I can’t believe that I’ve been blogging for a whole year. In one year of blogging, I’ve written 63 posts (including this one), and gotten over 26.5k views on them. It’s actually been a pretty good ride! Some months, I’ve gotten too much traffic. Some months have had abysmally low traffic. But more than anything, I’ve found a happy medium by using my one year of blogging to build links and gain search traffic. This is actually pretty nice, because now even if I ignore my blog for a month, I’ll get around 200 views. And if I build more links, it could be even more.
But more than anything, in one year of blogging, I’ve learned that writing can be incredibly frustrating. I already knew that, of course — but it’s another thing to run a publication where you’re the sole contributor. I’ve written for many larger publications in the past, and even ran my own publication for a while in the video game industry. But fronting a publication — even one as low stakes as a blog, can make you feel beholden to it. Nobody else will be writing posts, so if you don’t, the blog will stay dormant.
Not that it ultimately takes much money to run a blog aside for hosting and domain costs (along with blood, sweat and tears). But it does take the type of commitment that I’ve only previously given to my job and my girlfriend. But now that I’m in one year of blogging, I figure that I might as well continue. While I still haven’t settled on any type of niche (and am not sure if I will) it’s a really good outlet for me to write and share my thoughts publicly.
This might not seem very important, but if you’re a writer who is working in an adjacent field (offsite SEO management) it really helps to have a place to write and publish. While I do have a graphic novel coming out next year, the vast majority of the script work was done on it several years ago. Although I’ve been managing the production of that quite intently, one year of blogging has allowed me to write on things totally unrelated to my upcoming book. And most importantly, I’ve been able to produce new articles and thoughts for people to read directly. In a way, this is almost more important than a book, as for me, writing is communicating as opposed to a form of self-expression.
For me, one year of blogging represents taking my communication skills to the next level. No longer are my thoughts filtered through the confines of video game or technology articles. Now, I can write whatever I want, whenever I want. And I have a platform for that. It may not be a huge platform that gets a ton of attention, but its a platform nevertheless. And knowing that the only person that can take that away from me is myself has been the greatest achievement of one year of blogging.
Ultimately, one year of blogging has allowed me to communicate online on my own terms. Not through the use of social media, where arguments and toxicity is abound, but through my own platform that I own (or at least rent). For me, that’s the biggest lesson to take away from one year of blogging. Control the space where you choose to communicate; otherwise the terms of communication will be set for you.