2016 was pretty decent in terms of blogging. The writing goals that I had set at the beginning of the year were all fulfilled. This March as I complete eight years of blogging, I thought it would be better to write down a set of blogging goals. Also, since the OCD freak in me loves making lists this is more of a happy task for me. I have heard and read a lot about blogging in the past year and while some thoughts made me nod vigorously, others made me want to show them the finger. Blogging definitely is a way of life for me, but is not something that keeps me alive. Yes, I like to write and read other blogs, but I do not live to do that. During my initial days of blogging, I used to think that I cannot stay without writing. But later I realized that I wasn't much busy with work back then and hence blogging was a way to cure my boredom. As the years passed, I realized that as much as writing is important to me, I still can live without it. Well, I still have reading, stitching, sketching and baking to keep me company.
Writing will always remain important to me. Especially since I'm a person who always has a lot to say about a lot of things. As long as I have something to say, I'll say it. So here are my blogging goals for 2017.
~ Write thrice a week.
I have a list that I have been maintaining since the last two months about the topics that come to my mind about something that I have to say. Earlier, I used to interpret everything around me in the way I want to in the hope of using it in a blog post. Years ago that is. Now it is all about finding the time to write. With the amount of time work and reading is consuming, I hope to stick to this target.
~ Do more book reviews.
I've enjoyed doing book reviews the past year. The response to them has been pretty good as well. When veteran bloggers who I admire list me as one of their favorite book bloggers, I need to do justice to it. Since I've been reading a lot, it only makes sense to review the book and pass on the message to others. But I'll only review books which I feel that people should read or not read. If I have mixed feelings about a book, I'll just let it be. Since the target for reading this year is a book per week, I hope there would be a book review per week as well.
~ Read, comment and share.
When it comes to blogging, reading other blogs is as important as writing your own. Time has always been a constraint for me when it comes to this. For the last three months, as and when I find some time I read as many blog posts as I can. If I like it, I will comment and then share it. If I don't, I just read and leave. It is important to be honest in your comments just like the way you need to be honest in your writing. At the end of the day, it is the same person writing both. While sharing is not a mandate, I only share articles that I think should be read by more people. There are a lot of blog posts that I have read and commented on but not shared. Simply because I don't think it will help/entertain anyone else. Such people message me on Twitter and ask me to share their posts since I have commented on it. On that cue, I promptly unfollow them.
~ Corporate Circus.
I started this in October hoping to have one post on the topic every month. Sadly, I wanted to write about other things more. From this year on, I'll try to get this going. I have a lot of topics in mind already for it.
~ Go self hosted.
I've been toying around with this idea for more than a year now. While I love blogger and the ease it gives me, I'd like to take more control of my template and the design of my blog. Before the 8th anniversary of my blog in March, I'd like to go self hosted.
~ Write more fiction.
I already have a series hanging in the air after 6 parts. Some loyalists are kind enough to comment and ask me when the next part will be out. Sadly, after more than a year of writing the last part, the story is now out of my system and looks like I have to abandon the 'In Your Words' series. I'll try to write more fiction this year. Especially stand alone pieces. If I do want to write a series, I'll first write the whole thing and then put up parts of it. I loved writing stories before. I wonder what happened after that. I will try to get the mojo back this year.
~ Use social media more effectively.
All my blog posts get auto shared on FB and Twitter, but I do not share and re-share my posts often. I have seen many bloggers re-plug their old posts time and again and share them on social media. I've also seen them getting a good response. I need to do this too.
~ Not accept friend requests from all fellow bloggers.
The trend now is that if you are a blogger, you need to send a friend request to another blogger. And as soon as the blogger accepts it, send out an invite to like your page. Do you really need such friends? These days I've begun to unfriend people who are fellow bloggers but I have never/barely interacted with them. If the ones I know pretty well, pester me to go check out their posts and share it, off they go too.
~ Not do sponsored posts as a favor or for peanuts.
I do have quite a lot of creative friends who are not necessarily bloggers. They have their own etsy shops for cakes, handicrafts, soaps, toys and what not. While I'm really happy and proud of them, for some reason, they write to me asking me to promote their stuff on my blog. While some offer to send me their products for me, others expect me to buy stuff from them and do a review. Why? Just because I have an outlet to write something. I deny it right on their face. I just tell them that the theme of my blog doesn't go with their products. Which is the truth to a larger extent. When brands approach me for sponsored posts and offer me 500 bucks for a post and 10 precious bucks for ten tweets, it makes me want to give up blogging at times. I know there are a lot of bloggers out there who do a post in exchange for free samples or a bare minimum amount. I choose not to be one of them. Blogging is not what contributes to my primary income anyway.
~ Enjoy what I write.
At last but not the least, I want to enjoy what ever I write. I've always been very honest in my writing and have written what I wanted to write. I will continue to do the same. Because I don't know any other way to write apart from writing what exactly is on my mind. Sugar coating? What's that?
Blogging means so much to me. It has given me so many good friends and a fair share of enemies, many of whom I'm still discovering. It doesn't bother me to be honest. As long as I have the power to make an impact on someone in a good way or the bad way, I consider my work here done.
Have you set any blogging goals for the new year? Do share them.