Blogging, Why Do I Still Do It?

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I've been blogging on and off for probably 15 years.  I've started and given up on at least three blogs when they got no attention whatsoever.  I started my first blog when I retired and moved to Malaysia. I had some success describing my move and life in a new country.  I recently deleted that blog since my return to the U.S. I now have 3 blogs that I choose to concentrate on. One is about living with my pet cattle dogs, "Cattle Dog Kids" and the other two are about my views on politics, social issues, and everyday life, "Steveso Thinks, and of course, this blog, "Stephen Sovie's Blog".

I didn't start blogging to get rich but to pass my time during retirement. It wasn't until later that I realized that I could make money through blogging.  I didn't intend to blog full-time to earn even a part-time living, but I thought I could earn enough money to pay for my blogging expenses. After 15 years I realized that I couldn't even make enough money for a couple of Starbucks coffees a month!

I have earned the most money republishing my blog posts on Medium, but this still doesn't pay for the cost of maintaining my blogs. Over 10 years ago I had Google AdSense ads on one of my sites while living in Malaysia but after a friend tried to help by clicking on the ads, Google suspended my AdSense account.  After explaining to AdSense that I was not responsible, they immediately denied my appeal and banned me for life.  That was over 10 years ago!  Google is very unforgiving!

Recently I moved 2 of my 3 blogs, from Google's Blogger to WordPress, where I was able to place ads from WordPress.  So far I have made a whopping 86 cents!  The big difference between using WordPress over Blogger is that WordPress costs $120 per year per blog, whereas Blogger is free. I also use Amazon Affiliate and Chewey Affiliate advertising on all three blogs but haven't earned any money from them.  I also have a "Donate Button" on my blogs, but once again I have earned nothing.

In blogging, you can't make any money if you don't have any visitors, and you can't get advertisers if you don't have visitors.  So the most important thing about having a successful blog is to attract a lot of visitors.  And that is the most difficult part of building a blog.  If you don't have the technical knowledge of SEO (search engine optimization) or the money to pay for it, you're doomed.  

It's easier to attract visitors if you have a product or service to sell or if the subject of your blog is popular or in demand.  One of my blogs is about my pet cattle dogs, and the other two are personal blogs related to politics and social issues.  Neither attracts an overwhelming amount of interest.  So, I don't have much of a chance to hold my head above water.  

So why do I do it? Why do I go through the aggravation and periods of depression and hopelessness and times of hope and renewal? Why do I deny reality and look for any glimmer of hope of succeeding? I'm not really sure.  If I stop writing my blogs and delete them, I'll save a lot of money, but in a way, I'll be giving up on myself.  After all, I spent 15 years expressing myself, my feelings, and my opinions.  Writing my blogs has allowed me to stand up for what I believe and show my support for the ideals I hold dear. I feel better when I can vent, even though no one is listening. At least I feel better.  I also can show my pride in my pets and share the happiness that my cattle dogs, Cato and Lucky have given me. 

I may never grow the readership of my blogs, or make any more money than I make now, but I refuse to give up.  I don't even know why I am writing this post, as most likely no one will see it or read it.  I guess it's my way of saying I may be down, but I'm not out. After all, blogging is just my hobby, not my career.

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