A week off

I just gave myself a week off. I haven’t posted on the blog since 30th April. (OK, I know nobody noticed)

Save for one post on my ‘other’ blog last week, I have been deliberately abstaining from blog writing. I did this mainly because I feel that I often saturate my blog with posts, and they become so frequent, that they overwhelm regular readers, and induce alienation in others. I was additionally interested in what else I would do, with the hours that I usually spend writing this blog.

So, what did I do?

I read other blogs. Those that I follow, I refreshed myself on, and commented on recent posts. I read some new ones, and even followed one. I wrote one post on the other blog, as I have mentioned; a ‘worthy’ piece, requiring some research and careful editing. That took a little while. I did some routine housework, and some jobs outside, aided by the improvement in the weather. As it was a Bank Holiday here, we also visited relatives in Hertfordshire, and Julie and I had a day out at the beach with Ollie. I managed to clean all my windows, using my wonderful Karcher Window Vac. (No, they are not paying me.) Then of course, there was the usual 2-3 hours a day walking Ollie over the meadows, and Hoe Rough. Not very exciting, admittedly. To be honest, I did not really feel that I had a lot of extra time. This is strange, considering I normally spend anything up to 10-14 hours a week, writing or preparing blog posts. It is a bit like the situation with money. If you stop spending something on a regular basis, like a magazine subscription, or a membership to something, you never seem to find that money has accumulated anywhere later.

Reading the other blogs was interesting. I went over many who had liked a post, or followed my blog, and read them in some detail. As well as the usual ‘buy my book’ efforts, so many are depressingly religious. Every other line is ‘God this’, or Jesus that’, banging on about how they feel that they speak to ‘The Lord’. I will state here, for the record. Please do not send me religious posts, or contacts to religious blogs. I am really not interested.

Now I have got that off my chest, what about the other ones, those that are not primarily religious? Photos, Graphics, Pictures. That is what they all mostly contain. Nothing wrong with that. I know that I don’t add pictures (deliberately) but they often spruce up a post, and on occasion, can be better than the words. I noted how many blogs revolve around failed relationships, and how they are blogging to recover. I hope it works for them. Then there are the travellers. It is all a bit ‘look at me, see where I have been, and how well-travelled I am. Oh, and here is a photo of me in that fantastic place, just to make sure you know I was there’. Some sour grapes from me perhaps, but I often read on, only to discover that they are actually selling holidays, travel experiences, or empowerment plans. Selling again. The Blog as Commerce.

I checked out a lot of political comment blogs, and found some to be amazingly well-informed, meticulously researched and credited, and actually entertaining to read. That was a nice surprise. Then there are the deliberately controversial, and downright offensive blogs. I found many amusing, some relevant, others pointless. The problem with all of them, is that they are a one-trick pony, going on and on about a subject every time they post, apparently seeking to find someone to offend. It gets tiring after a while. I looked into cartoon blogs, amusing ones especially. Many are of such quality, it is frankly baffling that they have not found a regular outlet in the mainstream.

After all this, I came to much the same conclusions as before. Too many are selling. A few are patently mad. Graphics and photos get an audience. Liking and following thousands of other blogs gets you huge viewing figures, and (presumably) potential income. Some people must blog for at least eight hours a day, on a full-time basis, to produce such huge outputs. I do not fit into any of those categories.

In the ‘pond’ that is Blogging, I am merely frog spawn amid the minnows, toads, and huge goldfish. I am happy enough though.

15 thoughts on “A week off

  1. Hello beetleypete (I guess if I read your blog more I may discover what that name is all about), I came across your blog because I was looking for the driest county in England – and your post about Norfolk (and the rain) came up. It amused me so I thought I’d read some more. This is an interesting discussion; from one who has only recently started blogging in earnest (did one several years ago whilst teaching, but stopped when I stopped teaching) and who is a photographer and a traveller!! //‘look at me, see where I have been, and how well-travelled I am// but hopefully not one of those sort 😉 and in no way religious!!

    I’m just getting used to the ‘followers’ and the few commenters (often pingbacks to their own site – sometimes I look in case I like it, more often it hits the bin). I don’t object to pingbacks, but it would be nice if they made some comment about my post instead of just linking to me. Anyway this is getting far too long, apologies for rambling, but I just wanted you to know that sometimes normal folk do drop by 🙂
    Jude

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    1. Hello Jude,
      (I resisted the obvious!)
      I am really happy to ‘attract’ a new blogger, as I am still one myself. Despite numerous (probably too many) posts I am still under a year at the keyboard. You should have read the ‘About’ page (always worth a look on anyone’s blog) and you would see that my name is Pete (Johnson) and I live in a village in Norfolk called Beetley, hence the unimaginative ‘beetleypete’. This is where I retired to last year, after 60 years in Central London (and some suburbs). I have another blog too, also new, and very political, called ‘redflagflying’. That gets a couple of hits a day, and is of little interest to most people.
      I have quite a lot of followers, but in reality, about 12 ‘real followers’, those who actually read and comment all the time. The rest are just trying to sell stuff, promote religion, and swell numbers.
      Please come back now and then, read some of the ‘old’ stuff, and feel free to comment, good or bad, are always welcome. Enjoy your blogging, it may well (and can) change your life for the better.
      Regards to you, from a very wet Norfolk. Pete. x

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      1. By the way, I was once really into photography (with real film) and had a Canon T90, Canon A1, Canon T70, lots of other bodies, as well as various compacts (Olympus XA1 XA2 etc,) and oodles of lenses. I have settled on a Fuji S5 Pro now (Nikon D200 clone) and one lens. Not taking so many photos, as disenchanted with digital. Thought I would chuck that into the mix! x

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        1. And again! Just out of interest, ‘The driest county in England’ is my most frequent Internet search. A lot of people must be looking to live somewhere drier. x

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      2. Thanks Pete. I do read the ABOUT to see if I actually want to follow a blog – not interested in religious fanatics either, or Moms and baking, but in this instance I commented first and then read the other stuff! Not like me at all. So how’s life in Norfolk? We’ve considered moving there, but I’m worried it might be TOO flat. I like flat for walking, but love hills and mountains as views. Dilemma!
        Jude

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  2. I like your frogspawn blog Pete, it feels safe, comforting and real. No small print, no catch…just you writing what you know…because you can and you want to…not because you feel like you NEED people to read it or follow. I think regardless of the number of followers you will always have your blogging circle, the same people coming back and commenting etc – the loyal ones- while others (Ive noticed with mine anyway) just follow for the sake of it it seems and you never hear from them again.

    Btw for you to follow someone…i nearly fell off my seat! Who is this wordsmith that has caught your attention? xB

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    1. I must confess to feeling quite satisfied with my blogging lot at the moment, I think that I have finally relaxed into it, and no longer concern myself with followers, and stats. If you look at the new list on the bottom right of my page, you will see that I now follow as many as 13 other blogs! (including you of course.) I am spreading my wings B.
      As ever, Pete. X

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  3. You were missed, Pete. I was about to email you the other day but then I saw your comment to my latest post and figured you’re just taking a break. As someone who blogs once, maybe twice a month, I have to say that I think that’s enough. One of the bloggers I follow posts about 3 blogs every single day, and it’s really hard to keep up with him. I enjoy his posts but it’s exhausting keeping up. This invariably means that I simply will not like and comment on each post. As recently discussed, less is more x

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    1. Thanks A. Wise words. Sometimes, I just can’t help myself! Like a naughty boy in a sweet shop! I have no doubt I will be slowing down now, as I think the summer will be taking up more of my time. X

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  4. I was beginning to worry, but then I realised how easy it is to go a week without blogging. Glad you posted today though as I had missed our insights; they never fail to make me smile.

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    1. Thanks Eddy. It did feel a bit like ‘blogging cold turkey’ but I believe that it was a good experiment. I am no longer so ‘impressed’ by many other blogs, and will be staying small and happy. They are still trying to sell me stuff though; climbing my blogging walls like the Zulus at Rorke’s Drift. Relentless bastards! Cheers mate, Pete.

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  5. Haha, I love your “Please do not send me religious posts” warning. I’m equally uninterested in those types. I followed a few early on but have since un-followed because I’m tired of seeing them in my reader. Why do people have to mix religion with recovery or grief? Don’t they know they’re only preaching to the choir when they do? Maybe that’s the point. Anyway, it’s nice to take a break from blogging every now and then. It’s also nice to have you back. You were missed! x

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    1. Can you believe it? I open my e mails this morning, and I have three ‘likes and follows’ from pyramid blogging firms, all trying to ‘increase my traffic’!
      Thanks very much for your comment, it is always nice to see you here, and to note that things are improving for you too. Pete. x

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