Blogging Mysteries

I’ve been blogging for a little over six months, now, and I’m still a little mystified by the whole thing. Every week I find a new type of statistic or ranking that’s touted as the next big thing, or hear about another blogger going viral. Someday I’ll have to worry about filing taxes with money from sponsored posts, or, horror of horrors, figuring out SEO. As is, about once I week, I go “Mooorgaaaaan, how do I…” for some simple task. Blogging is hard, my friends, and today, I’m letting off a little steam.

Blogging Mysteries

After a few months, there are some things I just can't understand about blogging.

SEO

Google and I have a strained relationship right now. I’m not considering leaving for Bing or anything, but I’ve been on the map for almost eight months at this point, and Googling “Living Between the Lines blog megan schaefer” pulls up a bunch of social media hits, but no link to my actual blog. Come on, Google, what’s it gonna take? I just checked – not even “livingbetweenthelines.com” brings up with website. That will never make sense to me. I get the basic idea of search engines: robots crawl the web and index what they find with keywords. But you’d think if I can find any LBTL social media post I want, Googlebots would have made it onto the site itself eventually.

Pinterest

What a fickle beast. Sometimes I’ll pin something I think is gold, and six repins and a like later, it’s dead. Another time, I’ll idly pin a random body image from a post, and it’ll go nuts. What does Pinterest want from me? Maybe it’s just a lack of experience, though. I have a confession – I didn’t use Pinterest until I started blogging. I made an account about five years ago, pinned two recipes, and disappeared. Once I started blogging, I knew I had to get into Pinterest, but I still can’t quite get the hang of it.

Macarons

This is not what you were expecting for this list, was it? But honestly! Macarons (which I have been reliably informed are NOT the same as macaroons) are everywhere! And sure, they’re pretty. I’ve never seen so much pastel-colored food in my life. And maybe this is just because I’ve never had one, but they don’t look that tasty. They look like tiny colorful Oreos without chocolate or the joy of Oreo cream, and I can’t shake the feeling that any cookie that pretty has somehow skimped on flavor. Yet, every flat lay photo I see has some macarons scattered in the corner. I’m putting my foot down, blogging world: we’re done with macarons. They’ve had their moment, and now they can be over.

Look at these monsters. Why don't they turn brown when baked, as a cookie should? Photo courtesy of Bryan Ochella.

Look at these monsters. Why don’t they turn brown when baked, as a cookie should? Photo courtesy of Bryan Ochella.

Hyper-Specific Niches

I get that everyone needs a place to call home, a community and a core audience that they can depend on. But some blogs are so, so, so specific. Let’s say someone launches a whole blog about 10-minute-meals featuring quinoa. How many can there possibly be? How do you constantly come up with quick quinoa meals? Do you make a bunch of quick-noa meals at once, or do you literally cook with quinoa for dinner twice a week to post? Are you concerned about your effect on the world’s quinoa supply? Does your family still love you, or have they literally become quinoa? I have so many questions, guys. So many.

Brush Fonts

Okay, on the surface, yes, I get this. Brush fonts are cool looking. They’re beautiful. They mix elegant script fonts with genuine handwritten ones. But it seems like every blog banner, Pinterest image, and group button is in a brush font these days. And I always assumed it was the SAME brush font, because they’re identical. But a little research into acquiring one reveals that there are hundreds of them, and people are paying hundreds for them. I get that buying high-quality fonts is good and it means they usually come with a lot of options, but things are getting out of hand.

DIY Posts

This might seem like a dumb thing not to understand. And I do, for the most part. But at what point does something become DIY-worthy? I’m in the process of sanding down and repainting a piece of furniture. I learned everything I needed to about the process in a five-minute conversation with a Walmart worker who bore an alarming resemblance to Morgan Freeman. Could I conceivably write a post that goes like this:

  1. Find some furniture you want to make a different color.
  2. Sand the furniture.
  3. Prime the furniture.
  4. Paint the furniture your desired color.
  5. Use the furniture for whatever you bought it for.

And call that a decent blog post? Would I be putting Not Morgan Freeman’s job in danger if I did? I’ve just seen a lot of really unoriginal DIY posts in my time as a blogger, and wondered “Did someone really need your help to do that?” My other question is… Are recipes technically DIY posts? Because I definitely filed the one recipe on my blog as DIY.

Posting Schedules

Maybe I’m just super disorganized, and bad at posting. Actually, I’m definitely super disorganized and bad at posting. But there are people who have their blog posts planned and scheduledĀ weeks or evenĀ months in advance! I have vague ideas that I will implement sometime during the back-to-school frenzy, but beyond that, I’m just writing what comes to mind. This is something I think I could get into. Not the months-in-advance part, of course. But having a more solid plan for blogging? Sign me up. As you might have noticed through this post, I spend a lot of my blogging time wondering what, exactly, I’m supposed to do.

How does anyone schedule their blog posts months in advance?

How does anyone schedule their blog posts months in advance?

I think that’s enough complaining for one day, though. Do I hate you if you understand any of these things? Yes. Of course not. I know that I have a lot to learn, but I’m also confident that I’ll eventually solve many of these mysteries. Not the macarons, though.

Fellow bloggers, what blogging mysteries do you struggle with? Nonbloggers, is there anything about the blogs you read or bloggers you follow you don’t get?

  • I schedule. I post thrice a week, so at the end of a month I grab a lot of ‘blog post ideas’ posts and sit down and fill them into the days of the month so i know what to do later on.