The Joys of Blogging – into a fourth year!!

The Joys of Blogging

 

I’ve been blogging for exactly three years now. It has been a very strange and time consuming experience. I was very naïve. I imagined I would put out my material and discover a small number of like-minded people who I could argue with, share views, befriend, laugh with, enjoy, discuss and debate.

I discovered that it doesn’t quite happen like that.

So what is my material?

Well, part of the reason I set up my blog was to provide a vehicle for promoting my books. So part of the content has been extracts from my many books. As a writer I enjoy writing and sharing my writing. The rest of the blog has been made up of my poetry, art, photography, and comment on current political, religious and social issues that I am interested in, people that have inspired me, books, travel, and Rock music – particularly lyrics – which is one of my great passions. I also feature humour and philosophy. So it is a varied fayre.

I tend to have some strong controversial views and a tendency not to hold back so I did expect some fiery exchanges. But that’s fine.

Somehow the book promotions got lost a little on the journey.

Well I did make some good new friends across the world and have greatly enjoyed the enriching interaction. I have now accrued 2140 followers on WordPress, 5000 facebook and 1500+ on twitter so I know there is an audience out there who must be getting something out of it. I get a good number of views and likes though very few comments. Most of my audience are amazingly quiet. It’s a bit like performing in a big theatre that is silent. I do find that a bit strange.

I have had some big fall-outs with people – mainly over Brexit, Trump, religion and immigration – which is par for the course. I was expecting that. I was also expecting to attract the odd fanatic, nutcase and unpleasant character – and I did.

I have been physically threatened, abused, personally belittled, arrogantly put down, told that I will be ‘sorted’, that kiddie porn has been put on my computer, that my bank details, paypal and other details have all been compromised, ridiculed and subjected to a barrage of unpleasantness. Sometimes rafts of obnoxious comments under different aliases. Honestly – what goes on in people’s heads? Some bullies really want to silence anybody who thinks differently to them.

FREE SPEECH – ONE EACH!!

I started with a policy of leaving all comments up on display. I worked on the principle that the obnoxious ones showed themselves up and that people could judge for themselves. I changed that. I took to deleting extreme nastiness because it was often directed at various commentators, as well as myself, and designed to upset and drive them away. Besides, I did not need all the negative vibes. Now I delete posts that have personal abuse or nastiness. I don’t mind disagreement or debate but disrespect is unnecessary in my view. We can surely disagree intelligently without unpleasantness, can’t we?

So these three years have been a mixed bag. Has it been worthwhile? Well I don’t know. Like all things there is the good and the bad. I have published 5423 posts in three years and am still blogging.

We’ll see how my fourth year of blogging goes.

 

Thank you to all my new friends and followers across the world. You make it worthwhile.

 

Don’t let the trolls win!

 

Thank you to all those of you who bought my books. You fill me with joy. Please leave a review on Amazon!

 

I look forward to interacting with you through my fourth year of blogging!! I wish you all the best!!

 

Opher 26.5.2018

35 thoughts on “The Joys of Blogging – into a fourth year!!

  1. I’m laughing. I go to the comment section to wish you luck for the next 3 years of blogging and see that I’m first, and that you have 5 likes!! I always wonder about the likes. My blog posts used to automatically post on Facebook where they’d get a lot of likes. I realised that blog posts were actually read by one person that I knew of, the others were responding to the featured image and some kind of acknowledgement habit.
    Discussion good; personal assault bad = I agree with your commenting policy.

  2. Hey dude, Namaste 🙂

    You have a highly creative mind that won’t be silenced or impacted upon by those whose subjective opinion is different but who choose not to be decent and noble when expressing it when commenting. I’m sorry to hear your blog has been subject to trolls. It is an unfortunate disturbing symptom of a misplaced displaced disquieted world.

    Congratulations on your Blogging land-mark! Tis an occasion to celebrate. Three years and 5423 posts! Bloody hell, that’s good going 🙂 You are prolific – an approximate average of 5 a-day, and way better than fruit and veg lol 🙂

    Rock on with the next 5-tonne of words, spiel, rhyme and photo!

    Enjoy the weekend. Namaste 🙂

    DN

    1. Thanks Dewin – it feels like a milestone too. Constantly looking for fresh things to put up on the blog and feed the beast.
      All the best to you! Change the world piece by piece.

      1. You do a great job of entertaining, expressing with earnest, and presenting melody for the masses.

        Creatively change this world piece-by-piece.
        With blog and post, with free-speech!
        Enflame the beast with inextinguishable fire,
        Romance the beast with unquenchable desire.
        Feed the beast who each day lifts us higher!

        Thanks for best wishes. Have a great weekend blogging! 🙂

        DN

    2. Dewin Nefol: I agree that he has a highly creative mind – one that’s bordering on insanity if his Nazi and Goebbels comments are anything to go by referring to USA on another recent blog post, “If The Cap Fits”. I have just read it and that “highly creative mind” was decimated by a most intelligent American lady. Such phrases are always the proverbial defense tools of the intellectually challenged when trumped in a debate (no pun intended). There was simply nothing “decent or noble” about his behaviour in this case and perhaps you should read it before exercising your stoma.

      Having since read that I’m not particularly surprised that there may be some out there looking to give him a psychological spanking. Might teach him some manners and respect.

  3. Congrats on the milestone. You must feel like a hardened veteran now. I have only been blogging 7 months – about my Dog. Like you, I love the interaction and the opportunity to be writing. Any tips my friend?

    1. Shareofthedog – yes – develop a thick skin, ignore any abuse and write exactly what you think, feel, love, hate, enjoy or despise with a passion! Then write some more! For writing is the most fulfilling exercise you can do!
      PS – my dog died many years ago. I still miss the smelly devil!

  4. I had a blog for stamp collectors – yes, believe me! Some 8,500 but I haven’t made a post for four years and I still have that many followers, which cannot be true.
    I know that I read on this blog a while back when you were bragging to someone who you were disagreeing with that you had 6,000 subscribers to your blog. Now there’s just over 2 thousand and you didn’t have facebook and twitter back then. Very strange. With wordpress, facebook & twitter all people do now is put a block on incoming rather than going through the rigmarole of unsubscribbing. You wouldn’t be able to detect that. What counts is the contribution rates.

    1. Roger – though I don’t when you took up stamp collecting Andrew – I have always had twitter and facebook ever since I had my blog. I am and was very clear on the numbers. The total on wordpress, email, facebook and twitter used to be 6000 and now it is:
      2143 WordPress, 5000 facebook and 1522 twitter – you can add that up any way you want – I reckon it to be 8665 as of this minute.
      I agree that participation is important. Thanks for contributing.

      1. You’ve lost me. I’m a son of Don Newcombe, famous of the Brooklyn Dodgers, Los Angeles Dodgers & Cincinnati Reds. I trade all kinds of sports stamps.
        I’m not looking to pick fault but you might have forgot but if you post something about blog readership and I happen to be scouring the search engines for info stuff, you might come up and you did and I’d reckon two years past. You need real good search engines to get that level which I need to find sellers for trade.
        See, I made a list A to Z of the takeups on all new blogs back then for my own marketing purposes and I most likely still have on file somewheres.
        I got it clear, not 4,999 or 5001, but 5000 on the nose. LMAO.

  5. Just read an Interesting Guardian interview with Chelsea Clinton, whose high profile has brought her lots of unwanted attention over the years. Here’s an extract –

    “Her eyes fill with dismay as she cites the rising reports of bullying in schools … “Not just the hundreds but now thousands of instances in schools across America, where children are citing the president as they’re demeaning a little girl, or they’re chanting ‘Build a wall’ in an attempt to demean and degrade brown children. So the reason, now, I no longer ignore it when people say hateful things to me on the street or on social media is, I think we have to shine a light. I think those of us who have platforms to do that have to say this is wrong and unacceptable, so we don’t normalise it but try to detoxify what has been unleashed. Because if we don’t, we leave a vacuum. And I think the darkness fills that vacuum.”

    Keep flying that flag of fairness, respect and honesty, Opher!

    1. Thanks for that Dave. It certainly does seem to me that Trump and Brexit have both created an ethos of hate and fear. They have emboldened bullies and given support for bullying and nastiness. In the face of that we either shut up or speak out.
      I’m not one for shutting up.
      There is no excuse for nastiness or abuse. Bullies need taking on.

      1. The only kind of reply which is acceptable, I think, is one which begins by agreeing with something said and only then mentions specific areas of disagreement with reasoned explanations of the contrary point of view. Without proper rules of debate – as old as democracy itself – we’re in a slanging match across the school playground. Oh yeah, wearing balaclavas …

    2. Dave Kingsbury – You are either not paying full enough attention and only dip in and out as time permits or are kidding yourself on or perhaps simply brown-nosing.
      In recent weeks he has not been quite so loyal about flying that flag of fairness, respect and honesty. He has reached the point where if he has been taken to task on any of his unfounded and outspoken points of view, he simply deletes the last post of his opponent, leaving his own post as the final word. In fairness this is not all the time but noticeably more and more frequent. I’ve noticed that he will not tolerate any negative comments in particular towards his beloved Labour party, but it could be any subject. A few weeks ago I read someone’s post, went to fill my kettle, came back and he’d taken it down. Something similar happened the following week and the next and the next. My inbox is full of dead leads! Very strange. But there again, very strange fellow all in.

      1. Thank you, Christopher, for allowing me the choice between inattention, self-delusion or sycophancy. The reality is more straightforward. When somebody writes something I strongly agree with, I like to say so. If they write something I disagree with I mostly ignore it – we live in free societies, after all, which thrive on a range of opinions – although sometimes I’ll reply, beginning with any areas of obvious agreement before mentioning where I differ. I always try to back up my views with evidence and avoid any kind of innuendo and personal comment. True debate is only possible amongst equals and should be conducted in a civil fashion. We comment on other people’s sites as guests and it is their right to remove anything which fails to engage properly with the words they have posted. The anonymity of the internet makes it doubly important that we maintain a civilised discourse. I have always found this site to be especially tolerant of contrary viewpoints – so you see, I have been paying attention! I have also read replies here which were gratuitously unhelpful and did nothing to further debate.

      2. Thank you for your considered and courteous reply. A rare thing these days. I agree with your general consensus of opinion, however, we are not actually discussing your actions. Whilst I applaud that you do take the time to backup with evidence, I wouldn’t put too much on the blogmasters merits in this case. For instance, just ten minutes ago I received an incoming notification for another post of a few days ago, where Mr. O had made a point of questioning the contributor on a point about the state of Sweden, where Mr O was seemingly of the belief that Sweden was a model of peace and tranquility, a shining beacon of the Socialist State and would not tolerate any information to the contrary. However, today the Swedish Police made a public announcement to women that they should not stay out late to protect themselves from being raped. Basically, Mr O has constant trouble with taking in any new information that is new to himself.
        I also read another recent post where he resorted to claims of Nazism and Goebbels style propaganda towards an excellently structured and well considered number of points from an American contributor who certainly knew her onions. It was a pathetic grasp at straws. Anyone with any mettle would say let me take that in and do some research. Of course there are many useless posts and they seem to keep coming from the same few people, at least the names begin to become familiar, comments of “you’re right Opher, I so agree Opher”. Most useful indeed.

  6. Congratulations on your anniversary.
    My neighbour likes to say, ‘I may not agree with your opinion, but I stand by your right to express your opinion.’ I think he’s probably paraphrasing someone else, though I’ve never tried to track it down. It seems like a good policy to live by.
    I hope your next year brings engagement without the aggression.

  7. I started blogging in October 2014. To say it’s been an adventure would be putting it mildly! I’ve made SO many new friends, read SO much great poetry, and just learned SO much more about the world as a whole. It’s so been worth it!

    1. Bit of a mixed experience for me Cheryl. But I did expect to get a few reactions. When you speak your mind on things you invite some of the more unpleasant types to come out of the woodwork. But I too have made friends all over the world. It been interesting to say the least.

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