This week our reading was from Davis and Merchant (2007) Ch8: Looking From the Inside Out: Academic Blogging as a New Literacy. My overall take away from the reading was that yes, blogging is social, blogging is a way to get your ideas and thoughts out there immediately, blogging creates community and inspires conversations, a blog is a living document – always changing, and a blog is not just about the writing but about the design as well.
What captured my attention from this particular chapter was not so much the reading, but the comments from my classmates. We had several discussions about the “fear” of blogging. Fear of not being true to who are. Fear of being adequate. Fear of not having anything “note worthy” to say. I think that no matter how much of an “expert” we feel we are about a topic, these fears are real. I decided to look up some blogs about blogging and see if successful bloggers ever felt the same way.
I found an interesting blog about blogging by Michelle Schaeffer. Her business is helping entrepreneurs and small business find success with their websites and writes about blogging – failures and successes. She had several interesting blogs from ideas of what to blog and to how to overcome those scary moments when you feel like you are not enough. In her post titled How To Succeed Despite the Mundane (aka I’m not “enough” yet) she exposes the feelings that several of us have shared that we are experiencing.
She suggests that when you are feeling like you are not “enough” to acknowledge those feelings and realize that this is a challenge to yourself to become better. It’s time to improve and that is a good thing. Another fear that heard voiced in our group discussions was that if we were writing towards a particular audience and were being “careful” about how we wrote something, then maybe we were not being true to who we are.
If we are writing towards a particular audience and are being “careful” about how we write something, then maybe we were not being true to who we are. Difficult. If a blog were like a journal then we would just “lay it all out there”. There are some thoughts that simply belong in my personal journal, locked with a key, hidden under….well I can’t tell you where! Here is my opinion: I am an educator. I am an elementary school educator. I have chosen to have this responsibility and I love my job. So, I am going to be careful about what I put on social media via blog, Facebook, Twitter, etc. You may disagree with me and feel free to do so. This is a decision that I have made for myself and it is my personality. I don’t feel like I have to share my raw thoughts with everyone, others do, and that’s okay. Schaeffer suggests in her blog that we be honest, simple and transparent. Let others know if you made a mistake or if you simply don’t know the answer.
Schaeffer suggests that we be honest, simple and transparent. Let others know if you made a mistake or if you simply don’t know the answer. This is a voice I appreciate when reading a blog. Here is who I am and yes I know a lot about this topic, but oops, I made a mistake. Thanks to my audience for helping me see the error of my ways, let’s learn together and move on. Hey, that’s very social! Community learning and growth!
Schaeffer’s final suggestion is to “See both sides of yourself”. Acknowledge that sometimes, many times, you do know what you are talking about and you can help people. Simply say thank you without excuses and continue.
So here’s to another week of blogging. Another week of failures and successes. Another week of growth! I enjoy reading your blogs and growing with you!