M … is for mutual (support)

M[1]  is for mutual, as in mutual support.

Now, how am I going to spin this into a writing connection?

We all enjoy what we’re doing; writing. We all recognise that if not a lonely life, it can be safely construed as a solitary life. Outside of your shed, study, or wherever you write, you may have family or even friends. They may or may not make all the right noises when they see your work, but let’s look at our blog-life.

Instead of using this post to talk about writing, I thought I’d touch on what we’re all doing right now – blogging and communicating. We’re strengthening ties and creating a better, larger, writer’s community.

Is it good to see a ‘like’ about your blog?

For me, the answer to that is yes, and no. I can’t see the point in telling somebody new that you ‘like’ an aspect of their blog, unless you qualify it with the reason. If you give a ‘like’, give a comment the first time, even if it’s brief. There is an exception to this theory. Once you’ve established a rapport with the blogger, and actually written a comment or two, an unsupported ‘like’ is still nice to see – it shows you’ve made the time to get over for a look.

Why is it so important?

It leaves a bitter taste to find that somebody has ‘liked’ about four aspects of your blog, and clicked on ‘follow’, simply so that you will go and check out theirs, possibly even deciding to ‘follow’ it. In the last month I’ve had five such attempts at using me to increase ‘followers’. I’ve grown wise to it, and the transgressors have been unceremoniously removed. This blog is still very much a learning process for me.

Is this a rant?

Most definitely not. I did feel though that, now that we’ve reached the halfway point on this rather excellent challenge, it was time to show my colours so to speak.

I refreshed my blog at the beginning of the year, and started from scratch. My previous blogging efforts were going largely unnoticed. I now have 59 followers according to my statistics, but I know it’s not accurate so I’ve got a couple of ‘red herrings’ to find. I’m actually following about 40 blogs, and though it’s hard work at times, I want to see how things look at the end of April.

Don’t worry, we’re nearly there; the point is coming.

My aim is to have a manageable list of blogs, where there is mutual support between myself, those who follow me, and those I follow. If I have 30 ‘followers’ who are actually ‘following’, I will respond in kind. If I have 50 followers, I will work hard to support them.

I’m not expecting that there is a closed group of blogs, like a Facebook group. Good manners and integrity suggests to me that it doesn’t have to be a reciprocal exercise, as long as we are faithful when we hit that ‘follow’ button. If the target blog gets boring, then ‘unfollow’. It can be that we are following 25 blogs, but we have 50 followers. Even an occasional response to comments is good manners.

I know there are some out there with followers in three figures, and I salute you. You are what blogging is all about. My actual writing time is too precious to follow too many blogs. I will however work to support any writer who feels they need an opinion, a tip, or even a listening ear. I am not beyond asking for those things myself. No, sadly I’m not perfect or infallible, but I’m working on both.

What I’m saying in a nutshell is, that those of us that are serious about writing and blogging don’t really need ‘hangers-on’. We do need genuine, like-minded individuals, who can see beyond their own screen, and want to help, and be helped.

Okay. I think I’d better stop writing, or the decent folk among you will stop reading. By the way, there was no intent to injure any blogger, mentally or physically with the contents of this post.

Thank you once again for reading, and where appropriate, following. I’ll see you tomorrow with ‘N

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