books, Reading, History, Travel

I could now choose one of the above five categories to blog about. I could even choose one of the categories from my larger list. Some bloggers will choose to do this and it would definitely make for a more focused blog. Do you want to have a blog of DIYs? Recipes? Helpful tips? Educational information? Reviews? What category would you like to blog about? What parts of that category would you like to blog about? If someone wants to know specific information or is interested in a specific topic, they might come across your blog and find it to be very helpful and handy. Maybe they like the same thing as you. Maybe they'd simply like to learn more about something. Maybe they have a certain obsession. Having a blog that focuses on 1-3 specific topics/subjects can be very attractive to blog readers.

I, however, want to blog about all of those things that I'm interested in. Some people might think, well why did you do all of that work when you were never going to choose just one category. Why did you have to write down all of the things that you're interested in? Don't you already know all of the things that you're interested in? Well, I was actually thinking the same thing. I wondered why I did this exercise when I was still just going to choose to blog about all sorts of things. This exercise can still help me because now I have more of an idea of the specific things that I would like to blog about. I have a list of categories and the things that I like that fall under those categories. My interests are now organized. If I ever get stuck or need help with ideas for a blog post or ideas for what exactly to talk about in a blog post that falls within a certain category, I can refer back to these lists.

I guess you can say that my blog is like a journal for me. I write about the things that I like and feel passionate about. Except in this case, I'm sharing my words with a public audience and I also sometimes have to include information that I might not include in a journal. Like knowledge that I already know but that my audience might not know. Or website links. Or links back to other "entries." And then there's always information that I would write in a journal that I would not put online. Personal information that I don't feel like sharing or maybe should not be shared.

So here's my blog and, I guess, here's my life. You get a glimpse into it. I always like blogs where the bloggers share bits and pieces of their life and interests. There are more stories. More passion. More heart. The posts ooze with sincerity and authenticity. You don't get to see only one topic. You don't get to see only one part of my life. You get all sorts of different parts of it. You get all sorts of different knowledge and stories. Because that's the way that our lives are. We have lots of different interests. We have lots of different paths that we walk. We use our time on Earth to do so many things, to truly live! And I want to blog about it!


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