Something’s been bugging me!
I haven’t written a post for a while. Well nothing substantial, nothing that would make me say; “This blog has a purpose.” I guess I’m still trying to find my purpose for Jasper + Spice. Trying to understand why people read blogs, why I read blogs. what can I deliver that people want to read?
Well, that’s the big question I guess.
What can I contribute to the community?
This whole post can be contemplative, but what’s its worth if I don’t come to a conclusion at the end of it. I tend to spiral and ramble and think and write without really answering the question I was pondering. Today I will.
The question I bring to you today is not only about me and my blog (Jasper + Spice), but about you and your projects. What can you contribute to the community? What will you be bringing to the community barbecue?
I like the use of analogies, especially this one: Bringing things to a barbecue, especially one where dishes haven’t been allocated, you really have to be unique with your dish. Bring something that will shock people, surprise them, make ’em smile, laugh and come over before they leave to thank you for the wonderful potato salad/ fried chicken/ pickled cucumbers/ apple danish/ etc.
So my first question to you (and me) is: What is your dish?
My dish is … Writing but in a fun good-natured manner.
We speak about how people feel when they eat the dish. You obviously now have an idea and a way to execute it, but what will make it unique? How will your potato salad stand out from Susan of number 29, or the supermarket one you saw Kelly scoop into a bowl as she arrived?
Will you add seeded mustard, or maybe yours has spring onions in it. Is there a secret recipe, something you do differently to everyone else that has people running for seconds and arguing over the last spoonful. The one thing this uniqueness will bring to you is praise, and with praise is a sense of self-gratification that leads to confidence and the continuation of your art.
None of this will happen without criticism though. Maybe you added too much salt, used the wrong potatoes or someone doesn’t eat spring onions. You have to sort the criticisms from the insults and build on what you can for your wider audience. If you add less salt, and change your potatoes but keep the spring onions, the masses will love you, but one person who doesn’t eat the onions will be upset. You can always make two salads, but how does that translate into your project?
So here comes my second question: What makes your dish unique?
For mine … Writing will be a little ramble-y, but interesting and touch on some serious topics.
I love the potato salad analogy. My mum makes a killer potato salad but none of that would have been achieved if it wasn’t for her openness to the criticism from my sister and I. She has been able to take criticism from her children, her most frequent kitchen guests, as well as others who she offers her wonderful food to.
To have a unique dish there has to be something someone else doesn’t have. Something that will make people stand up from their seat and walk over to the other end of the table to take food from your salad bowl.
Focus on the blogging community.
People stand out in the blogging community because they are original. It’s one thing to have a voice that people like to hear, but to produce the content that people find interesting is tricky and time-consuming.
People read blogs for entertainment and information. Blogs like Sarah’s www.writtenwordworlds.com which provide people with recommendations on what to read when you’re looking for a specific topic; or C.G. Drews’ www.paperfury.com when you want tips about becoming an author, are informative and have the authors using their professional skills and knowledge – reading and writing respectively – to their advantage.
There are other blogs such as Ashley’s www.nosegraze.com that sell ebooks, templates, services, etc. and gain popularity as a business as well as a blogger. This manner of popularity – for lack of a better word – is not achievable for others.
This is where it is healthy to assess our realistic goals. What you as a person can/ cannot achieve.
My final question for you: What do people in your community do, that is achievable for you to strive towards?
For instance, I personally would not open up a shop, but I might put more effort into a series where I speak about my writing process. This might mean I have to knuckle down and write 2,000 words a week, but I would do it for my blog and for progress.
Another section of this question is goals. Write them down! I do it at the beginning of every year and you can read mine for this year in my Goal Setting for 2019 blog post. Also, make sure you brainstorm ways in which you can achieve these goals because if you have no plan, you won’t act on it.
Thank You For Reading!
I hope this post helped you answer some questions of your own because it sure gave me a clearer head.
If you’d like more of these posts please comment below because I’d be happy to do more of these contemplative posts in the future. I was also thinking of calling this “Thursday Thoughts…” Thoughts?
Please leave any constructive feedback, questions, or concerns in the comments below and I will be happy to start a chat about it xx
With Love Bree xx