I know there’s been a lot of conversation around Martha’s recent “who are these bloggers” comments the past couple days, and – even as someone that’s been blogging for over 7 years – it wasn’t my initial instinct to publicly weigh in, partially because a lot has already been said, but mainly because for some reason I just wasn’t experiencing as strong of a reaction personally as most of the ones I’d seen.
At first I wondered what my deal was – why I wasn’t getting all up in arms like I should be – but after reflecting on the situation for a bit, I figured out the reason why I wasn’t having a strong reaction, and it honestly kind of surprised me! So… I decided to share a few thoughts on the situation after all, in hopes that an alternative perspective might offer some comfort – or at least food for thought – to fellow bloggers that may still be feeling a sting.
The reason I wasn’t all that offended by Martha’s generalized opinion is that… I don’t really care about it all that much. Period.
I have to admit it feels a little weird to say that out loud, and this may not have been the case a few years ago, but it’s true now. And I don’t mean it in the nonchalant “I could care less” attitude sort of way at all. I mean it in the “I sincerely just don’t think her opinion affects my life” sort of way. Here’s why:
1) In regards to the things that I am or am not an “expert” on, I don’t feel any differently today than I did before the comments were made. I still have the same level of confidence in the abilities I do have, and am still well aware of the specific abilities I do not have… those areas have always been pretty easy to figure out on my own. ;)
2) While it’s true that I’m not a “trained expert at Vogue” so to speak – I’ve never pretended to be, not even for a minute, so I really don’t feel like that’s something I need to apologize about. That’s the beauty of blogging, really… you don’t have to fit in a certain box. You’re free to be you, whether you’re a seasoned pro in your field, just starting out, or somewhere in the middle. Your unique perspective & experiences are actually what will make you resonate with a certain audience – and that audience is the one worth worrying about. The people that are actually reading your blog – the ones that are taking time out of their day to check out what you have to say – those are the people whose opinions about you matter.
3) Blanket “opinion statements” on huge groups of people are just not accurate. Ever. Her statement was just so broad and cast such a wide net that it’s almost hard for me to take it seriously. However, one thing she may have been trying to convey (I think) that I will agree with – is that just starting a blog on a topic doesn’t automatically make you an expert on that topic. Starting a blog is one thing… Maintaining a top quality blog with great content on a consistent basis, and putting in the incredible amount of time and grunt work required to continuously grow and stay relevant in an extremely crowded and ever growing space… well, that’s a whole different thing, my friends – one that’s not easy by any stretch of the imagination. And I know quite a few bloggers that can proudly claim expertise in that. ;)
So on the bright side – the silver lining of this whole situation for me – and for all of us at HWTM – is that it made us stop and reflect on whose opinion is TRULY important, and the answer is: our readers. On that note – please let me know what we can do better… we don’t want to be sitting here spinning our wheels round and round; we want to be effective. So, please tell us what you want to see more (or less) of – whether it’s a certain kind of topic or column, more “behind the scenes” posts, being a little more open about the side of party planning that’s not always “cupcakes and confetti” (i.e. the epic fails that don’t make the final “party cut”, the times when centerpieces blow off the tables, etc.) And yes – that last part really happened to me. I’m really feeling like it’s time to freshen up the blog, but want to make sure we focus on what’s relevant to you – so please tell us what you want to see. We are listening. :)