On Blogging for my Mother

My mother, a blogging novice, has recently discovered that I author this blog. She summed it up like this: “Most blogs are just a bunch of family photos, but yours… well… you blog about whatever you want to, don’t you…” she said, almost accusingly.
It’s true. I blog about whatever I want. Everything from my random daily activities, house projects, and mormonism, to urban planning, biking, and whatever else I feel like writing about. My decision to include topics about whatever i want keeps this blog firmly within the “personal blog” realm.
Sometimes I think about splitting this thing up into about 12 different blogs – separate blogs for bikes, mormonism, planning, etc. The tricky thing about mashing all these unrelated topics into a single blog is that there is guaranteed to be nobody that is actually interested in everything I post. I might write the best posts ever about sidewalks, but people that want to read about sidewalks don’t want to have to wade through a bunch of my ‘home improvement’ posts to get to the content they’re interested in. Mish-mashing all my favorite topics into a single blog almost guarantees that not many people will become regular followers of the blog.
Since the only consistent element across all posts is that I write them – the only people I can reasonably expect to be interested in all my posts are people who know me personally – and even then, not really. A good friend summed it up nicely in an email. He wrote, “I read like 3/4 of the way through that post before thinking…wait this is about a pedestrian crossing in St Louis Park, what I am doing?”
So basically, the only person who could possibly be interested in reading everything I post is my mother – maybe my wife. If I want a larger audience, I’ll have to create spinoff topical blogs…. What do you think, readers? Good idea? Bad idea? Is there any topic in particular you’d like to see spun off?

19 comments to On Blogging for my Mother

  • Moe

    I've struggled with this as well and found this to be true. Having many blogs, all centered around different topics is more successful, but having one blog with many topics is more enjoyable.

    IMO, blogs should be about the person, not the topic.

  • I have the same problem and have thought about making my blog more specific to one topic or starting more than one – but I don't want to spend all my time keeping track of multiple blogs. So I say do whatever is most convenient for you – your friends and family will enjoy your blog either way.

    Plus, like how Moe said, "blogs should be about the person, not the topic," I like reading blogs to see the many things an individual person is interested in.

  • Reuben, I enjoy your blog because of its randomness,it's quite amusing and some times I hate that I enjoy reading about sidewalks, and your squirrel carcases. Its my guilty pleasure. 🙂

  • R: Keeping it random keeps it interesting.

    M: You can have it be about the person while still adhering to a topic. I try to do that with mine but perhaps others view that attempt as unsuccessful.

  • Andrew Guzman

    I don't know how blogger works all that well, but I bet with a little bit of setup you could keep this blog the way it is, but have your posts feed into a few different blogs that are more specific.

    So.. you'd set up lets say a separate bike blog and a city planning blog for example. When you go to write your post, you just write it on this blog, but you add a "Biking" tag. The post appears on this catch-all blog, but then also gets added to your biking specific blog without any real extra work on your part. That's probably not exactly how it would work on blogger but I'm sure it's possible.

    Then your friends and family could just keep reading this one and filter the content themselves, but you could work on directing more traffic to your specific blogs by linking them on biking sites or whatever else.

    It's strange you just posted this, as I've been sitting here with a notebook for the last hour or so sketching out ideas for a blog which I decided might be better as two blogs.. then three.. so I've been sort of working out the same idea in my head as well.

  • I have three blogs myself (my general life, my reviews of stuff, and my exmormon thoughts), but… I'm glad that you just have one. I like the eclectic mix, and I end up thinking about things I'd never think about if your blog was more subject exclusive.

  • Bolcheck

    I want all my Reuben in one place, thank you very much. If you spin off anything, I will abandon your pansy ass and go read "the Condie Times."

  • Thanks for the comments, folks. I worry that my blog is a little schizo sometimes….

    Darcey – you're using an RSS feeder to keep track of your blogs, though, right???

    Andy – I like this high-tech stuff you're talking about… automatically posting to multiple sites without any other work! I don't have a clue to set something like that up, though. I guess I could just write/format everything on the catch-all blog, then I'd just have to copy/paste the html onto the topical blog and it would have the same effect without too much extra work. I can't wait for you to start blogging. Let me know when you're live!

  • simplysarah, wait – 3 blogs?? I only read one. The three listed on your profile (one of which is private)? Or is there another one, too?

    Bolcheck – The last thing I want is to lose readers to The Condie Times… p.s. what was the address to your web site again? Did you ever figure out how to syndicate your content via RSS?

  • Also, your sister. A few days ago I was 3/4 of the way through composing a comment telling you how smart I thought your mid-block crossing post was before thinking, "this is too dumb a comment to make about crossing the street, just read the blog and move on."

  • Thanks, Gastro – you should know that half the reason I write things is because I'm hoping people will comment.

  • Paul

    Austin Texas has the slogan "Keep Austin Weird"…
    Keep SingleSpeed Random

  • I have three topic-oriented blogs and am about ready to launch a fourth. Plus facebook… I always wanted to juggle. But I agree with the others: don't fix what ain't broken

  • Sarah

    I am pro-Random. Go Random Bloggers! We shall unite! 😉

    I think you could focus on your topical theme by using tags and then create tag categories and your readers could follow whatever tags they are most interested in. Right? No? Just a random thought.

  • yeah, my third blog is public but not listed on my profile…so as to protect those loved ones who'd rather not think so much about my apostasy…i'll link it here if you're curious or ever *terribly* bored.

    it's more like my "processing aloud" blog

  • simplysarah – I'd love to read it. you can link it here or email the address to me at reubencollins @* gmail.

    you know, if you want…

  • Hey Reuben – I use Google Reader to keep track of the blogs I read. I meant I didn't want to spend all my time keeping track of WRITING several blogs (to keep the topics separated). Sorry for not clarifying. 🙂

  • leavingthegarden.blogspot.com

    Feel free to disagree, agree, be bored, etc.

  • curtis

    I know this is an ancient post, but here’s another vote for keeping it random. I like the melange of different topics (all interesting!)