The Challenges of Blogging, And How To Overcome Them

A lot of the time blogging is a challenge, even for bloggers who have been blogging for a while. We all blog about different topics and blog for different reasons. But what we have in common as bloggers is sharing stories on our blogs – and so much effort goes into it.

This is the 100th post that I’ve written for this blog, excluding reblogs. Next week marks two years since I’ve started this blog, this blog about Asian cultures and being Asian Australian. It has been a bumpy blogging road and as writer Jeff Goins said, “All things creative are hard. Blogging is just one of many”.

When it's a nice day outside, it's a sign for us to stop blogging, get outdoors and enjoy the finer things in life. Flinders St Station | Weekly Photo Challenge: Signs.

When it’s a nice day outside, it’s a sign for us to stop blogging, get outdoors and enjoy the finer things in life. Flinders St Station | Weekly Photo Challenge: Signs.

Creating Content

There can be days when we simply don’t know what to blog about or don’t feel inspired to blog. Maybe we feel like we’ve run out of stories to fit the theme of our blogs. Blogging about something we don’t often think about tends to get ideas flowing, keeping us motivated. Early this year I felt like I had written all I could about being a cultural outcast and racism, having written a lot about these topics over the previous year. After some thinking, I asked myself: why not look at what it means to be Asian every, single, day?

Blogging takes time. Insightful posts take time to put together. It also takes time to edit, upload and format blog posts. Blogging about culturally sensitive topics doesn’t come easy to me: there’s researching to be done to check out what has been said, and later thoughtful reflection to come up with original, two-sides-of-the-touchy-story points. Having a blogging schedule helps. I set aside Saturday and Sunday nights to write my blog posts, something which introverted me has gotten used to.

And sometimes we struggle to blog regularly because life gets in the way (think work, falling sick, travel). Then again, first we need to live, live in the moment, before we can blog about our stories. If we really are into blogging, sooner or later we’ll make time for it. No excuses.

Chatting With Other Bloggers

Keeping up with other blogs is another side of blogging and it’s challenging following lots of blogs. I space out reading and commenting on the 100-plus blogs I follow during the week, making “blog walking” manageable. Visiting other blogs is a way to get noticed as a blogger and get more subscribers but that’s not why I do that – the more I read other blogs the more I feel inspired to write and feel connected with the WordPress community here.

As I’ve written in the NEMBC Winter 2014 magazine, for many of us blogging isn’t a competition. It isn’t about gaining views and traffic for popularity’s sake. We blog to share, and we comment honestly on blogs without expecting a response in return all the time (though it is nice to get responses to our comments).

Designing Our Blogs

If we’re picky, choosing a blog theme that looks “just right” in our eyes can be difficult. Playing around with different themes and asking ourselves what we want to achieve with our blogs helps. If we don’t want to be bound by limited-customisable blog themes (on Wordress.com) but want to build our own and have more flexibility with our code, we can blog on a paid, self-hosted site. I’ve entertained this idea as the technical bits don’t scare me and I can afford it. Learning CSS I’ve tweaked my custom-upgraded WordPress.com theme to my satisfaction and with no intention of monetising my blog through ads, I can’t see why I should make the move.

Why We Keep Blogging

It is the challenges of blogging that make it rewarding. Blogging challenges us to think outside of the box each time we put up new posts, and in the process we learn to be patient and learn more about what we do, our craft. In my two years of blogging, my words have adopted a more informal tone, reading less and less like an academic textbook – stretching myself as a writer.

This blog has opened doors for me: giving me the chance to speak about being Asian Australian and recently the chance to interview my idol dancing violinist Lindsey Stirling. And blogging has given me the courage to write my first book…which is time consuming…and I’ve made the hard decision to blog less in the coming months. Never saw any of that coming.

But this all doesn’t beat chatting with you. Reading your blogs, I feel like I’ve been to several continents – you all blog so well with your own blogging styles. Keeping up with bloggers all over the world and their blogs, we see more of the world. Interestingly enough, my blog isn’t an expat, travel, lifestyle or food blog. Neither is it a photography, craft nor reviews blog. It doesn’t fit in anywhere, and it’s very humbling to see fellow bloggers commenting on my blog and supporting what I write. I wonder why you do.

Blogging. It’s a journey. A journey where we learn about ourselves and others around us. A journey with surprises along the way.

What are some of the blogging challenges you’ve faced? Or does blogging come easy to you?

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155 thoughts on “The Challenges of Blogging, And How To Overcome Them

    • Love your last line. When we blog, we are actually doing so many things. Getting organised, thinking, re-thinking, editing, researching, reading, observing, chatting and so on. Blogging is always fun. And best of all, we can do it anytime we want and when we feel like it. No pressure.

      Thanks for stopping by, Cotton. I love it when you do.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. This post really truly summarizes the challenges of blogging. I can relate to every single one of you points. As bloggers, we need to constantly draw on our own experiences and reflections. We constantly put us out there and sometimes our readers don’t agree with our thoughts.

    And then there is the writing part of blogging. I find that sometimes the words flow and sometimes I can’t start or formulate a great sentence. Before I started blogging myself, I never realized the amount of time and effort that went into every single post – the pictures, the writing, the editing, and the connecting with other bloggers and readers.

    And congrats on your 100th post and writing a book. How is it going so far? I, myself, have been setting aside some time every month to write about my expat experiences since arriving in Taiwan. I have no idea what will every come of it (maybe it will just be a trip down memory lane for me) but it is very inspiring to look back on it all and realized what it took to get to this point of my life (I sound like I am nearly 100 but I am only in my 30s).

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    • I like how you said that we put ourselves out there, and that requires some level of vulnerability when we write. Obviously every blog is different and has different goals, but I’ve come to appreciate the bloggers who aren’t afraid to pull back the curtain on their personal lives.

      Blogging has also given me a deeper appreciation for those who write (and those who produce original content), and for the hard work that goes into producing free content for us readers to consume. It’s so much easier to consume, and a lot more challenging to produce! 🙂

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      • Vulnerability. We are vulnerable when we are bloggers. Well said. And it’s something that we do free, yes. The best things in life are free 🙂 Another challenge to blogging would be writing in a way, or presenting our work in a way that is easy to consume. Everyone has a different perspective.

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    • You are so right. We need to “draw on our own experiences and reflections”. Once we’ve done that we have to be brave and put them out there. There will always be others who won’t agree with what we blog as they probably have a different perspective, having lived and grown up in a different place or culture.

      There will also be others who feel like we have only covered one side of the story, or haven’t mentioned all the points. To that, I have to say that we don’t have all the answers in the world….and that’s where commentors come in. From what I’ve learned at university writing essays, the narrower the topic we’re writing about, the more detailed analysis wecan bring forth in our words.

      That is so dedicated of you, making time to write about your expat experiences. Just writing it all down with no expectations. Who knows, it might turn into a book someday – and I will gladly line up for it 😉 Sadly I haven’t been working as hard on my book as I’ve liked. Freelance opportunities have been coming my way and work (switching jobs) has been very exhausting. Excuses, excuses. But the time will be right soon, I know it 🙂

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      • Yes, that is one thing I have learned to appreciate since I started blogging – the readers and commenters. I love how everyone has their own take on certain situations and sometimes it is great to see the same topic from another view or angle. I really believe everyone experiences things differently – what I might love might irritate another and vice versa. But as long as we are respectful when expressing ourselves, I think differences in opinion are not only welcomed, but encouraged!

        And thanks for much for your kind words. I have been working a lot on transferring my expat experiences to paper recently and my husband has been really enjoyed reading what I have written so far. He is even disappointed when there is no more to read (and he is even referring to it as ‘the book.’) 🙂

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        • “everyone experiences things differently – what I might love might irritate another and vice versa”. Couldn’t agree with you more there. We all grew up with different beliefs so of course each of us has our own opinion. It’s great to see a lot of bloggers are very respectful of this.

          Your husband is so supportive, very good to hear. I’m sure he’s proud of your blog too 🙂

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  2. You said it all, Mabel. True, blogging is hard work. Planning the posts, making time to read other posts, making sensible comments, they all take effort and time. Sometimes, I have to choose one part of blogging over another just to balance my time. Often, I lag behind in the social aspects of blogging – writing comments, responding to comments, etc. But blogging has brought a lot of good to me – I meet people and friends, and learn from them, among others.

    Keep up your good work here, Mabel, especially when it is most difficult to do.

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    • “Sometimes, I have to choose one part of blogging over another just to balance my time.” I so feel you, Imelda. There are so many aspects of blogging, all very much time consuming, in a good way. Which is why I understand why many bloggers don’t respond to all of the comments they get. Truth be told, I have quite a handful of comments I’ve yet to respond on my older posts; I usually get around to those some days (maybe weeks) after they’ve been posted.

      Thanks very much for supporting, Imelda. Always great to see you drop by, always saying something that makes me think 🙂

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  3. You have definitely captured the problems or challenges of blogging. At the moment “life” is getting in the way of my blogging and I feel guilty about neglecting my blogging as I love sharing my adventures and exploring new places through other peoples blog posts is so exciting.

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    • Thanks, Janaline. Very nice of you to say that. Looking at your blog, it seems like you travel a lot. You have a good excuse to neglect blogging 😉 Take your time. I’m looking forward to reading more of your travels, adventures and escapades soon.

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  4. First of all, congratulations on reaching 100 posts! You’ve reached a milestone that I would love to attain at some point down the road. 🙂

    Oh man, we could all probably write paragraphs and paragraphs about the challenges of blogging. There’s so much that happens in the process, and I like how you captured the different things we experience.

    For me, the biggest challenge is the writing process. It usually takes me 4-6 hours (but not all at once) to get out a post. I tend to find myself going down various rabbit trails, and then I lose track of where I’m actually trying to end up. When this happens, I usually have to rewrite a bunch of it. Sometimes I have a main point, but more often it’s like a collection of ideas.

    Another challenge I face is being consistent with writing. I was able to manage the once per week rhythm for about a month, but then I just needed a break from blogging. It became too much of a burden rather than a joy, so I had to step back for a bit. I’m happy to report that I’m excited about blogging again, although now I’m probably aiming for a two blogs per month rhythm.

    You follow over 100 blogs?! Wow, and I thought my life was tough keeping track of the 15+ bloggers that I follow. Haha.

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    • I actually never thought I’d reach 100 posts. Initially I thought this blog would last six months at most, just me reading back my own words to myself. At one point I kept seeing all these WordPress writing and photo challenges popping up all over the site and decided to check them out. And when I did, I realised that there was such a big blogging community here, that there is most to just blogging than blowing your own trumpet. A lot of the time I look forward to commenting on other blogs more than my own…I know, sounds bad 😀

      Spot on. We could indeed write so much more about blogging challenges. At some point down the track I want to write about blogging commenting, why we blog, blog designs and so much more. Blog fodder right there. Just need to space it all out.

      Hats off to you for being so dedicated with your blog and writing. Quality over quantity. I really enjoy your posts – short, succinct, to-the-point and easy to understand. On topic too. So rest assured that you’re bunching and culling all your thoughts the right way! Two quality blog posts a week sounds very reasonable. I’ve decided to cut down too: aiming for one post three weeks in a row, then a break. We’ll see how it goes.

      Actually, I’m following around 150 blogs, about a third of those which are active = at least one post a month. It really isn’t easy. Keeping up with all of them. Thanks so much for supporting. I really appreciate it when you leave blockbuster comments – or an essay of a comment – when you stop by. You have so much to say (all very insightful thoughts) and you say it all with so much energy 🙂

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      • It’s amazing the things you can accomplish when you decide to be intentional about writing. There are times when I wonder if it’s worth it to keep going…but then I remember that writing is an art that will only improve if we continue to practice and JUST DO IT.

        Even following 50 active blogs is quite the feat! I’m just beginning to discover how large the blogging community is…there are so many creative and thoughtful bloggers out there! Your blog is easy to support because you write so well. I appreciate that you talk about stuff that really gets the brain juices flowing. 🙂

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        • Very insightful comment. I too wonder a lot of the time if it’s worth it to keep going with writing. For instance, maybe I should focus more getting a (miserable) stable job. Then again, I love writing and I feel antsy when I haven’t written anything after a day. And spot on – writing is an art. The more we practice writing and blogging, the more we get to know the writer and blogger in us.

          There are quite a few topics that I’ve written about that are culturally sensitive, and not everyone has warmed to that. Moderating aggressive and accusatory comments is part and parcel of maintaining this blog, something I might want to touch on in the coming weeks.

          As mentioned, looking forward to your next post. Love how you seamlessly weave in your experiences with your points – and in so little words too 🙂

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  5. Congratulations on your 100th post. You summarized pretty damn good the challenges of blogging. Sometimes it takes days to write an article and sometimes the words just flow and I am done after on hour with writing, editing and selecting pictures.

    I also have sometimes the feeling that I run out of material, the feeling that I have written it all about my family and life but then I view everything from a different perspective and get great new ideas.

    Keep on going, I love your blog and look forward every week for another article 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • “pretty damn good”. Never heard you use the word “damn” before, Crazy. Not that I have any objection to swearing, though I don’t use fruitful language myself. I thought you said it with a lot of attitude, that’s all 😀

      I can see that you view things from a different perspective with your blog and writing. Examples would be your father-in-law post and the post about Nathan on vacation in the summer. A lot of people say the best writing, blogging or creative work comes when we are not trying. In our case as writers, that we let the word flow…but at the end of the day I still think hard work will shine through.

      Hope you and your little family are well. Thank you for reading and supporting my blog this past year. Always enjoyed your presence 🙂

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      • “Damn” is a pretty damn good way to describe something. In German we have the same word “verdammt” to curse but also to emphasize certain things 🙂

        I curse sometimes, but that is usually exclusiv for the times when something goes wrong like yesterday painting the wrong area in the kitchen…

        My family is fine though the paper war with the German offices to get all kind of registrations done is pretty nerve wrecking. I havent filed so many forms in my entire life as in the past 3 1/2 weeks…

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        • Always nice to learn swear words in different languages. On the subject of swearing, there are some words I don’t allow on this blog. Which means that sometimes I take time to moderate certain comments by taking out the fruitful word(s). Then there’s always rescuing comments from the Spam folder…so blogging is indeed a lot of work. I think we all work to project a certain image of ourselves on our blogs too.

          I hope the paperwork dies down soon. There has to be some end to it all. No wonder you painted the wrong area in the kitchen (??!!)…maybe you’re feeling very frazzled.

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          • We had to remove the entire old kitchen and now we had to paint everything and in 3 weeks all the cabinets and other stuff is coming and being set up 🙂

            I also try to check if there is any sweaing on my comments but thus far I couldnt find any. My spam folder is full of, … spam.., really these kind of junk spam messages, very rarely I find a comment which got there by accident

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            • Most of the bloggers here on WordPress seem to know how to mind our language. On my blog, the swearing tends to come from non-Wordpress bloggers, just random passer-by readers. I empty my Spam folder once a day. That takes up time too.

              How exciting. New place, new home. It’s nice to see your hard work all coming together. Hope your place is cosy, not too squishy 🙂

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    • Thanks, Iceman. Always great to see you pop by every now and then. Our outlook on blogging can certainly change over time. When I first started blogging, I never thought engaging with other bloggers would be fun. Today that is the complete opposite. One or two years from know, who knows, I might be burnt out from blogging.

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  6. bloggers blog for different reasons. i blog for more selfish ones — basically to chronicle my life’s journey and to remind me of the good times when i’m old and gray. kind of like building my own retirement plan, except that i invest on memories and not on money.

    aside from the obvious fact that i do enjoy what i do. which is why i’ve been doing it for a long time now.

    and, yeah, i agree with what you said about having a life before you can blog. like that quote about standing up to live before sitting down to write. something to that effect. i forgot who said that. hehe.

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    • It can be hard to remember all of our life’s milestones and experiences, but what better way to do it than blogging where we can all read, encourage you and pick you up when you’re down. Haha, it’s like our “retirement plan”. When we look back on our posts, we can see how far we’ve come and what we’ve learnt. Enjoying blogging? I’m sure that motivates a lot of us to blog.

      “standing up to live before sitting down to write”. Love it. Thanks for sharing. Googling it, it appears Henry David Thoreau said it along those lines. I will remember this one.

      Thanks, Jan, for popping by, reading and commenting. You’re really not selfish at all 😀

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, Ray. I always look forward to your essay-like comments here, thought-provoking and always a joy to read. No wonder you are an established writer. Hope you are well, talk soon.

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  7. Congrats on the 100 posts milestone & on such an interesting blog. You’ve highlighted some of the big challenges and the comments have also been interesting.

    One of my biggest challenges is finding the time to write. Another is keeping alive the main topic I started out with- parenting in a bicultural family – now that my son is an adult. I’m finding the photo challenges that I do are usually much more popular than the bicultural stuff, I think because i haven’t been able to build many links with others who blog on that topic.

    Anyway I love the wordpress community, especially those that blog for the love of it rather than the cash. Following other blogs is such a pleasure and I too feel like I’m traveling the world through the blogosphere. Thanks for being part of it Mabel.

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    • Keeping on topic is always challenging, and I’ve found that to be a challenge too. I’ve incorporate the photo challenges into my posts this year. Kind of scary since the challenges do influence what I write each week and it has eerily worked well – and it’s a source of inspiration. Here at WordPress, it’s very easy-going and there are so many blog that blog about everything under the sun – think “life” and everything-in-between kind of blogs.

      I’ve really enjoyed following your blog, Maamej. Yours is probably the most similar one to mine. Very brave of you to speak your mind about social and cultural inequality, and you always make an effort too see such topics from various points.

      Do you think it’s harder to engage Australian audiences through our blogs? I’m finding that’s the case. Seems like the Australian blogging scene is more, well, “underground” compared to the States and Europe (case point a lot of the blogs on this blogging platform). There is the Australia Writer’s Centre and the yearly blogging competition, spaces to connect us Aussie writers/bloggers…but I still feel in general the blogging enthusiasm is marginally less. Maybe I’m naive and I need to do more exploring online, I don’t know.

      Thank you very much for the support, Maamej 🙂

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      • Thanks for the compliments Mabel. I agree we are on similar tracks with what we write about and that’s what I enjoy about reading yours. I’m excited when I find an Aussie blog that’s about the topics I cover, but it’s rare, and some of the blogs I like, e.g. Fatima Measham’s, don’t post frequently.

        It seems to me that a lot of Aussie blogging is focussed on lifestyle and monetisation – fine if you’re into that, but really not my thing, although I do enjoy the occasional recipe post, being a bit of a foodie, and the lifestyle bloggers also sometimes do posts about more serious issues. There’s also the blogs about health conditions but again, not usually relevant to me even though sometimes quite inspiring or informative.

        There are also plenty of parenting blogs but I seem to be the only Australian one (I hope I’m wrong) that addresses issues like racism, biculturalism etc. I’m not sure why.

        I hadn’t heard about the writers centre & competition – can you share the links? I only know a couple of groups on Facebook but I seem to have to trawl through a lot of links about handbags and makeup to find content that I’m really interested in … not wishing to be judgemental of those blogs, to each their own.

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        • No, no. Thank you for your compliments on my blog and for following. You hit the nail on the head and said clearly what I’ve been struggling to say: that the blogging scene in Australia is saturated with lifestyle, beauty and food blogs. Like you, I don’t mind these blogs and actually look at them when, say, I’m interested in finding a review of a product or restaurant. Most of the time, I’d rather read about culture, racism and community development. Human rights issues.

          It’s challenging keeping up a blog about race and diversity because 1) these issues are not often talked about openly, and (consequently) 2) these topics are hard to relate to. I like how you explain the issues relating to biculturalism in everyday language. Simple language and listing out thoughts point by point helps to connect with a larger audience.

          Apologies for that, I was waffling on without thinking and making assumptions. Here’s the Australian Writer’s Centre, a forum bringing Australian writer’s together:
          http://www.writerscentre.com.au/

          And here’s the link to the blogging competition:
          http://www.writerscentre.com.au/community/best-australian-blogs-comp/

          Liked by 1 person

  8. You are a veteran at blogging!! I think blog going really helps one to keep in touch with the wider world too.

    It’s nice to read blogs like yours which reflect many people in Australia, who only write or think about it at university.

    Keep up the great work, and congratulations on post number 100!

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    • Hahaha! Veteran at blogging? It’s only been two years. I feel like I’ve been on here for a short while and have yet to find my blogging voice. Thanks, Tanny, for following. You always offer some interesting thoughts to what I have to say. I do wish there were more bloggers from Australia here on WordPress, and in the blogosphere in general.

      Really glad I’ve connected with you. It’s been wonderful reading about Greenland on your blog so far. Easy to understand and very informative. And in some ways sounds like Melbourne. Looking forward to more!

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        • I don’t think the Australian blogger scene is as vibrant as the others. Maybe many Australian bloggers prefer using other blogging platforms. As Maamej mentioned in the comments, a lot of Aussie bloggers are into blogging about lifestyle (think beauty, food).

          Maybe the blogs we like to read tend to touch on other issues and topics, I don’t know. It’s anyone’s guess, really.

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    • Thanks, Mara. I appreciate your support, you know it 🙂 No, no. Am definitely no where near a natural writer. It takes me ages to write a short article and I have to read it thousands of times – okay, maybe ten or twenty – before I realise it out into the wild 😀 But practice makes perfect and I don’t mind working hard to better my writing. And photography 😉

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      • No need to worry, I’m such a slow writer than I can’t possibly produce more than two pages per an entire day… I guess you’re better off! And yes, practice makes perfect; that’s one of my reasons for blogging too!

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        • Hahaha! I don’t think you’re as slow as me. I’ve had days where I can’t write more than two short paragraphs – and it doesn’t help at all when I’m working on a freelance article and the deadline is looming.

          I find it easier to make more progressive writing if I have a series of dot points out, giving me an idea of where the story is headed. Then, as I write, more thoughts will pop into my head and I use those to try to finish a first draft.

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          • Wow, a fellow struggling writer! And I thought I’m a uniquely slow writer… I guess we’re about the same speed.

            I know perfectly what you’re talking about — as a researcher, I regularly come across the problem of having to produce articles within deadlines. It must be tough for you to write freelance, this is of course even worse than my situation.

            Now I’m working on what should be a 20-page article and before I even started writing, I produced 40 pages of research — jumbled notes and quotations from secondary sources — now I’m having a hard time using these to create something original. *sigh*

            Here’s to happy (= easy and fast) writing!

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            • Oh yes, I’m definitely a struggling writer. You hit the nail on the head there. Deadlines come around very, very fast for freelance work…just as how suddenly freelance work comes around.

              With academic research, there’s definitely a generous time frame to get the essay or thesis done. But as you mentioned, research is time-consuming. Reading scholary articles is one thing, understanding them is another thing altogether and if we survive these two activities, then we have a shot at coming up with original ideas. Good luck. I know you can do it and complete your doctorate 🙂

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  9. “Neither is it a photography, craft nor reviews blog. It doesn’t fit in anywhere, and it’s very humbling to see fellow bloggers commenting on my blog and supporting what I write. I wonder why you do.”

    It is simple….I learn from you, I enjoy seeing the world from your eyes and you explore topics thoroughly and honestly….giving me things to think about!!

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    • It’s simple? Well, Tree. I think you explained it well. Thank you. Glad to hear you learn from me. I love inspiring others, to learn and be happy with who they are.

      Sometimes I think there’s more to it. Maybe some people like my writing style, or maybe my posts are easy to understand. Digestable. Or the photos. One can only wonder.

      Thanks for supporting, I really appreciate it. It has been very fun chatting with you. I’ve probably mentioned this before, but I really like what you blog about. Especially the photos and your town! It’s so quiet there, very different from the fairly noisy part of town where I live.

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  10. Congrats on your 100th post! I think blogging helps my writing by giving me practice being concise, as well as practice meeting a once-a-week deadline. Also, I love using photographs, so finding the Weekly Photo challenge has given me an excuse to be photo-heavy and also led me to follow blogs I might not have found otherwise.
    Thanks for including the links to some of your other articles, too, I enjoyed reading! Oh, and one of the links didn’t work for me, this one: NEMBC Winter 2014 magazine, not sure if it’s a broken link or just a bad day on the server.

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    • “once-a-week-deadline”. Love how you put it. Sure, some can say deadlines are stressful. But at the end of the day, they force us into being productive and getting around to doing things. It is amazing to see you weave your theme of “sorting through your belongings” into each post you write together with the photograph challenges, seamlessly. Bonus creativity points there. Photo blogs tend to lead us to travel blogs, expat blogs. What a world there is out there.

      Not too sure why the NEMBC Winter 2014 magazine link isn’t working. I’ve put the link in again. It actually takes you to a 3MB magazine pdf page. Maybe try, “Right Click, Save As” to download it if it does’t work. It’s supposed to open up in a pdf. Thanks for supporting Sandy, and for the well-wishes. Here’s to the next 100 posts.

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      • thanks – I’ll try the link again.
        I was thinking: not in response to your question on blogging challenges, but just in general. When I was a child my father got an amateur (“Ham”) radio set and was able to talk to people in other countries. We thought that was so cool. And now, that’s one of the really neat things about blogging, being able to connect around the world.

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        • Hope the link works for you at some point.

          Ooooh. Those radio-talky things. I vaguely remember those. I remember we also felt so cool with those big, brick-like chunky handphones we carried around in the 90s.

          You said it, Sandy. Blogging is cool. Apart from connecting with others around the world and learning from them, I reckon we have faith in ourselves, what we do and what we blog about over time. Of course there might be the occasional opinionated comment but everyone has their own thoughts.

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  11. Four years here. Sometimes it’s smooth, sometimes it’s rough. But on I roll —
    What I write for? Two big reasons. First, because it interests and pleases and amuses me. My blog has no real focus other than that: I hate to make choices because it means leaving out the one you didn’t pick. This way I’m free to wander around the world, or the world in my mind. (Call me eclectic, it sounds more dignified.)
    And the second reason is even bigger. It’s the conversation that develops among blogging friends. And there’s no doubt that the bloggers that we follow regularly, with comments and discussion, become truly friends. We share in each other’s lives through our blogs. That’s an opportunity that never existed before in quite that way. I’m old now, and my traveling days are behind me, but I’ve traveled the world over since I’ve been blogging, and to visit personal friends. How wonderful is that?

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    • Four years for you? That is a long time, you can definitely call yourself a blog veteran if you want to. Blogging amuses you…and you know what, it actually amuses me too. I suppose the more we have fun with blogging, positivity will shine through our words and photos. Wander all you wish and write about whatever your heart desires – the more honest you are, usually the more you will connect with others around you (here in the blog world and of course, in reality).

      A lot of us not only are so honest here, but also gracious and accepting of one another too – accepting of each other’s backgrounds, cultures and interests. Which is why I’m humbled to call you and other bloggers on here blogger friends. Keep blogging, talk soon.

      Like

  12. Congratulations on your big 100th 🙂 I am currently over-worked, so blogging has to be put aside right now. But your post makes me want to write something! Gah! Must – get – through – this – month – alive! Enjoy the journey. Happy to be reading along! xxoo

    Like

    • I thought you were still on holidays and having a blast, Lani! Time flies. Hope work settles down for you soon, sounds like you have too much on your plate. Remember to get organised, one thing at a time. Just like blogging.

      Thanks for tagging along so far 🙂 I’ve also enjoyed following your adventures in CR!

      Liked by 1 person

  13. Amazing text Mabel, you touched me deeply!! First, congratulations on your 100th post!!
    While traveling I thought a lot about what you told me: to live the moment, then I blog… and you were right, I took it slow and the quality was better than if I had it done in a hurry (thank you for that).

    You are also right when mentioning how much effort, work and time we put on our blogs… its not only writing, but design, editing, uploading and so on… its very time consuming, but yes, we blog because we like it, because its rewarding!

    Also, thank you for all the visits you pay to may blog and all your kind comments, I read your blog because everything you write has something to do with me, with my personal life, with my own experience… and also because you always make me think about things I never thought of or things I have once thought and didnt share with others! For example, while traveling I payed attention to how many times people asked where me and my hubby come from… see? You make me think of things Ive never thought of before! You really do a great job here, and I once said it but I will say it again: I love every single text you write!! And I am very happy to have met you through this blogging world!! 😀 ❤ Congratulations!

    Like

    • I am so humbled, Allane, thank you very much. I am glad I inspire you 😀 Live in the moment and not let ourselves get distracted by all the technology and material things, we see more of what’s around us. Slow…I didn’t really think of that but for this post but you are right. When we go slow, we might see the things we might miss when we go fast. For example, the other day I didn’t rush out of the door on my way to work and saw a snail on the ground. Took a photo of it 😀

      I love your blog. It must be hard with putting up the photos – so many of them to upload and you caption them so well! The way you right about your travels is so easy to understand, better than any travel guide I have read. There are visual descriptions, how you feel, a bit of where to stay and eat, and, of course, your jokes. You know what, maybe you can write a travel guide someday. I will be your first customer 😀

      “we blog because we like it”. Yes. Thanks for saying that. That’s what the comments section are for – for you and bloggers and readers to chime in with their thoughts and add to the discussion. Thank you for your nice and warm words, I really appreciate it. I feel warm and fuzzy inside ^^’

      Liked by 1 person

      • Awnn Mabel you are very welcome!! I say it with my heart!!

        Thank you too for your sweet words, Its so nice to know you like my blog that much, and my pictures too, I really appreciate it!! A travel guide? haha lets see what I can do about that!! 😀

        Well, your posts certainly inspire me and make me think a lot, so I enjoy sharing my thoughts with you!! Im telling you, I would love to read a book written by you, because I love your writing style and how you make me think about simple things in life! ❤ 😀

        Like

        • You have a big, gorgeous and lovely heart, Allane ^^’ Yes, as I commented on your blog, you can make a travel and food guide! It sounds so achievable since you are already blogging like a travel guide on your blog 😀

          Haha, I am still only planning my book. It’s a long way before it will be on the shelves…yes, I want it to be a book in hardcopy and not just an e-book. Thank you very much for your nice words. I will sign a copy of my book in the future for you 😀 ❤

          Liked by 1 person

    • I admire you Sylvia how you post almost every day, or most days of the week. Text and photos in your blog posts, incredible. Working full time I don’t have the time to do that, but…never say never. Thanks for the well wishes and for always dropping by 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Blogging has certainly become a labor of love in so many ways. I thought I ran out of things to say, stories to tell, on my cultural blog but I did manage to find another approach similar to yours. Blogging is a huge challenge and I respect each and every blogger I meet. I remember before I started it seemed so easy. It isn’t. Not by a long shot. It takes dedication. It takes consistency. It takes love.

    As always, thank you for your insightful topics. I just don’t know where you consistently come up with great stuff.

    Like

    • “labor of love”. I’ve heard that phrase so many times over the last year and somehow I don’t ever tired of it. Everything creative is a labour of love – creative work takes time to create and manifest, keep pushing on with it even when no one “gets” what we’re doing (which is a lot of the time).

      It has been a very insightful reading about your travels in Japan. And even more interesting to read about your thoughts on writing. Love how you pick at one aspect of writing and talk about that – sinking in to a writer’s deep thoughts. I can always relate.

      You know what? I don’t know where I come up with the topics I write. It’s hard to explain…there are moments where topics just call to me to write them. Thanks for championing in my corner, Matthew. Glad we’ve connected.

      Like

  15. The blogoshere enables us to connect among one another, at the same time we can learn and share. It has helped me appreciate the history, people, nature, places, and beyond. I certainly have learned a great deal from your blog. Your topic is always well chosen, carefully crafted, and nicely presented. Thank you for another wonderful post, Mabel!

    Congratulations to your 100th post. What a milestone for a young writer! 🙂

    Like

    • Thank you, Amy, for the nice and encouraging words, and supporting for a while now. I am very flattered to hear that you like my work. I like your blog a lot too, and that really is no secret 😉 Love your eye for photography, you do BW and coloured photos well. And of course, you’re brilliant at snapping photos of birds. Photography is one thing I can learn from you.

      Like

      • I think photography is a “vehicle” that helps me see the beauty of nature; it also helps me appreciate the history, places, people a little more. I used that to connect with blog friends. That said, I probably will never be a photographer. 🙂 Thank you for your nice words about my photos, Mabel.

        Like

        • “I probably will never be a photographer” You are very humble, Amy. I’m quite shocked you said that because your photos not only look stunning, but show us the beauty of nature, people and places. I think one of us mentioned this somewhere previously, but for you the challenge in blogging lies in choosing which photos to share with us 🙂

          Like

  16. Hey Happy two years Blogoversary in Advance and also Congratulations on your 100th post ! It was so nice of you to share this helpful tips with us and it was such a light and enjoyable read to go through all the points you mentioned. At each point I tried to acess myself as to see where I stand. As one of the biggest problems I’ve faced in blogging so far is finding time to blog but more than that even having enough to visit all the blog and see what others are upto too. I still haven’t gotten a hold of it. I don’t know if I ever will really. I’ve had a hard time sticking to the schedule too. Hope I’ll learn soon!
    Thanks for the post Mabel ❤

    Like

    • Thank you very much, Zee. I’ve wanted to write this post for a while now, and I felt that being the 100th post and my blog anniversary the moment was right.

      There are so many sides to blogging. There are so many sides to blogging. You know, we could actually spend all day here blogging, writing our posts and chatting with others – like a full time job…only if it paid! Then again, we don’t blog for money and there’s something so humbling about that – giving away stories, sharing, for free. Love is everywhere right here.

      I haven’t known you for too long, Zee. But I’m glad I have and am very impressed with your writing 🙂

      Like

  17. I loved your post Mabel and the honesty. For me blogging about travel when I am at home is the biggest challenge. While traveling it’s just like sitting down with a friend and chatting. However the search for the ever elusive Ms. Wifi makes me wild. 🙂

    Like

    • Sue, you really are a live wire. Always wanting to be in the thick of the action, AND reporting from the front of the line. So much energy you and your husband have, I think you show us young people how things should be done 🙂

      Thanks so much for following and supporting what I write. I am so glad to have connected with you. Your blog certainly has opened my eyes to your side of the world. And waking up early 😉

      Like

  18. Congratulations on the 100th.

    I blog for fun. When i started, I posted erratically, now routinely and only twice a week, to limit my time blogging. Once it stops being fun, I’ll stop. Having said that, photos on my blog have been seen by corporations and this has led to photo sales. I’ve even been contacted by a gallery director who wants me to exhibit. All of this is unexpected. So yes, it’s been an experience.

    Like

    • Thanks, Dragon. Blogging for fun. If it’s not fun, then yes, we should find something else better to do and quit being miserable. Congratulations on getting noticed for your photography work and the sales. Seems one day we will see you, Dragon, for who you really are. The real you in person 🙂

      Like

  19. Hi Mabel, I’ve always enjoyed writing but the fact that I have dyslexia always stopped me from publishing anything I’d written. Then I discovered blogging and WordPress back in February this year, and the support and advice I have received since posting my first post has been incredible. I’ve made so many new friends across the world including other bloggers like myself who have dyslexia. The only challenge I now have is that I love my blog so much (I’ve always loved to write) there is never enough hours in the days to allow me to write and read all the other wonderful blogs I follow. I want to follow everybody and read all their posts but, alas, I know that is impossible. So I now tend to spilt my time on WordPress between reading and writing.

    Like

    • That is great for you, that you found an outlet to share what you love doing, writing. There is such a welcoming community here on WordPress. Everyone’s pretty much accepting of each other’s background and you don’t need to be a long-time writer to feel welcomed. I believe most of us bloggers here genuinely share what we love doing and want to connect.

      I always appreciate it whenever you stop by, Hugh. And I’ve always enjoyed your posts, especially your haikus and poetry. Thank you for sharing 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • Thank you for saying so, Mabel. That really is very kind of you.

        I’ll be stopping by again soon I promise. I love the way you write. You have the ability to knit all the words together, which makes your posts so very interesting to read. It’s a wonderful gift to have.

        Like

        • That is very nice of you, to stop by soon again on my blog. You don’t have to, you know. I do write quite a bit about culturally sensitive topics, which isn’t some people’s cup of tea.

          Thank you for the kind words. Looking forward to reading more from you soon, you know it.

          Like

  20. I like reading your blog because you show us different sides of thinking about things. Reading blogs is like reading books, they let you dive into other people’s lives and live in different worlds. And more often than not, blogs let you know that you’re not alone and others think and act similar.

    Like

    • Thanks, Ruth. I do aim to show both sides every topic I write. Sometimes I don’t do that too well. That’s where you and the other bloggers come in and chime into the conversation, and add to it. I enjoy reading your blog a lot on your life in China – makes me feel I’m not the only one in the world who finds themselves intrigued by cultural differences.

      Like

  21. I don’t blog often –maybe 1-2 times per month. It’s good enough for me and keeps me disciplined to blog with some quality content. Well, at least I think it’s quality vs. …a cycling journal/diary which would be a bore in a short while.

    What I do like is to have a few posts already in publishing line-up . It helps me during times in life where I don’t feel like blogging much because of family problems (ie. my father is dying of cancer, etc.).

    When I remember that my blog is my personal legacy for friends and family that keeps me on the path of inspiration and positivity to express the very best I’ve seen, created and learned.

    Like

    • That is very organised of you, preparing posts to publish in the future. Sorry to hear about your father. It must be a hard time for you and your family. My thoughts are with you.

      I’m not sure how a cycling journal or blog can be boring. Cycling takes you places and you can always blog about the journey and the people you meet. Oh yes. Quality over quantity. Though some bloggers – especially the photography blogs – can achieve both, and that is a very admirable feat.

      Like

    • Apart from speaking out for many Asians out there, I hope to get people thinking about the little cultural things in life…and entertain too. Thanks for reading and supporting, Domenico, and for the nice words. Great to have you on this blogging and writing journey of mine 🙂

      Like

  22. Hi Mabel, what a great summary. It all reads true to me. I also see blogging as a way to hone my writing skills. I am constantly amazed by other people’s ability to put high quality, meaningful and often personal writing on their blog. Thanks for sharing this and putting it all into perspective. Excited to hear that you’re starting your first book. Best wishes to that 🙂

    Like

    • The more we blog, the more we get to write. It is a great way to hone our writing skills. We can blog anytime we like, and don’t need to wait to get our stories out there. It is challenging for me to write posts that talk about two sides – or more – of the story. But if we love writing and blogging, we will do whatever it takes to finish a story. Or a part of it, since stories never really end.

      Thanks, Pixie, for your well wishes. You are very kind 🙂

      Like

  23. Well, congrats on your 100th post. I’m not surprised at all by the number of comments you have received on this topic. Many of your points I have thought about at some time. What speaks to me most now, is your comments about community. Community is what I missed most when I took a break over the summer, it is a big part of why I am back. It is amazing to me what I have seen and the conversations I have had on this platform. I am happy to have met you here 🙂

    Like

    • Thanks, Amy. Community is certainly a big part about blogging. I think a lot of us don’t realise this when we start blogging. It took me almost a year of blogging to realise that. Not only does the blogging community encourage what we do and blog about, they are usually honest with us and give us constructive feedback.

      I certainly missed your photos over summer (or my winter). Glad you’re back. And I’m happy to have connected with you too 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  24. Congratulations Mabel! I think my current biggest challenge in blogging (because I believe our challenges change over time) is finding enough time to blog. I have to say that, ok, I’ve also overcome the barriers of learning CSS and whatnot, so now it’s just basically finding the time. I adore the community of friends I’ve built up (with you included ofcourse!) and as apart from in our blogs as such, I’m finding it heaps of fun to keep in touch via instagram and other ways. Keep up your great work, I know you love doing it ❤

    Like

    • Thanks, Sofia. Time seems to never be on our side. Maybe it’s because we have too many things to do. Or we aren’t organised enough. Or we’re just too ambitious 😉 But somehow…the both of us still have the time to blog. Maybe we love it too much to not do it.

      It’s so exciting that you have a new camera. I still need to learn how to use mine too, no where as good as you yet! Always fun chatting with you, you know it.

      Like

  25. Congrats on your 100th post Mabel! You always wrote interesting topics which makes your blog is special to read – that’s why I keep coming back to your blog 😉 My biggest challenge in blogging is the time. I wish I have lots time to write posts, respond the comments and visit other blogs. Just like you I love to visit other blogs to read and be inspired. And you are one of those bloggers who are inspiring their readers. Thank you for wonderful post all these times and wishing you the best for your book writing!

    Like

    • Thanks, Indah. I’m glad we’ve connected here. My “blog is special to read”. Awww, you really are very kind 😀 I don’t know if I keep inspiring readers…I do want to do that, but then again, some of the topics I write rub people the wrong way.

      I love your photography, you seem to do a lot of it. When I have more time to play with my mirrorless camera, I will visit your blog loads to find inspiration to take photos.

      Like

  26. Hi Mabel, congrats on your 100th post! The challenges and rewards of blogging that you mentioned are so true… I can totally relate! I read your blog cos the topics you write about are really interesting… and I love the way you express your thoughts… not only in your posts but also the comments you make 🙂

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    • Thanks, Kan. Love it when you stop by. To be honest I find comments so much more harder to write/respond compared to writing blog posts. Everyone always has so many insightful things to add to the conversation. Thanks for supporting as always 🙂 Keep on blogging and sharing your photos with us.

      Like

  27. Hey Mabel, that’s fantastic, congrats on your 100th blog post! I am a new subscriber, found you on Dedys blog. 🙂 I love this post , I totally relate, its nice to hear your thoughts on the challenges and rewards of blogging. I look forward to learning more about you and your adventures. Happy Friday and have a wonderful weekend too.

    Like

    • Thanks, Anna. Blogging is never easy, especially if we’re blogging a specific subject and if we’re turning our blog into a-sort-of online portfolio. Your blog looks interesting, about events and hospitality. Chucked you a follow via email. And you’re from Canberra! Love connecting with fellow Australian bloggers. Hope you have lots planned for the weekend. Have a good one and see you around 🙂

      Like

  28. This is a very insightful post and you mention a lot of things that I can relate to and agree with:

    “Blogging takes time. Insightful posts take time to put together. It also takes time to edit, upload and format blog posts.” That’s all very true and the reason why so much time passes between my articles on the history of tattoo. Another example: last night I sat around 3 hours and worked on one single photo.
    Life gets in the way. This happens to all of us, all the time.
    Keeping up with other blogs. A full time job!
    It is nice to get responses to our comments. It is, but this is related to the previous point: it takes time to write responses, visit other blogs,, reply to comments, write posts, edit photos, etc. Often there’s not enough time to manage it all.

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    • Thanks, Cardinal. You do run a great blog and showcase a great deal of your photography artwork over there. I still remember the mosaic shot you did of Ålesund City Centre. Probably that will be my favourite shot from you, and that must have taken hours to do. If you love what you do, you won’t mind spending time on it but when you do realise how much time you spent on it, often you realise you need more time for it.

      Blogging is “a full time job”. I have to agree with that. For a number of us creative people, blogging is so much more than just rambling on about what went on in our day in a blog post. “not enough time to manage it all” – spot on. I always have trouble catching up with comments on my older posts.

      Like

  29. Hi Mabel! As I was scanning your blog posts, I was repeatedly asking myself, “Why didn’t I discover this blog sooner?” Your posts are grealy helpful, and, I especially love this particular post simply because it motivates and inspires me to blog more thoughtfully. Though I have been blogging for 2 years now, I’m afraid I haven’t really discovered the WordPress community yet, and I believe that I have to do that for growth and for sharing as well. I will definitely drop by more often. It was nice meeting you through your blog. 🙂

    Like

    • Thanks, Christina, for the very encouraging words. I really appreciate it. Wow, you’ve been blogging for a while too. I’ll have to check out your blog at some point 🙂

      The WordPress community is great, they are very supportive. Everyone here is a different blogger, and we blog about different things that matter to us – and it’s amazing to learn from everyone here. It’s very nice to connect with you. Keep blogging, talk soon 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • No worries, Amy. I like to think I have a sharp eye 😉 But not so good organisational skills…it has taken me forever to get back to your comment. Hope your week is going well, talk soon 🙂

      Like

  30. When I started this blog, my idea was to introduce my home place, Kerala, and the city where I worked, Bangalore, through my travel stories and photos.

    As I used to travel a lot searching for interesting places, I thought it would be helpful for like minded people, when they search for information on less explored places.

    But after 90 posts and just over an year of serious blogging, I am really confused, where I stand now?

    Being “super lazy” made me post “single photo” posts, most of times and now my blog looks like a photo blog, rather than a travel blog 🙂

    As you said, initially I plan to check out each and every blog post that appears in my reader, and as the number of blogs I follow grew, it’s become impossible and I really feel guilty at times.

    I really feels that, being systematic, is the only way out and to manage blogging and our day today activities.

    One thing is for sure, I am not going to stop blogging any time soon, as the positive energy and support that I get here really helps me to overcome even the personal challenges 🙂

    Like

    • I have always loved what you blog, Sreejith. No, no, no. Don’t say that you are “super lazy” just because you post one photo per post and nothing else more. I’m sure you worked hard to take that shot and worked hard post-processing it as well. Each of your images never fails to say a thousand words.

      Don’t be too hard on yourself Sreejith for not keeping up with all your blogs. We all can only do so much blogger – there’s a life outside of the blogging world, you know that 🙂 I always appreciate you stopping by. Thank you for that.

      Liked by 1 person

      • It’s so kind of you, Mabel 🙂

        Yea, it always feels good, when some one really appreciate our work and the effort we put in the background to make it presentable 🙂

        I am learning quite a lot from you Mabel, on how to be systematic in blogging and manage it with our regular work and life 🙂

        Hope you had a beautiful day at work 🙂

        Like

        • I am flattered that you are learning from me, Sreejith. Very humbled. One thing I need to improve on is responding to comments – I have yet to respond to a lot of the ones on my older posts 🙂

          I can learn a lot about photography from you. I hope one day if we meet you can give me a photo lesson 🙂

          Liked by 1 person

  31. Pingback: Fight that urge | Pixie Dust Beach

  32. As a new blogger (I only started writing around 5 months ago) I already encountered most of the challenges you mentioned. Moreover, I sometimes feel like my English fluency holds me back, as I am not a native speaker and I need to make an extra effort to write in proper English. However, as you wrote at the end of your post, blogging is so rewarding that I always manage to overcome the obstacle and keep going. I feel like my blog is my window on the world, a way to find my place and identity. Feeling part of such a big community gives me a sense of belonging that I lost long ago when I decided to leave my home country to relocate for love and become an expat in Asia.

    Thank you for your thoughts, very inspiring as usual!

    Like

    • If you didn’t mention it, I would have thought you were a native English speaker – your comment was so well-written. Blogging is definitely rewarding on many levels, and it’s so great to hear you’re discovering more about yourself through blogging. Moving is never easy: we always lose a bit of us, our culture, in the process. But we also learn who we really are and more about the world around us.

      Good luck with blogging 🙂

      Like

  33. Hi Mabel. 😊. Blogging has taught me much about computers and technology and it is a fun way to learn.. It seems I can only manage one post a week though. I intend to learn some HTML at some stage. But I will have to make time for this. Thanks for your thoughtful post on blogging.

    Like

    • Hello Maria 🙂 Have to agree with you there. Blogging has taught me more about photography in many ways, to be more tech savvy.

      Good luck with learning HTML, I’m sure you’ll catch on. I’ve learnt a bit of CSS to tweak my blog template to what it is now…it was a nightmare 😀

      Liked by 1 person

      • Starting my blog was a challenge. The first post took hours and I had a lot of help from my cousin. I have had to persevere with my blog posts making many mistakes! Finally I am learning though and have settled into a pattern that still takes time but I don’t make so many mistakes! 😄. And yes – I’ve learned about taking photos, too.

        Like

        • Looking forward to checking out more of your blog soon, Maria. Blogging is so addictive once you get into the groove of it. These days I find choosing photos for my posts just as exciting as writing them 🙂

          Liked by 1 person

  34. Pingback: What do you think is the most challenging thing about blogging? – Site Title

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