Monday, April 10, 2017

How to use a Blog, Part 1: The Personal Blog

There are so many blog around the world today - at the time of this posting, BlogPulse had identified and tracked 168,689,982 individual blogs - that its obvious how popular and pervasive they have become in such a short span of time.  But what are all these blogs talking about?  They can't all be TMZ gossip or Cranky-pants complaints, can they?


Not even close.  

Blogs and bloggers are using this method to communicate about everything, from the personal to the professional.  Some blogs manage to blur the lines between the two, often mixing personal stories with professional news.  In the same way, your blog can serve many purposes, or just the one you choose.

The Personal / Diary Type
Many people use blogs like they would use a diary or journal - to document events, activities, hobbies, like and dislikes, and general on-goings in their life.  The desire to communicate how your day went is a common denominator in humankind, and throughout history people have found interesting ways of doing so.  From scrapbooks to photo albums, people have always found a way to showcase their mundane in a way that allows everyone to see its beauty.  Blogs are a simple, fast way of continuing this tradition.

If you send group emails, you can find a personal blog useful.  If you send Christmas cards to family, you can find such a blog handy.  If you a part of groups, social circles, hobby classes, craft buddies or belong to school or church groups, this might be 'write' up your alley.  Blogs like this come in handy, as you can blog as often or as little of you’d like, and readers can visit when they are ready for new information.  And best of all, your friends and family can respond almost instantaneously with comments or replies.  Much faster than waiting for a card in the mail!

Personal blogs can become just that: personal.  PenMachine, written by Derek K Miller became something of a touchstone as he chronicled his life dealing with Cancer.  The Vancouver-based writer wrote of his life and dreams as he took readers on his emotional rollercoaster.  Derek had his family post his final post on may 4th 2011, and it still remains a very tough read to get through. 

RIP Derek Miller


A word of caution: 
Blogs last forever, or at least a really long time.  Don't post anything that might get you into trouble later in life: embarrassing photos, cruel words, perhaps a mistaken word or two.  Be cautious, and be careful what you publish.