What is happening in the blogosphere, my lovelies? In the last few months, the bloggeristas on my reading list have been dropping like flies. I fear something is indeed rotten in the state of Denmark.
Is blogger burnout getting the best of them? That’s this week’s Friend Friday* topic—hitting the blogging wall, and breaking through it.
Now on to the questions for this week.
How many hours a week do you spend blogging? Has that number changed since you started blogging?
I’m guessing I spend about 10-15 hours a week on blogging, which includes shooting and editing photos, writing, commenting, technical updates, etc. When I first started my blog, I posted rather sporadically…just a handful of posts a month. At the beginning of this year, when my direction and intent finally became clear to me (after almost four years of blogging), my blog time increased dramatically. As soon as I figured out what I wanted to focus on—and what I would no longer write about—my blog grew in virtually every way possible.
That’s kind of good and bad. The good: my readership has grown exponentially, I’ve made fantastic and fulfilling connections with other bloggers, and I’ve learned so much about social media, from the inside out. The bad: now I need more time to interact with my readers and visit their blogs, and I do feel pressure (because of lack of time) when it comes to keeping my blog fed. It’s like my baby. I feel compelled to nurture it and stretch the boundaries of my writing and creativity, and regularly.
There is always more you can do, write, read, comment on…how do you limit time spent on these tasks?
Well, my husband’s pretty good at letting me know when I’m spending too much time in front of my PC…ha!
When my blog really started taking off, I was between jobs (and countries), so I had all the time in the world to spend on it. Fast-forward a few months and suddenly I’m working full-time, I’m trying to help my expat hubby settle in on U.S. soil, I’ve got a niece and nephew I adore and try to spend time with, I’ve begun using rich media in my posts, and I’m not only writing for G&G—but three other blogs as well! GAH!
Needless to say, I had to put the kibosh on something, so here’s what I did:
- I scaled back the frequency of my own posts to two-to-three times a week.
- I stopped contributing regularly to two of the other blogs I was writing for; I’m now only contributing regularly to Independent Fashion Bloggers (IFB), because I think it is an incredible resource, and I feel like my posts there actually help younger, less experienced bloggers.
- I’ve stopped commenting on every single post published by my blogging homies. Wish I could hit them all, but there is just no time. I try to interact with them at least weekly since daily really isn’t possible anymore.
- I try not to blog on the weekends. That’s my time with Hubby. I will pop on and comment in the morning since I tend to get up earlier than he does, but once he’s up, I move on to brekkie and the rest of my day.
I’m sure some people in my life would like me to scale back even further, but the Web is my thing, and my blog actually makes me a stronger Web content editor and creative professional. I’m a writer and the Web is my medium. I have to do it.
Have you experienced blogger burnout yet? How have you dealt with that?
I have. I took a six-month break from July to December 2008; I had so much going on in my life and I needed time to digest it all. But eventually the fog cleared, and I came back, on a new blogging platform.
I actually just wrote a post about this very thing for IFB; if you want to know more about the symptoms of blogger burnout, and tips for dealing with it, check out Beating Blogger Burnout.
I started to feel a little burned out this past summer as well, so I re-prioritized my responsibilities and decided that outside of the occasional post, I would stop contributing to blogs other than G&G and IFB. And I also made a firm rule: I will only write and post when I am 100% into it. If not, then I will not post. That’s the surest way to loathe something, and I think for creatives, it’s the kiss of death. I take the same approach toward painting: I only paint when I “feel” it. That’s like every five years or something. But I get good results.
This time of the year is always a lot busier than any other time. Will your blogging change as a result?
I’m not sure that it will change much because I will not be away for the holidays, and I’ve got a pretty manageable blogging schedule. Other than a mini blogger meetup, and a guest post here and there (I can’t wait to share…I’ll be guesting on at least two other blogs!), my blogging should remain unaffected. Should. But life is unpredictable, so you have to just try to roll with it.
Could you forsee a moment in which you are not blogging anymore? How would you you identify that it’s time to walk away?
Walk away?! After all the work I’ve put into my blog over these years? No can do. Burnout, schmurnout, I say. I might take a hiatus if life demands it, but I really cannot imagine never blogging again. I love it too much. It’s my #1 hobby…aside from shopping, of course.
As I said above, I’m a writer. The way I cope with my emotions—happiness, anger, bewilderment, frustration, melancholy—is through writing. And the only medium I’ve found that allows me to meld the verbal and the visual (and my love of technology) is blogging. So I’m here to stay, whether I have one reader or one million (yeah, right). I ain’t goin’ out like dat!
*The Friend Friday project by Modly Chic is a way for fashion bloggers to share more about themselves and create a friendly connection with other bloggers. Join the conversation by joining the Fashion Beauty Friend Friday Google Group.