I recently started using Google Reader (GR). I had a routine before using GR, where I would literally just remember all of the blogs I liked and would check them on a regular (cough, daily) basis. They were mostly of the cooking variety. I think they all were, actually. I loved following those blogs. I got excited each day that my favorite ones updated (it was like Christmas!).
Google Reader opened up a whole new world for me. Not only did I no longer have to actually remember which blogs I followed, I didn't have to check them every single day in order to see when they were updated. GR does this FOR me. It made me feel awfully lazy, to some extent. I mean, come on, it's not like I had to exert that much effort to begin typing the name of a blog I like, since the address was stored in my cache (or whatever). But now I didn't even have to do that! (insert picture of lazy me, leaning back in my chair drinking a can of pop, eating from a large bag of potato chips, clicking at the mouse saying "all right! now I only have to enter ONE url." In a horribly offensive southern accent)
And it opened up a whole new world of following blogs as well. I started adding blogs left and right! I imagine that I went on the internet equivalent of what extremely rich people do.
Every. Time. They. Shop.
My proverbial cart overfloweth. I follow cooking blogs galore, but not just that anymore, oh no, I now follow blogs on writing, film, technology, photography, and news. I follow blogs of people I know and one of a person I don't (which totally makes me feel like a creeper but her posts are so good and heartwarming and it's like a big hug or something to read about her trials and life and everything. It's like a really sappy Halmark movie that you don't really want to like but, gosh darn it, you DO). I also check out what GR thinks I would like on a regular basis. It's not always right, but I usually find something that entertains me, and sometimes, oh those sweet sometimes, something to add to my plethora of reading materials.
I started writing my blog a while ago and I never quite understood how people did it. Seriously, I did not comprehend this whole blogging thing, even as recent as last week. I mean, updating on a regular basis? Keeping up with current events? Dredging up funny/heartwarming/interesting stories from the past? Making everything that comes out the first time you write it actually compelling, every single time? Yeah right, like that could happen. "But it MUST. Because it DOES," I thought. And then promptly concluded I could never be one of "those" writers.
See, I had gotten it into my head somehow that bloggers were all the new generation's Jack Kerouacs. They just wrote, stream of conscious, everyday. They didn't plan. They just wrote, all very flowy and hippy-like. Yep, every blog writer was a hippy in my head. Or, you know, something like that. Which is ridiculous. As I read more and more blogs, I began to surmise that, by golly, these people actually PLANNED what they were going to write, like an essay or a story or something.
That made a lot more sense.
It also gives me hope for my blog. Maybe, just maybe, I can actually get the hang of this blogging thing after all.