A few days ago I was talking with a friend about my blog and she remarked that my recent blog posts have received a lot more likes than before. We tried to pinpoint the blog post where my “followers” and “likes” count suddenly started to go up, but couldn’t really decide when it happened. After that conversation, I actually went to have a look at my stats and saw that in July the numbers trebled from 522 (June) to 1465 views (July)!
But my stats are not the reason why I wanted to bring up the subject “thoughts on blogging”. Because during that same conversation I said something along the lines of “well, yes, I’m very happy that I have new followers and likes, but I do sometimes feel obliged to make sure I create nice and interesting looking lunches / blog posts”. Her response was to ask ” But why do you blog? And for whom? Yourself or your readers?”
Since then, I have been thinking a lot about this question, because I actually wasn’t sure how to answer it.
I started my blog in February of this year with this Bunny Bento post and this About Dosirakbento post. The last post explained the difference between dosirak / bento and also my reason for blogging (to keep a photo diary of my lunches). The Bunny Bento post was my first, actual lunch photo blog post.
This might be familiar to other new bloggers, and other bento makers, but the first few weeks, well maybe months, of blogging I got sort of “taken over” by my new hobby. I couldn’t stop talking about blogging, connecting with other bloggers, showing off my blog to friends, family and colleagues and in general being a nuisance about it. I also spent a fortune on bento and dosirak accessories.
Now, about 5 months later, it has slowed down. Not stopped though. I still buy the occasional bento box but don’t order any longer for lots of ££’s at my favourite shops. And I continue to love blogging and reading other blogs (especially about food, Korea and Japan but not limited to those subjects only). But I stopped talking non stop about my blog.
However, having a blog did “take me over” in another way.
The more likes I received, and the more followers I gained, the more I felt I had to offer creative, well written, blog posts showing different lunches, new recipes, kawaii (cute) character lunches, food art, explanations on what I make, and why, and how, and so on. I have been pondering about getting a proper camera so I could make better food pictures. I have been feeling guilty about not taking the time to properly thank for (and accept) the nominations I received from some lovely other bloggers (HotDish, MsWuKitchen and lefthandedchopsticks, please accept my apologies. I truly appreciate your nomination, really).
Basically I have been lured into the thought of not wanting to disappoint my readers.
The questions “Why do I blog? And for whom?” from my friend, made me realise I need to go back to the beginning. And that is going back to why I started blogging: keeping a diary of the lunches I make. Enjoy playing with food in a box. Learning about Japanese and Korean food. And to enjoy blogging.
That doesn’t mean that I will stop making occasionally kawaii bento or trying out new dishes. I will still do so, but only because I want to, not because I feel I “have to”.
And I wouldn’t be human if I didn’t like having new followers and receiving likes :-). I will always try to visit back the blogs of my followers, like back (when I truly like it) and respond to your comments.
I also love finding new blogs and reading the stories shared by other bloggers or being inspired by recipes and ideas.
But I won’t accept Awards. I do appreciate being nominated, but just don’t have the time to truly accept and reciprocate the appreciation in the spirit these Awards are being meant, given and passed on.
I will stop worrying about the quality of my photo’s and whether my punctuation is right or my writing style interesting, constructive or good enough.
Finally, and most important, I will stop feeling guilty for posting a picture of a “boring” daily dosirakbento such as the one above.
Because this is how most of my daily lunches look like. Nothing fancy, nothing creative, just rice, veggies, protein. OK, and a cute food pick. Those ££’s spent on Bento accessories shouldn’t be wasted after all… 😉
I’m not sure if the above makes sense to anybody other than myself, but I’m sort of glad to at least have said it (written down).