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Celebrating One Year of Blogging Fun

May 11, 2012

I’m surprised at this myself, but I’ve been on A Scenic Route for a whole year now! I would be remiss if I didn’t acknowledge this milestone with some thoughts about how I ended up here.

I pretty much stumbled into blogging. WordPress makes it incredibly easy to start a blog, so the temptation was great to come in and take a peek. What I discovered thrilled me. Themes, ready to fill with pictures and words! Widgets to track my word counts! Fonts galore! Spam blockers! I immediately set about making this place feel like home, rearranging the furniture so that my words might feel comfy here.

It never occurred to me that I was going to get visitors. I was just playing around. I’m a super shy writer. In fact, when I showed my blog to a writer friend, who knows about my inhibitions, she asked me, “If you’re afraid to show your work, why do you have a blog?”

Well, she had it exactly right. That is the perfect reason for me to have a blog. Blogging has been a great way for me to start overcoming my self-doubt, five hundred to a thousand words at a time. Many of my first posts were password protected, partly because they contain copyrighted How to Think Sideways course material, but also because exposing so much of myself to the world was downright scary for me. Clicking the publish button and the thought of someone coming upon my words induced stomach cramps.

Image via Geeks.com

Because writing isn’t supposed to induce gastric distress, I knew this was something I had to work through. I resolved to post something once week and wrote about anything that crossed my path. (Surfing by moonlight, anyone?) Usually though, I ended up with writing related posts: research discoveries, progress reports, playlists, or character interviews. The random nature of my posts fit in with the title and intent of the blog–to chronicle my writing journey.

The first few months were challenging for me. Even after the piece was published, I would usually edit it at least four or five times. I couldn’t imagine my words ending up in someone’s inbox, where my leaps of logic, typos, and grammar faux pas would be exposed for all the world to see.

Before I knew it though, I found myself looking forward to putting something up on the blog. I got a deep sense of satisfaction seeing my words up here, neat and edited, with pictures on the side, just like the pro blogs do. I looked at the Freshly Pressed blogs and aspired to be just like them, polished and pretty and popular.

Then, I gained a follower. Just one was enough to make me feel that I was now big time. The pressure was on, and I felt my posts had to be more perfect than before. Lo and behold, my practice paid off. I only edit my words once (or twice … ) after they post.

Now that I have a few followers—and believe me, the fact that you have invited me into your inbox means more to me than you can even know—I feel I should let the world know what joining me on A Scenic Route means.

My goal from the beginning was to make my blog a peaceful place to visit and read about my words and my stories. No hustle, no credit cards, no exhortations to visit this or that. No blatant pitches to buy my book—not that my book is anywhere near being finished. A Scenic Route strives to be a one stop shop for fun and relaxation. My writing is my holiday, my rest stop, my few hours of escape from the hassles of the everyday. I want my blog to be the same.

What is your vision for your blog?  How long have you been blogging?

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18 Comments
  1. May 11, 2012 8:56 pm

    Congrats on your one year anniversary. It has been a pleasure to follow along with your journey and to hear your thoughts — some echo my own thoughts at time. Keep at it.

    • May 11, 2012 9:34 pm

      Thank you!
      I’m glad my thoughts resonate with you, and hope you like the upcoming journey along the Scenic Route. 😉

  2. May 13, 2012 1:29 pm

    Congrats on your first year. That’s awesome 🙂 I’ve only been blogging since early March. I’m not sure I even have a vision for my blog, and if I do, I don’t know how to articulate. But so far my posts seem to go together fairly well.

    • May 13, 2012 7:38 pm

      I think your posts go together really well, and though you might not be able to articulate it yet, I think your blog has a great vibe. 🙂
      My path through the blogosphere zigzags a lot right now, but I’m finding that the more I post things, the more natural it feels.
      … Although I don’t know if sending my innermost thoughts out into the worldwide web will ever feel entirely natural to me!

      • May 14, 2012 3:10 pm

        Well, I think you do a great job on both your blogs, so keep up the good work 🙂

        • May 14, 2012 5:22 pm

          Thanks so much! I never, ever, thought I’d be up to managing two blogs at once, but here I am …

  3. May 15, 2012 2:10 am

    Isn’t blogging fun?! Some ppl find it so difficult to do for some reason. I just tell them to simply write when you feel inspired to write about something. And don’t write when you don’t. I love the lovely pics and the name, ‘The scenic route’. I definitely feel @ peace when I read it 🙂

    • May 15, 2012 6:52 am

      Thank you so much for your thoughtful comment!
      Great point–blogging is a lot of fun, as long as it doesn’t ever feel compulsory. I seem to have a lot of things to say (as I’m discovering writers have a tendency to do 😉 ) and what better place than a blog to gather them together?
      I’m glad you stopped by the scenic route!

  4. May 16, 2012 9:48 am

    Congrats on one year! I like your comment about removing self-doubt five hundred to a thousand words at a time. That is why I like blogging, too. Blogging is fun, and WordPress does make it easy. Keep on writing! I’m following.

    • May 17, 2012 7:21 pm

      Thanks! Blogging has done wonders for my self-confidence, and knowing that I’m not alone in feeling this way has helped tremendously.
      Plus, it is fun! I’m glad you stopped by, and I’ll do my best to keep the fun posts coming–five hundred to a thousand words at a time. 🙂

  5. May 16, 2012 1:54 pm

    By the way, Kirsten…I’ve nominated you and A Scenic Route for the Versatile Blogger Award. If you don’t already have one, stop by my blog for details.

    And are you on Twitter? I don’t know if we’re connected there or not.

    • May 17, 2012 7:24 pm

      A Versatile Blogger? Moi? Thank you so much, and no, A Scenic Route has not yet been nominated for this honor. Thank you! I have something special in mind for this one. 🙂

      As for Twitter, I’m using the Write A Book With Me account for now. (which I think you’re already connected to.) No point in having two twitter accounts as well as two blogs!

      • May 18, 2012 12:16 am

        Just double-checking 🙂 I still haven’t figured out the best way to sort my followers so I know who all I’m connected to.

  6. May 19, 2012 11:14 am

    What a beautiful blog you have, my dear.
    Since I’m in a pitched battle with Lesson Seventeen HTRYN, I need a place of peace to visit!
    And, I’m finding it here!

    Congratulations on year number one.

    And, thanks for following me.

    • May 19, 2012 6:26 pm

      Aww, thank you so much! The blog was fun to put together, and knowing that people are enjoying it doubles the fun. 🙂
      Speaking of double the fun, I’m on my second pass of the dreaded Lesson 17 (on the same book!), which is a bit easier the second time around but still a challenge!

      I’m looking forward to reading about your progress!

  7. May 22, 2012 1:42 am

    Hey Kirsten,

    Congrats from me, too and well done on getting through your internal struggles and making it to the beginning of your SECOND year in the Blogosphere 😉

    PS… thanks for your funny comments – and NO, there will be no sequel… the panties have already been returned and exchanged 🙂

    • May 22, 2012 10:44 pm

      Well, I’m glad to hear that there was a happy ending to the panties saga! Though I’ll be looking forward to further funny escapades on the HI from Hawaii blog. 🙂

      And thank you for the congrats. The one year mark really caught me by surprise, but is an achievement I am proud of nonetheless.

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