It’s the end of #NaBloPoMo2019 Week 4 which means this is my final #NaBloPoMo post! I’ve kept my promise to myself to post every weekday this month, and it feels damn good.
Here’s what this month of blogging has taught me. Most of this stuff I already knew in my head, but experiencing it was like going from a circle in two dimensions to a sphere in three.
Blogging is intimate in a way social media isn’t.
Elan Morgan said this about their #NaBloPoMo2019 experience:
As of this post, I’ve published on my site 26 days in a row, and I’ve really enjoyed regular blogging again. There’s a kind of deeper connection in smaller doses with blogging than happens with social platforms, and I’ve missed it. (Read the full post on Instagram.)
Exactly. I’ve missed the intimacy of blogging, too. There’s a feeling of hospitality and welcome and place with blogs that doesn’t exist in social media.
Routines feel good.
#NaBloPoMo2019 provided just the right amount of structure and motivation to get me moving. I found myself squirreling details away and formulating blog posts in my head as I went about my day. The routine felt good and generated its own energy. Now that the month is over, I need to establish a new writing routine.
Blogging focuses my attention, while social media scatters it.
Blogging has been good for my attention and focus. I had more mental energy for writing and responding when I wasn’t sucked into social platforms specifically engineered to keep me distracted. Obvious, I know! But it’s eye-opening (and sobering) to see just how distracted I was.
I didn’t comment on other peoples’ blogs as much as I’d planned to.
I had intended to spend time every few days commenting on other #NaBloPoMo2019 blogs, but I didn’t do a great job of it. I followed the hashtag on Twitter and Instagram and visited often, but I my comments didn’t reflect that.
I discovered I still love to write.
I haven’t written much during the last few years. I should say, I haven’t written much creatively. I’ve done a ton of writing, but most of it was either inside private political groups or tossed out onto social media. I’m proud of that work and it did its job, but blogging gave me room for more exploratory writing. Blogging forced me to slow down, collect my thoughts, formulate themes and topics, and craft posts with more care. I’m rusty, and it feels like starting from scratch. But it’s a start, and that’s what I needed.
This has been a surprisingly emotional experience. Writing has always been my bedrock, but during the last few years I’ve wondered if writing was part of my future. Now I know, without a doubt, it is. I have more to say (surprise, surprise) about the importance of blogging and where I think it could fit into today’s media landscape. I’ll write a blog post about it!
OK, friends. Thank you to everyone who joined me in this #NaBloPoMo2019 experiment…I hope you got as much out of it as I did.
Photo by Kaitlin Duffey
Let's Keep Talking
Subscribe to my newsletter, Parent of Adults, for essays and conversation + occasional writerly news. Free to read.
Comments are closed.
Congratulations! And thanks for the “blogs are back” call.
Thank you for the challenge of discovery, Asha. I haven’t commented, and in all honesty, I haven’t read every post, but I did hear your call and practiced writing a poem a day in my journal. Basically, any writing that requires reflection is a bonus in this scattered world. T, J, and I would like to have your 3/4ths over for dinner. Let’s talk.
This was a great year! I’m hoping that next year whoever hosts it will include a Linky every day where we can all come and submit our link for the day. That seems to work well for blog hops, and might work for NaBloPoMo as well.
I did and didn’t meet my goal. I started on the 4th, committed to weekdays only, and one of my posts didn’t show up – not sure if I didn’t schedule it, or scheduled it for the wrong time. But I did retro post it, and I do consider the goal met since I actually wrote a post for that day.
I’m going to try to keep up with it, too, since posting is just a habit now. But it’s going to be hard during the holidays with everyone busy and not visiting blogs as much. It’s easy to get overwhelmed and discouraged. But hopefully we all continue writing!
That’s a great idea, Kim. I saw that the Nano Poblano folks do it this way: https://cheerpeppers.wordpress.com/
Any awareness at all, to me, matters. I love that you applied this to your own writing practice. Yes. Dinner.
Congratulations to you, gRegor! Thank you for joining in.
“Blogging has been good for my attention and focus.” I feel exactly the same way – as much as I love other social media platforms – it’s often about “catching up on all the posts” and scrolling, scrolling, scrolling… I feel that if I visit a blog, I have more time to linger.
Thanks for also promoting NaBloPoMo again this year… let’s keep this community going and let’s do it again next year!!
I loved the structure that made it possible to build the habit – for that and the kind encouragement all month long, thank you!
I loved practicing the idea of “better done that perfect,” and figuring out how to write a little something without spending all day on it. I feel the same as you about commenting…I did discover a couple of new blogs and left comments, but wanted to do much more of that. There’s always today…and tomorrow and the next, right?
Thanks, again. I loved participating in this.
EXACTLY, SARAH! There’s always today! I feel like this was the start of something for me, and not the obvious “start of blogging” or even “start of writing.” Something else…something good. No matter what it is, I’m so glad you and I figured out our amazing birthday surprise!
Re: scrolling: I wrote about this here: https://ashadornfest.com/what-feeds-us-2/ My thoughts are still evolving on this. Stay tuned for more; I’m writing up my thoughts on a new way to edit one’s social media habits.
Re: NaBloPoMo, I’m putting it on my calendar for next year! This time with a little more prep! November 2020 will also be US election time — I will need every glimmer of Internet humanity I can get.
This resonates with me. Routines, focus, and attention are all valuable, yet ephemeral.
I managed exactly TWO posts, both in the first week of November, but that’s more than I have blogged for a lot of months of the past few years.
YOU WIN! In all seriousness, two is better than zero. I, too, had abandoned my blog (not technically, but creatively). Just booting up WordPress is progress. I hope you will keep blogging.