I THOUGHT OF SEVERAL REASONS WHY I SHOULDN’T WRITE ABOUT THE BIBS17 AWARDS OR AT LEAST THIS TOPIC.
people just skim through it, missing crucial points and get the wrong message?
I come across as disrespectful towards blog awards organisers?*
people think I’m wilfully setting the cat among the pigeons in an attempt to get massive views?**
a clear explanation has already been published somewhere and I’ve managed to miss it (likely as I generally live in my own clueless hole)?
even worse, nobody gives a crap because blog awards are by no means the focal point of blogging?!***
worst of all, please God no, people think I’m being churlish due to last year’s awards!
*This post is not a tirade against the BiBs17 awards organisers. I’m not that foolish or rude (bloomng hope not anyway!)
*Given the sheer saturation of parent blogs out there, I’ve got more chance of scoring a date with Chris Hemsworth than getting crazy stats on this post.
***I totally appreciate nobody starts blogging to win awards (and many people question their existence anyway). So maybe none of this is a big deal and it could all just read like a mountain-out-of-a-molehill whinge-fest!
However, at the time of writing I honestly don’t know the answer to the question in the title and frankly I can’t not write about something that is on my mind just because it may go down the wrong way with people…what’s the point of blogging then? Here’s the thing:
THE OTHER DAY, I WAS DOING MY LINKY READING, COMMENTING AND SHARING AND ALL THAT JAZZ.
One of the posts I read was by the poetic genius Rhyming with Wine: her absolutely brilliant poem about blog stats that describes the utter head wrecking preoccupation with views/rankings/SEO/social media 24/7 activity /yada yada that ends up eating away at many a blogger’s energy and self confidence like some awful disease. There is also another brilliant post on a similar topic – which you will not regret reading it is SO ridiculously funny – by a Life Just Ordinary.
As another good blog friend of mine – whom I won’t name without her approval which I can’t get right now as she has FAR better things to do on her Saturday night than write blog posts about blogging – put it (better than I ever could):
Everyone is so busy thinking that they have to stumble, link, pin, tweet, YouTube and Instagram that they forget why they started blogging in the first place – to connect with others and share stories.
I’m one of those people!!
Ok I know the phrase ‘why they started blogging in the first place’ is highly subjective and I’ll address that shortly.
Anyway, I loved Dawn’s stats post so much – and just as strongly disagreed with her claim that she still hasn’t ‘found her voice’ – that I commented I was voting for her in the writer category of the BiBs17 awards. It’s never an easy decision when they are so many über talented wordsmiths out there but I’d decided this about a month ago based on loving her work for some time. Cue much expression of love and thanks from Dawn. Later in the evening, I popped onto the BiBs site so that I could start casting my votes for everyone I had in mind. I stared at the screen confused, thinking I must be mistaken.
THERE WAS NO WRITER CATEGORY IN THIS YEAR’S BRILLIANCE IN BLOGGING AWARDS! YES AN EVENT THAT CELEBRATES AND HONOURS BLOGGERS’ WORK HAD LEFT OUT AN AWARD THAT CELEBRATES AND HONOURS THE VERY WRITING OF BLOGS!
I was totally surprised, felt bad for Dawn and frankly felt like a plonker for my public promise to her earlier on. I couldn’t help ponder over what I see as the puzzling removal of the writer award from this year’s BiBs17 categories.
OBVIOUSLY THE ORGANISERS KNOW THEIR REASON FOR REMOVING THIS CATEGORY AND SEE IT AS A JUSTIFIABLE ONE.
Perhaps it was felt the Readers’ Choice somehow covers it? I’m not sure I see how to be honest as surely that is an overall all-encompassing category. Surely removing a specific category that honours the actual writing on blogs is counterintuitive? Perhaps it’s nothing other than logistical/budgetary reasons? Only x amount of money for prizes or whatever. I don’t know.
Anyway, without ANY disrespect intended towards the BiBs17 Awards organisers – I have several questions.
IS THE ABSENCE OF A CATEGORY THAT RECOGNISES THE WORDS ON THE SCREEN, A REFLECTION OF WHAT BLOGGING HAS BECOME?
As many people said in relation to 25 Things That Annoy The Hell out Bloggers, there are massive blogs out there with eye watering daily visitor numbers and a social media reach beyond even most brands’ wildest dreams…that are poorly written. Some of us will see those sites as the very embodiment of successful blogs. Others will see the formulaic content and linguistic errors as hardly an example of a successful blog.
The very astute Katie of Squirmy Popple says in this excellent post:
The bloggers with the biggest following and the most influence [are] the ones who are good at all the other stuff that goes along with blogging – social media, networking, branding and self-promotion.
Now, this post is in no way trying to belittle such blogs. If you have the resources to hire people or are switched on enough, social media savvy enough, hard working enough and whatever else enough to build a mahoosive blog, well bloody done. I can’t do it as I just don’t have the energy level or ability to drag myself away from Mad Men Netflix binges for long enough (yes I do know about laws of attraction and that famous Henry Ford quote about self belief so if I tell myself I can’t build a massive blog, well…then I probably never will).
Ok, now remember the line about going back to the reason we started blogging in the first place?
OBVIOUSLY, THERE ARE A MYRIAD OF DIFFERENT REASONS WHY PEOPLE BLOG AND NOBODY SHOULD BE PUNISHED OR JUDGED FOR THEIR REASONS.
My reason for blogging will be different from your reason which might be different to that of Janet over there etc
Many bloggers have the goal of monetisation from the start. High traffic and social media follower numbers will be king to them. Nothing wrong with that. We all need to put food on the table.
There are those who do it for the love of the written word and the reaction their writing receives. They would trade 1000 empty views for just one comment like: “I was meant to write two blog posts this morning but instead I spent three hours binge reading you. Can’t get enough of your blog.”
There are bloggers who get a buzz out of having a positive impact on others, be it through their words or photography. As I’ve said before, if I stopped blogging tomorrow my ‘marriage post‘ is the one I’ll hang my hat on. The immense effect it had will stay with me forever. To Musical M on Your 12th Birthday which I thought would bring me vitriol instead brought me confessions from parents who felt less shit as a result (or at least just as shitty but in good company!) A BLOGGER’S WORDS CAN HELP PEOPLE.
Some of us want to simply document our family/individual memories. A blog provides a structured and logical platform for this, rather than regularly emailing everyone we know or clogging up Facebook.
Of course, there are those bloggers who want share their knowhow: recipe sites, craft blogs, budget advice, IT tips and son on.
Your blog, your prerogative. However, whatever reasons people have for blogging…
…HAS IT NOW BEEN DECIDED WE DON’T NEED TO RECOGNISE THE WRITING PART OF WRITTEN BLOGS?
No blog can exist without words. Are the words on the screen no longer important? And what about the blogs that aren’t heavy on photography or video etc? The ones that are just about the writing? Surely, they’ve been sidelined?
I admit I’m a linguaphile. I studied French and English at uni and when I launched my blog, friends and family said ‘words are your thing Prabs’ (judging by the average length of my posts, they’re a little too much my thing). I even launched #BlogStars (no that’s not a shameless plug…ok a little bit) because I needed to share my excitement at other bloggers’ great wordsmithery. Words DO something to me. Ok, words aren’t everyone’s thing. I get that. My husband doesn’t think language is that important. He’s not the least bit bothered by a poorly written email or a text message filled with errors. For him, it’s more about just getting the message across – and getting it across quickly. (Seriously, how we’re even together is a miracle.) Me? Sloppy incorrect English makes me break out in a rash. Fair enough, not everybody gets hung up on the language of every blog they read, but surely it has to count for something?
DOES IT MAKE THE WRITER AWARD GIVEN TO PREVIOUS WINNERS MEANINGLESS?
No it’s not a Pulitzer or the Victoria Cross for incredible bravery in battle. No I’m not making this about me (my piece of glass isn’t shown off to every Tom, Dick and Harry who comes round but in fact sits discretely in my bedroom) but honestly, I can’t help wonder.
WON’T MINIMISING THE IMPORTANCE OF WRITING, BY GETTING RID OF THE WRITER AWARD, JUST MAKE THE AFOREMENTIONED BLOG DESPAIR WORSE?
I see countless mentions, including when I was compiling that aforementioned Annoying Things post, that for many (most even) bloggers, the writing is the ONLY part of blogging that they enjoy amidst the sheer weight of blogligation, as Dawn brilliantly calls it. No you don’t need an award to make you carry on enjoying writing – that would be slightly bonkers with thousands of bloggers out there but only one writer award – but what message does it send those of us who love the writing aspect? Do you get me?
WHAT DOES THAT ACTION SAY ABOUT THE IMPORTANCE OF LANGUAGE TODAY AND THE FUTURE OF BLOGGING?
Society, as we already know is on a downward ‘dumber and dumber’ spiral. Maybe I’m old and cliched and simply repeating what our parents said and their parents before them but surely the Kardashianised culture, a super power leadera super power leader who can barely string an intelligent sentence together, the narrow minded vile comments on chat threads that erupt on social media are just some of the many symptoms of this dumbing down of intelligence.
It may sound like a tenuous connection but I actually genuinely wonder if eliminating the writer category in a blog awards list is symptomatic of this dumbing down.
OF COURSE THERE IS THE POSSIBILITY THAT IT IS NONE OF THE ABOVE!
Maybe this year there is no writer award because after last year’s #Jeangate incident, they now associate that category with calamitous wardrobe fails and didn’t want to risk it. Rumour has it some saddo squeezed herself into tight white jeans (can’t remember her name). Nobody needs to see that again.
I’M A FINALIST (EEK!) IN THE READER’S CHOICE CATEGORY OF THE BRILLIANCE IN BLOGGING AWARDS.
IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO VOTE FOR ME TO WIN, I’D BE SO GRATEFUL AND HONOURED!
Just click on this THIS LINK and fill in boxes 1, 2 and 13. Super quick and easy!
(Voting closes July 2nd.)
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