Thoughts on social media and blogging

I used to follow dozens, maybe even more than a hundred blogs. I saved book reviews from them, used them to see what people were generally saying about a book, and linked my reviews to other people’s reviews.

As my favourite bloggers have wandered off (mostly to have kids, though a few of them have come back, or become bestselling authors – I’m looking at Books I Done Read, Iris on Books, The Sleepless Reader, Teadevotee – sometimes to become serious open water swimmers and marathon runners) I ended up with a blog reader split into “favourite book blogs” where there were very few posts and I never read them anyway, and hundreds of unread posts in “book blogs”.

The internet is just too big to try to keep up with everything that everyone is saying. That’s why I like Twitter better than Facebook – no one expects you to keep up with everything that happens on Twitter, whereas I know of at least two occasions warranting at the very least email invitations if not phone call invitations that were organised just on Facebook with the attitude that if the person isn’t on Facebook, they’re not important!? I took a break from social media for the first part of Lent 2016 and while I ended up going back because I felt I was disconnecting from friends I had on Twitter and missing out on enjoying people’s pretty pictures on Instagram, I’m not going back to Facebook in anywhere near as big a way and I’m still contemplating removing myself from it altogether and just making sure I catch up with certain people by email more.

I also moved my blog reader more towards personal blogs and “good living”/lifehacking and a dose of parenting: Modern Mrs Darcy, Back To Her Roots, The Happiness Project, Hey Let’s Make Stuff, Lifehacker, Coffee and Crumbs, Time Management Ninja (which I used to read a lot and now don’t so much). I find these ones so much easier to sift through for things I’m really interested in or where I know I will enjoy reading the content, and just mark as read things I know I don’t care about (this applies to about 85% of Lifehacker posts).

It was blogs like MMD and BTHR that made me think I needed to change the direction of my blog – and it’s probably no coincidence that a lot of these are written by women in their late 20s and 30s who have 1-4 kids. Apparently, subconsciously, I’ve changed the group from whom I want to learn. I used to want to learn (what to read) from voracious readers; now I want to learn how to enjoy this insane season of new parenthood and work and activity. Is it fair to say that these 10 years are probably going to be the busiest and best of my life?

Hence the re-launch and the changes in my reading. I guess reading blogs on the commute became the replacement for reading books – short personal essays (which is really what blog posts are) are much more digestible in 8 minute intervals at 6.40am than a few pages of a novel!

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2 thoughts on “Thoughts on social media and blogging

  1. Iris 31 March 2016 at 2:02 pm Reply

    I cannot begin to tell you how completely and utterly recognisable this is. Except for the fact that I have yet to get around to reorganising my reader. There is something very sad about letting go of the “solely bookblogging” identity, which is I guess why I still struggle with the whole redesign, but on the other hand it feels like it should be very freeing as well?

    Anyway, I just added the Modern Mrs Darcy to my temporary feedreader, because it looks like it is right up my alley.

  2. Alex 12 April 2016 at 2:45 pm Reply

    I’m still here, at a much slower pace, but still here! It’s funny that you and others from the old days are moving towards a more life-style, parenting blog. I see my blog as an escape from the parenting stuff (yes, yes, bad mom! sorry-not-sorry). I love that the blog I write and most of those I follow are in this contained, often obscure world that is almost completely separate from real life (almost none of my in-person friends/family follow it or even know if exists, my FB page is real-life and twitter is bookish and they rarely cross).

    That being said, although i don’t actively look for parenting/life-style blogs, I’d definitely follow anything old blogging friends would publish with great pleasure 🙂

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