And this is what I'm concluding:
- Time constraints: Sometimes there just aren't enough hours in a day to do all the things we want to do, so we have to make choices. People initially enter the blog world with time to write, but then life happens. A new job, a new baby, a new health issue - you name it and it eats time. I just hope that if a blogger really enjoyed writing, he or she will find a way back to us if and when time allows.
- A change of focus: Today it's stitching. Tomorrow it could be skydiving. And the blog isn't relative to the writer's life anymore. It happens.
- Technical issues: People get sick of the way blog software constantly changes. Seems like they barely get the hang of their publishing routines and zing... The software/template/publishing format is updated and seemingly totally different. I get that. It could be enough to drive someone away.
- They've found other forms of social media that they like better. Well...to each his own, but I'll take a meaty blog post over a "Like" on Facebook any day.
- Feeling like nobody reads your blog anyway: Oh. My. Goodness. I completely get this one. And I'm also guilty of causing it. In fact, I have so much to say about this that I'm going to give it its own section here.
- You thought no one you knew in real life read your blog, but....Maybe you like to blog anonymously. It's quite freeing. And then one day you realize that your family is reading your blog and that creative door just slams shut for you. So you leave your blog.
- Once you wrote something and then got slammed for it. I know bloggers who were writing and enjoying it but stopped because they wrote something sarcastic or controversial and got zapped with nasty comments and emails. It'll set a blogger back on her heels...and we lose her.
Why feeling like nobody reads your blog is a bummer and how that happens:
- First of all, there's that whole "Follower" thing. Although it's meant to be an easy way for people to follow your blog, it often feels like a popularity contest. Now, I'm not saying that's true, I'm just saying that's how it can feel. Kind of like class officer elections in high school, where we are constantly reminded that it wasn't a popularity contest...riiiiiiiight. We have to get past that popularity contest state of mind but sometimes a sensitive soul may feel - I don't know - unread and sad. I don't consider myself sensitive, but I've been there, too. I get it.
- Or we may interpret few followers to mean that our blogging skills are inadequate. We worry that our photography isn't good enough. Our words aren't interesting enough. So we stop writing. Quite frankly, there are some blogs I've read that have hundreds or thousands of followers and tons of comments. But I didn't understand it because I thought it was obvious that the writer was completely insane. Maybe those other followers were like me...following to see how crazy this person could get before a total meltdown. (And ok, that's not nice, but like I said last week - I'm not self-editing dammit!) All that is to say - I'd rather read a nice blog with a blurry photo than a blog with professional style pics and crazy writing.
- Some people go to the Page Visits thing on Blogger and see that they have very few visits. Then we feel really crappy about ourselves and quit. But here's the thing - I use a reader. Feedly, to be exact. Loads of us use blog readers and often don't often leave the reader and visit actual blog sites. And that's especially true if I'm reading from my phone or tablet. So I don't think we're showing up on your page stats. Nor do I click to be a follower on a blog, because I'm already following it in my blog reader and I don't sho up as a follower in your sidebar. But don't fixate on page visits, unless you're blogging for money or advertising. Most of us don't fall into that category.
- Then there's the whole Comment thing. Which also dovetails with the Page Visits. Writers think that few comments mean few readers. I really wish there was a way to comment within the blog reader software, since (and this is very lazy), I often don't comment because I don't want to switch from the reader to a web page. So I bookmark your post to go back to later. And then I forget. Or too much time passes. But my point is - few comments does NOT mean few readers.
So, there's my nickel's worth of conclusions I've drawn from your comments and posts.
And I hope I haven't bored your eyeballs out. But I hope that if you've stopped writing, maybe something I've said will get you started again.
I'm off to an all-day retreat in Pittsburgh tomorrow. There'll be stitching, food, stitching, laughing, stitching, shopping, and stitching. And then we'll do it all over again. I'll see ladies I haven't seen in a while and I can't wait to get a gander at what they've been up to!
Maybe I'll take my camera so I can add some gorgeousness to this page.