To blog or not to blog?

I recently read a blog post on amateurgourmet.com titled ‘When food blogs stopped being food blogs’ (My Custard Pie thanks for sharing the link on Fooderati!). The author laments the fact that modern day food blogs are looking ‘more and more like food magazines’, the likes of Martha Stewart Living and that the good old days of casual food blogging where people would say what they want, how they want and when they want without giving two hoots about presentation or prose, are gone forever. A few days later another post pops up in my WordPress reader with a 121 page downloadable guide on how to grow traffic and build your blog. The advice given herein is the total opposite of what Amateur Gourmet was saying; interesting content, perfect prose with correct grammar and spelling and eye-catching images are what rocks the blogosphere boat. The guide even gives tips on how to make the transition from  ‘blog’ to ‘brand’.

Interesting yet conflicting perspectives on blogging by blogging greats (Amateur Gourmet has been doing it for over 10 years! And I must add his blog is very entertaining). Being an amateur blogger (only eight posts and counting) I was left baffled…to blog or not to blog?

There are no hard and fast rules to blogging, at least that’s what I thought when I started The Stove & I. I badly needed a creative output which had something to do with food and what better way to unleash your inner Nigella Lawson (or in this case Martha Stewart) than start your own food blog? I love coming up with new and creative ways to transform my foodie thoughts into blog posts – it’s relaxing, fun and my new-found favourite pastime. To me, a blog is a form of self-expression – some use it as a platform to showcase their creativity, some use it to voice their opinions, their thoughts, journaling their day to day lives – like an online diary. To each his own. Why can’t we stop being judgemental and try and appreciate each other’s work for what it is? (sadly we humans are extremely judgemental creatures!) While everyone is entitled to their opinion, I sometimes feel there is unnecessary pressure on bloggers, especially on those who are new to the arena. There are way too many opinions or should I say way too many cooks? 😉

Food blogs are my e-caffeine – whenever I need a break from work I sneak into some of my favourite blogs and get lost in their world. Some are like works of art with beautiful photography and story like prose, some are witty, random and downright funny with candid images taken from mobile phones, but all of these bloggers share one thing in common – the sheer passion for blogging and their commitment to it. And no one can judge that.

In the end it doesn’t really matter what you do with your blog because it is your personal space. You want to start your post with a picture of that perfectly photographed plate of macaroons? Go ahead, DO IT! You want to swear like a sailor but are too worried about what the blogging community would make of your choice of words? Don’t think twice, DO IT!  You want to post an Instagram of your husband flipping pancakes in his undies to stick on your ‘Pancake Day’ post? Yes!! By all means! Just DO IT! (no, am not promoting Nike)

And as My Custard Pie commented “No matter how long you’ve been blogging, nothing will give you more satisfaction than blogging as if no one is reading” (Cook Republic) – and that’s exactly what I’m going to do.

Bloggin 101, as much as I value and appreciate all opinions, can we please hush for a while?

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