The Common Question on Blogging: Profession or Pastime?

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Do you consider yourself a “professional” blogger? Why or why not? What does that mean to you?

Many define the act of being a professional as “one who receives payment for the work they produce”, but the definition, according to Google, our lovely and highly-reliable search engine, defines “blogging” as “having or showing the skill appropriate to a professional person; competent or skillful”. I don’t believe that you have to receive your primary source of income from something in order to be leaning more toward profession. Am I skillful? I would like to think so. I’ve been told I’m skillful, and I do consider myself a jack of many trades. I would also go as far as to say that I invest a tremendous chunk of my time and energy toward this particular journey in my life, so I personally do consider my writing and blogging as somewhat of a profession. I feel that, in an idealistic world, there’d be about 10 extra hours each day for me to put forth toward this long-term project and that I would bring in at least some pocket change when I’ve fully established myself, but I know and accept the fact that building that kind of literary empire and being able to create a community among my readers is easier said than done and will take plenty more years to establish. I am in no rush to develop my skills and expand my audience to a more diverse range, nor am I discouraged by the bumps I’ve run into along the way. Writing takes time and patience, just like many of the things we’ve learned to do. Learning a language takes time, riding a bike takes practice. Many of the abilities we possess today were not “second nature” from the start, and I believe that blogging is no different. It takes passion, determination, and the ability to accept failure. Yes, there will be failure at times. In the beginning of this journey, I couldn’t help feeling discouraged by the lack of an audience. I felt like I was writing in an empty room. No feedback. It was me, myself, and I. But I’ve become more skillful at exhibiting my work, about my marketing my abilities, and about growing what I believe to be a little sub-community within the blogging community. I probably spend about 5-6 hours a day working toward improving my writing and my blog, whether through editing, marketing, sharing, or interacting. Even though I consider myself a professional when it comes to my work, I consider this also to be a major pastime. I believe that my love for creating and exploring has brought me to writing and that desire has kept me going strong from the founding of my blog to its current state. I don’t see this as a struggle or a chore. It’s an effective exploration of myself, and regardless of whether I define it as a profession or a pastime, it’s a major chunk of who I am today and the milestones I hope to reach in my future.

How do you define yourself as a blogger?

Leave a comment below!

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6 responses to “The Common Question on Blogging: Profession or Pastime?

  1. Really good read, keep up the good work Amanda! πŸ™‚

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  2. I love this post because I can totally relate! I feel like you’ve echoed everything I feel and the things I’ve heard. I too have been told that I’m a great writer, that I should pursue writing and write books, etc. I started blogging because I decided to go natural (not putting chemicals relaxers, perms, etc in my hair) and I wanted to blog about my experience with the hopes of helping or inspiring others. I too dealt with the tumble weeds of no responses, no comments, no likes on several of my posts. It can be discouraging but I had told myself from the get go that I was doing this for me because it was my journey. Anyhoo, writing does take time and patience and to answer your question I’m not sure I’d consider myself a professional blogger because I don’t feel I write regularly enough to be considered as such. I’m not giving up and I will continue to write. Thank you so much for posting this, I feel like I’ve found a kindred spirit in you! πŸ™‚

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    • No, thank you for your response! It seems to me like you fully grasp the extent of this feeling, that is shared! It’s always nice to meet someone who understands the struggles and triumphs you go through personally. Thank you for your input and for contributing to the conversation πŸ™‚ -Mandy

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  3. You are very welcome! It takes courage to put ourselves out there. My hair journey blog is out there for all to read on FB and Twitter, but I also have another blog out there that’s more about my personal feelings and experiences (it’s called She Writes) and that is only on Twitter and Tumblr. I have to let go of my fear and just put it out there. I’m never going to apologize for my personal feelings or thoughts regarding the things I write about, so I need to JUST DO IT! Thanks again for this post Mandy. πŸ™‚

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  4. Great post!! And family members who scoff at you really hurt.

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