I am struggling to write blog posts at the moment; I am feeling all blogged out. I’m not even reading anywhere near as many blog posts as I used to so sorry if I haven’t visited for a while.
I have been wondering why. I know some say that the third year of blogging is the hardest but I don’t think it is that. I think it might be that my brain is just so full of information it cannot process it all to regurgitate it on the blog.
I am paid to write two blog posts a week for the Yell.com Know How site and so this takes priority. Writing these posts really makes me focus. I have to write in a certain style or with a certain approach as the purpose is to draw people to the site to find out information and then to keep them on the site. I like this discipline and the 400 word count limit as it really helps me get the writing done.
On top of this I am trying to study for another unit of the RHS 2 Certificate, this time on Pests and Diseases. The exam is at the end of the month so I really need to get my act together but I am always so tired by the end of a day in my non-gardening administrator job that I’m not getting very far.
Then there is the allotment and garden. My head is overfull of ideas for both. I am reading and thinking about intercropping, sucessional sowing, rejigging borders, what I need to sow and on and on. I wake up in the early hours and mentally start planning what will go in at the allotment when the first crops are harvested or whether planting the Geums amongst the Luzula is a good idea on the back slope.
Then there is my other reading matter, when I’m not trying to take in RHS dogma, at the moment it is Weeds by Richard Mabey but there is also a gigantic pile of gardening magazines to read and I know there are some books on their way to me to review.
I am also trying to break into freelance garden writing which is certainly not an easy thing to do; there are so many closed doors and so many established writers already chasing the work. You need to have a portfolio to show that you are capable of writing more than your blog but you need someone to publish you so you can build up a portfolio – quite frustrating. Luckily Jane Perrone at the Guardian blog has taken pity on me and I have had two posts published on their blog which I am really pleased with. However, I know I need to improve my writing style and to do this, not only so I need to write to get practice, but also I need to read lots more to see how other people write and what works. I think I have got a case of stage fright as suddenly how I write is being scrutinised more. This hasn’t really happened since I did my degree in literature and I suddenly find myself pondering over words to the extent that I lose my voice.
Generally I post 3 or 4 posts a week on this blog, although one of those is usually a Wordless Wednesday but I am thinking I will take a step back and not worry about blog stats and keeping a steady flow of my ramblings for readers. I think it will be better for me to post on here when there is something I want to share or explore rather than trying to think of things to write. I have tried to take this approach in the past but recently I have felt that I am writing posts for the sake of it and I am boring myself so my readers must be really really bored.
For example today I have spent the most wonderful day at the Oxford Botanic Gardens learning how to identify plants. I was thinking on the train home I better get on and post about that when I get home but I just can’t engage my brain to do so, to distill the whole day into a post. I just want to keep it to myself, to go over what I have learnt in a gentle way if you see what I mean.
I find myself looking for events to go to or gardens to visit so I have material for the blog and then I think but I just want to potter in my garden but then I think well that won’t give me anything to blog about – I don’t think this is healthy. After all the blog started as a way of recording, for me, what was happening in the garden. Over the last three years I have met lots of fabulous people some who have encouraged me to follow my dreams and find a way into a new career in horticulture. I have been places and done things I would never have thought I could and all this has led to me having less time to blog. Which is kind of ironic really.
So that’s where I’m at and if I don’t blog very frequently it’s because I am gardening or reading. However, saying that I will probably now feel inspired and start blogging more which would be typical of my character! Only time will tell
The photos are all Geraniums which are flowering at the moment in the garden and that I have grown from seed.