I don’t know how many blogs are out there, but I know it’s in the millions.

I don’t know how many topics there are to blog about, but I’d guess that’s in the millions, too.

Can you imagine if the world wide web limited the amount of blogs allowed for each topic?

Fortunately they don’t and we’re free to write about anything we want.

Hence, we find many bloggers publishing posts on the exact same subject.

Just like I do.

Today’s Lesson

The last thing I planned to do was have a blog about blogging. After all, when I started there were already hundreds (or thousands)  of blogging blogs out there.

Thinking back, I could have kept this blog private since I was just writing down what I was learning, but at the time my thoughts were, “What the heck. Make it public. Maybe I’ll get a visitor or two.”

And eventually I did.

When that happened, I felt there was no turning back.

So there I was, blogging about blogging; a topic that gets written about so often, I sometimes felt I was beating a dead fish.

I realized I needed to approach blogging about blogging from a different perspective, and since I’m not into writing a lot of  “How To” blog posts, I knew I had to do kick it up a notch. Experiment. Take a risk.

So what I’ve done is made this blog about you by asking you how you feel about different blogging topics and how you view things in blogosphere.

You share your perspective and those who visit and read the comments, learn from many bloggers, not just one.

In some ways it doesn’t matter what I write; I’m just the conduit which leads visitors to your view point.

And when they arrive, lessons are learned, connections are made and I no longer feel I’m beating a dead fish.

I see that as a win-win. 🙂

Today’s Assignment

Do you think some topics get beat to death by bloggers?

If you’re blogging about the same topic as others, how do you keep your content fresh and original?

Care to share?

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P.S. I want to take this opportunity to thank all of you for your continued support and thoughtful comments. This blog wouldn’t be what it is if it wasn’t for your loyalty which is something I truly appreciate.

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  1. Kelvin KaoNo Gravatar says:

    Sure there are lots of blogs about how to blog, and how to make money online, but that doesn’t mean we are reading all of them. I think there’s always a natural progression.

    1. You start reading a blog on a certain topic. You are fascinated by it, even though there are some people already going “meh, that again”.
    2. You start to read lots of blogs on the same topic and learning a lot.
    3. At some point you start to think, ok, I know most of this already. Now everyone is repeating the same thing… except these three bloggers who just really have new insights all the time.
    4. Now you’ll see new blogs on the same topic and think “meh, that again”. But then, if you were to see these blogs back in step 1 and 2, you would’ve been excited.

    It’s not them, it’s you.
    Check out Kelvin Kao’s awesome post.New Business CardsMy Profile

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Kelvin,

      That’s very true. It is us, not them.

      Finding blogs which discuss a new topic can be exciting, until like you said, we find more blogs publishing posts on the same thing.

      I agree. It depends on where we are in the process.

  2. Alien GhostNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Barbara, 

    I agree with Kelvin about it is us and not them.

    It seems to be too many blogs in the same topic but then (I suppose) if the blogger doesn’t bring something new they either loose audience or start getting just “generic” comments, just to make a presence by the visitor. 

    Still, I’m surprised how many blogs about self help are out there; it seems the world if overflowing with good people yet also is overflowing with wars, violence and planetary destruction, mmmm…. 

    In my case I don’t ting I have a topic or a niche, I just write what I see and without limitations of a specific niche, which gives me the opportunity to talk about many things and I hope that makes my blog a little more diverse, so people wouldn’t say: “meh, that again” (words taken from Kelvin Kao without permission) oops! 

    Check out Alien Ghost’s awesome post.Anticipation ManiacMy Profile

    • “I’m surprised how many blogs about self help are out there; it seems the world if overflowing with good people yet also is overflowing with wars, violence and planetary destruction, mmmm….”

      That’s quite insightful. I guess blogging has given a way for “good people” to show up, without feeling threatened. Perhaps we need to be aware than doing the good thing requires a certain courage that goes beyond the blog. Sure that’s hard, but that’s why so few people are doing it.
      Check out Miguel de Luis’s awesome post.A new rule for Newsies &amp BootblacksMy Profile

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Raul,

      I think it also depends on the audience we attract. With so many blogs on the same topic, when I look at them, I find they’ve attracted a different group of bloggers, so that tells me we all have something that will appeal to at least a few.

      And, there’s also the loyalty factor. If a favorite blogger writes the same thing as ten others, we’ll read and comment even if we’re saying to ourselves, “meh, that again” 🙂 (thank you Kelvin)

  3. Hi Barbara – Even with so many blogs out there, and having had one for over two years now, I am still reminded all the time that this Internet stuff is new to a lot of people. I meet weekly with a group of ladies, ostensibly as colleagues in our travel-related business, who are eager to learn more. Initially, attaching documents to an email was challenging. And blog set-up with owned domain? Way scary, just as it was for me! I have family members who could barely turn a computer on a year ago who are Facebooking away, and others who have yet to see how a computer, the Internet and a little bit of time invested could transform their lives, make them money, and create an entrepreneurial spirit.

    So, Barbara, this niche that found you will never grow old. Everyone is at a different place in the continuum. The beauty of what you have created is that it’s a community designed to be supportive and helpful. And I know you will attest that it can be the highest kind of reward to help someone achieve. Thanks, always, for your tireless work. I know it brings you joy and satisfaction.
    Check out Betsy Wuebker’s awesome post.New and Improved SpamMy Profile

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Thank you for your kind words Betsy,

      What you said is very true. Each blogger is at a different phase in their blogging journey. For those who are new, some sites will have high appeal, whereas others will scare them off.

      What I’ve seen with this blog is some of those who use to visit when they were new to blogging have gone on to bigger and better things. I’m guessing discussing blogging is the last thing they want to do when now they have so much more to be concerned with.

      And yes. The community on this blog is VERY supportive and helpful to one another. That really makes my heart sing; to see the bloggers here being so supportive to others.

  4. MikeNo Gravatar says:

    This is only one of two blogs that I read about blogging and the only one where I read every single post… unless I’m really busy with something else.

    In one niche that I read, the bloggers go on and on and on about the details of their day, beating it to death — but, every now and again, there is something worthwhile and of interest. Most of these I generally just skim through to see if there’s anything worth reading.

    In another niche, there is a lot of technical information combined with political posturing. Some things get beat to death, but there’s often new and interesting developments.

    I don’t have a particular niche — at least I don’t think that I do — so my only challenger is myself: “Sharing some of my photos, vintage images I’ve discovered, and — occasionally — commentary and thoughts from retired life.”
    Check out Mike’s awesome post.Take an eleven state trip… and lose weight doing it!My Profile

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Thank you Mike,

      I appreciate your loyalty.

      I hear you. Even though on some blogs a topic will get beat to death, there’s often a nugget we can extract from the post or conversation.

      You really don’t have a niche, do you? I like how you share your gorgeous photos from your travels and we get the feeling we were right there with you.

  5. Barbara, we should thank you for fine-tuning us in the world of blogging. I usually don’t venture into blogs which talk about blogging as they are full of statistics, links and less of soulfulness. But I like your way of presenting things and that’s the reason I hang around here. Maybe you are beating a dead fish but you are doing it quite aesthetically which is quite interesting and informative.

    As for the topic which is overdone and intolerable is tales and woes of ROMANTIC LOVE. There are so many people who talk of it in their fiction, poems, and whatever. I sometimes get tired of reading all of them. Now I’ve started avoiding it like the plague.

    And if I think I am writing about something that is overdone, I try to focus on the tiny details which often get overlooked in the bigger picture. Fine-tuning, as I call it.

    Thanks Barbara for all the lovely posts on blogging 🙂

    Joy always,
    Check out Susan Deborah’s awesome post.Dropping names and playing wiseMy Profile

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      You’re welcome Susan, and thank you for your kind words.

      Hmmm. You must be frequenting blogs I’m not since I don’t see a lot of “romantic love” type posts.

      I like your idea of “fine tuning”. That’s a smart move as I believe we often look at the big picture, but forget what it all entails.

  6. Miss BeckyNo Gravatar says:

    Here is what happens to me. I subscribe to dozens and dozens of blogs in my Google reader and keep up with them for awhile. Then I get accustomed to what they write about and how frequently the topic is repeated. Inevitably, if the topic is “been there, done that” then I immediately mark it as “read” in the reader without even opening the blog’s home page. It depends on what sort of blog it is too. Foodie blogs post recipes everyday and if it is something I haven’t tried, then I enjoy reading it. But if it is yet another Banana Nutella Brownie recipe, forget about it. Same holds true for personal development blogs. I get weary of the “live the life you dream about” topics, so enough already. So…yes, it depends on what sort of blog it is. I usually don’t tire of photography blogs, but I do tire of the same post-processing techniques ~ like all those flowery photos that look like they were taken on a foggy day. There is indeed an annoying tendency among bloggers to become part of the herd, and that is boring.
    You ask a very good question. this is the only blog about blogging that I read. And I’m more of a lurker on most blogs ~ but I’m becoming more comfortable with commenting.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Thank you Miss Becky,

      I’m happy to see you commenting and to hear you’re becoming more comfortable with it. To me, comments (both on my blog and on other blogs is where it’s at).

      That’s interesting how you use your reader to determine if you’ll read a post or not and avoid any more recipes on Banana Nutella Brownies. 🙂

      Like you, I also enjoy photography blogs. The talent that’s out there is amazing, as long as like you said, the blogger isn’t following the herd and keeps their work unique.

  7. Write through your heart. By sharing your own experiences , that will make your blog fresh and unique from the others-no one can take it away from you. You can easily explore with other things because your ideas are just overflowing.
    People may have the same subject but they differ in perspective.
    You can also research about a certain topic and compile it. Then, try to think of a better way to improve the ideas. Just do not stick on what you’ve done. In the end you can create a wonderful blog and share it to everybody.=)

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Lyan,

      That’s right. If we remain true to ourselves and share from our own experience, no one else will be writing the exact same thing.

      I like your idea of challenging ourselves to make it better. If we continually do that, in the end, we’ll stand out amongst others.

  8. Keith DavisNo Gravatar says:

    “What the heck. Make it public. Maybe I’ll get a visitor or two.” You can say that again…

    Comments really make a blog for me. All different and all adding something to the post. Makes me want to publish all my posts again after I’ve added all the clever bits from the comments.

    BTW – love the title of this post
    Check out Keith Davis’s awesome post.Two way trafficMy Profile

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Thank you Keith,

      Isn’t that the truth? We can find so much value in the comment sections of blogs, they alone are well worth the read.

      One thing I’ve found is comments often inspire a post topic for me. Those who visit shed a new light on a topic and the more I think about what they said, the more excited I get to take it to my readers and get their input.

  9. I believe that as long as we write from our own perspective and personal experiences, it’s always fresh and interesting.
    Check out vered | Blogger for Hire’s awesome post.Social Media for Customer ServiceMy Profile

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Vered,

      Yes. We can keep our posts fresh and interesting by being authentic to what we experience and sharing how it affected us.

  10. DavinaNo Gravatar says:

    Beating a dead fish, Barbara… lol. Leave it to you 🙂

    I agree with Vered about writing from our own perspectives to keep things fresh. Trouble is, that doesn’t necessarily equate with blog success (if traffic is what a blogger is expecting). The most original content can go unnoticed unless the blogger takes the time to get out there and “network”. And then, there are the lucky ones who seem to attract readers in droves the minute they hit the publish button.

    I think some topics DO get beaten to death but maybe it seems that way because I don’t get outside the circle enough. Bloggers in similar communities tend to be influenced by what each other is writing. I keep my blogging fresh, I believe, because when I write (at the risk of sounding airy fairy), my heart pours into it. I go for the emotional hooks and as I’ve recently said to a few blogging friends… lol… I’m a bit of a drama queen on paper 🙂
    Check out Davina’s awesome post.Sitting on Top of the WorldMy Profile

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Davina, aka the drama queen on paper. 🙂

      Hey, that works for you. With your flair for words, I’d say use it to your advantage.

      That’s a good point about the circles we travel in. If we continue to visit the same blogs over and over again, like you said, we get influenced by one another. Ideally we should expand our reach, but as you know, that also takes time; something we don’t always have a lot of.

  11. HilaryNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Barbara .. as far as I’m concerned finding your blog was a lucky strike .. it’s always fresh, as you say you involve us – and your readers are quite knowledgeable and willing to share as you do. I don’t look at other ‘how to’ blogs as such, there are one or two I enjoy their content too – but it’s at a different market as such.

    I couldn’t look at foodie blogs all day .. I subscribe to one – they’re building a vineyard too … she writes well and her photography is good .. but again I’ll scan & not actively participate – she’s well known in the States anyway.

    Re other blogs I tend to select the bloggers I like .. I do find personal development and self-development rather overdone .. motivational ones too

    Still I enjoy the interaction and love the camaraderie on the blogging circuit.

    I do find if people post 5,6 or 7 times a week .. it’s too much .. and so I do skip some of the posts – can’t do it all! Your twice a week is excellent news .. and really interesting and I look forward to reading the post, reading the comments and generally being around ..

    Thanks – Hilary
    Check out Hilary’s awesome post.Glyphs- Ps and Qs- Murder My Profile

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Thank you for your sweet words Hilary,

      I was laughing at what you said about foodie blogs. If I followed them, I’d be cooking and eating all day and that wouldn’t be good. LOL

      I’m with you. The camaraderie in blogosphere is awesome. Although I’ve seen blogs where the commenters get snarky, all in all, bloggers are a wonderful bunch of folk – all willing to help one another.

      *smiles* Posting twice a week works better for me, too.

  12. suzenNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Barbara! Boy for my first year it seemed I was in a community circle of sorts. After awhile it was all pretty reguritated content, some of the bloggers quit and then I quit the rest. I don’t read that many blogs regularly anymore because I don’t have the time – and don’t want to MAKE the time for it – but the ones I read are all rather different. Gotta say I am quite weary of the “success” themes. Advice and tip formula stuff has been done to death but every once in awhile someone will take a totally creative spin to it – delightful!
    Check out suzen’s awesome post.Fluoride – or – Another F word!My Profile

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Suzen,

      You’re right. To follow a large group of blogs takes time.

      And yes, some topics do take a regular beating, but like you said, when we find a blogger who puts a total different spin on it, it’s a delightful read, indeed.

  13. Tej KohliNo Gravatar says:

    I also noticed such kind of the things ,While I am going to write any post first we choose a title which are not written by anyone. But many blogger posting the same post which was posted somewhere . You can find on Google Blog Search that same post had been posted on many blog ..

    So we have to do Something for quality blogging

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Tej,

      That’s smart to check to see if others have used the same title, however with so many blogs out there, chances are it may have been used previously. I don’t see anything wrong with using the same title, however, we do want to make sure our content is unique.

  14. Hey Barbara,

    While I was working on my new site, I read your blog in silence. So it is a thrill to be able to be vocal again and leave comments.

    My take on the whole blogging thing is that sometimes people post certain topics because they are writing for traffic and not from their heart.

    Now I realize that traffic is important but…a person can get traffic and yet be authentic to who they are. So my view is that a person design a site based on what they love and know and just write from that perspective. That way they have enough material to write about and they can be true to themselves.

    A blogger has to respect their audience and write with respect.
    Check out Nadia Ballas-Ruta – Happy Lotus Lifestyles’s awesome post.Project Revealed- Welcome to the Launch of Happy Lotus Lifestyles- LLCMy Profile

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Welcome back Nadia,

      It’s good to see you’re back in blogosphere. I was on your site and like all of the changes you’ve made. By the looks of it, you’re going to be one busy gal.

      You’re right. Many bloggers are posting on specific topics ONLY to get search engine traffic and have no regard for their readers. Although I don’t have a problem with bloggers trying to make money online, like you said, we also need to have respect for our audience.

  15. JamesNo Gravatar says:

    I think Vered is right. A fresh personal perspective will keep your blog from smelling like a pummeled dead fish.
    Just this blog is different from any other blog I’ve read about blogging. John Chow’s blog is very different from Problogger. I think the fish trap some fall into is the feeding frenzy of doing the exact same thing as everyone else in the school is – always going in the same direction everyone else is. No individuality. I admit I tried the same thing to some extent at one time too.
    I guess the real trick to a successful blog is finding something people do care about and showing them you have something different and useful to tell them about it.
    I’ve been doing this for several years and I’ve seen a lot of blogs come and go, even some seemingly successful ones. I think at the heart, you have to want to blog about whatever you are blogging for in order to keep it up over the long term. That also will help make your blog different from others and provide the bait that brings people to your blog.
    Did I get enough fish related terms into this comment?
    Check out James’s awesome post.How To Disable Facebook Places and Why You Need To!My Profile

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      LOL James,

      Yes, you did get lots of fish related terms into your comment. It makes me wonder if I’ll start getting traffic from fishermen. 🙂

      What you said is so true. Like you, I also tried publishing articles on topics which other bloggers appeared to have success with, but they fell flat.

      And you’re right about us needing to “want” to blog about whatever we blog about. Although our blogs may not grow as fast as we’d like, I think with perseverance and some self promotion, we can end up having a site others will enjoy and we won’t tire of.

  16. SaraNo Gravatar says:


    As I scroll down and down and down, I immediately think of this line in your post…”Maybe I’ll get a visitor or two.” I’d say slightly more than one or two!

    And your readers love you because you give us such interesting assignments and allow us to explore our own need to blog…and I emphasize NEED!

    Okay questions: Yes, I do think some topics are beaten to death, but it doesn’t bother me that much. Sometimes the fact that people are writing about the same topic at same time is fascinating to me. I think it shows the synchronicity (thank goodness for spell check) in the blogosphere:~)

    Keeping things fresh…I don’t really think about it. I know I should, but I just sort write what comes. On the other hand, I will experiment with writing. I don’t have as much fear anymore of just putting something out there and seeing if it works.

    Funny…as I write this, I laugh because, other than writing, I’m not very brave about doing new things:~)

    As usual…great topic!!!
    Check out Sara’s awesome post.Guest Post- The Passport to Travel HomeMy Profile

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Thank you Sara, you’re so sweet.

      LOL, Yeah, that was one of my thoughts over three years ago. A lot has changed since then. 🙂

      I like how you put that, “I just sort [of] write what comes.” I see that as writing from the heart. Being authentic. And when we do that, we remain true to ourselves and our readers will sense that. So even if we’re writing on a topic thousands of others have written about, what we share will be fresh and original.

  17. PatriciaNo Gravatar says:

    All this talk of dead fish and I am reminded I need to head off for some lunch – fuel…

    I am learning how to get a new affiliate on my blog today, They said in their lesson that it would take 10 minutes to connect with their program. I gave myself and hour…and still have not completed what I need to…but knowing that I will make more funds reviewing their books – well that is keeping my eye on the prize. (Could you tell I have been on your archives again this week?)

    I think always learning new things it key

    I think too part of my blogging job is to be such a good reader of blogs….and commenter. Those who are writing need good readers and commenters It is one of my strengths for sure…

    I am also attempting to teach my college friends and neighbors how to read their magazines ONLINE and save the environment… now I do love getting letters in the mail, but still a great blog post feels like a wonder full connection

    I would have liked a picture of a dead fish on this post….:)
    Check out Patricia’s awesome post.SMILING ON A BEAUTIFUL MORNINGMy Profile

    • DavinaNo Gravatar says:

      All this talk of dead fish is ruining my appetite 🙂
      Check out Davina’s awesome post.Sitting on Top of the WorldMy Profile

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      LOL Patricia,

      I thought of adding a picture of a dead fish, but didn’t want to make any of the reader ill looking at it. 🙂

      It sounds like you’re one busy lady. I admire how you make sure you READ the posts of the blogs you follow. That and your comments definitely are strengths of yours. Ones you should be very proud of.

      I hope you enjoyed your lunch. 🙂

  18. PatriciaNo Gravatar says:

    a dead fish is not necessarily a rotten fish?
    Check out Patricia’s awesome post.SMILING ON A BEAUTIFUL MORNINGMy Profile

  19. Tony SingleNo Gravatar says:

    I dunno, Barbara…

    You do realise that you’re more than just a conduit, right? You have a way of bringing up interesting blogging topics and pointers that I certainly don’t always think about. And you know how to back up that insight with your own “rubber meets the road” research if need be. I appreciate that.

    Yours is the only blog about blogging that I actually read. The others are all far too technical for my personal taste (not that there’s anything wrong with being technical). I appreciate that you put everything in layman’s terms, and that you don’t just assume certain knowledge that some of your readers (me) may not have.

    So, yeah, while some topics are probably flogged to death by bloggers out there (especially blogs about blogging), you have put your own indelible, invaluable stamp on yours, making it a true one of a kind. And part of this is as you say, that you’ve invited the commenters to share. Bravo! 😀

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Thank you Tony. Your kind words have be blushing.

      You know, one thing I always keep in mind is my audience. And I assume many are new bloggers who are just like I was when I started; not knowing all that much. Maybe self taught like me, and enjoying the process.

      Although this is a blog about blogging, I treasure how all who contribute in the comment section add value to the topic. I feel it gives those who are lurking and not commenting, a chance to learn from bloggers who are in different stages of their blogging journey, plus they can click on the links and find out more about each and every one of you.

      In the past some have said this blog is similar to “Cheers” – where everybody knows your name. I take that as a high compliment and hope it inspires others to join in.

  20. FriarNo Gravatar says:

    I posted a photo of some dead fish once.

    I ended up with over 300 comments. An all-time record.
    Check out Friar’s awesome post.Custom-Made Serenity PrayersMy Profile

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Friar,

      I must have missed that one, or don’t remember it. Care to share the link? If I didn’t comment, I’ll certainly add one. 🙂

  21. I use to wonder about this and worry a little too. But then I thought about all the libraries on this planet, filled with more books than I could count, on every topic imaginable….

    With more books on each topic than you think anyone would ever read and yet…

    Every writer has their own unique style and take on things. Many people may write on the same topics, but unless it’s a case of plagiarism, the writing is unique.

    There’s plenty of room in the library and online to share any topic you like. The truly unique and talented blog writers will rise to the top, like the cream. The people who push through the tough times and keep on learning, and growing will succeed. But nobody should worry about whether their topic is already done to death.

    Instead ask yourself: “How can I make my blog a unique, creative and compelling place to explore the topic I write about?”
    Check out Blog Angel a.k.a. Joella’s awesome post.As a Blogger- How Do You Measure SuccessMy Profile

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Joella,

      I like your library analogy. It’s very fitting and when we think about it, each day more books are being published, many on the same topic as others.

      I agree. We should never feel what we’re blogging about is unimportant or repetitive. Sometimes it’s OUR words which will resonate with someone, even though they may have read the same information ten times before.

      And yes, the cream will rise to the top. 🙂

  22. First, I had to follow the comment love link to this post just because of the title. I’ve heard of beating a dead horse, but never a dead fish. I’m not real sure why you’d beat either, but it got me here nonetheless.

    I’m one of those in the personal development blogging arena. I also follow a bunch of others in RSS feeds. Many, many, many of these folks cover the same basic topics time after time. I label many of them as quick fix blogs, and many of them are popular because that’s what a lot of people are looking for. Personally, I prefer blogs that are a bit deeper and really make me think.

    The commenting circuit is pretty interesting though, because I see the same names and gavatars at all the various blogs leaving comments. With millions of web surfers and blog readers out there, I think anyone has a chance to develop an audience.
    Check out Eric | Eden Journal’s awesome post.Exploring the Brain Twisting Worlds of Subjective RealityMy Profile

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Eric,

      It’s good to see you here.

      I’m new to your blog, and must admit, yours in not the typical personal development type blog. After reading your post on subjective reality, I pondered what you said for days and know I’ll be back to reread it.

      You’re right. Anyone can develop an audience and a community in their comment section. All it takes is time and perseverance.

  23. J.D. MeierNo Gravatar says:

    Barbara — The most important part you bring to any of your posts is you and your perspective.

    We use a simple lens at work to think about competition or duplication or overlap. It’s as follows:
    – problem
    – approach
    – implementation

    Translating this to blogging, you could write about the same problem or a different problem. You could write about the same problem, but change your approach. You could write about the same problem, and the same general approach, but change your implementation.

    I actually measure against a very simple thing. If I’m writing to solve a problem, even if it’s been “addressed” a 1000 time before, I do a very simple check. Can I send my post to my sister, or a friend, or a stranger, and how quickly can they use it to solve a problem.

    At work, I have to write about a lot of things that have already been touches or covered in some way … but the unique value I bring is I tease out the underlying principles, patterns, and practices … as well as create mental models or visuals and simplify complex information … or help people make sense of it.

    I tend to solve a lot of deeper problems at work, so my technical writing actually helps me solve problems beyond software development in a more systematic and rigorous way … whether it’s leadership stuff, fun stuff, or you name it.
    Check out J.D. Meier’s awesome post.Day 26 – Solve Problems with SkillMy Profile

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Thank you J.D.,

      I like how you “test” your writing. Knowing your words have solved a problem or become useful to the reader, you’ve reached success.

      As I read your comment, it made me think how fortunate those people are whom you mentor. By you making topics easy to understand, you’re creating a following (for lack of a better word) of individuals to whom you could delegate and depend on to understand what you expect.

      And with you doing the same on your blog, it’s understandable why you’re popularity is steadily increasing.

  24. Cath LawsonNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Barbara – I think your blog is way better than any other blog on blogging, because you encourage conversation.

    I’m lucky when it comes to content, because a lot of it comes from personal experience, and that does make it easier sometimes. But it’s difficult not to write on the same topics as others.

    I guess it’s always been done – even in mainstream media, but you’ve just got to come up with a different slant.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Thank you Cath,

      That’s a good point. When we have a lot of personal experience to fall back on, we never lack for material for blog posts. As for repeatedly writing on the same topic, like you said, if we approach it from different angles, it’s almost like it’s all anew.

  25. Debbie YostNo Gravatar says:

    As I see it, it’s all about personality and connection. Some people we relate to and we understand where they are coming from. Some peope we don’t. It’s like having that teacher in school that got through to you. I stunk at math, still do. It’s rather embarrassing actually. But, through high school I made good grades in math. I took the highest math courses I could. It wasn’t until college that I realized just how good my high school math teacher was. She got through to me where the college professor never even made a dent! But others in my college class did just fine with the guy.

    That’s how all the blogs are. Some you relate to and get information from and some just go over your head or are written in a way that doesn’t make sense. So, we need more than one person out there telling us the same thing in different ways so everyone can be reached, some how.
    Check out Debbie Yost’s awesome post.Where Are the GrantsMy Profile

  26. Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Debbie,

    I love your analogy. It IS like when we were in school and some teachers got through to us, and others didn’t.

    I agree. We need all the bloggers we can get. With us having to deal with so many issues on a daily basis, it’s nice when we run onto a blog and we can comment and say. “I know EXACTLY what you mean.”. It’s like we “came home”.

    And, even the ones we don’t agree with, they’re good for helping us to see the bigger picture.

    Don’t you just love blogs/blogging? 🙂

  27. Taxi FinanceNo Gravatar says:

    I think writing from your experience and skills can make the difference. If someone want to catch the attention of a unique visitor, he/she has to write every time something new and meaningful. It needs lots of experience.

  28. Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Taxi Finance,

    Yes. When we write from our own experience, our material will remain original. As long as what we’re sharing isn’t repetitive, our readership should continue to blossom.

  29. AnneNo Gravatar says:

    I actually blogged about it a while ago… about how many blogs there are about blogging. What never fails to make me smile is when bloggers come up with yet another metaphor for blogging. Blogging as this and blogging as that…
    Check out Anne’s awesome post.And… I’m back!My Profile