Friday, August 13, 2010

Blogger Survey Questions

So the Blogger Survey questions are going around again, and I don't think I answered them the first time ...
  1.  Why do you blog? What goals do you have for your blog?

    I have been blogging since 2004.  My "why" has changed, and continues to change.  I began blogging because I wanted to write about what seminary was like.  I really got into blogging when my baby daughter was diagnosed with cancer and it was better to scream into the blogosphere than my backyard.  Now I blog ... hmm, why do I blog now?  Sanity.  Both my own and my husband's, who would have to deal with me following him around the house verbally posting my thoughts to his ears otherwise.

  2. Who is your intended audience?

    Depends on the moment.  Mostly, Unitarian Universalists.  Sometimes, parents.  Other times, cancer parents.  A lot of time, the whole wide world.  But they don't seem to be listening.  Da noive.

  3. Who owns your blog? Does it belong to you as individual or to your congregation or other organization?

    Lizard Eater owns my blog. 

  4. How frequently do you post?

    Way too much or not enough, depending on who you are.  If I have 3 papers and a sermon due, probably about 10 times in one day.

  5. What is the tone of your blog?

    Indignant.  Navel-gazing.  Weepy.  Excited.  Naive.  Snarky.  Confused.

  6. What steps do you take to make sure that your blog is a safe space, both for you and for other participants? Do you have a code of conduct?

    I monitor comments.  But my parents know where it is now, so I'm not sure I can maintain that it is a safe space.  For me, anyway.

  7. What kinds of boundaries do you observe around confidentiality?

    I blog under a pseudonym.  It is also the worst kept secret within Unitarian Universalism.  And I'm okay with that.

  8. How do you respond to comments and email from readers?

    Sporadically at best.

  9. What are the most challenging aspects of blogging in your experience?

    Not to allow myself to begin writing "for" my audience.  e.g. If I know that you, whom I know in real life, are reading, it will affect how I write.  Hence, I maintain the facade of a pseudonym.  It is purely to try and trick me.  I'm quite gullible.

  10. What are the most rewarding aspects of blogging in your experience?

    a) Getting to know other people through their blogs
    b) Getting to share my thoughts and my story -- knowing that if it bores my readers, that's okay, they don't have to pay attention
    c) Meeting the people that I've gotten to know through blogging
    d) Feeling that I'm not alone with my "crazy" thoughts about this crazy religion
    e) Learning from others' journeys
    f) Being in relationship with other bloggers. 

    You know, none of these things adequately express the most rewarding aspect.  The most rewarding aspect is love, plain and simple.  I've gone into hell and back and I have readers/friends who voluntarily walked with me.  As Auspicious Jots once said, "Don't ever let them say you can't find true love through the internet."  You can.  I have. 

  11. What advice would you give to Unitarian Universalists who are new to blogging and want to get started?

    First, read the uu blogs.  Get on and follow the links for a few weeks.  You'll see a myriad of ways it's done.  Leave thoughtful responses on their blogs.  Then start yours.  Be authentic.  Don't worry so much about the responses you'll get, worry about being true to you.  If you start feeling the need to impress others, walk away from the computer.

    Keep reading other blogs and commenting.  A blog without relationship isn't a blog -- it's a public journal.  The relationship is what transforms your writing, your blog, and (testify, Sister!) you.

  12. How do you evaluate the success of your blog? What have been your most successful blog posts or series?

    My blog is successful because I keep wanting to write it.  Period.  I mean, ultimately, I'm not blogging because I think I have some great insight that will change the world, you know?  I'm blogging for me.  Blogging still feeds me.  Ergo, it's successful.  My most successful blog posts are those that kept me from sitting in a corner, sucking my thumb and beating my head against the wall.  Sometimes it's because of what I have written.  Sometimes it's because of the comments people leave.  "Salvation is not a solo act."  (Thandeka)

  13. What do you wish you had done differently in your blogging?

    Never titled a post "How to kill your daddy."  I get hits off that every week, which is deeply disturbing and makes me wonder if I should contact the police.

  14. What other online tools do you use to promote your blog? (i.e. social networking sites, Twitter, social bookmarking tools, etc.)


  15. Do you use an Really Simple Syndication (RSS) feed? How many subscribers do you have?


  16. Do you track site traffic? How many unique visitors do you have per day (on average)?

    Occasionally.  And then I see how many people have found me through googling "how to kill your dad" and I go sit in a corner rocking back and forth with my thumb in my mouth.

  17. Do you find Unitarian Universalist Association resources helpful to you as a blogger? What additional resources could we provide to Unitarian Universalist bloggers?

    I like the stuff through UU World.  They're good about tracking the conversations that go from blog to blog.

  18. Please write any additional comments or suggestions.

    Consider giving blogger a red dot to put on their name tags at UU events so we can identify each other. 

    Hey, that's not a bad idea.  


Lilylou said...

Hey, but just think what the effect on those "dad killers" might be if they read that post. They might think twice, maybe even more. Maybe even decide their dad should get a second choice.

Br. Pax said...

Thank you for our thoughtful answers. As I read I pondered what my own answers would be. Yours were much more eloquently put!