Keeping It 100

5 Nov

keepit100Every year for my birthday, I do an annual self evaluation. Beyond celebrating the most important day of the year, it’s also a time for personal reflection: What goals have I accomplished, what goals did I let fall to the side, what to I want to accomplish in the coming year, how am I going to make that happen.

In the past year, I’ve accomplished the goal of starting a health and wellness blog that tells some of my stories on the road to weight loss. I have been able to reach so many people and engage with them on the issues that are important to me. I’ve been able to fulfill my passion for writing on my own terms, and it has been amazing.

This marks the 100th post at I’m Skinny, Now What? I’d like to use it to tell you some of the things I’ve learned, some lessons I’m hoping to learn, and what I want this space to become.

1. Blogging is not as easy as you think. Everyone knows how to write, but not everyone is a writer. I’ve been writing fiction since I was 7. It was easy to make things up and tell different tales that I didn’t have to be a part of. This blog is a different animal. I am innately private. I don’t like people in my business. So I had to balance my need to write with my need for privacy and also my need to engage an audience with stories they could relate to. Luckily I am a trained reporter, so getting the facts to you all wasn’t  as much of a bear as I had expected. I’ve been walking a narrow tightrope deciding what to divulge and what to keep close to the chest. Still, I appreciate the feedback on the stories you all relate to. It gives me a little more confidence each time I tell an embarrassing story.

2. Building an audience is even harder. Not that I don’t appreciate all of you who check in on post days and those days in between, but building an even bigger audience is difficult. When I’m Skinny, Now What? started, average page views were in the low single digits. Now they’re in the mid-30s. Good, not great. The business side of this is something I didn’t plan for, but it is something I’m learning and hoping to conquer soon.

3. You never know what will click. Posts that speak to current events, like Prince Fielder’s Body Issue cover or the recent street harassment post, I had a feeling would do well. But personal stories like The Gym Rat’s Ugly Truth or How I Got Into a Bikini really hit with audiences. Sharing how I deal with the ugly side of losing weight or even the mental workout it takes convincing myself it’s OK to wear a two-piece were some of the hardest stories I wrote. But I appreciate your support in getting those out there. I will do more.

4. Never give up. This would seem like a gimme, but there were a few times when I thought of letting the blog fade. I kept running into writing blocks. My page views were decreasing. I wasn’t feeling motivated. But I’d talk to friends or family who really appreciated what I was doing. I’d post something that would just click with an audience (like my recap of the BET Awards). Or I’d just start having fun again in my posts. This blog is for you, but it’s also for me. It’s a way for me to vent and to share. It’s a way for me to improve on my craft and to motivate myself to stay healthy. This blog holds me accountable to you.

Thank you all again for a great year. It has been such an honor to take this journey with you. Let’s see what the next 100 will bring!

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2 Responses to “Keeping It 100”

  1. FinickyFeet November 5, 2014 at 8:28 pm #

    You know what? Thanks for sharing this with us. I feel honored to have found you and to “hear” your honesty with words. I just very recently began my first blog. UGH. I hate the “theme,” I hate the commitment to it, I’m having a difficult time just putting myself out there. But your blog has spoken to me. I’m going back over to Finickyfeet. I’m going to revisit it, and see if I can keep going even though I’m not sure what I’m doing technically. I’ll just keep on writing. Thanks, Skinny!

    • cicelyd November 5, 2014 at 9:51 pm #

      Thank you, FinickyFeet! It is not easy coming up with new ideas for posts all the time, but it’s so rewarding when people like yourself appreciate the work that was done. I look forward to reading your blog!

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