It can all feel like a game and maybe I don’t wanna play

Blog Games

My writers’ conference messed me up.

(I mean, it was amazing. Good feedback, great insights into the industry, and permission to send my book proposal and chapters to agents and editors. No real results yet, but I’m learning patience.)

I mean with blogging. It messed up my blogging.

I took a great, thought-provoking, spiritual morning track on internet marketing. (Yes, I did say it was spiritual.) It was crazy full of great advice and insights and my typing fingers could barely keep up with all of it as I took notes.

And now I have all these words swirling in my head — audience, demographic, SEO, focus, write for readers, engage, analytics, optimize, traffic, subscribers.

The core message was great: People are looking for answers. When they type that question into Google, whose answers will they find? We have an opportunity to reach people with the truth, and here are the tools to do it.

Except when I get home and try to put all (or at least some) of it into practice, it feels hollow. Then a couple blog posts feel empty, or I force them, and I just know they weren’t born out of passion or pain or that spot in my gut that burns until I spill the words onto the page.

And it all feels like a big game. Linking up, retweeting, gaining a following, creating a Facebook fan page, and for what? Yes, I do have a message, and yes, I do think it’s important. It’s crazy important to me. But I feel like it can get lost in the shouting match for attention online.When I engage there and focus on that, even my message, my One Thing, gets diminished and I don’t really feel like going there — even there, where I know there’s healing and love and inspiration and hope.

In the end, all I really want here, in this space, is to tell my truth and let others tell theirs. I want people to be honest about their adoptions, or whatever journey they’re on, because even if it has nothing to do with adoption it’s sure to be filled with more pain and more beauty than we ever thought possible. When we open our hearts all the way up, we can be healed, finally and fully.

So this week, I went back to writing the next chapter, and it’s helped a bit. I think once I find the rhythm of the book again, I’ll find it for my blog again. And THEN I’ll be able to engage and add in those SEO terms and build a subscriber base and whatever else I’m supposed to do. I’ve heard it’s possible to build an audience even without a great topic or great writing, and that scares me more than trying at my passion and failing. It’s felt gross the last couple weeks to push content out there that I don’t completely love, that I’m not attached to.

If you’re still here, thank you. I promise to publish with heart and not strategy, with passion, not pressure.

 

Have you struggled to find your blog voice? What have you done to focus and stay true to your passion?

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9 comments on “It can all feel like a game and maybe I don’t wanna play

  1. Thanks for the honesty, Kim. I’ve just recently connected with your blog, and I’ve been enjoying it because of the honesty and because of a shared passion. The last few months I have felt strongly the Lord saying it is time to come back to my writing, so I’ve been back on my blog and more serious about it than I’ve ever been. But definitely at times, I feel the writing is hollow and doesn’t come from the knotted place in my gut where I think it should. As I’m in a major transitional season, I’ve also found myself becoming obsessive about counting my followers and pageviews. Its been a bit like David and his census, counting out what I’ve accomplished when it is really something that belongs to God. So thanks for the honesty and thanks for the encouragement.

    • Amanda, I love that — counting out what I’ve accomplished when it really belongs to God. All we can do is present our best offering with the gifts he’s given us, and then it’s up to him. Thank you for the reminder.

  2. Kim!

    I just subscribed to this blog. Can’t wait to get all your honesty direct to my inbox.

    xo
    Claire

    • Claire! so great to see you here. I was completely joking when I said something narcissistic about you not reading my blog, btw. I hope I didn’t coerce you here! Love you too.

  3. HopeUnbroken says:

    just recently found you, but this post, alone, tells me i’m gonna like you 🙂
    nodding my head in agreement with all that you said. and a big “thanks” for keeping it real. when it’s all said and done, that’s what we should all be both asking and striving for.
    have a great day!
    steph

  4. Courtney says:

    i started blogging with the purpose of my children being able to read it one day to know who their mom was – as a person. right now i’m just their mom. one day, i hope they want to know who i was as a person (like i wish i knew what my mom was like – as a woman, friend, etc when i thought she was “just” my mom).

    i don’t think about or write “to” anyone else when i write. just my family. if others are blessed by or learn from or are challenged by my words, that’s encouraging to me! but that’s just a bonus.

  5. Blah! I’m constantly struggling with this — walking a tight-rope . . . fearing that my raw messiness on the one side will be too ugly and my put-togetherness on the other won’t be wrapped in the right packaging.

    Thank you for your honesty. Oh! And you can add one more to you fan base!

  6. brian miller says:

    here is the thing…you have to blog because you want to…and do it because it is fun….forcing it stinks and you will burn out…to many that try to treat it like a biz fall flat…because their heart really is not in it anymore…

  7. this makes me cry for the relief. i have been really burdened re: all of the marketing that is required for selling books, and it doesn’t feel right to me. i have decided to trust God entirely with the process because only he can make a project succeed. “unless the Lord builds the house, the workers build in vain.”