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An Apology


In the words of Fiona Apple--I've been a bad, bad girl.  And it's about time I start apologizing.  Blogging is important to me.  Every day I try to come up with a post that I think you guys will get something out of.  Sometimes I accomplish that, sometimes not.  But despite what's going on in my life, I usually try to make sure I post five days a week.  So that, I've stuck to.


However, what I have slacked off on is what I like about blogging the most--interacting with all my bloggy friends.  You guys are brilliant and insightful and supportive.  You write blog posts that make me think or laugh or teach me something.  And I used to dedicate a big part of my morning to reading and commenting on all these posts--not out of some reciprocation obligation, but because I enjoyed it.

But over the last few months, I can say, I've gotten to the point where I barely read more than five or so blogs most days.  And usually it's because someone tweeted the post and I can easily click over to it when the title catches my attention.  Even my industry standbys--Nathan Bransford, Janet Reid, Pub Rants--have gone from daily reads to occasional ones.

I also used to respond to every comment left on one of my posts because, seriously, I LOVE getting comments and am so thankful to those of you who take the time to say something.  I still read each and every comment, but there are days I don't get around to responding back in the comments (and yes, I'm still bitter that Blogger doesn't have threaded comments to make this more efficient).

And I wish I had some respectable excuse as to why, but really it's just a combination of things.  One is that the more followers I get (thanks to all of you, btw), the harder it is to make sure I get out to everybody's blogs.  It also means I don't auto-follow back anymore because I don't want to make a promise to someone by following and then never make it back over to their blog.  The other thing is that when I'm in rough drafting mode, I'm consumed with the need to write and between doing the normal life things we all have (being a mom, wife, housekeeper, cook, friend, critique partner, etc.), I only have so much time to dedicate to other things--so doing blog stuff falls to the wayside if I have decide between it and writing.

Now, I know that's not a unique story--each one of you balances similar things each day--but I'm just letting you know why I've become a less active blog buddy.  It is not because I don't heart you.

Crap, did I just say it's not you, it's me?  Well, it's the truth.  :)  I'm going to try to do better, but I doubt I will ever be able to maintain the level of commenting and blog reading I used to until I'm in editing mode again.  So, I hope that you will continue to stop by and comment even though I'm not always the best reciprocator.  And if you have any tips to share on how you balance your blog stuff with your writing, let me know!

So am I only the one feeling this guilt?  How do you balance your blogging/internet stuff with your writing and every day life stuff?  Do you expect blog reciprocation--here's a great article on that btw)?


**Today's Theme Song**
"Criminal" - Fiona Apple
(player in sidebar, take a listen)


Reader Comments (38)

Sometimes I read a lot of posts, other days hardly any at all. And I think it's okay.

I can't/don't follow everyone who follows me. That's okay, too!;)

May 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterCaroline Starr Rose

The only time I really expect Blog reciprocation is during blogfests, where the whole point is getting out and reading everyone else's stuff. So if I don't get out to read everyone's contribution, I definitely don't expect them to mine, but I make every effort to at least hit the people who are commenting on my piece. The rest of the time, I read blogs when the titles catch my eyes, but I do definitely go through my blogroll at least once a day and check out what the latest posts are, even if I don't click through all of them.

It's a hobby, you know? It's not my entire life. Commenting on EVERY blog I follow is great for procrastinating on getting my real work done, but it's best if I don't make a habit of that :P I'm perfectly happy if I get an occasional comment from individuals, and certainly do not expect people to post comments on every single one of my posts.

May 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAmalia T.

I completely understand, and I think most people would too. I follow far more blogs than I can read in any one day. Some weeks I have more time to read and comment; other weeks I barely stay afloat on my own blog. I think you're doing just fine! (And I loved the dog photo!)

May 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAmy Jo Lavin

Heh...I am a guilt-ridden creature. I feel guilty when I post on blogs (like now) b/c I am not writing, and I feel guilty when I'm writing really hard that I have gone into my writing cave and withdrawn from humanity again. No apologies necessary -- you've got a generous blog and have a lot to share. Happy writing!


May 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMichele Lang

Heh...I am a guilt-ridden creature. I feel guilty when I post on blogs (like now) b/c I am not writing, and I feel guilty when I'm writing really hard that I have gone into my writing cave and withdrawn from humanity again. No apologies necessary -- you've got a generous blog and have a lot to share. Happy writing!


May 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMichele Lang

Yeah, blog reading and commenting is supposed to be fun, not an obligation. Don't worry about it.

May 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterLivia

We can't expect reciprocation every single time. I mean isn't this is all about putting it out in hopes that it will help us while benefiting someone else. So for right now, just know your help has outweighed any short comings you think you might have.

Thanks & and keep up the great work.

May 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterShain Brown

Hmmm... I search for that balance every day. Sometimes I read a number of posts, sometimes not so much. I do try to hit those titles that pull me in right off the bat from my blogroll but to be honest it is different day to day.

Don't worry we all know you are still here, reading, writing & blogging...we are patient bunch. ;o)" rel="nofollow">Visit My Kingdom Anytime

I think people understand, I do. I mean, we're all writers, and what better thing to do with our time than write, especially when a story is begging to be written.

May 10, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterpaulgreci

No worries. We're all in the same boat, and when we're in that creative mode, sometimes there just isn't time to come up for air, let alone prance around the blogosphere!

May 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJoanne Brothwell

I have good weeks and bad weeks (and sometimes bad months). I think we can only do as much as we can do. I kept up with blogs really well when I followed less than 100. Now, not so much. I still do try to follow people who follow me and check in with everyone at least once a month (google reader helps because I can tell how long it's been since I've visited a blog). It isn't great and I know I don't reciprocate like I should, but it's all I can do right now. I think everyone understands how crazy it gets. If we're going to be writers we have to have some time to write.

May 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterNatalie

We all do what we can. Sometimes I feel like I'm being pulled in 8 different directions and I am only giving a portion of myself to each thing. I hate it...but sometimes it's just the way it has to be.

I love blogging and interacting with other loggers, making friends, commiserating...but in the end...if I have a half hour and it's either blog or work on a WIP....I have to write.

May 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterStephanie

I understand. I think blogging guilt has stopped me from blogging altogether, and from commenting much (sometimes when I comment, it seems people feel oblligated to visit my blog and return a comment, but I haven't been blogging lately etc). But I appreciate and read your blog (and and don't expect a comment back)!

May 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMJR

You are so honest with this post! I struggle with the same thing myself and sometimes I don't visit everyone's blog. Especially now that I'm up to 147 followers, it gets really hard and takes hours to leave a comment on everyone's post.

Oh well, we do out best. :)

May 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAubrie

I just did a similar post about a month ago. We can't do everything and make everyone happy. We all understand how it goes.

As for me, the only day I really blog my heart out is Monday. I make it a point to get to each and every blog I follow and comment, that way I know that at least one day, I've 'talked' to every one. The rest of the week, not so much. Unless it's a special friend or an interesting topic. Then if I have time on the weekends, I'll go around to blogs I may have missed during the week. If not, no biggie. Relax, Roni. It's all good.

And I LOVE that puppy!

May 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterPiedmont Writer

I struggle with the exact same thing (looks like everyone else does, too). If it comes to blogging or writing, writing will always win. But I love the support and the advice I get in the community, so I make an effort to get out there at least three or four times a week to make it happen.

Also, I think there are some basic blogging rules that I'm frequently unaware of (like commenting on comments to your blog). I now feel like I'm a bad blogger, too. Boo.

May 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJEM

I just said this on my blog last week. We all have hectic lives so I think everyone understands. I know I do. Don't feel bad. Lord knows we all have crazy lives too. Trust me I feel the same way about not being able to respond to the comments let alone read more than a few blogs a day. No worries.

May 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterChristine Danek

you may feel bad, but you're just making the rest of us feel better. i read all the blogs i follow on my google-reader. but that means i have to open a new window to actually access the real blog and leave a comment, so i'm the worst kind of lurker and hardly ever comment anywhere.

you're failing to stay supper blogger/commenter forever makes me feel far less guilty about my lurking.

May 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKate

This is totally understandable Roni, and if your own blog wasn't so great it might matter more. My guess is that there are very few Elana Johnson's out there who can be super-bloggers, moms, AND writers.

Personally I'm still pretty new to blogging, so it's still kind of exciting but if I wasn't I would definitely spend more time actually writing and less time reading and commenting on blogs. It is important, it's just not THAT important.

Thanks for sharing though.

May 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMatthew Rush

What Amalia said.

I'm in the midst of final exams and turning in semester grades, so I'm hardly reading or commenting at all.

Life comes first. Always.

May 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterChristine H

P.s. it was the cute photo of the puppy that got me here today!

May 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterChristine H

Been going through the exact same thing, so I totally understand.

May 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSusan R. Mills

Just goes to show how well the social networking thing is going when you don't have time to get to them all.

I've been slacking myself lately, and feeling guilty. I've also pretty much stopped reading the industry professional blogs. I regret that most.

I think we all have to once in a while prioritize the blogging/writing/day life schedules.

Thanks for sharing your little crisis; I know how huge it feels - been there myself - but its good to know how many others are also struggling.

Have a good day Roni.


May 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterDonna Hole

Wow. Way to be open and honest about it, Roni! You are one of my must-reads - that will not change, whether you comment on my blog daily or not at all. Yes, I love seeing your smiling face in comments, but I don't feel disappointed in you when I don't. None of us can keep up with comments as much as we'd like. If we let it become an obligation, though, we lose the fun. We love you. We love your blog. Do what you can do and no more. :-)

May 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterShannon O'Donnell

NO need to apologize girl! Life gets busy! I should come and say Hi more often!

May 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterChristiejolu

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