Successful Blogging: Never Give Up

This article is just as much self-affirmation as it is advice. I may be writing articles on successful blogging but that certainly doesn’t mean my blog, Creative Twilight, is as successful as I’d like it to be or as I feel it should be. Most of us go through periods of time where we wonder why we’re even blogging. It seems like nobody is reading, few are engaging and the articles you spent the most time writing, and are the most proud of, fall on deaf ears. The thoughts turn from ways to increase your blog’s popularity to just hanging it up. Nobody is reading it anyway, so why bother putting all this effort into it? Will anyone even notice if my blog just fades to black?

My blog is not extremely popular. I have some very loyal readers and commenters but ultimately it’s a small fish in a very large pond. I have run Creative Twilight for almost six years now. Actually, the 30th of this month will mark its six-year birthday. Through those six years the blog has had many ups and downs. When I began I would see one person visited on a given day and would be ecstatic. That grew to 10 people a day and I was amazed. Now, six years later, the numbers are far better than that but ultimately nowhere near what I’d like to see them be.

Maybe it’s greedy to want more visitors and comments but that’s not how I see it. I blog because I enjoy writing and because I feel I have something worth sharing. I want everyone to see what I’m working on, what I have to say, because I feel it’s of value. That might also sound egotistical but let’s be honest, you must have a bit of an ego to do this, to put what you feel and think out there for everyone to read. However, my goals with my blog aren’t egotistical in nature as my aim is to aid and benefit the community I write for.

This is the stuff that floats around in my head. I cannot count the number of times I have considered shutting down Creative Twilight. Right now that’s the place I’m at in my mind, that consideration forward in my thoughts. Yet every time I emerge from those thoughts with renewed interest and strength to persevere. Had I given up early on when I began blogging and only had a few readers a day then I would never have gotten my blog to where it is now. It may not be where I’d like it to be but progress is a slow thing and if you give up to early then you will never see that progress, the rewards of your efforts, and it could literally be just a day away.

Persevere

I push forward every single time I want to quit. I know my blog can be better, could attract more readers and offer something unique and interesting for everyone. It’s not there yet and so I will continue to become a better author, to establish a community and engage my readers. I will never be content with what I have and always strive for more. My next success is around the corner if only I wait long enough to see it.


When I set to write this article I had a far different idea in mind. It was going to be more informative in nature but this is what came out instead. On account of the topic itself, this seems far more fitting.

Note: This isn’t intended to be a pity party for me. My intent was to say that when you think of giving up, don’t. When you give up because you lack success you never get to see it be successful.

 

Thor

I began playing Warhammer 40K in 2006 and have been an avid player and hobbyist since then. Blood Bowl is also a favorite of mine though I rarely get to play it. Blogging has become my outlet for all those random thoughts regarding the games I play.

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  • Hey, Thor. Sorry to hear you’re having motivational issues. I think all of us have been there; I know I have multiple times.

    I reckon you can see blogging as something you do for yourself, or something you do for the social aspect. I’m glad there’s both sides, because when I’m not feeling one facet of it the other one keeps me going. Writing for the House has been a breath of fresh air for me, and I think your involvement is really valuable.

    Six years eh? Time flies, man.

    • Yeah, the idea was to show that we all go through struggles with this but if you give up too early then you never get to see the success you worked for.

      Yeah, six years, crazy. Some days it feels like ten, some times, one but I enjoy it all the same.

      • Thuloid

        It’s good advice, regardless of field. I appreciate it. Grind–it’s worth it.

  • Hey dude. Hope the blues shifts soon. I enjoy your blog and articles, so hope you keep it all going. Maybe take a short break so you can concentrate on other things till your mojo returns?

    I dont think it egotistical to want to share stuff we play, paint ect ect. We are a niche community and we should be rightly proud of what we create. Its ok to want to share it and have discussions and receive feedback on the stuff we write and show 🙂

    • Thanks.

      Yeah, just a rough go at shit lately all around but that’s the point I was trying to make – stick with it.

      I never really thought of it as egotistical either until I started writing the words and reading them. I thought it might sound a little conceded. Then again, we all are a least a little bit so nobody would notice 😉

      • It’s a healthy mix of conceit and voyeurism. Keep fighting the good fight.

  • Zab

    well i’ve added you to my reading list. Blogger won;t let me ad you to my blog roll right now. I’ll try again later.

    • I appreciate it. What’s your site? I recognize the name but I’m drawing a blank.

      • Loquacious

        he’s the amazingly talented mind behind Almost Perftec.

        • Ah yes. Thanks.

  • You’re well aware I’ve been disappointed with the amount of interaction I get at Wargaming Tradecraft. Facebook is picking this up though, which is nice.

    I’ve never wanted to shut down my site… I’ve accepted how difficult it is to maintain the quality of my posts when life gets crazy though. This has led to periods of inactivity. But I always intend to return. To me, anything that goes up there is worth referencing down the road, so there’s always a use to keeping it running.

    I am, however, WAY behind in reading my feeds. I enjoy your articles when Facebook shows me there’s an update, but I really need to get around to catching up on all the sites I follow. Glad to hear you keep finding a reason to keep it going.

    • I’m with you on the interaction, which you know as we’ve discussed it before.

      If I ever shut down my site it would be for some larger reason, like life not allowing me to blog or something. Every now and then I can’t help but look at how much work I’ve put into my blog, I’ve written 1,038 articles in six years, and wonder why it isn’t more popular. I have plenty to read, not all gems but not trash either, I’ve put endless effort into design and layout as well as ensured it does well with search engines. It’s hard to not feel let down when you see other blogs who obviously put less effort into it doing better than you do. It’s like a kick in the nuts.

      Facebook sucks for staying current. The way it works these days is the less you interact with a person or page the less you see of it. You don’t see everything from everyone, only what FB decides you should see. I’m not a fan but it’s a necessary evil these days.

      • It’s not just how much you interact, but how much anything is interacted with. You post something and it’s shown to a few people. You get some likes/comments, it’s shown to some more, etc.

        My biggest thing is INDEX. I don’t approach my site as a blog and make a point of not referring to it as such. It’s a website. Period. Blogs don’t index, old content becomes lost after a few pages. Make sure there’s some kind of reference back to all your articles.

        • I have just turned on a related posts plugin again in the interests of keeping old stuff alive. Or at least keeping it front of people who will hopefully check it out. I’m interested to see what the end result will be.

          • Related posts are great at keeping your traffic at your site and are also good for SEO.

      • That pisses me off with facebook. The reverse is true too – the other day I visited a page I hadn’t checked for months and the next day I was getting notification emails every time anyone posted on it. I know it’s meant to be convenient but maybe I’m old-fashioned. I find it insidious.

        • The thing is, I can understand their reasoning. They had to adjust for how people used Facebook. People will “Friend ” someone they meet once and end up with over 1000 aleged friends. The stuff they Like goes way beyond that.

          There has to be a mechanism to prevent the stuff that doesn’t really matter from spamming newsfeeds.

          This method also means that pages posting spammy / junk doesn’t bother people. It also shuts down pages that purchase Likes or market contests to people out of their demographic to increase Likes. If your posts only go out to a small number of people until they’re interacted with, having robot Likes or uninterested people Likes increase the chance the posts won’t be Commented or Liked, thereby the posts won’t be shown to more people.

          • Loquacious

            Having paid for likes recently as a one off to see what it did to our business’ feed, it was well worth it for the period of time we did it in. By boosting likes, we were seen by far more of our legitimate customers and interaction spiked. Once the interaction level was up, we didn’t NEED the bots and we dropped that campaign- but getting in front of our customers was well worth the money.

          • So that’s what happened to modbot 🙂

          • Loquacious

            Nah. He is in the corner for being naughty and hoping I will forget and let him out. Too bad for him I am a mom and I don’t forget that sort of thing lightly…

          • But did you pay for Likes from bots or pay for Facebook advertising to reach real humans that would Like your page?

          • It’s hard to say. We got reports about who liked our page and many times the profile that was shared with us wasn’t active or genuine; but those profiles boosted our ability to reach real ones.

          • Was it done through FB or a third party?

          • through Fb

          • Then it was probably hitting legit people with perhaps some bots mixed in. Facebook campaigns are an amazing way to build Likes and have always been super successful when I’ve paid for it. You do get people who just go, “Oh cool” LIKE with little intent of checking it out later. You do also get the bots because bots / fake accounts will Like other stuff too so Facebook has a harder time catching them.

          • Yeah… I see how it makes sense. It just feels jarring when you tell it not to send you notifications, but if you visit a page it seems to override that, and decide for you that yes, you actually do want ten emails a day from the local jobs and internships group. It vexes me. Apple products behave in a similar way. I don’t want machines doing my thinking for me unless they’re going to get it right!

  • You’ve been an inspiration and motivational helper to new bloggers like myself Thor. I always like to remind myself, that if I helped one person, then taking the time to put it online was worth the effort! So there ya go! Helped da greggles.

    • I appreciate it.

    • You’re ‘new’ Greggles? It feels like you’ve always been there, this timeless monument to positivity on the interwebs.

      • I consider myself new to the community, I just jump up and down a lot, yelling how awesome everyones mini’s look.

        (dec 26, 2013 FYN started up). I’m a baby blogger.

        • The Meadow came into being June 2nd, 2014. It’s worked out beyond my wildest expectations.

  • cadianshock

    A thousand times yes. My blog is about 18 months old but I still know exactly what you mean. I find that at those times stepping back a little helps until the lure and joy of the hobby brings you back.

    I also find at those times that ideas for a series of articles come into my head and that usually gets me back on track and writing again. A series can also be more engaging for users and tends to get more comments on my blog, Facebook, Reddit and Twitter.

    One thing that is interesting is that people are so loyal (thank you to all you guys, you know who you are) , I still have the same commenters, perhaps say 10 unique commenters on an article. But its the same 10 even if the article gets shared by BoLS and gets 2,500 views as opposed to 200 views from my normal sources.

    Its never about the numbers, even though sometimes those numbers do make us smile?!

    • Having a loyal readership is great and really what keeps many of us going.

      Nothing wrong with enjoying some positive stats. It might not be the end-all-be-all for most of us but it’s definitely a great indicator that you’re doing something right. Seeing something get more attention than you expected is always great.