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Is Blogging Still Relevant?

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I started blogging in 2009, reasons behind it were important back then but not now. Writing was an outlet and the concept of blogging was quite new back then and people were thrilled to write, read, comment and give away a plethora of blogging awards. It used to be all personal and thought-sharing back then. With time, it became a business. Blogging contests were a challenge to the mind of a writing novice, but the eyes were always on the prize. Blogging communities came up with many money making ideas and honestly, all of them did work. Prizes and vouchers were given away at the drop of a hat and for an article written just for the sake of it. Personalization gave way to commercialization. Ample time was spent on research of topics we did not care about, but had to write about. Deadlines and version revisions took away the simplistic joy of writing, but not without giving you more moolah than you bargained for.

The way the blogging community grew, for business or not, it was bound to fall down head first too. First, the contests disappeared, followed by the paid-writing opportunities and finally the blogging communities themselves bit the dust. It all ended the way it began. Suddenly. There still are some platforms and communities out there that encourage blogging and we should be thankful for them. Blogging should have been only for the pure joy of writing. Having said that, there are many many people out there who make a living through blogging alone and they need to be encouraged and appreciated. They know exactly what they want from their space and work on achieving that.

Personally, I did not set out to make money from my blog at all. Exactly why I'm still on blogger and have not gone self-hosted. I did not understand Alexa ranking or the DA rating, I still don't. Only thing I knew was to write whatever I wanted whenever I wanted. I was regular and writing what I felt kept me sane. This is not to say that I did not take up paid opportunities when they came my way. I made a great deal of money from my blog and won many gadgets and other things. It felt good, of course. But, when you gain something, you lose something else. That something else was readership for me. I'm someone known to write about my life and honest take on things and topics that matter to me. Imagine if someone comes to read that and is exposed to an article on housing loan instead. Or an article on why you should wear more skirts. It would be a turn-off for sure. When I realized this, I knew that it was time to go back to plain old writing.

This posed new problems too. When I came back to blogging after a brief hiatus, people were hooked on to other forms of content. Namely, social media. People preferred life updates on Instagram than on a blog post. Same goes with reviews and everything else that you can think of. With time, our attention span is reduced to that of a gold fish and we don't want to spend more than a minute on anything. Also, bright and happy updates in the form of glossy pictures made for the perfect lure. Still, I wanted to write. A blog post. Not just a social media caption. I do run a book page on Instagram for book related updates, but I also miss the joy of writing a book review blog post. 

So, what made me stop writing in the first place? No, it was not the lack of paid writing opportunities. At least not only that. My blog posts have provided fodder for a bunch of my relatives and they talk about my decade old articles till date. Of course, not in a good way. Never in a good way. Everything I wrote was dissected and my parents and in-laws were getting involved for no fault of theirs. Nothing kills the writing mojo like threats from your own family. As someone who wrote what she wanted to, the way she wanted to, I began to feel restricted. Personal posts took a backseat and without them I felt empty. Of course I could talk about a lot of other topics, but then again who are others to dictate what I write on my own space? They can all be damned. I haven't mentioned any names (no matter how much I wanted to) or used any risqué words (believe me, I wanted to), and yet they were considered libelous. I mean, who do they think they are? I'm a small time writer, with a small space of my own. Why would I waste it on them?

Another thing that kept me away from writing was the lack of readership and reciprocation. Also, by now I was off Facebook/Meta and there was no way I could promote my posts. I don't think people bookmark blogs anymore or type in a URL they know. Everyone wants a one-click availability and that was becoming hard for me. Still, under no circumstances I wanted to go back to Facebook. That place was as fake and as toxic as it could get. Twitter is a slightly better platform to use for letting people know about your work, but then again the ROI is sometimes not worth it. Instagram is an addictive platform and while I enjoy it, nothing comes close to blogging. Of course you can promote the posts you write there for better reach. In the end, the question that I ask myself is this, is it all worth it?

The answer came to me pretty quickly and stuck with me. If I want to write, I should write. It is my prerogative alone. I enjoy writing about things that matter to me, including titbits of my personal life and I should do what I want to do and when I want to do it. So, here I am, back at a space that has given me so much and it is now time for me to do justice to it. I think that once I'm consistent with what I'm doing here, the readership and interactions will improve as well. I'm not trying to make it to the list of best blogs in the country, been there done that. I'm just trying to get back to something I loved doing, for over a decade. And hopefully stay consistent at it.

I also love reading blog posts. No amount of pictures or eloquently written captions can hold a candle to a well written post. As a blogger of more than a decade, I have made some excellent connections out here and some of them are still writing. I'm going to be a regular reader from now on and together we shall ensure that the blogging community survives against all odds and influencers. Also, now will be the time to put it out there. A social media account to promote things makes you an influencer, not a blogger. Having a blog makes you a blogger.

Now, to answer my own question, yes, blogging still is relevant. Any good content always is.

Comments

  1. So good to see your post after a long time. I really enjoy reading your posts and it's such a relatable and well written post. I don't understand Alexa (this term irks me, not sure why), SEO and all that. I blog when I feel like writing something. Very few people visit my blog but that's okay. I still feel a sense of joy when someone comments on my blog posts. I have started writing very short Hindi stories these days. :)

    Keep blogging. And I miss your 'Not a Movie Review' posts. Take care, Soumya. :)

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  2. So good to see you writing. <3

    Even I had taken a bit of a hiatus, but I do agree blogging is absolutely cathartic.
    And I'm glad I shall leave this little legacy behind for my children and grandchildren.

    I write for myself and that's what counts. The cherry on the cake is when it resonates with others too.

    I hear you about nosey relatives etc. dissecting your words. As of now that hasn't happened to me, but have got these one liners, jabs on Facebook, so I stay away and just post my relevant blogs there. Facebook is passe` honestly.

    I wrote a post on Why blogging is still relevant on my blogiversary this year. It's tad long but you might like it. Read when you can.

    https://natashamusing.com/2021/12/5-reasons-why-you-should-blog-on-turning-5-blogiversary/

    Have a wonderful rest of the week. Stay well and keep writing.

    It's only words, words are all that we have :)

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  3. Oh Yay Soumya. So good to see you here. I'm also slowly getting back to blogging on both my blogs. I miss the connect that all of us had - that knowing little bits of each other's lives, of sharing things that made us happy or annoyed. I still remember your film reviews. They were so much fun.

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  4. Good to see you here after a while. As much as I use social media, I agree that when you write on your site, you own your content. Whereas on Insta and everywhere else, they could shut down one day and everything is gone. I haven't blogged as much but I do keep my weekly gratitude posts and the monthly post. I've been writing more with the intent to submit pieces which is why blogging has reduced. Anyway, I do hope you keep writing and keep connected! :)

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  5. Today was a great Sunday as I got to read so many blog posts out here including this one. I am one of those rare specimen who likes to bookmark nice blogs for future reads lol. I am so happy to know that there are so many good writers like yourself out there who makes blogging a thing. Like you said, do not write for an audience, do it for yourself :)

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  6. Hey Soumya, I don't remember how I stumbled upon your blog but, you will be happy to know that I have actually bookmarked your blog and I do sometimes read your posts and they are so relatable and nice :) Yes, I have never commented on your blogs and I am guilty of that :) But, after reading your post today I felt I should comment to at least let you know that although the whole world is behind social media trying hard to be an influencer or trying hard to fake their lives out there, there are still few people like us who like to read genuine content through blogs and not those glossy posts of instagram. I am on the verge of quitting social media (instagram) because it is toxic and I personally enjoy reading someone's story through blogs. Your blog is one such place where I can relate to your stories and opinions. So, please don't stop writing because you are not getting the right readership but continue writing because you want to! Trust me there are still people like us who appreciate and enjoy what you write :) I have a private blog and I write only for myself and share the link of the article with just 4 people and they matter to me a lot! Their opinions matter to me and they bring me happiness and I do not want anyone else judging my story!

    Look forward to continue reading your articles, Soumya!

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