Friday, May 7, 2010

Blog fodder

One of my blogging friends used the phrase, "blog fodder" in a mention of some things from her daily activities that she could write about on her blog. I thought it was a funny phrase, but once I went online to research its meaning, I found this on Urban Dictionary:
blog fodder: an interesting idea, story, or link. Referred to as blog fodder when your first reaction is to use it in your blog. Urban Word of the Day on October 4, 2005.
One of the main differences in my life today and back in 2005 is that I am now a dedicated blogger and reader of personal blogs. I wrote a post in January of this year about the expanding blogosphere. Today I was thinking about how different my life is when everything is possible blog fodder. My daily activities, random thoughts, movies, books I read, and relationships are fair game (with some caveats about respecting the privacy of others).

Today I live my life with one thought always tuned to whether or not I could make a good post about any activity. Doesn't that seem like it must change my day-to-day experience in some way? Of course it does. Yesterday while trying to take my mind off the pain in my feet as I slogged back down the road, I began to formulate my post, wondering how to organize it, what to include, what to leave out. It occurred to me that I have an audience of my fellow hikers who read my posts and usually tell me whether they liked it or not and if I had any inaccuracies that need fixing. And, of course, my followers.

The earlier post about the blogosphere mentioned how so many of us social bloggers use Google's blogspot or Wordpress. I found this link to The Future Buzz about blogosphere stats as of 2009:
133,000,000 – number of blogs indexed by Technorati since 2002
346,000,000 – number of people globally who read blogs
900,000 – average number of blog posts in a 24-hour period
1,750,000 – number of RSS subscribers to TechCrunch, the most popular Technology blog (January 2009)
77% – of active Internet users who read blogs
55% – percentage of the blogosphere that drinks more than 2 cups of coffee per day (source)
81 – number of languages represented in the blogosphere
59% – percentage of bloggers who have been blogging for at least 2 years
I started REALLY blogging (as in writing posts on blogspot) in February 2009, so I'm not going to be in the "at least two years" column for a while. And how much will it change between now and then? It's definitely a very dynamic environment. I am just about at my maximum rate of reading and writing, and sometimes I get a little stressed out, afraid I might miss something from my friends' blogs if I don't read them morning and night. I can see how you could get burned out if you don't watch it.

That said, I discovered this very interesting blog that I guess I have to join because it's really good and right up my alley. It's called The Change Blog. Peter writes about his own life and also has regular contributors. I spent an hour over there and just scratched the surface. That's the problem: where do I draw the line? Will I burn out if I'm not careful? Will you?


  1. I hear everything you said. Sometimes I wonder how many more balls I can keep in the air. Sometimes I wonder how long I can keep writing something every day.

    I think it is very good for our old brains to have to come up with a little something every day. It keeps us thinking.

    I'm about to get back into some genealogy work and I've wondered how I'm going to do blogging while I'm creating other blogs etc. but I'll figure out something. I have to keep up with my friends, and some bloggers I do consider to be friends.

  2. I hope we don't burn out, I may dim a little, every now and then though!


  3. Staggering statistics. A growing community for sure. And I feel a sense of change with the power of the blog community. A very positive change...which is what prompted me to blog. Blogging continues to help my realization of how interconnected we are. I feel in some small way my blogging can help show love for others, and in doing so make a change in the world. While reading other blogs...I find we are more similar than I think. Of course it can become too much if I'm spending too much time in the blogosphere, but that's the beauty of it...we drop in on each other without that's just sort of understood that we are going to drop in from time to time...and it's okay. No pressure. No one gets offended. There are so many friends to visit, and I see our lists of blog friends's wonderful isn't it? My mom once told me that there was nothing more rewarding than the laughter and love of friends...and we can never have too many friends. I hope we all continue to ride the wave.
    Great post DJan, quite thought provoking.

  4. This was a SUPER interesting post Jan! Many of the same thoughts go through my head too. When I'm traveling and not on the computer, I manage very well to fill in the blank "time" spaces. I clicked on your "Change Blog" link - will definitely go back and explore. Thank you for the stats too - really terrific!

  5. It is hard to juggle it all, isn't it? I love that you researched all of this, though! You are such fun!! And yes! Everything becomes "bloggable" the monkeys, by the way! This post is delightful from start to finish! You are fantastic! Love you, Janine XO

  6. My husband thinks it's funny that I look at everything as blog fodder. I sure hope we don't burn out!

  7. I see lots of faces in the figures and memories too. Patty and I have been doing this since 2002 and some blog houses went broke, closed down, or quit. Blogger is the biggest we have blogged in and now know about as many people as we knew altogether before we came here. I question why I am doing this and should be doing something else but so far it is like quitting smoking. I had to have a bad aortic aneurysm to get me to stop in 1996 and I suppose the lack of electricity would be about the same to get me to quit now.

  8. For me, I keep blogging where I am comfortable with it. Like TV when I used to watch it, blogging can take over my life if I don't keep my life on an even keel. I like many things and I don't want to ever feel like I HAVE to write or read blogs. It is something extra in my life, not my life. I will check out the blog your recommend. Thanks to you for all the wonderful posts you have written that have stirred me and warmed my heart. You are a dear.

  9. Blog fodder..yes my entire life has become the fodder. Since I get a big charge out of it, and leave behind some stories..what the hay! I think it is all about the editing..Far Guy will often say "Don't write that" sometimes I listen, sometimes I don't. I write lots, that is not to say I sit here all day..luckily my computer is centrally located. I pause here all times of the day.. between loads of laundry and errands..when I pause I read or write. In the evening I read blogs in place of watching TV. You have a great weekend, and Happy Mothers Day my friend:)

  10. Yes. I do think I could burn out by trying to keep up with too many blog friends. I'm allowing myself to slip and not read everybody every day. I do try to leave a thoughtful comment when I do visit.
    As to blog fodder, I find myself thinking that way all of the time. And since so much of what I post invilves photos, I occasionally leave my camera behind just so I can release myself from that hold blogging has over my life.
    I'll be leaving for the soccer match in a few minutes. The camera is staying home. I'm traveling light today. What a glorious day it is!

  11. I suppose the answer is that for every Blog you join, you should leave one behind, i.e. stop being a follower. So, for that reason, I have decided to leave your Blog!
    No, no, no, only kidding, never would do that, dear D-Jan. We were in it together from the start, weren't we. That is Feb 2009.
    Blessings, Star

  12. Blogging and reading blogs is exposing me to so many ideas, and getting me to think about who I am, etc. So it seems exciting and worthwhile. But I'm sure I will have to cycle through ups and downs...take a little time away when things need doing, etc.

  13. Reading this I get the sensation that you've been poking around in my head! It's like I'm hearing myself!!!

    "Today I live my life with one thought always tuned to whether or not I could make a good post about any activity"

    So true! There are so many things/events/thoughts where my first reaction is "this would make a great post!".
    Even my parents have noticed this attitude about me, and they never read my blog unless I send them a link to a particular post! But they notice I talk about "writing" (and know it's not my thesis), see me carrying my camera around to a lot more places and posting the videos I make for the blog to my Facebook page as well.

    "I am just about at my maximum rate of reading and writing, and sometimes I get a little stressed out, afraid I might miss something from my friends' blogs if I don't read them morning and night. I can see how you could get burned out if you don't watch it."
    Ditto! I for one need to learn to write my posts before I start reading my blogger list, because way too often I'm too tired/brain dead to write after spending a couple of hours staring at the computer screen reading! And I've had this year a few "down" moments with the blogging, where it just seemed too much like "work" and couldn't find anything to inspire me. And then once again zooom!

    It's damn addictive is what it is! :p

    Blog Fodder... I LOVE that term! lol!

  14. Not only do I look for fodder every day, but so does Dick! When we go on our drives, I'll feel the car suddenly slowing and he's seen something. I'll get an email form him and yes... he's sent me something. I even sent Eva an email with a joke in it because she's always posting such good ones! But I'm definitely a poster more than a reader. I do have my Fav's, but don't have the time to surf much.

  15. I like the random coffee drinking statistic:)

    I, like CrazyCris, need to learn to post before I read other's blogs because I often run out of time and have to postpone blogging for awhile longer! I think the trick to not burning out is taking a step back when you're feeling overwhelmed. The world won't end if you fail to blog for a day or two (though we'd miss you, we'd understand). The same could be said for reading your favorite blogs. If you miss some of your favorites you can always go back and read them later. After all, they don't go anywhere.

    As for blog fodder, it seems to be a different mindset that you slip into once you've been blogging for awhile. I also notice a related symptom-thinking of fellow bloggers when I see certain things in my life. For example, I think of you every time I see an ad or commercial for birdseed!

  16. lol! very true Whitney! Before when I travelled it was little things that caught my attention, things my friends would enjoy if I shared with them, presents they'd love (if I could afford one for them all on each trip). I never looked, I was just so conscious of my family and friends it was like a 6th sense.

    Now I'm developing a similar blogging 6th sense! Certain things I see, experience, read, watch remind me of some of my readers and I go "oh! I should totally write about this, so and so would love it!" :o)


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