Monday, 15 April 2013

confessions of a secret blogger

a few selfies to break it up
I first posted on this blog almost exactly nine months ago. When I did, I was feeling the repercussions of deleting an old blog (about a year before that) which I had put a lot of effort into, but wasn't happy with the direction it was taking. Managed at a time where I was still finding myself and my preferences, you can imagine what a poor show it was. However, the love of beauty blogging and that creative satisfaction has never been extinguished. I still read blogs every day and before I started Red Lipstick & Tea Parties (formerly Ruby Woo), I longed to get back into my old hobby.

I've never been a confident person and trying new things sends me into a downward spiral of anxiety. Hence why this blog has been incredibly slow moving with a total of just thirty three posts published in that nine month period. I have been so afraid to push myself out of my comfort zone with this project and I feel it's suffering for my reluctance.

The main problem I have involves Twitter. Twitter is probably my favourite social media site, and I'm addicted to scrolling through my timeline and seeing what people have to say. It's also a great way to keep up with my favourite blogs, as often the bloggers I follow will post a few times a day to notify their readers of any new posts. This is often how I catch up with blogs I don't read often, or discover new ones to read.

Excluding my blog from my Twitter account is something I've been questioning from the very beginning. The ultimate tip for new bloggers which the seasoned gurus often offer is self promotion on every social media site possible. My Twitter as well as Instagram and Facebook feeds are saturated with notifications of the latest article or video someone has created. Yet I'm not taking part in this.

Ultimately it boils down to this: I am, for all intents and purposes, a secret blogger. I only talk to other bloggers about what I do here. I have never told anyone from my 'real life' that I write my own beauty blog. It's mostly a feeling that people who are into reading blogs are often bloggers themselves, and those who aren't just don't understand. I have more than my fair share of judgemental people in my life, and I don't think they'd be able, or willing, to accept what I do.

A few months ago, my mother came to me saying she'd heard someone talking about blogs on the radio and she didn't understand what they were. After explaining to her and even showing her one or two of my favourites, she replied "But why would anybody want to read that? Why would anyone care?". I think this sums up the general attitude which separates the bloggers from the non-bloggers and the defining factor in why I have not once posted my blog link on my Twitter account.

I feel that I am in a camp halfway between the two: while the non-bloggers wouldn't understand my desire to write paragraphs about my favourite blusher, the bloggers cannot understand my anxiety. And every so often I get that rush of pride and think, fuck it, who cares if they don't understand? I love my blog and I want to share it.

But do I? Do I really want my boyfriends band-mates seeing me here? Or those friends of friends I don't really know and I'm not really comfortable around? I don't even think the handful of close friends I have would understand it or be willing to tolerate it. If sharing my blog on Twitter is essentially sharing my blog with people from my real life, what risks am I taking by doing so? Seeing the judgement and hateful remarks that are hurled at some of my favourite bloggers - though the online abuse is more rife on YouTube - makes me wonder, if strangers will think such nastiness about you, what about the people who know you? It's a strange debate that keeps coming up: if you write a blog or create for YouTube, do you 'deserve' the scrutiny you are subjected to? Should you expect it?

So why am I writing this? Is anyone going to read it? Ultimately, I'm not sure if I care. At this moment in time I have 71 followers who couldn't be happier with. I'm not interested in blogging as a career, or as anything other than a haven for me to retreat to all too often when I want to tell someone about a new cleanser but nobody in my life is interested. Somewhere to hone my writing skills, and to take pictures of pretty new lipsticks.

But, I think it is time to expand into Twitter. I'll do my best not to over-saturate my friends and followers. Maybe that anxiety will grip me by the throat once again and I'll freeze and this will all have been for nothing. And, if you are someone who knows me in real life who has found me here, chatting away to myself in my own corner of the internet, welcome, but please be tolerant. Maybe you have just come here to smirk at my gratuitous selfies or beauty-based ramblings. If you have come to judge, or you don't understand, I'm okay with that. It's taken me a long time to get there.

If you in any shape or form understand what I'm attempting to discuss here, please leave a comment. It'd be nice if it wasn't just me here, in this lonely boat sailing anxious waters. And if you have read this monster of  post, please let me know so I can find you and shake your hand! As always, thank you for reading. & P.S.! You can follow me on Twitter here @serenaelliott!

1 comment:

  1. I can totally relate to how you feel. I always kept my blog secret from my "real life" social media outlets like Facebook and Instagram (none of my friends really use Twitter). I have more followers on Instagram and I wanted to promote my blog a little, so I just went for it and put my blog link on my profile. Have my friends seen my blog because of it? Probably. They've never mentioned it to me before, but if they do, I don't mind.

    Not knowing any of my friends had Twitter, I brought it up in conversation one day and a friend really wanted to add me, so I told her my username and when she found out I had a blog, she said, "I had no idea!", but her response was actually really supportive and she said she it was amazing and she was really proud. :) I have always been worried about what kind of responses I'd get from real life people, but you know what? At the end of the day, if you enjoy it, you should feel like you want to share it with people you love and if they can't understand it, that's their problem. It's no different from any other hobby, I think! Not caring what people think is easier said than done, but I'm really trying, as I don't think I should feel like I need to hide something that actually makes me proud and happy. :)


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