Across The Blogiverse

When I started this blog back in March, I really had no idea what to expect.  I imagined that it would involve me writing my thoughts, hitting “publish”, and catapulting them into the ether where they would float around whatever the internet is.  Are my thoughts tightly crammed in fiber-optic cables trying to not bump into someone else’s thoughts like they’re on a New York subway?  Or is there a grand universe for our thoughts or are they “flowing out like endless rain into a paper cup?”  Wherever they are, they found readers.

It’s the readers that I didn’t really contemplate as I began my blogging journey, mostly becuase I wasn’t sure if I’d have any.  I wrote for “a” reader, meaning that I wanted everything I wrote to have a point; it couldn’t be “just because”.  Each post had (as still  has) to be a unit with a beginning, middle, and end, so whoever reads it would get a complete story or at least a reflection.  This was my M.O. for a while until something odd happened: people started to follow me and I had regular readers.  My random unspecified reader turned into an audience– an audience that I could get to know. I read their blogs, hit their follow buttons, and commented on their posts.  Before I knew it, I was transported into different worlds: India, Pakistan, Ireland, Spain, England, Australia, Canada, Arizona, and even to different parts of my neck of the woods.  I learned about different life experiences and ways of thinking, and found a whole troupe of funny, talented, intelligent writers. Everyone has a story to tell.

Two things happened that I didn’t expect from my readers.  One is the amount of my non-blogging friends who follow me.  Many read my posts through Facebook, and others opted to follow me and have my posts sent to their email.  I know that we are all busy and lead hectic lives, and the fact that they make time to read what I write is humbling.  My audience is not made up of anonymous faces, but of people who I admire and people who have their own amazing stories to tell. The second thing I didn’t expect was how many of my  blogging audience I consider as friends.  Even though I’ve never met any of you, I feel that I know you– well at least the “you” you present on your blog.  I look out for your posts, eager to hear about what’s going on in your life or what new idea you’re going to discuss. Reading your work is part of my day.  I didn’t expect the openness of the blog community, but I am glad I found you.  Thank you.

Readers:  What aspect of blogging surprised you?  How is blogging different from how you thought it would be?

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30 thoughts on “Across The Blogiverse

  1. This my fav post of yours till date.
    When i first started blogging, i thought i would be secretly hidden in this vast expanse of the internet for months or even years till someone discovered me. I was surprised out of my life when i got my first “Like” within ten mins. of publication of my first post. I thought it happened by fluke but soon readers grew slow and steady.
    I never felt my poems would have many readers because there’s so much talent out there and ppl who write in such an expressive way. But it was heartening and encouraging though i felt too conspicuous. There does come a responsibility when you have readers…you can’t post just anything, i guess. The negative side is the some of the originality is lost.
    I have now found a new world of friends with similar passion of writing and i can really connect to all of them. I never expected online friendships but this is a wonderful blessing. 🙂

    1. Thank you! I guess it depends on how “original’ you’re going to be. I’ve posted some stuff and thought, “this is ridiculous,” but people responded to it. It all depends on how much of a chance you want to take. If you are going to do something “out there”, you can always put a warning at the top of the post to give the readers a head’s up. It’s a fine line between being responsible to your readers and maintaining originality– because ultimately, it is your work.

      I, too, am very grateful for the friends I’ve met, like you!

  2. When I first started blogging a few years ago, I started with a website of my own where I just put something new on the front page. I was on freeserve, then madasafish, pipex and freeuk. I believe the freeuk one is still up [runs off to check] yup. Made years and years ago. that one was to do with a role-playing game I was running.

    Then I went onto blogs themselves, I started with AOL’s livejournal, then blogspot (I still use that one when I am really upset and want to say things that I thought wouldn’t get answers – only I found I got a reader on that now) Then someone suggested WordPress to me as a means to log onto his Moveable Type page.

    I had to shut that original blog down as I was getting death threats and threats to my children and the police advised me to shut it down. I moved to this one and earlier this year. I was going to close it down after I felt no one was reading it, then suddenly it seemed there was a knock on the door and a party started.

    I couldn’t stop blogging now. I enjoy reading what every body is doing, and seeing the photos they take – plus recipes on a few 🙂 It has given me something to occupy my mind when it starts wandering

    1. Wow, you’ve certainly have had a blogging journey! Glad you’re here now! It does feel like a family here– everyone checks up on everyone else to celebrate the wins and bemoan the losses. It’s fun to see what everyone is doing. Thank you for your response.

      1. That look into other people’s lives can be priceless. I know everyone has their own views, and I respect that. Life would be boring if we all thought the same way about the same things. There are a couple of blogs that I have stopped following though, because their views were bordering (tipping over?) into nastiness. One (Can’t remember who it was) published a post about how being bullied would be good for everyone, and those that killed themselves were just weak. I didn’t leave a comment on that page as I was far too angry and it wouldn’t have a pleasant comment.

        On the whole though, people opening their lives to let people in takes some measure of trust, and I am grateful to be a part of that.

  3. I am glad to have found your site and that you find blogging to be so enjoyable for you. I do this to disconnect from the issues I face from day to day. It helps keep one’s sanity intact! In the same way, my wife likes to surf the web with no specific direction as well as hang out on Facebook with her family. There’s a lot of good stuff and tons of good people on the Web, but many more of them hang out on WordPress!!

    1. WordPressians are a pretty cool bunch, I agree! Blogging is a great escape, and I completely understand your thought about sanity. Writing and sharing has helped me keep many things in perspective. Thanks for stopping by, Michigander!

  4. Hi Amy
    It’s a sweet post.. I have been busy adjusting in d new subject n hostel environment.. Many students have fallen sick due to heat n food of Delhi, that’s very different from their homes… Am taking care of a classmate hailing from d state of Kerala… But I couldn’t resist reading this post as I was checking mail from mob.. It’s really a beautiful friendship that blossoms through blogging, as we present our innate thoughts, talents n best side of our personality … Wish u always happy blogging 🙂

    1. Thanks, Asifa! It’s amazing how we sneak blogging into our days– even among illnesses! Take of yourself! Try not to expend too much energy– you have to be well! I really value your friendship– and your thoughts, talents, and the best side of your personality. : ) Happy blogging to you, too!

    1. Thank you! The notices of where the readers come from is too much fun. When I first started I had a lot of readers in the Philippines, which blew my mind– then I got one from the Republic of Georgia! Is school in session yet?

  5. Agree! Truly and wonderfully surprised that people think my thoughts and life are worth reading about. Feeling that it is easier to be so openly, directly honest and revealing to THE ENTIRE BLOG WORLD than it is to some family and friends.

    1. I think bloggers want to connect to others, so they seek openness because maybe in our “real” lives, those who know us might judge or make assumptions and therefore, not hear us out. It’s like talking to a stranger on a plane.

  6. Well said! I don’t know that much as “surprised” me. I think because I didn’t really have much for expectations when I started. I don’t remember why I started blogging. I don’t even remember thinking about starting a blog. One day I just up and started a blog. So I never really thought about what it would be like.

    I guess the closest thing to a “surprise” would be how much my blog has changed over it’s run. I moved from Blogger to WordPress, changed my format a few times and went from blogging mostly about fitness to a lot more and a lot more personal stuff. It’s helped me reconnect with writing, something I hadn’t done much of since college.

    And surprise or not, I continue to be amazed by the friendships I’ve made through blogging. And, really, friendships. It’s been wonderful getting to know you!

    1. It’s been great getting to know you, too! I don’t often “hang out” with math people. 🙂 I agree that blogs suit our needs at particular times– mine certainly isn’t what it was when I started, but our blogs do reflect how we’ve changed over time. I like the outlet it gives me to process my thoughts or get something out of my brain.

  7. When I started my blog, I was hoping to have readers just because I wanted to feel heard. What’s been most surprising for me also has been getting to know people and finding great friends from all over the world through my blog. I definitely didn’t expect as much support as I eventually did!

    1. Bloggers are a supportive bunch! I think we’ve all had times when we’ve felt alone and adrift, and through blogging we can let others know that they’re not alone.

  8. Thanks for putting into words what I have been feeling. The summer is really hard to find the time to write and read. I sneak on when I find a little time. Didn’t we both start around the same time-ish? I started to keep the stories and hoping to find encouragement so that I would want to write more. Do you find yourself more relaxed when you get on and begin a post or when you see that someone you enjoy has something new and you open it? This whole thing has screamed, “wake up” to a part of my brain I didn’t even know was there. Thanks again, and I was very happy to see you had something new to share. I read it earlier but couldn’t reply as I was putting together a ping pong table and took a quick break. Ha ha.

    1. Yes, you and I did start at the same time. It’s been fun to see what other people have done with their blogs since we have started. It is disappointing when there are people that I really like who drop off of blogging. I’m glad you’re still around! As for waking up part of my brain– blogging actually gave my brain an outlet for everything that spins around in it. As for the ping pong table– my husband would be over in a minute if we didn’t live on the opposite side of the country to challenge your boys. The idea of him and Peter just cracks me up.

  9. I believe the thing that has surprised me most is the feeling of Tribe resident in Blogsville. This is followed in short order by the sheer number of talented writers I have found out here – it’s truly amazing.

    1. There really is a sense of belonging isn’t there? The talent is really amazing– I’m always amazed by what people come up with and where they take their thoughts.

  10. Okay, I’ll bite. Great post by the way. I can really relate to its content. What I was surprised by was the amount of talent out there. I knew that blogs would be pretty awesome to read – but I was wrong. They are not awesome. They aren’t even great. They are unfathomably amazing! Some of the content is sublime! On top of that there were the awards that I have received. Never expected those. Cheers!

  11. The one thing about my blog that has surprised me so far is how much of my personal life I’m incorporating. I had a very clear thought in mind: use my training as a student of Literature to write about music. But because my relationship to music is so very personal, I had to put much more of myself into it than I anticipated. More importantly, my posts have begun to really connect with my readers (including you).

    The one thing that doesn’t surprise me but pleases me to no end is how many wonderful other blogs I’ve discovered. You guys are all so wonderful and funny and smart.

    1. One thing I’ve noticed is that the blog takes the writer places where she never thought she’d go before– it can be difficult to separate ourselves from the content, and the reason why the things we like resonate with us is because they reach us on a personal level. In order to discuss what we like, we have to tap into that part of ourselves. As for meeting other bloggers, it reminds me of college and being introduced to a whole new troupe of talent.

  12. I started blogging after reading a blog written by a woman with pulmonary hypertension. She started her blog for her young son just in case she died before he could get to know her well. It startled me into thinking that we never know when we’re going to die, and wouldn’t it be nice to have this thing “out there” that my son could read sometime down the road. What startles me now is how close I feel to people I’ve never met. Strange, but I am grateful for this web of lace. It contains and transmits a certain kind of grace.

    1. What an amazing story. It does leave a record to the world that says, “I was here. This is who I am.” Blogs do create these intricate webs of friendships. I, too, am amazed by the sense of camaraderie and closeness. They really show how even though we have vastly different lives, we’re all similar.

    1. Truth be told, I miss the old colors of M&M’S– especially the light browns. Even though blue is my favorite color, the blue candies freak me out. However, the universe does provide many other wonderful surprises!

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