I cannot believe it’s my blog birthday.
Mummascribbles is one whole year old.
It was one year ago that I was feeling like I needed to write was I feeling down. Where I felt like I needed to have a place that I could go to when I needed to get something off my chest.
Because that’s why I started.
My first ever post, “Like the old days”, was me reflecting on a day I spent with Zachary. It was a day that reminded me of my maternity leave and the part time working. A time before full time work came along and stole those precious days that I had with him. It was a moment that I felt sad, bereft for how life used to be and I needed to get those thoughts and words out of my head. That’s how Mummascribbles came to life.
Did I think I would still be here writing a whole year later?
I’d tried blogging before with little success but suddenly I had something to write about. Suddenly I had an expertise in something and I could share that with the world.
Do I look back at those first posts in horror?
Absolutely! Have you seen some of those early posts? They are a bit pants!
Do I look back on that first logo that I ‘designed’ (if that’s what you can call it), and think it was awful?
Do I regret any of it?
Over the past year I have written 233 posts! Wowsers!
I have been sent on holiday with Eurocamp for a blogger review.
I set up a linky that got so popular, I had to get co-hosts and it now receives somewhere between 160-170 links every single week.
I have become an official Your Baby Club blogger. (go register if you haven’t already!)
I have received my first ever sponsored post.
I am sitting at number 509 in the Tots100 chart. Out of around 8000 bloggers, I am creeping ever so close to the top 500.
I have been to my first ever blogging conference for which I was sponsored by a company called Kidster to attend. I had people coming up to me saying, “you’re Mummascribbles aren’t you?”. I felt completely famous!
I have met such a wonderful group of fellow bloggers who I have grown to know and love and some of whom I have now been fortunate enough to meet in real life.
Last month, I officially registered as self employed. So not only am I an event manager, I am a also a self employed blogger. Mummascribbles is a registered company.
A year ago, did I see any of that happening?
And you know what? It leaves me feeling a little bit emotional when I look at how far I’ve come.
I have written posts that have made people cry.
I have written posts that have made people laugh,
I have written posts that have helped people.
I have written posts that have made people click on a button and leave me a comment. Back when I started, there weren’t many comments and if there was one, it made me so happy. Receiving comments still makes me feel that way now. That person has read my post and enjoyed it enough to write to me.
So what have I learnt from a year of blogging?
Writing regularly improves your writing
Fact! Like I say, I look back in horror at those early posts! I mean they aren’t that bad but compared to what I write now they are. Writing posts several times a week, even if they are review posts, really allows you to hone in on your skills. You start to learn your own style of writing. You start to learn the types of posts that really get your audience going. You start to write better, clearer posts that you read back and think, ok, I’m actually pretty good at this.
Commenting gets you everywhere!
Seriously, if you want to get readers to your blog, you HAVE to comment on others. I have read so many blog posts that have said exactly the same thing and it was again reiterated at the conference I attended. Commenting is one of the most important things that you can do to get people back to your blog.
Linky’s are another important thing for blog traffic. Join in, comment on as many other posts linked up as you can and if you fancy it, start your own!
There is no point in not being yourself. Don’t think that you have to write a certain way. Don’t think you have to write about a certain topic to succeed. Write whatever you want and write it in your voice. If you accept sponsored posts, edit them so they are still in your voice. Just be you and no-one else. People will much prefer your blog/writing if you stay true to you.
You need to be a social media guru!
I was already a bit of a social media addict but goodness have I discovered that I was a mere beginner. Facebook pages, Twitter pages, Instagram, Google+, YouTube. And now there’s Periscope (which I still have no ruddy idea about!). You HAVE to be social with your followers and your readers. You HAVE to interact as much as possible. With a full time job, a toddler and an other half that moans at me for being on my phone too much, I do pretty well, but I could do so much better with my social media interaction!
Your thumb will hurt if you constantly use your phone to blog!
I have iPhone thumb because I do most of my blogging on my phone!
You will never see a day trip or photo opportunity in the same way!
You’ll be out at a theme park and you immediately think, oh that would make a good blog post and you will take 20 of the same photo to make sure you get the best one for that post! My poor child has had so many ‘oh just do that again’ moments it’s unreal!
You will panic when there’s an upcoming holiday!
It’s been three weeks since we’ve been back from our hols and I’ve been playing catch up the whole time! A week away means coming back to a load of comments, a load of emails and a load of blog posts that you want/need to write! I still have one day trip post from our Eurocamp holiday that is sitting in my drafts waiting for me to add photos!
You will get to know some seriously amazing people
I feel so so lucky to have integrated myself into an amazing circle of bloggers. When I was able to give them all massive hugs at BritMums, go out to dinner with them and just generally hang around with them, it felt like being the popular kid at school π
You will read the most amazing pieces of writing ever!
Bloggers post from their hearts. They write about such personal things. They might be wonderful things, they might be tragic stories. They share love and they share heartbreak. They share happiness and they share loss. I may have made people cry with my posts but not as much as I have been made to cry reading others.
You will want the best technology
Like I say, I do most of my blogging on my phone. Sometimes I use the work computer and sometimes the home computer. The home computer is the other half’s and it’s not very good for what I need. Therefore I want an iMac 😁
I use my iPhone for all of my photos. It’s fine, it does the job, but I want a proper camera that takes amazing photos.
That your other half might leave you
Although I’ve been told this is less for the blogging and more because I’m getting old 😁Though he did just say he might stick around longer if he gets his PC back (see, I need that iMac!).
And there we have it. One year on, little old mummascribbles is going stronger than ever. The most important thing I tell myself is to enjoy it. No matter how far I come, no matter how many sponsored posts and reviews I might get, just enjoy it because at the end of the day, it is my hobby. I might work at it during any spare hour that I have, but it is a hobby. A hobby that I absolutely love.
Happy birthday to me 😁