I’ve been meaning to write this post for ages, but am finding lately that when I’m not feeling overwhelmed with life (read it and weep), I rather enjoy procrastinating (surely that is a blog post in itself) and so I haven’t been updating Le Blow as much as I’d like to – or I feel I ought to, which are really two separate things.
One reason has to do with the P-word above. And also the other one: Perfectionism. Sometimes I think about an idea for waaaaay too long. Instead of heeding the advice by the marketing people at Nike and just bloody well doing it, I mull things over in my mind, trying to perfect my prose to the extent that… nothing materialises.
But the second, perhaps more pertinent reason why I haven’t been Le Blowing (snigger) so much recently, is simply because… I haven’t wanted to. For the last few months, blogging and I broke up. It got complicated. It wasn’t blogging, it was me. Or was it?
I guess I was growing increasingly pissed off with the blogosphere in general. If my blogroll is anything to go by, those ‘lucky’ (hmm… debatable) enough to have hit the big time have also sold out, big time. Sponsored post after sponsored post; outfit updates with everything coming ‘care of’ the brands in the credits and travel features where the entire trip is funded from someone else’s pocket.
I’m aware I sound like a jealous old bat at this juncture, but do you know what? Really I’m not. Well, not jealous, anyway. I am indeed a good decade older than some of the most popular bloggers (and there-in lies part of the problem TBH. I’m 34! Pointless trying to compete with or compare oneself to bloggers in their early twenties without mortgages and boring bills to pay and full-time jobs to hold down).
In any case, I’ve experienced all the freebies. Free clothes, gadgets, dinners, fancy hotel stays. There comes a point where they lose all value. Because they’re never really free. There’s always a trade-off. And you have to ask yourself, would I have given this a second glance if I had to spend my hard-earned on it? Prolly not.
Anyway, I’m digressing slightly, and I fully appreciate that if you’re blogging full-time, you need to make a living somehow. But I think the majority of bloggers have forgotten what blogging is meant to be all about. It’s meant to be about you. And your life. In an almost, boring, fly-on-the-wall type way. Like an online version of The Office. You’re meant to be keepin’ it real. That’s why bloggers became so bloody popular in the first place – because their lifestyles, although inspirational, were always attainable and more importantly, authentic.
I often reminisce about the good ol’ days of blogging, when – get this! – bloggers would even remain ANONYMOUS, because the focus was on the content, not seeking contentment through blagging all the free shit. Blogs read more like teenage diaries, like a delicious peep into that particular person’s life. Like a virtual gaze into someone’s window when it’s night-time and they haven’t got net curtains but the lights are on and you can have a good ol’ nosey inside their living room.
If a blogger featured something you liked, you’d buy it without a second thought, safe in the knowledge that they were recommending it ‘cos they liked it. Not ‘cos they’ve been paid a hefty sum to subliminally sell it to you.
Seems I’m not alone in my current mode of thinking about blogging being a bit blah these days, as I have recently read similar musings from these awesome sorts:
A Little Bird Told Me became J for Jen, with not only the title becoming more personal, but the blog content, too, reflecting how Jen’s interests have evolved as she’s got older.
And Zoe London, in her inimitable style, went straight for the proverbial jugular in her recent post entitled: Did We Lose Sight of the Meaning of Being a True ‘Blogger?’ with the answer pretty much being, yes; yes we fucking well did.
One of our favourite sites by sisters from another, er, mister, Domestic Sluttery even closed completely because Sian the editor was fed up of it increasingly being all about chasing page views and less about having fun. Sad but true.
So, I’ve decided to follow suit and go back to blogging basics. From here on in, I and the rest of the Le Blow gals will only be writing about things that are important to us, and not for the sake of chasing traffic. I mean, I wouldn’t chase traffic in real life (not like that tramp on Camden High Street) so why should my blog be any different?
For me, that means the introduction of a new Health & Self section which will be a bit like Gwyneth Paltrow’s Goop but without all the patronising bullshit and firmly rooted in the real world. This is because, if you read my post on burning out, I’m now very interested in being kinder to my body and finding ways of living a more balanced life but without being a boring twat or a smelly hippy.
Having spoken to some of the Le Blow girls, who are also Wimmen of the World in their early thirties, they feel the same. So Laura wrote a post on running at night and I recently discovered just how bad sugar really is for you (yes, this is the sort of GROUNDBREAKING content I’m talkin’ abaaaht). Our aim is to share this sort of shit with you as we experience it or try new things.
I want to consume this type of content myself, because I’m living it, and hope that there are others out there that do too – but even if there aren’t, I will be happy ‘cos I’m writing about what makes ME happy. Ya get me?
What do you think? Does blogging need to go back to basics? Have bloggers lost their way? Comment below or tweet me @NatWallers.