My Boring Blog

By Jac

Ever since I started blogging, almost nine months ago, I have been a teensy bit obsessed with my site’s stats. How many people read it today? Where do they live? What, specifically, did they read? How long did they stay? It’s just so much fun for me to have people read what I’ve written. I have long considered myself to be a writer who doesn’t actually, you know, write anything, so now that I am writing again, and now that people—strangers, even!—are reading it, I can’t help but focus on getting even more “fans.” Ultimately, I know that the more people who read my blog and enjoy my writing style, the more likely I am to be able to make this writing thing my job, and that would be simply amazing.

As I’ve started to blog, though, I’ve also started to read more blogs, and I’ve noticed something: there are a lot of us. I’m not the only person who writes well, and who wants to gain a larger group of readers. So what sets me apart? What makes my blog about my thoughts and my little family special? My four daughters are each beautiful, hilarious, busy, difficult, smart, and covered in dirt or boogers to varying degrees, but none of them is exceptionally so, and most children are these things. But I’ve noticed that blogs with a “niche” tend to have an advantage when it comes to finding readers. And when you are a parent blogging about your family, having a family with something interesting going on makes it easier to find that niche.

Having two sets of twins, for example, would be fascinating. Living in a culture outside of your own, or travelling a lot in general, would be interesting for people read about. Having an adopted child, or even having been adopted yourself, would give you lots of opportunity for content and to share your personal expertise. People would want to read that stuff, just based on the captivating nature of those experiences.

And then, of course, there is the real gold-mine, blog-wise: personal struggle and tragedy. Infertility, depression, divorce, poverty—all of these life circumstances offer a wealth of opportunity to be vulnerable with your readers. I think of Kelle Hampton coming to accept and appreciate her daughter’s Down Syndrome; Glennon Melton and her life-long struggle with an eating disorder and addiction; even my talented friend-of-a-friend who started her blog to keep her friends and family up-to-date about her baby’s life-threatening heart condition.

You see, if life were only about getting more blog readers, I could hope for tragedy. I could wish I’d had a traumatic childhood; I could hope my child would have special needs; I could beg my husband to let me exaggerate our arguments and over-share details of his own anxiety disorder. I’d get more readers, after all, and that would be so cool.

But life, of course, is not about getting more readers. My beautiful, “normal” family is not for sale, and I am so thankful for them, just as they are. The wise and wonderful Anna Whiston-Donaldson from An Inch of Gray has had a very successful writing career recently, but I’m certain she’d give it up in an instant if she could change her own compelling and heart-wrenching story—even though the post she wrote about her son’s shocking death must have had a huge impact in launching her career.

So I want more people to read my blog, but I sincerely hope I have to keep relying on Facebook giveaways and top-notch writing quality for that to happen. Going viral is amazing, but not at just any expense. I am so grateful that my life—and maybe my blog, too—is just a tiny bit boring. I pray it stays that way … and maybe that more people start to read it anyway.

And speaking of gratitude, I am also appreciative of those people who write the blogs that I have discovered, and who inspire me and make me laugh daily. I don’t begrudge you your hard-earned readers, even if you have a fascinating or difficult or compelling life story to draw them in. I know that your niche story is not what’s keeping me (and so many others) reading—it’s the vulnerability, wisdom, and straight-up skill with which you write about it.

This blog, though, I do share, of course. I obviously don’t want anything difficult to happen in Juli’s life either, but maybe I can convince her to adopt a baby who has special needs. It’s really the least she could do.

Another option is to keep using pictures of my sister-in-law in her bikini. The original post with this picture in it went viral. Coincidence? I don't think so.

Another option is to keep using pictures of my sister-in-law in her bikini. The original post with this picture in it went viral. Coincidence? I don’t think so.

 

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15 thoughts on “My Boring Blog

  1. Erin

    This was great and spot on. (And I laughed pretty hard at the picture comment.) I’ve been blogging for almost six months, and I have to keep myself in check to remember it’s not all about the stats. Of course I want to get gaining more readers and increase my stats, but I know I’ve been called to write and help others, so if I’m helping just one person then I’ve done my job. Keep using your talents! Have a great day!
    Erin
    http://www.itallmattersmom.com

    Reply
    1. Jac Post author

      Thanks for reading, Erin, and super thanks for commenting! I just checked out your blog; looks impressively professional! And I, too, do not like to hear people eat. 🙂

      Reply
      1. Erin

        Well it wasn’t boring, so I read it. 🙂 No, I really do enjoy your guys’ blog! Thanks so much for visiting my blog and for the kind words. I’d like to spruce it up someday, but oh my goodness, setting it up was enough work to last me for quite a while … yikes! (I am a graphic designer, not a website designer!) Oh yes, I have to have a radio on at mealtimes because I can’t stand the chewing and swallowing. My poor husband with a bowl of cereal knows to not sit next to me when he eats it. Ha!

        Reply
  2. Alison

    its a tough go even with a niche (from the perspective of a feminist pole dancing single mom who has struggled with eating disorders). Keep writing, keep enjoying your awesome family, and keep sharing your words with us. And most importantly, keep well, because what you do does matter.

    Reply
    1. Jac Post author

      POLE DANCING! I never even CONSIDERED that one! Juli? You up for a new hobby?

      Thanks for your encouraging words, Alison! I read your stuff quite frequently, and I really enjoy it. You’re very good, and therefore I’m only a little teeny bit jealous of your many recent successes. Keep it up! And you stay well, too, please. 🙂

      Reply
  3. Kristen

    I haven’t commented in a while but am always trying to keep updated – mainly via Facebook.
    But this blogpost right here is what will keep myself and other readers coming back. You might not have that shocking comedic or tragic post that seems to go viral…. But you have your authenticity and relatable qualities that make me want to come over, laugh about the cheeto stuck in my hair, and share a cup of coffee. This blog is strong and steady…. Sure to be a success. Keep doing what you ladies do. I’ve been ready a lot of blogs lately and they are so superficial and all about $$$ – it is so obvious and such a turn off. Shilling products left, right, and center. They sold out. I love when you said, “My family is not for sale”. I wish you and Julie all the success and will share your blog with others.

    Reply
    1. Jac Post author

      I have to say, Kristen, though it took me a while to reply to you, but this comment made me cry a little! Thanks so much for your support and your kind words. The thing about selling out when you’re a blogger: it’s SUPER EASY to do, because blogging is a lot of work, and you feel like you are working for free. So when you think about getting paid to do it, it makes you feel better about all the time you’re putting into it! But I have to remind myself that a)I want to be a writer, not a salesperson or an ad rep, and b) it’s okay to have a hobby you love. Also, I love that when you come over for coffee you have a cheeto in your hair and not something healthier. Junk food is GOOD, yo.

      Reply
  4. DeBalino

    You, my dear, are a far cry from boring! So excited to get to know you and your beautiful family, including your so-called tiny-bit-boring dog. Your sister pic idea is kinda genius. I may have to do that too, only my brother isn’t quite as cute in a bikini.
    Xx

    Reply
    1. Jac Post author

      Thanks! Your blog is so fun, by the way. So glad I found you! And I think your brother would probably look awesome in a bikini! It’s worth a shot anyway, isn’t it?

      Reply
  5. Quirky Chrissy

    I claim a delightfully nicheless blog (no kids, not married, a professional copywriter, sometimes funny blogger) & I went quasi-viral (for me) on my birthday last year, when some douchenozzle on Reddit thought it would be fun to call me out on being fat, ugly and ridiculous. I fought back and tried to have fun with it, but I still cried more than I care to admit. The stats are not all they’re cracked up to be…because viral brings mean people. And mean people suck.

    Reply
    1. Jac Post author

      Oh no. Happy birthday to you. 🙁 Reddit-douchenozzle, you SUCK. Whenever I get a negative comment (here or on any social media) my “oh crap, what did I do wrong, are they right?” response kicks into high gear. I cannot imagine how I’d respond if there were calling me fat, ugly, and ridiculous because a little part of me worries I am those things. I don’t need people letting me know they agree. I’ve read your blog before, btw, and it was delightful!

      Reply
  6. Kathy Radigan

    I have been at this for 4 years and I have to say that areas of focus seem to just happen to a lot of bloggers, even boring ones who write about their families! Lol! (A category I also find myself in! ) One of the things I find the most interesting is that even though a lot of us write about similar things, everyone has their own twist on it! I love that!

    I too can get caught up in my numbers and stats, but I find that when I do I stop myself from doing what I love most, writing and connecting with amazing people!

    Reply
    1. Jac Post author

      There are definitely a lot of people like me (us!), and it’s so true that what makes their blogs appealing is that everyone has their own personality and different take on things. Thanks for your encouragement; I’ll definitely try to remember to forget the stats! 🙂 (Your blog is great, by the way!)

      Reply
  7. Katie

    Kelle Hampton’s blog is one of my favourites! I also very much enjoy Under the Sycamore (http://ashleyannphotography.com/blog/), it’s among my favourites as well. The draw for me is good writing (which you’ve got in spades) and pretty photography. I have to admit if a blog post is all words and looks long I’ll probably read the first sentence and decide whether to trudge through or just give up then and there. Except yours, I read every last word, even the long posts 😉

    Reply
    1. Jac Post author

      Oh pictures… I suck at pictures. But I am WORKING on it. But I will NEVER be Kelle Hampton, obviously. Her kids are always dressed to match each other AND the theme of the post that day! 🙂 I’m glad you read our wordy stuff too!

      Reply

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