I have been been blogging now for six years and it occurred to me that there were a few things I had learnt.
Writing a diary, a journal or a blog, is an excellent discipline. It forces you to notice things. I am more conscious of seasons. I see the patterns of passing years. Perhaps that is just age. I think I have always been attracted to beauty, be that in nature, painting, music, or dare I say it, food. The blog nudges me to make a mental note. Not all I see or notice ends up on these pages. But lots thoughts have and I believe the very discipline makes me a happier person.
My posts start with the words and the images are added later. You might think it would be the other way round. I try very hard not to blog if I don’t have something to say. The idea must be there and usually it takes a few days before the idea wheedles it’s way out onto the page.
Write for yourself – it is better not to be inhibited by the thought of lots of people reading…but edit, edit, edit for everyone. I am not an excellent proof reader of my own work. When I am done, I am done. However when I am being a good girl I will preview the words on the page. For a while I was paralysed by the thought of people mentally ticking off my grammatical errors. Then I realised that if we listen to our inner fear, we would never achieve anything – so I do the best that I can.
I use a Canon EOS 450DR camera, but more often I use my phone camera. In my head that is lazy. I really don’t like to admit it. But my phone is much lighter in my handbag.
I do mention my family, but rather obliquely. I feel very conscious of their right to privacy. Having said that most of my inspiration comes from what friends and family have said to me.
Being nice costs nothing, being nasty can cost you everything.
Not everything is always jolly in the Varnam household but this is a place of joy for me – you don’t need to hear about the other stuff.
Blogging has opened up a vast and wonderful world for me. I have connected with people from across the world. I have met and worked with my heroes. I have had opportunities to develop my design work beyond my wildest dreams. Most of the images at the right of the page are projects and dreams which have been fulfilled due to this blog. But keeping a blog is hard work and requires dedication – there I said it.
Be brave – if this girl can – you can.
Be generous – some people will take advantage, some will nick your ideas or work. But in general, whatever you give will be returned to you tenfold.
Compliment and thank those who have inspired you. Most people have no idea how much they have positively effected others. But everyone needs encouragement, even if they are at the top of their game. Saying ‘thank you’ will give that person a huge boost, and you never know, someone might do the same for you one day.
You can get quite hung up on how your blog looks, how many people view your blog, whether it gets comments, whether it is on-trend. The most important thing is to ‘Do it if you love it’. Don’t write a blog if it is a pain for you to do and you begin to dread it. But don’t let the look of your blog enable you to procrastinate.
Don’t make comparisons, don’t be jealous, be inspired….