I was on the phone with my best friend last night and we were joking about what’s known as ‘blogging stigma’. If you also have a blog, then I’m sure you’ve run into it at some point or another. From the snide comment claiming that ‘all you do is post pretty pictures,’ to journalists telling you that ‘you’re not a proper writer’. Yes, both of these scenarios have happened to me more times than I care to admit and they always made me really embarrassed about having a blog!
My friend tells me that he now just tells people ‘my friend is an online travel writer‘. It just avoids those awkward looks when people are like, ‘so she writes about her feelings online?‘ To be honest, ‘online travel writer‘ sounds exactly like blogging, right? Right? Apart from people don’t laugh when you tell them that you’re an online travel writer…
Blogging Stigma? Is it even a real thing?
I try not to talk too much about my blog in person, as I still feel really embarrassed about it! Wait, let me rephrase that: I feel really embarrassed about people’s reactions to me telling them that I run a blog.
You see, having a blog is not the issue. When someone asks you what you do in your free time and you answer ‘I run a travel and culture blog,’ nine times out of ten they’ll just laugh in your face. I mean, I get it (kind of). Twenty years ago, blogging didn’t even exist. It’s hard to imagine how people can be making a career out of something so new and that couldn’t exist without the internet!
To be honest, most of the time I don’t even feel up to defending my blogging hobby. I don’t laugh at people who collect stamps (does anyone even use the postal service anymore?) or people who collect Troll Dolls (dolls are still really scary, though). Each to their own and blogging is becoming more and more ‘accepted’.
However, there are definitely times when I stop feeling really embarrassed and start feeling really stressed (those are the times when I don’t have time to feel embarrassed, ha). It usually happens when I’ve broken something around here and need advice on how to fix it from my boyfriend (hi!). Or when yet another person has stolen my content and I’m mid-meltdown because it’s damaging the blog and I need to call my Mum for moral support (lol).
When I started writing on this little corner of the internet, a year and a half ago, I had no idea how long I’d keep writing. Maybe a month, probably a year at most. But then, I kind of became obsessed with writing posts and getting better at taking photos. And that’s not to mention connecting with other bloggers, some of whom have become really good friends. Maybe the sad truth is that I’m a little bit proud of what I’ve managed to teach myself about SEO or how to use a camera. I know, cringe.
However, this blog is the one thing I’ve managed to stick to, without extended breaks. It’s the one job I know I’d do for free, even if I had to take on other work to fund this little hobby. I’m off to see a careers advisor at my university in a couple of weeks. After all, it’s my final year and I’m expected to get a ‘grown-up’ job in the very foreseeable/ near future. Will I tell the careers advisor that I run this blog? Will I be worried about the ‘blogging stigma?’ I’m not sure…