Can anyone who blogs call themself a blogger? Seems like a dumb question, but I guess it depends on what the definition of blogger is. To oversimplify – one who blogs. Is it that simple? Because that would be too easy, right?
What you do and what you are
I’ve struggled with this blogger identity. On my Twitter bio, I still have not claimed that label for myself. Instead of saying what I am, I simply say what do, “I blog…” And if that makes me a blogger, cool.
But what you do does not necessarily make you whatever that thing is. I sleep, but I’m not a “sleeper.” A dog barks, but it’s not a barker; it’s a dog. My wife bakes, sometimes, but she’s not a baker.
Another example is photography. It’s a side-hobby of mine (see my Gallery). I label myself an enthusiast for it. I own several cameras. I geek out on the gear, the craft, and the art. I’ve practiced shooting. I try to develop my eye for shots. I take and make photos in camera and in post processing software (Lightroom).
But I am not a photographer. Why? Because I don’t get paid for pictures. So I’m not a professional photographer. My day job is not photos, or writing.
Regularity is key
Let’s bring it back to being a blogger. What is a blogger? It’s a person who publishes or shares their thoughts online. But a key word to add to this definition (thanks to the Oxford dictionary) is, “regularly.”
Posting to a blog on a regular or consistent basis is vital. Blogs are considered defunct when the blogger doesn’t post for months at a time. For me, this is a big deal. I’ve started many blogs only to end up missing in action. Even my Jason Journals blog has gone on hiatus before – yikes! That is why I’ve always hesitated to self-identify as a blogger.
Consistency is not my strength. It takes lots of planning, self-discipline, and concerted effort on my part. And that still doesn’t always make things work out. So I’ve kind of had this personal standard: I can only call myself a blogger after I’ve blogged regularly for one year. Because if I could stick with it that long, then the label would stick.
But I admit, I feel closer to accepting the blogger identity now because I’m on my longest stretch of regular blogging ever! Yeah, I feel good about that. Part of me just wants to assume the identity of – blogger. I like writing, word-smithing, etc. If I keep it up, I may even get good at it someday!
Labels and identities
Beyond the blogger label, in general, I think someone who posts words online can also be called an Author or Writer. But “author” seems more associated with published books, not blogs. And they’re usually paid for their writing.
But by definition, a blogger is one who writes online regularly, not professionally. They publish their writing often, and money may or may not be involved.
Anyways, I’ve got to stay focused on the doing – just blog stuff, man! I enjoy it, so my chance of success in being a blogger is decent. I don’t know if that necessarily means that what I do and what I am relate to who I am. But that’s getting too deep.
Keep it simple. If you blog enough, then yeah, you’re a blogger.
Oh, and drink coffee. Seems like that’s part of being a blogger. Works for me!
Are you a blogger because you blog? Or do you blog because you are a blogger? What do you think? Write below, or write to me here! I like hearing from you!
3 thoughts on “Bloggers Gonna Blog”
So true. An acquaintance of mine tried to argue that just because he doesn’t write/blog regularly doesn’t mean he is a writer. He claimed he doesn’t have time for it and asked if a painter is still an artist if he/she only occasionally produces a piece. I replied that is a hobbiest (which is okay) but not someone who is seeking to do it professionally. A professional writer needs to write regularly, regardless of how much time that person has.
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I’ve thought about calling myself a hobby blogger. It is sort of a hobby for me. I’d like to keep at it – practice makes perfect – and maybe get paid someday. I found a few freelance writing gigs online that I’m considering as an aside. Anyways, thanks for your input. I guess anyone can claim a title, or to be something, but if you’re not doing the thing regularly, what difference does it make? The title then is moot. Pulling back a bit, I think labels in general are helpful but can also be problematic at times. Anyways…I digress a bit.
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*Hobbyist (I typed too fast) 😉
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