Saturday, April 4, 2015

Blogging Crossroads

I'm somewhat unsure of what the future of War Horse will be.  I will certainly continue blogging (because I love my horse, and I love writing, so it's a natural combination), but I am beginning to wonder if I want to spend more time on the blog, increase its visibility, and cultivate more of a following.  I've been blogging since August 2013.  I have 200+ posts.

I have six followers.

Which, you guys/girls are awesome, by the way, so thanks for that.

Still, that's not a lot of people.  I should highlight the fact that aside from listing the blog in my signature line on the Chronicle of the Horse forums, and one listing on a horse blog website which I have since completely forgotten about, I have not promoted this blog.  I have not asked people to read it, I have not gone out of my way to bring it to people's attention.  I started it simply because I wanted to give myself something to look back on as Soon and I marched forward in our journey together.  It was strictly a training journal for my own use.  If people read it, fine, if they didn't, equally fine because I wasn't writing for the public.  I wanted to chronicle the highs and the lows, and have a place to post the thousands of pictures I take of him (honestly I probably take at least five to ten photos each day the math).  And since not all of my Facebook friends want to see all those pictures, this was a natural outlet for my five horsey friends to get their Soonie fix from afar, without pissing everyone else off.

I've seen old horse forum friends start their blogs well after me, and in practically no time achieve horse blogland celebrity status for their clever posts, reviews, and innovative contributions to the blogosphere.  I wondered if I had the time, the energy, and the interest in doing similar things to increase this blog's popularity.  Honestly?  I'm not sure I do.  And I'm not sure how I feel about that.

I mean seriously how do you get that popular so fast

Why do I want more interaction and activity on the blog?  What am I hoping to achieve with that?  Do I want more people to swoon over my pretty horsey and tell me how awesome we are, or am I looking for actual, constructive critiques?  Do I want some hearty debates?  Do I have the time to do product reviews and write more on the issues facing the horse industry?  And even if I do, do people even care what I think?  What makes me so special?

I'm a former horse pro who now enjoys spending quiet days at the barn and rarely ever show.  In fact, I show so infrequently, that I still don't have my USEF Amateur status back.  Because I'm fucking lazy as shit.

Suffice it to say, I am at a crossroads.  I see some of the fun and popular horse blogs and can't help but want a little of that.  There is some really great content out there.  Meanwhile, I have this CRAZY AMAZING horse and I feel like the world should know that.  But at the same time, having that kind of visibility means that you open yourself up to all opinions, wanted or not.  And YES, differing opinions are extremely valuable.  We were discussing this at work not too long ago, and I remember this being said: "I never learned anything from someone who completely agreed with me."  And it's true.  But I pay professional trainers to tell me to pull my head out of my ass and ride my horse like a normal person.  So do I really want that on my blog, too?

YES PEOPLE wait...I don't know.

The answer is that I'm not sure right now.  And this whole post is really just me working it out for myself, like a demented sort of catharsis.  I do want to highlight (for the six of you) that this is NOT a rag on those with the popular blogs.  I admire the dedicated bloggers who go out of their way to provide timely, thought-provoking content to their readers.  Writing is an art.  Blogging apparently is not just an art, but in a way, it's a service to both the blogger and the reader.  The good bloggers are taking many things into account into their blog design and content.  So to them, I say good job, well done, and your readers appreciate it.

I feel like I need to think this through, because I don't want to promote something that won't contain reviews, or regular spotlights on other bloggers, or whatever else is popular and useful to readers.  I just don't know if I have the time for that right now with the rest of real life.  Worst case scenario, I continue blogging to myself about my horse and leave this as an open journal, which may or may not be read by another human being...ever.  Part of me is okay with that too.

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