After all but crippling myself during a recent spell of over-enthusiastic gardening, I have not been doing a lot. Other than walking Ollie, I have found myself unable to undertake any physical tasks, at the risk of more back pain. This has also applied to my blog, with little written over the last few days. I have submitted articles elsewhere, but have been neglecting beetleypete, as there has been little inspiration for tales of everyday life that involve sitting around, and taking painkillers.
I came back to the blog this morning, to check on some posts, and have a look at comments; all the usual stuff carried out by regular bloggers. I was thinking about the absence of some of my favourite bloggers, wondering what had happened to them, and why they were not writing posts, and appearing in my reader. I don’t like it when blogging friends disappear. It makes me worry about them, watching the metaphorical tumbleweed roll across their blogs; no posts since January, perhaps even December. After almost three years, you convince yourself that you know these people, many of them in far-off lands. Your correspondence with them, even if only by to and fro comments on blog posts, assumes a familiarity and a connection. Then they are gone.
This slight erosion of that small community impacts far beyond its real importance. There is a family feel to blogging, a cosy feeling of togetherness, in an electronic world peopled by untold millions. Without that group dynamic, it feels not unlike throwing a message in a bottle into an ocean. But life goes on of course, and for some it is very busy. Blogging is a diversion, not the purpose, and those absent for whatever reason have their own stuff to deal with. It is pointless to assume the same connection is felt by everyone concerned. To some, the blog is an ‘as and when’ activity, to others it is a forgettable experience.
If you have ever expected crowds at a party you were throwing, and only a few turned up, you will have an idea what I am on about. I have written before about concerns for the blogger. Lack of followers, few readers, less and less views. Over the last few days, I have had few guests at my ‘party’. Despite a welcome increase in followers, for some reason daily views and the always welcome comments, have plummeted to an all-time low. When you are not being productive in your output, this is perhaps to be expected. As consumers, whether of entertainment, foodstuffs, or the written word, we all look for something fresh every day. Something to stimulate, to share, or just enjoy. It is up to us, as bloggers, to provide such fare.
Today marks a very good day for me. I used to worry unduly about views and likes, clicks in and out of the site, searches, comments, and statistics. I stopped worrying this morning. I don’t know why, I just did. It is like a weight off my shoulders, a burden removed. I am now a grown-up blogger, and it feels really good.