June 17, 2013

To Blog Or Not To Blog? by Bryan Norford

That is the question. It faces me weekly. Because I blog each week as a form of discipline, I face that blank screen every time, often without an idea what to write. Surely, if nothing is moving me, why write? And then, if only a handful of readers respond, what’s the point anyway?

Of course, I could be motivated by the possibility my blogs will be discovered in some future century, but that’s far too remote. However, my grandchildren and beyond might be interested someday. That thought does cross my mind occasionally.

But to be honest, if I write as a discipline, I write for myself. If so, why write, for isn’t writing primarily for others to read? If that is true, then writing for self-discipline is a contradiction. Which brings me back to the original question: why blog?

Then again, blogging is almost universal. Anyone with an itch for writing blogs, and few of us will attain a readership like Ann Voskamp. Add to that an often passionless article and the effort to blog becomes almost meaningless.

Perhaps my problem is really one of pride. Do I measure my worth by my readership? The truth is, some always read my blogs, and one person encouraged, blessed, or challenged is worthwhile. The least inspired writing is still a reflection of me, providing some colour and diversity to the world.


  1. I have often asked myself this question and even prayed about it; am I blogging with a selfless purpose and if so, what is that purpose? As soon as I begin writing to try to impress or draw a certain audience I lose my passion and ease with which the words flow; it is forced. When I turn my thoughts and motives over to God He has humbled me to the max and He alone is the one who sees the increase. I will never know if or why the readers stop by but as a traditional poet there seems to be a very small platform of outlets in today's media...so I blog. I don't really know what else to do but plant a seed and pray God gives the increase.

    Thank-you for this article. I'm interested in seeing if there are more of you out there who struggle with blogging or not to blog because it does take some time and we all seem not to have enough of it to waste. What is an average readership of a blog? I have no idea. If only a few read am I wasting my time? or are those few that find it the ones God led there? These are questions I ask from time to time. Is a blog really measured by stats? God left ninety and nine not to search for 10 or 20, but 1! What if that one reader was in some way encouraged. Isn't that enough?

    I would LOVE to know how others feel that blog.

  2. Thanks for your thought-provoking blog, Bryan. You have asked some necessary question. I started my own blog some time ago, but had to abandon it due to a time crunch. I'd like to get back to it for my own discipline's sake and for maybe helping out a lone reader or two who is grappling with the same issues I am.

    Rather than operating on the misery-loves-company philosophy, I'd like to think that by admitting my struggles I could help someone along the journey of life. Think of Paul and David as bloggers. Consider how God has blessed their writings.

    No, I'm not putting myself in their category, but I am living through the challenges of the 21st century with God by my side. Perhaps my Creator can use some of my creative writing.

    Thanks to Janet (above comment) for challenging me to respond. Remember also, Bryan, that not everyone who reads and is blessed by your writing will respond. They may have only had time to assimilate what you say, but not enough time to let you know.

  3. Thank you Janet and Sharon for your thoughtful responses. I'm sure the concerns raised will reverberate with many people.

    In the end, do we feel what we do is God's leading--whether we decide to blog or not? If so, our blogs, or whatever takes its place, will be used by Him where He wishes.


  4. I've been thinking about your posting for a few days now, Bryan. I'm sure many writers tussle with that question.

    I took to blogging like the proverbial duck to water. Love it! And I've got a small readership circle that gives me great joy and a sense of connection.

    Like anything else in our lives, I believe blogging needs to resonate with our hearts and what He's giving us to do.

    I catch the feeling that blogging for you does not resonate. And if your heart's not in it, I'm thinking go where your heart is. That's probably where He is waiting for you too.

    An Idea...If you skip the blogging, could you use Facebook to your advantage more? It's less wordy, less time-consuming, maybe less chore-like.

    Just thin'ning out loud.

    I say... go with your heart.

  5. Hi Brenda:

    Thanks for the thoughts. I think you are definitely half-right. There are times when it seems like a chore, when its not just writing block, but ideas block!

    However, when I look back, most of what I write seems to have some value--even those times when I struggle for a meaningful subject.

    There is no doubt there are peaks and valleys of inspiration, but that doesn't meant the less inspired efforts are not worthwhile.

    Had I decided not to write and wait for deeper inspiration, those pieces would not have circulated. I'm not sure that would have been preferable.

    Facebook would be too limited; I need space to develop my thoughts. Blogging does come alive for me often enough to keep me at it--especially when national or world events stoke my anger at the way God is treated by our culture.

    And that arises often enough to raise my flagging spirit to--as you suggest--a heartfelt response.

    Sorry for the essay, Brenda, but your encouraging comments deserved an honest reply.


  6. So in the end, Bryan, I hear you saying blogging is still worth it for all its ups and downs. I'm glad to hear it! We'd miss you around here.


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