Showing posts with label blogging. Show all posts
Showing posts with label blogging. Show all posts

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Finding my tribe

We've been to the conference and now we are all basking in the afterglow.  And what an afterglow it is.  Bloggers and tweeters all in one room, all day long with no one to give us that stern "you are really doing something inappropriate" look when we tweet at the table.  No one.  We all tweeted.  All. Day. Long.

It was amazing.  I met some of my favourite bloggers.  In a beautiful moment I clunked glasses (the facial ones) with my idol.  I sat next to my girl crush for breakfast.  I roomed with someone who is fast becoming one of my close friends.  I hugged and cried with a lovely friend who is now on a road I once traveled.  I met some of my most favourite twitter friends.  I hung out with some of the coolest people on the blogging and twitter block.  The weekend rocked.  Big. Time.

I've been reading the posts about the conference and it seems almost everyone is feeling the same way.  I did not expect to come back from the conference and not be able to stop thinking about all the wonderful people I met. I did not expect to be so familiar with people I've never met face to face.   I did not expect to feel so comfortable with these people.  I did not expect to fit in so well.

At my age I certainly didn't expect to be so excited about finding a group of people who I could spend hours with and it never be enough time.  At this age I expected that the majority of my close friends have already been made.  I was wrong.  I can't remember feeling this way about new friends since I was at high school, when I found my first real tribe*.

Since that first tribe I have made work friends, mum friends and other friends who might have started off as friends of friends. Some of those friends have gone on to become part of my close group of friends and some have moved on to be friends with other people.

This phenomenon called Twitter has given me the chance to find like minded people pursuing very similar dreams.  These people, these new friends, this new tribe aren't my friends because our kids are friends or we work on canteen together.  We don't work in the same office and have to get on.  We don't live next door to each other and have forged a friendship over the back fence.  We mostly met on Twitter.  We have been speaking for 12 months or less in tiny 140 character snippets.  We have connected through reading blog posts where we bare our souls or make each other laugh at the similarities in our lives.  We share parts of ourselves we don't always share with our other friends.  We sometimes show our weaknesses. We often show our strengths.  Mostly we aren't judged.  We are accepted for who we are.   We seem to gravitate to those who are most like us.  Twitter has a way of finding Tribes.

There were around 170 bloggers at the conference.  I didn't meet everyone.  I don't believe anyone met every single person there.  I noticed there were little groups forming.  We were all gravitating to our Twitter Tribes.  The people we have the most in common with.  The people we connect with.  The people we know so well before we actually meet them.  I didn't find this cliquey.  I found this normal.   It felt right.

My tribe is not complete yet.  There are still some people I have met on Twitter who I know are part of my tribe, yet I've not met them in real life.  I will one day and I will feel like I have known them forever.  Just how I feel now about all the people I met at the Bloggers Conference and those I have met here in Brisbane.

What a rare and wonderful surprise this has been.  Who would have thought it possible?    


* Tribe is a wonderful word for a group of friends made popular by the beautiful and talented writer Rebecca Sparrow, who I am so happy to say is part of my tribe :) 

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Weekend Rewind - The Narcissistic Blogger

It's that time of the week again.  The fabulous Weekend Rewind over at Life In A Pink Fibro.  Last August I wrote this blog about blogging.   Not too much has changed.  I'm still trying to get into the groove of regular blogging and I'm still narcissistic about my stats and comments.  I was hoping it would lessen, but I don't think it has.    If you want to read the awesome comments I received first time round, you will need to click here for the original post.   Thanks again Al - the weekend rewind ROCKS!  

I am reasonably new to blogging.  Like Twitter, I started both around April this year.  I have met so many bloggers through Twitter, and to be totally honest, I am somewhat intimidated at times.  These people are good.  Their posts sing.  I love reading them and connecting with them.  I am in awe of their ability to write an interesting post almost daily.  I haven't been able to master that yet.  I might get two done in a week and I think on the odd occasion I have written three.   But daily?  I'm not sure I have anything interesting enough to say that would make people visit my blog each day.
Blogging has opened up a whole new world for me.  I am finally able to write and have other people read my writing.  That feels good.  One thing I have learned is that I love sharing my writing with others.  I love seeing my blog stats go up.  I love comments.  I love comments particularly when someone tells me my post has helped them, or it resonated with them.  This is what makes my heart sing.
For as long as I can remember I have written.  Mostly my thoughts.  When I'm at my angsty best I can write pages and pages of words pouring directly from my heart.  When I read them years later I can almost feel my heart bleeding onto the page.  I sometimes don't believe they are words that I've written.  But they are.  It is my handwriting after all.
The scary thing I find with writing is that it brings out some narcissistic traits that I wasn't aware I had.  I become obsessed with people reading my writing.  I constantly check my blog stats.  I mean constantly.  I become frantic, constantly hitting the refresh key.   I hope other bloggers do this, because if they don't I'm definitely in serious need of a life, or medication!  I also hope I grow out of this habit.  The constant refreshing ... not the medication habit.   I like that one.     
I want my readers to comment.  I love hearing people telling me that my post meant something to them.  When someone tells me my writing is good my tummy literally tingles.  The very beautiful Lisa Reynolds told me my writing was like and old friend.  That gave me a glow that stayed with me for days. 
On the other hand, if my comment count is low I start to feel that perhaps I am a bad writer.  That my posts don't move my readers enough to write a comment.  I start to lose confidence in my writing.  I start to panic.  I look at blogs written by my idol bloggers and see their comment count and go back to mine and feel failure setting in.  I tweet my blog in earnest hoping more people will read.  It becomes frantic.  It really is madness.  This feeling lasts for a couple of hours.  After a while I pull myself together and let it go.  
These feelings make me question why I write.  Should I write for me or should I write for others?  I find this question difficult to answer.  In the first instance I believe I should write for me.  I should write because I enjoy it.  Because it makes my heart sing.  I enjoy crafting a sentence.  I enjoy taking thoughts from my head and putting them onto the screen.  I enjoy reading them back.  I enjoy changing the words around.  I enjoy writing.  This is a good thing.   Would I enjoy writing if no one ever read my writing?  I'm not sure I would.   Like any artist, I like people to view my craft.  It is human nature.  Am I an artist yet?  Would I say I'm a writer yet?  Not yet.  I'm still working on it.
Prior to blogging, the majority of writing I have done has been angsty writing.  The type of stuff you write when your heart is breaking and when you need to understand your feelings.  Private writing.  Journal writing. 
In addition to writing for myself, I choose to write now because I do want others to read it.  I want to share the things I think about.  I want people to read what I have written and nod their head in agreement or even shake their heads in disagreement.  I want my writing to make people reach back into the dark recesses of their minds and hearts and feel a kinship with me.  I want them to sigh with relief that they are not the only person to feel the same way.  I want to inspire people.  I want them to smile.  I want them to laugh. I want them to cry.  I want my writing to move people.  I really do.
I have been lucky with my blog writing so far in that I've never had a negative comment nor a troll visit my blog.  For this I am very grateful.  I know that it is only a matter of time before they rear their ugly heads.  Am I ready for them?  I don't know.  I think I will feel a sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach and I will momentarily question whether I want to keep blogging.  I know that I will move on and keep writing.  I've found my writing groove and I want to keep it going.  Hear that trolls?  You don't really scare me, but, I would appreciate you staying away.  Thanks.
So, now that I've shared my reasons for blogging and the crazy things I do to feed my ego after I've blogged, I would like to ask you, my lovely reader to share something with me.   The very gorgeous A-M over at The House that A-M Built wrote a post this week where she asked her readers to say hi.  To identify themselves so she knew just who was coming to her blog to read about her life and her house.  I loved this idea for two reasons.
Firstly, I would love to know just who stops by my blog.  I'm nosy like that.   And secondly, it's that ego thing - I'd like to get loads of comments.  I'm being honest.  Us bloggers really do love comments.  It is a buzz.  So please, say hi and introduce yourself.  Put a link to your blog in your comment and I'll make sure I come over and say Hi to you.


Saturday, February 19, 2011

Today I'm Grateful For ...

Today I'm grateful for:

  • The lovely Maxabella Loves for giving us the chance to reflect on the things in life we are grateful for.  It is something we should practice regularly.
  • Being part of this online community.  I wish it was around when my children were younger.
  • Nurofen Plus - have suffered a few headaches this week and without the Nurofen it would have been ugly.
  • Blood - the ability to make it and share it with those who need it - I gave blood for the first time this week.
  • Water - it is the nectar of the gods.  On a hot day there is nothing better than a big glass of iced water.  I'm also quite partial to swimming in it and having showers.  In fact is there nothing more versatile than water?
  • Books - I love to read, I love book shops, I love to write.  While there are always books, I will never be bored.
  • Fingers - without them I wouldn't be sitting here typing blog posts, tweeting and researching.


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