After reading the awesome feedback from this entry I have been working on a separate one to declare my intentions and my goals as a blogger. I started with a silly little comment policy and this is now my Blogging Manifesto. It was mainly an exercise to force myself to really think about what I’ve built here since January 2004 and what I hope it to be to outsiders.
I really don’t think any of this is necessary, I kinda just like the using the word manifesto. It’s one I can’t figure out how to work into my daily conversations, so killing it on my blog will have to do.
I Will Promote Kindness and Joy With My Words
Man. There are a lot of bitter and angry writers in the world. Did you know that? I am not one of them. This may make me boring to read, but it also makes this site a place of warmth that has become my own personal shelter over the last four years. Even if I’m having a bad day and blog about something bringing me down, the commenters pick up the slack and spread the love and joy while I can not. I will do everything I can to focus on the positive in my life so that people who stumble by here might find something that makes them smile. Even if it’s just me talking about boob sweat.
I Will Do My Best Not To Feed My Ego By Knocking You Down
I’m insecure. And like a lot of insecure people – I’ve been known to gossip/badmouth others behind their back to make myself feel better. While I’m sure I’ll still do this with my dearest friends (I’m no angel) – I will not use my blog as a place to hurt others. Even celebrities that really seem to be asking for it. But especially not other bloggers. This cyber-community is too important for me to devalue it just to make myself feel better about gaining 10lbs.
I Will Assume Everyone I Write About Reads My Blog
I will not write anything I would hate for someone to one day find. If I’m not comfortable with them finding it – I will not write it. Period. This is not self-censorship, this is simply me avoiding drama and negativity in my life. I don’t want my blog to hurt anyone, just like I don’t want my spoken word to hurt anyone. Some may consider this to be spineless – I just consider this my way of treating others how I would like to be treated. Unless they say something bad about my hair. Then I’m totally taking them down.
I Will Try To Visit A Few New Blogs Every Week
While some of my entries only get a handful of comments, others get 50+. I can’t follow every URL left by every commenter. However, I will try to make a point to follow a blogger to their site when they say something especially insightful or funny. Or maybe just because they smell nice. Either way – I will try to comment on a few new sites every week. I have been notoriously bad about commenting because I over-analyze the words I write other sites until I opt out and just don’t say anything. I am trying to change that about myself so I can continue to spread the comment love that is so kindly given to me.
I Will Not Feed The Trolls
If someone is ugly in my comments section or in an email, I will not call them out or link to them directly. I may write about the issue in a vague sense, but I will not give them the spotlight. More than often – I will simply ignore them. I may grumble and mumble about them to my blog friends, but I will not use my blog as a way to rally the troops against someone I don’t know.
I Will Give People The Benefit of the Doubt. Once.
If someone leaves a nasty comment or sends a nasty email, I will try to understand that sometimes we all have bad days and will do my best not to derive all of my opinions on someone based on one comment, blog entry, or email. However, if the asshole returns a second time? I’m totally making a VooDoo doll of them and letting my dogs poop on it in the yard.
I Will Remember That I Can Always Learn From Others, Now Matter How Different They May Seem
We are not all the same. You may be a practicing Catholic while I left the church years ago. You may be a Pro-Life Conservative while I’m a Pro-Choice Liberal. You may think Diet Coke sucks. I will not let any of these differences blind me to the wisdoms you may share. Just because you think The Amazing Race is a stupid show, doesn’t mean you can’t help me learn how to cook. We can all learn something from each other, and I will try not to let our differences make me forget that.
I Will Always Try To Find A Gentle Way To Express Disagreement
If I disagree with something you are saying on your own blog – or even in the comments of my own – I will find a kind and gentle way to express that. The best phrase in the world is, “This is what works for me…” and I will use that instead of, “Your way is stupid – use mine instead” whenever possible.
I Will Apologize If Necessary
Sometimes I will screw up. Most of the times this is because I react emotionally to something before letting it simmer. When this happens, I will have the courage to admit my error and apologize. And I will forgive myself because no one is perfect. Although I come pretty damn close.
I Will Try To Use This Blog For Good, Not Evil
As often as I can without taxing my audience, I will try to use this platform as a way to help my community. I’ve supported causes like MDA and the American Heart Association. I also try to promote the charities other bloggers are trying to help. I am not sure why people come here as often as they do (it’s definitely not the cooking) but I will use that gift to help whenever I can.
I Will Not Take This Site Too Seriously
This is just a blog. It is my blog and it is very special to me, but it’s still a blog. Just because I sometimes write about serious things, like pregnancy loss or parenting struggles, it doesn’t mean I can’t also write about how much I love Cadbury Cream Eggs. Periodically this blog may need a dose of silly — at which time I’ll post a picture of my dogs humping each other. Or maybe I’ll talk about how hard it is not to pee on yourself instead of the cup at the doctor’s office when you’re pregnant.
Because trust me – it’s impossible.