Why start a blog? Guest blog by Grandma Williams

"Blogging by you... why not? I started at 80 and it transformed my life!" Grandma Williams talks about the benefits blog writing brings, especially if you have a lot to share with the world!

Blogging by you... why not? I started at 80 and it transformed my life!

Do you remember when we wrote letters? Long ones and lots of them, to Aunts in Canada; to Grandma, saying ‘Thank you’; to cousins in Australia; to your Mum from University… occasionally. But mainly to friends, family and, of course, to lovers. We loved getting them too. The postman awaited eagerly. News, gossip, everyday chat, things seen, places been and thoughts. I don’t know about you, but thoughts seem to straighten out when you write them down to tell somebody don't they?

What has happened?

Letter writing seems to all but disappeared. All gone. A real letter is a rarity now isn’t it? Even postcards of donkeys from Scarborough have gone. Communication has transferred to phones and social media. We don’t do any actual writing at length any more do we?

Well I miss it. Used to enjoy it, that sitting down with a pad and pen and it starting to flow.

Then I discovered Blogging

I woke up! Realised that writing a blog was just like writing a long letter to someone. You could describe what you had seen, where you had been, and what you had been thinking about. I am doing it now aren’t I? Not only that, it dawned that I could publish it myself – which in some ways felt the same as posting my letter through the letterbox and awaiting it’s recipient to read it.

But with blogging I can write to hundreds of people, all at once, all over the world too. People who shared my interests, who might like to write back and comment on my thoughts.

So how do you blog?

Well I went to a blogging class but that is not essential (though most people will need help from a savvy youngster to get up and running). You have to create a site for yourself on the web and learn to use it. Not at all difficult once you have the basic set up done.

  1. You use a special app like wordpress.com to get your blog site created. You may need to pay.

  2. Whoever you ask to help you can take you through it. You have to choose a name for your site. I chose grandmawilliams.com because I thought I was going to write for my grandchildren. It didn’t turn out like that as you will see if you click on my site!

  3. Then you need a picture for your site. Can be anything you like.

  4. Once the site is created, all you do is click on the word write and there is a blank sheet for you to begin, just like a letter except that you can put pictures in it from your photos!

  5. You don’t have to address it to anyone. Once written you just press publish and off it goes to the world.

  6. It will also ask for a title for the piece. And at the side of the blog site is a column of other things you can do, like add a picture for it. All quite simple once you have had someone explain the basics.

  7. Once it has set off into the world you can find out if anyone has read it. The site will give you statistics about how many people in what country have visited your site and viewed it. It is amazing to find yourself being read in Taiwan and Canada. 

You can get more readers to your blog by letting your friends know your blog name. All they have to do is type it into Google and you should come up. At first you will have few readers, but those first ones are a delight. Some may comment.

If you are on Twitter, Facebook or any other social media, you can widen your readership by writing about your blog and putting the link there for anyone to find you.

It is so worthwhile. Really really! If you enjoy writing do find a way, someone with know how, and get yourself started. It has transformed my life.

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