Successes and Mistakes: Blogging in 2013

I am glad that what has essentially been a rather difficult year has come to an end and (like most others, I am sure) I’m in a reflective mood. I had prepared several posts that reviewed the various events of the last twelve months, but I decided to combine them.

At times, I can be extremely lazy.

A year ago this blog didn’t exist. I created it in April after spending years writing random thoughts in various notebooks, which I never finished – Paperchase was making a fortune from me and my bedroom cupboard was stacked with beautiful books that all contained one or two pages of (often repeated) scribblings. The Bloke, my partner of four years, directed me to WordPress and thus Suzie81 was born. I chose the name quickly and without much thought – my name and the year I was born – I didn’t have any expectations, other than perhaps a few nerves about it being discovered by people that I know, I had no plan, theme or any idea of what I wanted to write about – the important thing was the process of writing itself.

In the last eight months my little blog, and my life, has grown beyond all expectations. As I write, I have gained over 3,000 followers and my posts have received over 70,000 views. Compared to some, this is tiny, but I have been absolutely gobsmacked by the response that I have received. I’ve been spoilt with nominations for numerous awards, I was Freshly Pressed in November and for the first time in years I have a project that I never seem to get bored of – I love every minute of it and can easily spend hours at a time reading posts and writing my own. I have found something that I genuinely want to do. I’ve met some amazing people, formed small relationships with them and I have started to get to know a little about their interesting lives. Continue reading

Blank Screens and Brain Mush: Overcoming Blogger’s Block

This morning was unusual – I got up and went to work, still feeling quite weak and generally ‘bleurgh’ after being ill all weekend. However, by the time I sat down at my desk it became quite evident that I wouldn’t be very productive today, so I was sent home for fear of infecting the rest of the school. I arrived back, changed out of my wet clothes (it’s been raining here constantly over the last week) and decided to update my blog. Unfortunately, I found that I’d been staring at the screen for the fifteen minutes and came to the realisation that I had nothing to write about. Zilch. Zero. Nil points.

In just over six months and almost 500 posts, this was the first time I had experienced the dreaded ‘Bloggers Block.’ If i’m being absolutely honest, it was quite an uncomfortable experience – I had the urge to write something, as I often do, but couldn’t think of a single subject that I found interesting enough to sink my teeth into, or even have a little nibble at.

I was just about to switch my laptop off and then something occured to me (I always think of Gavin and Stacey when I hear the word ‘occuring’ – those of you in the UK will understand this)… why don’t I create a list of ideas for those in a similar situation? So here we are: these are my hints and tips for overcoming Blogger’s Block. Continue reading