As we fall back into our September routine here at the cottage, I remembered that I wanted to thank all of you for your continued support for this blog and podcast. So much has happened since September 2016 that I don’t really know what to say other than thank you. Thank you for your interactions, support and for the lists and nominations. I did want to explore the idea of awards and nominations, as the meaning can sometimes get overlooked as we get caught up in it.
As bloggers sometimes it can feel like you are talking or sometimes, screaming into the void. The one thing that swings it back around is when conversations happen. It becomes less like a monologue and more about community and discussion. Hearing the other side of the conversation is so important to me. I love the comments on social media, the laughing on Instagram and the emails that pop out of podcast episodes. The community and support that lies within the craft and gardening world just floors me each and every time. From when you share my content online, introduce me to your favourite yarn, pattern and podcasters, I learn from you and I do write for you.
A Personal Space
This blog has always been a personal space for me to explore, learn and try new things. I’ve had knitting disasters, gardening mishaps but I’ve also had surprising successes that I would love for you to try too. This is a place, not for content marketing and showing you all the best yarns and things to buy but to celebrate what is fantastic in our communities. What’s working and what isn’t. Somewhere to have a discussion on it. To tease out the reasons behind the things that we love and loathe. To get to know those who bring about the change in our industry.
Sometimes though it can all be a bit much. Maintaining a blog takes time, practice and patience. The bar for craft and gardening blogging seems to keep moving higher and higher. Breathtaking images, beautiful social accounts, updates and content plans are just some of the ways that blogging can get you down. Thoughts like ‘this post isn’t up to scratch, should it see the light of day?’ ‘Should I use this image or that?’ ‘Can I post two days in a row?’ can really sink in deep and wear you down.
Then you also have the comparison trap of other bloggers in your industry. Am I different enough? How does my blog compare to theirs? How do you compete with larger audiences and with people who seem to have it all together and much better than you do? When you blog alone there isn’t anything or anyone to prevent you from going into the rabbit hole of your own head. Which is why I usually find awards/judging stressful but last year I had an absolute blast with Evin OK, Carol Feller, Aideen Fallon and many, many more bloggers than I can name at the V by Very Blog Awards in Dublin. I made friends and I was genuinely shocked at how supportive this community was!
Do Awards Make a Difference?
Some will say yes and some will say no but my take on it is personal. When you nominate a blog or podcast you have no idea just how much it means to the creator. Last year I was brand new, not even a year old. I hadn’t settled on a theme and I wasn’t quite sure what I wanted to be. Yet you still nominated me, you all pushed me to be better, to hear from me, help me with images and what you wanted to see more of and mostly that you enjoyed following along on my journey. Those awards and lists give you an uplift and sometimes it can be the only light during dark times. Right the way from the biggest awards of the year to those smaller, niche nominated lists and awards, each time they come your way they mean that others are listening, reading, interacting and that they care about you and your content.
The worst thing about blogging is the deafening silence that can happen but the best thing is you. Your thoughts and comments, your presence and being part of the community. I never want this space to be a monologue. From the bottom of my heart, Thank You for sharing, nominating and choosing to join in one hell of a journey.
Now, did I happen to mention there are some wonderful other blogs that have been longlisted in this year’s Blog Awards please go and check them out:
For a full list and other non-craft categories head on over to Blogawardsireland.com.
A giant woolly hug from me to all of you and let’s catch up over a cuppa, I’ll be hanging about on Insta later tonight.
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