Amateur Blogger: Everybody Starts Somewhere… Embrace Your Fears
There are a bazillion things an amateur blogger might be afraid of.
The actual blog set-up, the theme design, working with scripts and plug-ins and html.
For the newbie blogger, navigating these waters can seem treacherous.
Believe it or not though, these aren’t the areas where most new bloggers get hung-up.
On the contrary, the thing that terrifies amateur bloggers most is the writing.
New bloggers operate under the mistaken assumption that everything you see on the Internet is the absolute truth, researched by rocket scientists, backed up with facts and data, and written by award-winning novelists.
Nothing, absolutely nothing, could be further from the truth.
But this belief leaves the amateur blogger frozen in his tracks, like a deer facing the oncoming headlights of a Mac truck going 90 miles an hour.
Many new bloggers don’t even get their blogs started because they’re too afraid of looking like, well, amateurs.
(Apparently, they haven’t done a lot of blog surfing.)
Here are four points to consider if you’re one of those amateur bloggers afraid of taking the plunge:
1. It’s impossible to know everything
There’s not a blogger on the planet who knows everything there is to know about his niche.
It’s just not possible.
Think of your blog as a conversation.
When you’re having a conversation with your friend who dabbles in woodworking as a hobby, he may appear to be an expert to you because you know nothing about saws and hammers and dovetail corners.
But at some point during your conversation you’re going to ask him a question and he’s going to say, “I don’t know.”
When he does, will you think any less of him? Of course not.
No one can know everything and now you both have an opportunity to learn something new together.
2. You have to earn their respect
Nobody comes to your blog believing you’re the expert who can answer all their questions.
You don’t automatically respect a stranger you meet on the street, so it only makes sense that you wouldn’t automatically respect a blogger.
You’re going to have to earn the respect of your readers and since most of them will only stay on your blog for a few minutes at a time, it’s going to be a gradual process.
That means you can take your time impressing them with your knowledge.
Tell them a little bit today and a little bit tomorrow.
This way, you’ll have plenty of time to increase your knowledge and improve your writing skills.
3. Honesty is the best policy
Now, had your friend the woodworker answered your question with a boldface lie or just made something up off the top of his head, you’d have seen right through him.
At that moment, you’d lose a little bit if the respect you had for him, you’d take a step back from your friendship, and you’d wonder just how much he really knows about woodworking?
Has he been lying to you all along? For future woodworking questions you’d probably consult someone else.
But because he was honest with you and said, “I don’t know” you still respect him, you still love him, and as far as you’re concerned he’s always going to be your go-to guy when you have woodworking questions.
In fact, the next time you’re at the hardware store you’re going to look up the answer to that question and share it with him because he’s such an honest guy.
4. We learn by doing
Everything you’ve ever done in your life requires trial and error and repetition before you become successful.
When you were an infant you didn’t just wake up one morning, decide you were going to walk, and stroll through the garden picking daisies.
You stood, you fell, you pulled yourself up on the table, you fell, you held on to your mother’s hand and you fell again.
But gradually you learned how to walk.
The first time you sit down to blog it can be scary but you’re not the first amateur blogger to take the plunge and you won’t be the last.
Be yourself, be honest, and remember: That which doesn’t kill us only makes us stronger.
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