Thursday, April 11, 2013

Unraveling My Blog and Me

It's all about the dialogue.



I've gotten so fond of writing poems from prompts in the past few months that I realize I probably don't write enough about myself to either let new readers get to know me or maintain close ties with old ones. My blog used to (quite literally) be "Sue's News, Views and Muse," but lately it's pretty much Muse.  While nary a one of my followers has complained, I suspect most have noticed...and my readership and comments are down, which is probably not a coincidence. After all, the perusal of poetry isn't everyone's favorite pastime.

The thing is, after writing so many posts about family, friends, spiritual experiences, church activities, politics, music, books, television shows and the like, I began to feel as if I were just recycling the same information over and over again in slightly varying formats. Having blogged since 2008, I was ready for a new slant. It came as a relief not feeling like I had to take pictures of everything my family and I did, record every single interesting/enlightening thing that came to mind, review whatever media mattered to me, or express and defend opinions on the prevailing social and political climate. In short, I got lazy! The relative ease of simply responding to writer's memes appealed to me more and more.

That said, here's the crux of my problem: I now find myself getting bored with this steady diet of memes, too! I've even wondered if it's time to hang up my hat here and revert to doing my writing in "real life" only. After all, I haven't put out a new book since 2004. What's more, my new church assignment is to write articles for our stake public relations committee; I have recurring opportunities to create scripted programs for church; family and friends still request plenty of wedding and birthday poems, and I should get back to journaling anyway––so I would have lots of ways to exercise my writing muscles in the future, with or without blogging. What I wouldn't have, of course, is that inimitable feeling of communicating with bloggers who relate to me and I to them. I would miss all of my longstanding friends and the comments we exchange. I would crave the immediacy of sitting down to express myself and knowing there are people out there who are ready and willing to listen...and equally important, to respond.

The upshot of all this deliberation is that I've decided to go on, change things up a bit with my subject matter, and continue the dialogue. That's right, the dialogue. Hey, if I want to carry on a one-sided conversation, I can have it with myself, right? So come out, come out, wherever you are! If you read something you like, comment. When you read something you don't like, speak up. Nothin' but bored? Say so! For me, it's about the interplay...the give and take...the conversation. That's what blogging gives me that other arenas do not. That's what makes me a better and more satisfied writer. And that is what I hope will be happening more often on this blog.

Thanks for hearing me out. I'd like to return the favor.

=)

PS. If you are a long-time reader, I would love to know your thoughts about all of this. Had you noticed I was meme-ing a lot? Are you sick of poetry, poetry, and more poetry? Was my blog beginning to look the way it has been feeling to me...like a big, blue-and-yellow, one-trick pony? 

Let's keep those lines of communication open!


PS. I'm recharging my blogging batteries.

for more T posts, click below
(More of a blog hop than a meme.)

29 comments:

jen said...

Is there anyone out there, outside of your immediate family, that has been reading your blog longer than I have? I wonder . . .

So, as one of your oldest blogging friends, I will respond to your query.

As much as I enjoy your poetry, I have noticed that your immersion in muse has diverted your attention from other ventures, and I've really missed your opinions.

Blogging is a changing medium, and that fact has surprised me a little. Many people whose blogs I've read for years simply disappear from cyberspace, and as far as I know, keeled over from a diesel truck accident.

My main thought is this: DON'T STOP BLOGGING!!!! I would miss you!

Love and hugs to you, Sue!

Lola said...

Totally endorse Jen's comment above: too many great, interesting bloggers have disappeared from the blogosphere during the past year or two for various reasons. So, please, DON'T join them! We'd all miss you too much!

Leovi said...

The dialogue is essential, hard and with a lot of untapped potential ... Cheer up!

Stacia said...

I think your blog should be about whatever is fulfilling to you as an artist. We'll still be here!

Momza said...

Like an old friend, I peek in on you every day--sometimes I leave a comment on your poetry offerings n' sometimes I just smile.
Truth is, I visit your page because I like you, Sue. You can write about whatever and I'll still come n' see!

Grandma Honey said...

I've noticed since your husband retired that you blog less....I thought it was just because of the changes in your time. Please don't even think about quitting. I enjoy whatever you choose to share.

Having said that, yes, I would really enjoy more about you....your thoughts, challenges, ideas, opinions. Some of that comes through your poetry which you have an amazing gift for. But I also like it when you just let the words flow and give your insight on things.

tidbitsandtreasures2011 said...

I'm an occasional reader, usually via Alphabe-Thursday, but I certainly understand how difficult it is to come up with fresh and interesting material. And, I don't think I realized before I started blogging how much work it can be to put together a credible post.

I'd be in sorry shape if it wasn't for memes because I don't seem to have the creative mind it takes to come up with very independently innovative posts, but I do find that the prompts and themes some bloggers offer up are exactly what I need. I especially like Alphabe-Thursday because it lets me plan ahead and I also like once-a-month themes that I can work into my schedule.

Nancy Claeys said...

Oh Sue -- we all feel this way at some time or another, especially if we've been blogging for some time.

I am more apt to comment on a post about someone's day or pet or job, etc..., than about a poem. That's just me -- not that I don't enjoy poetry, but I don't write it and can't relate to it like you do.

Bottom line, you do what you like to do. Otherwise, it's pretty pointless. xo

acreativeharbor.com said...

I can relate to all that you wrote ~ I just recently cut back on how frequently I post and today added a creativity 'tips' , added a new photo of my studio~ My suggestion would be to change a little gradually and continue blogging ~ You enjoy it and I enjoy reading what you write ~ It is always your choice, though. Do what is good for you. ~ hugs ^_^

Brian Miller said...

smiles. i feel you. i have been having some similar dialogue personally...figuring out what i am going to do...after 4.5 years and seeing so many people come and go...and running the poetry pub...i am ready just to write a bit...and open that dialogue as well...and drop a few memes and just be myself again...smiles...

this has been a very interesting year...so many good blog friends disappearing...i feel you...def...

*MARY* said...

I always look forward to seeing one of your poems pop up in my reader. Sorry I haven't told you that before; I've been a horrible commenter for quite a while now.

EG CameraGirl said...

I was so afraid when I began reading this post that you were calling it quits. What a relief to find out you are not! I DO love your poetry but I'm also interested in your news and views.

Eva Gallant said...

Glad you're not leaving us. Memes are okay, but I try to avoid getting too caught up in some of them. Like the others...I'll be by to read whatever you decide to share.

Sistas in Zion said...

So happy that we got to the end of the post to find that you are recharging and not quitting! That's the great thing about blogging it is a medium that can evolve as we evolve, it's fluid. We are excited and eager to read the posts your recharge sparks! Don't ever leave us sista Sue.

Gail said...

Every post is different for all of us. It varies from creativity, personal news and just the mood of the moment. Memes are fine if that is what you want. I have enjoyed all your writings.

We are not stagnant and never write consistently the same so we should celebrate our differences and embrace them. I know one day I feel like fluffy bunnies and the next some mystery jumps from my fingers.

I know I would miss you but I do understand. I have chewed this bone a lot too.

Pondside said...

I think it's a good thing to change things around - in blogging, in life....the essential you is still there - in blogging and in life....just exercising a different set of muscles.
I'm glad you're staying around. I like your voice, whichever way you use it.

Pamela Beers said...

Keep blogging. I just met you as a blogger and enjoy reading your thoughts. It keeps us all connected and I think that's important.

Corine said...

Sue, you just do what makes you happy. People like being around happy people. ;)
Corine :D

Janet Martin said...

Sue, I have read the comments and hope you are encouraged. I'm a newbie but also often read without commenting because at this stage in my life and one household computer to go around we have computer and time share...that's why it's almost midnight and also why I hope to be around still when the years come when I will have more time for prompts and comments. In the meantime I blog...as an outlet and by all means HAVE FUN! Sometimes views are up sometimes they're down but the main thing is that if we need an outlet we have it here, and the thing I like about blogging is that no one is forced to my blog. They may come or leave at their own free will, comment or not, I understand both(yes, appreciate the comments for sure) but also understand and empathize with those who for one reason or another choose to be silent readers,I think it's nice if when people they leave one final post explaining that they might be gone rather than leaving the masses wondering but oh well, that's just me.

Hugs and thank-you for the uplifting comments you leave on my porch when you drop by:)

Lily Strange said...

I've had a few different blogs. Currently I'm mostly involved with team blogs and don't write much about myself. I have bipolar disorder, and when I write about myself I got people who didn't like the fact that I was writing about the depression I feel. I don't tend to write about myself when I'm feeling up. So that's why I quit doing it. I'm always happy to read what other people have to say, whether it's up or down. Too many times we're afraid to express our true feelings.

Gattina said...

I just love blogging and even after nearly 7 years I don't have enough. I have learned so much about people's life in other countries which I would never had without blogging. Often I know things which happen even before they appear in the News. Blogging is my window to the world. I have met Bloggers in real life, from Canada, Australia, Norway, the UK, South Africa and France. I would never have had this opportunity without my blog.
It's not only the pleasure of writing, it's the contact you have with the whole world. On Friday's I participate in Friday's fave five which allows me to know what I have done a year or two ago. On Mondays I describe what I did during the weekend, that's also a very good reminder of what I have done in the past. Sometimes it even helps to dig out memories. I can't compare blogging to other activities I have in "real" life !

Dixie Mom said...

I think we all get in ruts sometimes. I for one hardly post anymore. So, because I post less, I check on other blogs less. I really want to get back into it but I'm finding I don't have much to say except to complain! So, I'm glad you are feeling ready to jump back in because of the 5 blogs I check in on, yours is one of them. :)

Rocky Mountain Woman said...

I have been here reading for quite a while and it's funny because one of the things I have enjoyed so much about blogging is that I've rediscovered a long forgotten love of poetry, so even though I would love to see more posts about what you're up to and what you are thinking about, I also like the poetry!

Whatever you do, don't stop writing here! I would really miss what you bring to the table...

xxoo,

RMW

karen said...

I think a healthy mix of everything keeps it fresh and fun. I enjoy your poetry, but I do love a lively discussion as well, or learning about something going on with you or your family. I know what you mean about trying to keep the interest up. I sometimes feel that all I do is yap about the same things over and over - mostly because I just do the same things over and over... When others have interesting topics on their blogs it will get me thinking in different directions, so I always enjoy that. But your poetry is inspired and beautiful, so please give us doses of that too.

Splendid Little Stars said...

great questions! It does help to review every once in a while. I say write what you wish, and those who enjoy will read. The blog IS for you after all.
However, the interaction with others online can be so fulfilling! I agree with what Jen said here. There are bloggers who seem to have disappeared from the planet. And that makes me sad.
It seems lots of blogs evolve (like life) and are not always just one thing. And that's OK.

Your post has generated some great insights and comments! See! That's what blogging is about!
Carry on!

Cheryl said...

There seems to be a shift in the orbit of blogging. More and more hoppers and memers are pulling back and returning to what brought them to the blogosphere in the first place: the dialogue.

I enjoy your poetry but for some reason, don't feel inclined to comment after reading it. It's not just your poetry, it's anyone's poetry. I'm more inclined to comment about prose, whether it's fiction or non-fiction. I don't know why, but there it is.

Kristin Klein said...

Interesting subject . . . I've noticed frequently how my blog takes on a whole different nature from time to time . . . sometimes it's a journal, sometimes it's a family history scrapbook, sometimes it's my recipe file, sometimes it's my soapbox. I love the interaction from comments and have noticed I feel very close to some of my frequently commenters - which is kinda fun, makes for some wonderful new acquaintances :D

But I long ago stopped blogging to comments or even caring about comments. Just no time for that and I don't like the pressure of caring if someone finds my opinion memorable (or commentable ((is that a word??)) ) in any way. And I must admit, I love reading through everyones blog . . . but I can either read a lot, or read a few and comment . . . so sometimes I have to choose.

Great subject!

Kristin

Jenny said...

I think whatever way the wind blows your creative talent is the way to go.

Whether its the structure of a meme or reading or picture prompts, sometimes we all need a jump start.

Don't stop blogging though, Miss Sue.

Your writing is always a bright spot for me, and as indicated by the comments above mine, for so many!

hUgs!

A+

Amy said...

I have noticed the memes and have really missed your wise outlook on things. Really, I have learned a lot from you. There are still posts of your that I think often about (the post on entitlement!!). I would really miss you if you disappeared, and I already miss your opinions and what is going on in your life.

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