Girl About Town

Beauty, Restaurant and Bar Reviews around Dublin City

The Difference Between Writing and Blogging

GirlAboutTown is 1 year old this month. When it started I knew it would take a new direction from my previous blog, but it’s only in the last few weeks did I realise what the difference was to be.

I’ve realised that, for me, there’s a real difference between blogging and writing; in that they are two different styles, two different voices.

I didn’t necessarily set out to write reviews, I just wanted to write.  Yes, I love makeup, and skincare, and coffee, and when a restaurant serves up a great dish; but I didn’t start writing about that sort of stuff to review it – I wrote about it to share it.

I’ve always found joy in sharing news and information with others. I’ve always been that person who can’t wait to share what they heard about a new bar or is simply so excited about their new foundation they have to tell someone. For this reason I never liked the idea of disclaimers, because if I used something and I liked something I wanted to tell someone, my opinion was never for turning.

Over time, my sister and mother were getting tired of me telling them about “this great new cream that does x, y and z” – and so I started a blog.

Why do I think blogging and writing are different? Because the way that I blog and the way that I write are different; and that’s on me. I write because I love the process, the punctuation, and the possibilities. Playing with the language and the patterns and overall just enjoying the act, the art, of writing.

Not that I never enjoyed blogging, but it’s becoming clearer as to why I could never bring myself to write a haul, an empties or a favourites post. I love reading those posts, but they’re not my style when it comes to writing my own. I think that’s why I enjoy writing about perfume so much – because it’s more of a challenge, there’s more room to explore.

Blogging tips and thoughts

So many people refer to their blog as their own little corner of the internet, and just like the walls by our pillows, our school lockers and our desks at work – they’re our spaces to decorate and organise as we see fit.

I’m trying very hard not to think so much about how my corner compares to others. I’m trying to tell myself that we all get something different from blogging, writing, sharing. It’s not easy, because some people get more out of this than others, but in cases like that I remind myself it’s not about physical rewards all the time, simply having someone say “Oh, I picked up that mascara you mentioned the other day – I love it!” ; that’s worth more to me than any number of glasses of bubbly or parcels in my front porch. Of course, at weaker moments, I’d be lying if I said that at times I didn’t feel jealous or left-out, or criticized myself based on  how “well” I perceived others to be doing.

There’s nothing to say that because you write about beauty on occassion, you have to write about it a certain way. I’m not here to say I’m above or below beauty blogging; those blogs and those bloggers are institutions, and icons; they broke the ground for the online revolution and helped shaped a media that’s changing the way the world works.

I’ve just realised that the reason I started to blog was not necessarily to do what they did – it was not to have a blog, but it was to write.

Taking photographs for blogging

For anyone feeling in a similar mindset, I’ve found solace as of late in recent lifestyle posts from Zoe London – someone whose work embodies exactly what I felt “blogging” means to me.

Or, very simply, in the wise words of Karima (of ShamelessFripperies) – you do you.

9 Comments

  1. Great post, missus. I think that’s why I enjoy your writings so much. They’re so different to everything else I read.
    Good to see you have the comments open too as I always want to WRITE a comment or perhaps, REVIEW your articles 😉

    • Lisa Dee

      July 13, 2015 at 9:29 pm

      I see what you did there! Glad my ramblings can be of interest to you 🙂

  2. I completely understand how you feel. So many people say to be ‘Your blog is amazing, you write so well why aren’t you filled with free stuff – surly PR companies are banging down your door’ – I don’t agree but, people never understand when I say the only reason I started this was to write. It’s why I felt so constrained when the words ‘Beauty Blog’ were scrolled under my name. I was not a beauty blogger, I was a girl who was writing about anything and everything in life that effected her. I was using the internet and my blog as a way to publicise the voice that I think I was put here to have and share. Whether people listened or not, wasn’t the point. It was a reward if they did, when I see the views or hear the comments – it validates me. I will admit it but even without them I still strived on.

    My biggest issue with the ‘PR – Disclamour’ style writing (for the short period I tried it, I mean the champaign and free gifts, who would say no?) was the lack of my own voice I could have. No matter how many times a company tells you ‘to tell your readers YOUR opinion’ we all know, sitting around the table what they mean.

    Anyway I’m rambling but, one of the reasons why I ever saw your wiring or you as a person was because I felt a sense of honest with you. I knew you weren’t like the walking, talking cliche that wrote about the brand they got most money from. That to me, is worth more than any good bag.

  3. I love this so much, and it has struck a timely chord with me. When I was a teen, I blogged in Irish to practice my creative writing (and other general ramblings) in the language, and it slowly gained me attention in the community and the arts scene. As I got older, I tried to break into the mainstream in a way, by writing in English, but I then started to write about another niche topic; LGBT issues. Now, I’ve grown a little tired of both LGBT stories and Irish language affairs, but by me not wanting to blog about those, I find myself losing my voice and not knowing what else to do. I write for a living in a way, as you know Lisa, but I feel I may need to return to blogging soon to revive my creative side. Thanks for writing this and making me think about it a little harder. S x

    • Lisa Dee

      July 13, 2015 at 11:32 pm

      It’s a tough call! There’s a part of me that just loves to write, but the way the modern world is you feel you have to publicise it and get outsiders opinions, their validation – when it’s only the fact that you enjoy writing it is all that should matter.

      I’ve seen so many of my favourite bloggers and writers say they’re going back to their roots and writing for the love of the act of writing, not just blogging for blogs sake.

      I agree with you on the loosing your voice when you’re without writing, without a creative outlet I’m completely lost. But as soon as an outside structure is imposed upon it, it loses its authenticity … If that’s the right word…

  4. Loved this post and really identified without. I started my blog simply to write too. I have a Journalism and Visusl Media BA and I was frustrated I didn’t have an outlet to work or create how I wanted to so I created my own! It’s an amazing thing and I’d agree blogging fulfills a different need in each person. For me I created the job I wasn’t privy to otherwise and it’s a great outlet for me.😀

    • Lisa Dee

      July 13, 2015 at 11:35 pm

      So glad to hear it! Yeah I was the same, no one was going to pay me to write so I just did it. Even when i worked as a content writer I didn’t enjoy it because I wasn’t creating for myself – but being active online did open a lot of doors for me. It’s great to have a space you’ve built yourself, I think it’s very therapeutic 😊

  5. Sorry about all the bloomin’ typos, that’s what happens when I post from my phone late at night and hit comment too quickly!

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