Ten years ago today I published my first blog post, on a blogger blog, with the preformed template that had a lighthouse background (anyone else have that one when they started?). I’d fallen into blogs and blogging quite by accident, searching the Internet (dial up, made that wonderful noise like how you’d imagine a snail eating lettuce, and still a complete novelty at home) to see if I could find a picture of what my Rowan subscribers free kit scarf was supposed to look like. I found a couple of pictures, and I found knitting blogs, stories of triumphs and disasters, the project that worked perfectly and the one that went so badly wrong it was unceremoniously binned to loud applause in the comments section.
“I could do that,” I thought. “I want to do that.” And so it began.
It took me months to work out how to turn my comments section on, far longer than it should have done to start leaving comments on the blogs that I enjoyed (it felt very un-English and rather like butting in on a private conversation), and as for the photos – well let’s just say it’s not arrogant to say I’ve improved!
When I first started it was just words, the occasional photograph if you could find the right cable to link your camera and your computer, and the people at the other end. I’m not harking back for the good old days, just quietly amazed at how much has changed, and, given that a lot of the same people are still here, still blogging, amazed at how much we’ve all learnt to do along the way.
In ten years blogging has given me some amazing opportunities, many of which still completely blow my mind and have me sat looking at my email thinking “is this really real?! Of course yes!!”.
I think pride gets a bad reputation as a purely negative trait, more Mr Darcy pre-Pemberly than merit based, but I am unashamedly proud of this blog of mine; I love it and cherish it and nurture it as much as possible and I think after 10 years writing and taking pictures is an ingrained habit, I couldn’t stop now if I tried.
But this isn’t a “yay me! Hurrah!” blog post, this is a “yay you!”
Blogging found me a knitting group that lead me to some very dear real life friends. It connected me with people the wide world over who think like me, and parent like me, and who keep me company down at the slightly more hippy crunchy end of the scale, and people who challenge what I think and force me to examine and refine my ideas, and both are equally valued. In short, if you’re reading this, it gave me you.
This is my chance to say thank you. For reading, for commenting, and for being there so that in this crazy fast paced world of blogging in 2016, that makes 2006 seem a lifetime ago, not merely a decade, I’m not shouting into an abyss, just looking across a noisy room at some happy familiar faces.
Thank you. Have a cake.