Exactly 3 years ago, that is on Wednesday, June 17th, at 23.32, I have published my first official article on this personal blog. A few hundred posts later, I am glad to affirm now that blogging has changed my life. I know, I have a fixation with “life-changing”, but it’s true, it really contributed to my personal & professional development.
Analytic Vision has been for me a do-it-yourself blogging school.
I will share with you some of my conclusions concerning this experience, which I think might be useful for you. I don’t know whether these go for advice, but this is what I did and worked.
1. I used as the title of my blog something which represents me. Of course, many would argue that it’s best to have a blog with my own name. But it’s also the easiest. That’s why I did a 360 degrees evaluation I described here, in 2009, right before starting my blog. I didn’t do it especially for my blog, and the results weren’t so different from the one in 2008 and among these results it came that one of the things most obvious about me is that I have a very analytical approach to issues. So I did not only embrace “Analytic Vision” for my blog, but as well as a pseudonym, which I use on Twitter, Scribd, etc.And, of course, the category which is best represented on “Analytic Vision” is …”Analytic & Critic Vision Over…“
2.First of all, I learned that, in time, I would change my mind about a lot of things, and some things I once believed, are no longer valid. For example, I had a pessimistic period in the spring of 2010 and I wrote this article, which I re-made public especially for this occasion. Now, it’s not like I don’t still believe what I’ve written, but if you’ll read the comment on the end of this article, you’ll see the commenter has a point. Another example, that I prefer to keep private, is the one with SNSPA. In the first year as a student at this University in a master’s degree, I was very enthusiast about it and I even wrote an article called something like “Proud to be student at SNSPA” Er… the second year I didn’t keep my good impression and it wouldn’t have made any point to keep public on my blog an article to which I didn’t agree. So, in years, flexible people learn, change ideas, grow up. A blog is a mirror of someone’s beliefs and opinions. Only people who think that they know it all aren’t flexible to learn and change.
3. I sacked a lot of articles. Some of them , for the reason I presented at no. 2. Some other, because they were plain bad. Some others, because they were unread (that is, they were accessed less than 10 times over a reasonable period of time). Others, because the information wasn’t actual anymore. Learning is selecting. For me, it’s important to have more quality than quantity.So it’s a good idea, in my perspective to take a general look on the articles of the blog and to clean those which are weaker.
4. I wrote about what I wanted to share. That is, information I thought to be useful to others. A blog is not a personal log. People don’t really care about me particularly, and even if they do, they don’t want to read it from me. But the way they DO find about me is by the way I write, the way I present events, people, ideas, systems, films. I put a lot of who I am in what I write and I think that is why people would be interested in following me. Of course, a lot of things may not be so original, but it’s the style that makes the difference.
5. I developed a multitude of styles. All different from each other. I don’t choose my style a priori, but rather I prefer to let the subject and my attitude to it direct it. A good exercise is to write the articles in my mind, asking myself a few questions, borrowed from George Orwell:
- what is the message?
- what words express it?
- what expression would nail it the best?
to which I added:
- is it sufficiently documented?
Compare, for example, the style of this article Rich item conceptualization with this one Nobody to Vote With (I) with this one Felicia, înainte de toate and with this one Impressions from Westock ’09. They’re all different. And they all depend on the public I am writing for.
6. I preferred to develop niched blogs for different audiences, based on the topic. That’s why in March 2011 I have started Discerne and in June 2011 I have started Debug Your Mind. Discerne is a blog in Romanian, dedicated to a corporate audience / aspiring corporate audience, interested in professional & personal development. Debug Your Mind is a blog dedicated to intellectuals with superior studies, interested in awareness about the economic and political system we live in and is especially based on video. I have used the best of my learning in these niched blogs.
7. Blogging for me is a game of numbers. Now, to add the articles which right now are publicly available on all of these blogs, there are 118 posts on Analytic Vision, 162 posts on Discerne, 44 posts on Debug Your Mind. 324 articles. The average time dedicated to getting an article from idea to correcting to publishing to improving: 2 hours (that implies that for some articles I worked 15 minutes and for others 8 hours). Add to that about more than 100 other posts which I initially published, than sacked, plus tens of hours dedicated to following statistics, editing comments, promoting blogs, and especially documentation and searching and you will get to more than 1000 hours. It has been said to me that I don’t practice “blogging as any other person”, but to a higher standard of quality. The truth is, with time, quantity becomes quality, if you are looking to learn, to improve. Of course, who am I to compare myself with, let’s say, the best 100 Romanian bloggers? But I’m a specialist in blogging.And there are quite a few things I only keep to myself and my clients when I say this.
8. It’s important to have and to keep an online public archive, hand-made like this blog has here. It helps the readers and it especially helps me, as it is custom made for what I’m interested in when I’m looking for fast links.
9. The best is not free for always. I always have some of my best articles initially public, then password protected – you can also notice that on Discerne. For example, on this special occasion of having 3 years celebrated for this blog, I have decided to make public again my series of articles called The Art of Respecting Others a paraphrase based on Mircea Eliade’s writing. So, have a good time reading the articles, starting with the introductive one. They won’t be there for long.
10. I enjoyed all the things having this blog offered me: invitations to events, free participating at some other events, being chosen to speak in front of certain people, a lot of useful feedback (otherwise paid), getting to know some very special people, free training, books and, maybe the most important, visibility for my personal brand. Actually, it’s such an integrated part of my life, that I can’t actually capitalize its benefits, because I can’t imagine how would my life would have looked without it.
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