Blogging, then and now

This is going to be short, because it’s really at least as much for me as for you, and, so, brevity is only fair.

I started this blog four years ago, and I reflected this week on how much my life has changed in the interim and, therefore, how the role that this blog plays in my life has changed, too.

Then, blogging was about the discipline of reading and sort of reengaging with the academic world, especially since my days were so occupied with childcare. Now, blogging is about the space to step back from my advocacy practice (and, still, childcare) to think about connections.

Then, I blogged mostly for my current and former students, as an extension of my teaching. Now, my audience is fairly national, which gives me a chance to interact with social work students and faculty from other schools, and other political contexts.

Then, my blog posts were really long, both because I was still learning the medium, and because there was a lot bottled up that had to come out. Now, while I still write more than a lot of bloggers, I think I write more like I speak. Which is still, of course, a lot, but less pedantic. I hope.

Then, I blogged in spurts, but much more regularly, because I had quite a bit more time to focus on it. I really had no idea, four years ago, how much time it takes to consume and process and then produce content. Now, I need to plan out my posts, preparing ahead for times when I know I’ll be too busy to write, and then sometimes filling back in when something urgent happens that I want to write about.

Then, I wasn’t at all sure that there would be anyone to read this. Now, I worry that I won’t be able to keep it up for long. As the kids get older and bedtime is pushed later and my client list continues to grow, I am torn between the ‘get-out-and-advocate’ role and the ‘think-about-what-it-all-means’ role, here. There are only so many hours in the day.

This site also serves as a sort of repository, for me, of what I’ve thought about and how I’ve thought about it.

Thank you for sort of growing up alongside me, and for the journey, to this point in time.

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4 responses to “Blogging, then and now

  1. Melinda,

    I say to you….your client list grows because of your blogging not inspite of your blogging. Your blog is your pr and marketing for you as an expert in your field and your advocacy. When a business has a successful marketing campaign do they quit marketing because business is growing. Your blogging and growth is not mutual exclusive. It increase your visibility as a social work professional, an advocate, and a caring person. Don’t dismiss the value of your greatest asset. I say find ways to invest in it and perfect it in order to reduce the time consumption. Learn to curate more post than drafting original articles. Go to a bloggers tech conference to learn how to blog more efficiently. I do hope that you won’t stop.

    • Thank you for the encouragement! I agree that there is mutual value from the blogging and my consulting and teaching work, but I’m also confronting the realities of 24-hour days and parenting 4 kids. I am experimenting with different types of posts, and I appreciate that guidance, but I also see from comments and statistics that what people value most here is my original content, and so I want to honor that, as well. Thank you for taking the time to weigh in, and especially for your engagement here.

  2. Melinda,
    I hear you…and agree with the prior commenter. I believe we’ve been blogging about the same time and I’ve struggled a lot this year with maintaining regular, original posts, and a content calendar. Blogging styles change as the reason we blog changes. Also, as we get busier, it takes precious dedicated time to produce thoughtful, provocative and inspiring content (which you are always great at producing). However, I have definitely seen a correlation between regular blogging and inquiries in business, blog views, and even conversations on Twitter.

    I so enjoy reading your blog and the blog conversations we’ve had over the years. I’m looking forward to the next four years!

    Best,
    Debra

    • Thanks, Debra–I really appreciate you taking the time to comment, and I so value your insights. We still need to schedule that Skype chat! One of the greatest values I have gleaned from blogging, for sure, is the connection to people like you–thinkers I respect, leaders I admire, and people I just know I like!

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