Do you feel a part of a blogging community?

I have been blogging for many years now and can honestly say I still enjoy it. It’s something that’s become a part of me and has helped enormously in many ways over the years. Through the good times and the bad, my blog has waited patiently for me, knowing I’d be putting my thoughts into words at some stage. And I have.

It’s been partly therapeutic, a bit insightful, a tad honest, and then again sort of addictive. When I blog I feel productive, creative and connected – it makes me a more observant person and gives me a desire to share – whether or not anyone reads my words or not!

We all have stories to tell and usually our blogs are the way we share our thoughts – for whatever reason.

I particularly like the feeling of belonging to a group of like minded people spread all over the world. One thing many bloggers I’ve spoken to over the years have said is that what they didn’t expect to happen was to find friendship and acceptance as a part of their blogging ‘journey’.

I’ve made many friends, met some in person and others are friends inside my computer. I got over the scary feeling of meeting bloggers in real life because when I did meet them they were exactly as I’d imagined from their words and views.

Many bloggers have also said they didn’t expect to find friendship and acceptance as a part of their blogging ‘journey’. But they did.

In a post I wrote What makes you return to a blog again and again? I asked readers to tell me why they return to some blogs more than others and the results were very interesting!

friends quote
friends quote

Do you join in link ups?

One of the best ways to find bloggers is through link ups or link parties, which can be problematic if they are too big and unwieldy. I participate in a few link ups as a co-host: What’s on your Bookshelf on the 3rd Friday of each month and 2022 Word of the Year monthly updates on the last Friday of each month. My co-hosts are bloggers I’ve met through blogging and a connection was made through reading and commenting on various posts. Some of us have gone on to form an online bookclub together and I consider them to be some of my closest friends.

Then there’s Natalies Weekend Coffee Share on her Natalie the Explorer blog, Terri’s Sunday Stills over at Second Wind Leisure , Gail’s Wow on Wednesdays on her Is this Mutton blog and Marsha’s Writers’s Quote Wednesdays on her Always Write blog and Donna and Deb’s What’s on Your Plate on the first Wednesday of each month – just to name a few that I like to pop in and out of as the whim takes me. These bloggers are people I’ve not met in person, they live in Canada, America, England but they are still ‘friends’ of mine.

When joining a linkup, the rule is you don’t link and run. Always comment on the host’s post and follow any rules, whether it be to visit/comment on at least 2 other posts in the linkup or something similar. As we all have limited time available it’s becoming harder to visit all the blogs we want to, so many people are being more selective in their engagement. But it’s a rewarding way of doing things and I enjoy it!

As a co-host of our link-ups I always try to visit everyone who leaves their link and leave an appropriate comment. Yes it takes time but it is part of being a blogger – it’s a 2 way street and interacting with others is a big part of it.

Friendship is mutual. And honesty shines through. Every.Time.

Source: Deb from Deb’s World

Denyse’s Life’s Stories Link-Up

Which leads me to talk about Denyse’s link-up. I can’t remember when we crossed paths but we connected due to our past professions of teachers/managers in the education sector. I followed Denyse’s cancer journey (coming in halfway through it I think), we’ve messaged each other about lots of things and she was a great help when my Mother-in-Law, Ruby, was going through her own cancer treatment and subsequently passed away in December 2020. We’ve not met in person but when we do meet up it will be like meeting an old friend and I know we’ll sit and talk for hours!

I loved participating in Denyse’s Life This Week link-up with her optional but always interesting prompts every Monday, then for her monthly Life This Month free range link-up and more recently her fortnightly Life’s Stories link-ups. I know Denyse has been offering this link-up since 2016 and was committed to visiting and commenting on everyone who left their link – which is no mean feat!

Today is Denyse’s final link-up after a mammoth 6 years of offering this service to others to share their stories. Thankfully she’s not finishing with blogging!

You can read her final #LifesStories post here Endings and Beginnings – a huge thank you from me for all the effort she has put into offering this way of sharing our posts to a wider audience and for the friendship she has provided along the way.

thank you
Photo by Donald Tong on Pexels.com

To answer my own question

My title asks a question and my answer is yes I do feel a part of a blogging community and link-ups like these are why. Many of my non-blogging friends and even members of my family often wonder why I do this blogging thing but I do it because I’m passionate about words, sharing thoughts, connecting and staying engaged. It’s also great fun and I get to meet some lovely people!

What about you?

Deb xx

I’m linking up with Denyse and friends for the final time #lifesstories

Life's stories linkup
Life’s stories linkup

You can also find Deb’s World in lots of other places – stay in touch by clicking any of the buttons below.

Bold Debbie 2021

A tragic accident at age 17, resulting in a Bravery Award from the Queen, didn’t deter Debbie from travelling the world.  A young retiree,  after being made redundant from her 22 year career managing education programs in a men’s correctional centre, she now loves reading, blogging, riding her ebike and a good cup of tea! Also known as Granny Debs to her 4 grandchildren.

Read more here

56 Replies to “Do you feel a part of a blogging community?”

  1. I blogged for a LONG time before I found community. I have a house restoration blog and sent it out to family and friends. Then I wanted to write about whatever and slowly started finding “pen pal” blogging friends on her. For me it started with the Widow Badass after I started looking at retirement transition ones and branched out. I follow enough that I can get behind on commenting (especially in the summer) and they are all widely different so that’s great. Thanks for being the friendly sort! Denyse’s blog and I just aren’t friends– can’t seem to get my comments to go nor send across a link. Weird.

    Like

  2. Thanks for mentioning my linkup Debbie! I have sometimes thought about giving up the blog but it’s the community that keeps me going. Prior to Covid I met quite a few of the UK bloggers, and as you said, it was very easy because it felt as if we knew each other. The link up includes women from the US, Australia, New Zealand and Europe, and it feels like a tight knit group with no borders.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Yes I do! I’ve been blogging for 11 years and have met some wonderful people, a few in person as well. I’ve travelled the world virtually, got to know how others live, learned a lot more, got words of comfort… Not always easy to keep on blogging but hope to carry on while I can. I had never visited Denyse but will pop over for her final link up 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Well, I certainly have been made feel special and appreciated here Deb. I too can’t remember how we ‘met’ virtually but we still have a goal to meet IRL too!! Maybe when we are back in the Big Smoke there may be a chance. There is a community feeling in link ups like the one I have run, and the ones I see you as a part of to. I did still get some inappropriate linkers on mine on occasion and over time got so sick of any respect for the link up ‘rules’ I just deleted them!!!

    Thank you for kindly linking up your blog post for the “last, last lucky last” link up from Denyse Whelan Blogs.

    Bloggers such as yourself have made my day, week and month many times with your kindness, your care and sharing your stories too.

    I am grateful to have had such an opportunity to create and keep a great community of which you have been a valued member.

    I will still be blogging from time to time and I look forward to continuing connections where we might ‘meet’ again.

    Warm wishes,

    Denyse.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. It'[s been great to be a part of your regular link-up Denyse and your authentic self shines through in all your words, comments and photos. It’s been an absolute pleasure getting to know you through our blogging and I look forward to more in the future. We will definitely meet up one day!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Like you, getting into blogging surprised me. But I’ve “met” so many folks who have inspired me, challenged my thinking (in a good way), and celebrated with me. I’ve loved learning about how others are living at this time of life – all over the world. It makes me want to keep going – reading, commenting, writing. I don’t engage in many of the link-ups as I’m not (yet?) into prompted writing. But a do appreciate those who run those link-ups!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for your thoughts Pat, you make some great points. Blogging challenges me too and it’s good for my brain! I like the idea of bloggers celebrating with you and yes to all the inspiring people we get to meet – like you!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Deb, I am curious about people and enjoy being inspired by how they live, where they travel, their hobbies and interests, and what they are reading, or cooking. I love blogs that share advice or teach me something. And, I love viewing beautiful photographs. It is not surprising that most of those topics mirror my own blog, which is a reflection of our constantly evolving retirement lifestyle.

    So yes, I feel very much a part of a blogging community and appreciate those bloggers who check in with me and are genuinely interested in knowing more about me. People who leave a comment for me will always be acknowledged and treated as a friend. Like others have said, I do think some of the ‘connecting’ through blogging has wained and more and more bloggers are drifting to challenges and linkups to maintain a presence. That has taken a bit of the ‘heart’ out of what some bloggers write, which is frustrating, but understandable. Not everyone is comfortable with having a few hundred pen pals.

    I appreciate any blogger who hosts a link-up (that’s a lot of work) and have participated in nearly all of the ones you mentioned, at one time or another. I don’t want to overload my readers with frequent posts. But, I do try to visit and comment, even when I don’t link up.

    Good questions, Deb. Thanks for asking.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks Suzanne for such an insightful response. I agree with your points and as I’m a curious person too, it makes sense that we have connected with others. I get your point about doing challenges just to maintain a presence and that this is taking the heart out of things. It’s an interesting one but I know I try to use my blogging to share bits of life and tie the challenges in if I can, not just for the sake of it. If that makes sense! I also don’t want to overload my readers and am always thrilled with comments and engagements from those who read my thoughts. Thanks again.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. I’ve blogged on and off since about 2006, but I only started feeling part of a blogging community when I started participating in blog hops and link parties. I struggle with the time commitment to write something other people might want to read (maybe… sometimes… if they’re really bored) and also with the time to read and respond to other participants. I feel guilty that I can’t get to everyone, but I always get to a few in each group.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I think the community has stripped back a lot – in the beginning, I used to meet up with a lot more bloggers in real life, and I used to get invited to a lot more events. I have noticed a lot more people just dump and run. On my own link up, I’ve just started deleteing those, as I figure they aren’t really in it with the right intentions, so I’d rather just have a smaller turn out. I really just blog for my pleasure now. I keep thinking I’ll scale back but then I end up with photos I want to share or books I want to talk about (I love your book link up by the way). Coming from the blogging community where we first ‘met’ for one last time #LifeStories

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I think you’re right Lydia in what you say about blogging and the various communities, there have been lots of changes over the years. I’m in it for the sense of satisfaction too. I love sharing books, photos and random thoughts so will continue while I find it a fun thing to do. Great to have you join our What’s on Your Bookshelf link-up :). I’ll miss Mondays and linking up with Denyse!

      Like

  9. I have never heard of link ups before, so thank you for all the information about them. I do feel like a part of a blogging community. I feel like a handful of bloggers I follow are dear friends. When I started my blog, it was an extension of writing I did for magazines and a popular swimming website. I liked the freedom to write what was on my mind. At that time I didn’t read other people’s blogs. Now that I do, it’s changed the nature of blogging for the better.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Yes, I still feel part of the blogging community, but nowhere near as much as I used to a few years ago.

    It all got somewhat overwhelming for me, Debbie. I was a member of many blogging communities and felt guilty if I didn’t read and leave comments on all their posts. I even found myself reading and commenting on blog posts that did not interest me, but because the blogger was part of a blogging community I belonged to, I felt obliged to read and leave comments. Something that should never have happened.

    Gradually, I stepped back from many blogging communities and even unfollowed blogs publishing content I was not interested in reading. It helped get me and my blogging life back on track. That may not be easy to understand for many, but it did work for me. I’m not someone who wants to belong to large, close-knit blogging communities that get larger and larger or that feel too close-knit to outsiders.

    Yes, I no longer see many of those belonging to the blogging communities I stepped back from on my blog anymore, but I still enjoy blogging and never feel obliged to read and leave comments on anyone’s blog just for the sake of doing so. It’s rich engagement and discussions I want and like, and I still get lots of that and enjoy leaving those types of comments on other blogs.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. That’s a great comment Hugh, and thanks for your honesty in sharing your thoughts of overwhelm – it gets me at times too! I do miss seeing some bloggers from years ago but I understand the time constraints we all have a life to live away from blogging. I also miss some of the ‘older days’ type of blogging community activities but I’m enjoying what I do now and will keep going while-ever I enjoy it. You always have great conversations on your blog and are a master at comments :). Thanks again for your friendship.

      Like

      1. I like to say it as it is, Debbie. No use in hiding it.

        I’m rather shocked by how many of those who have commented on this post say that they feel guilty if they do not keep up with reading and commenting on certain blogs. I remember those days and never intend to go back.

        Liked by 1 person

  11. I definitely feel part of a blogging community – or maybe more accurately several overlapping communities, focused around each of the challenges I do. It’s not something I expected at all when I started almost two years ago now. Perhaps I should have done though, as I’d already experienced the close connections that can be formed with online friends who share your interests and passions through my involvement with the Virtual Tourist website!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Admittedly, I’m slowly starting to feel part of the community. I’ve used my blog as my travel diary, then decided my photography needed my exercising and got intrigued with photo challenges. I love reading others creative thoughts including Debs World! Time limits still seem to keep me from going deeper yet I find myself more immersed over time. Thank you for sharing this post.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s a great way of growing your blog and I agree challenges can help exercise our creativity. I enjoy that aspect of them and as I’m curious I love seeing how other people’s brains work! Thanks for joining in with your thoughts – always welcome!

      Liked by 1 person

  13. I joined the blogging community when I took up scrapbooking years ago and it was a great way of ‘meeting’ people with the same interest and to take part in the same online courses etc. It’s kind of evolved from there! A lot of the scrapbookers that used to blog then have stopped unfortunately and there are some that I genuinely miss and as they live overseas, there is little chance of meeting up ever again. It is lovely to share other’s snippets of life, and ‘meet’ like minded people. I’m happy to think that you still have a lot more blog posts to share!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Deb, I always love reading the thoughts of others and why they started blogging. I enjoy reading snippets of other people’s lives too and love having so many pen-pals around the world!

      Like

  14. Hi Deb, I definitely feel part of the blogging community. Thanks for the link and the mention. Whether I link up every time or someone links up with me every time, I have made many lifetime friends through blogging. I enjoy writing, and I learn so much from each blog. Denyse’s last link on Mondays has been hard for me to link to because of my schedule, but I can’t imagine being so faithful. She has made a tremendous impact on the community. Her story is inspiring and she has shared so many other stories on her blog. I’ve been honored to be one of them. Everyone needs a break and a change or blogging can get old. Always writing may get us started blogging, but the friends keep us going. Thanks for being part of my world, Deb and for sharing this post.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. What a wonderful post and how we as bloggers meet by chance then make friends for life, Debbie. Thank you for linking to Sunday Stills and I’m so happy you remain a regular contributor to the challenges. Blogging has also changed my life and I believe we are all blessed to share our worlds, photography, interests, etc. Lovely shout out to Denyse as well. Tale good care and see you around the blogosphere!

    Liked by 1 person

  16. I do feel part of a blogging community though the community’s changed since I started in 2009. Many old-timers are no longer blogging, but I think the change is good. It was all about mummy-bloggers for a while. Then monetisation. Ugh.

    I’ve struggled with the commitment to blogging over the last few years and recently had a bit of a break from any personal blogging. It means that I don’t tend to read blogs either – just follow people on social media for news, but I do miss others’ ‘voices’. If that makes sense.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Deb, things have changed a lot over the years as you say. We’re definitely not in the mummy-blogger set and I’m not into monetisation. Yes your comment re commitment and engagement make complete sense to me!

      Like

  17. This is a beautiful posy Deb. My answer is also yes. When I started blogging I never expected to find a community of bloggers so that was a lovely surprise. I’m extremely Thankful to the generous bloggers such as yourself who give their time to creating a linkup for other bloggers. It’s one of the joys of blogging.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. Lovely post Debbie
    I’ve also met many friends, as I like to think of the people I engage with, over my few years of blogging. I get a sense of achievement when I’ve got thoughts and photos down too.
    I try and view as many blogs as I can but as you say takes time.
    Have a great week 😀

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Haha yes I know what you mean
        I try and read different ones every day but I seem to get the same ones up and often have to go back to ones I follow to find them

        Like

  19. Hi / I enjoyed reading about how you feel connected to to blog community amidst the up’s and downs of life – I feel that way too.
    I also like the point about how we have to be selective because there isn’t always time to visit all the blogs we want to!
    🌸🌸🌸
    Also – i recently pulled back from linkups and challenges because I wanted a different pace and post flow – but do look forward to doing more again

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Well I love taking a break and coming back – sometimes easing back in slowly and other times picking right back up – but breaks have been key to my longevity her (thus far)
        ☀️😊
        And glad to be blog friends

        Liked by 1 person

  20. I will sometimes say to my husband ‘one of blogging friends has said….’ or whatever so yes I so feel part of a community. The linkups are a great way to meet other bloggers and can act as an idea of things to write as well. I really enjoy blogging and writing and just trying things out. Thanks for a great post!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I do that a lot too! I’m glad you feel part of a blogging community and I love meeting new bloggers and seeing what everyone is doing with their lives. Thanks for your comment 🙂

      Like

  21. Hi Deb – I feel that the blogging community has diminished over the years. So many have come and gone, but those who have weathered the storms and still turn up every week (and who take the time to leave a comment) have definitely become true friends (you are definitely one of those!) I’m going to miss Denyse’s link party – it was such an interesting blend of bloggers and lots of Aussies to connect with, but I also understand that she’s ready to step back and have some breathing room. I’ve definitely become less prolific with my blogging over time and I think Denyse is finding she’s in a similar place.

    I’m grateful for the parties that still remain, and for those of you who check in without needing a party to prompt them. xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Leanne it’s great to have your comment on how blogging has changed over the years. many bloggers have come and gone but I’m happy to still be here and have friends like you still blogging even if it is in a diminished way. I’ll miss Denyse’s linkup on Mondays too but completely understand. I’m always grateful to you for reading and commenting on my posts, so many thanks 🙂 xx

      Like

What do you think? Make me smile with your words :)

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: