Blogging used to be a slightly less-private version of the cloth-bound diary; a personal thing, a publicly-visible site filled with people’s impressions and thoughts. Blogging was a pointless, self-indulgent pastime, for those who knew a little HTML or, a few years later, could type in the Blogger URL. Now, with the hordes of Facebook and Twitter users, I’m noticing that personal blogs seem to be more at home on the community-like Livejournal and Tumblr. WordPress has a vague sort of community of bloggers, and I think there’s also a small crowd who uses Google+ and its easy security settings for private blogging. (I know one guy who does that, in any event.)
For a while, everybody blogged, but the freely-visible personal blog seems to have faded away, mostly. There are blogger journalists, professional blogs and reference blogs, science blogs and cooking blogs. But journal-like, opinion-filled blogs? Not so much.
A lot of those old blogs were little more than people mocking other people. That gets old fast. Want to blog for personal reasons? That can still bring an audience, but you’ve got to be good. And mocking the world doesn’t bring in the pageviews unless you’re funny and smart.
- The Barefoot Foodie has been blogging for years. She’s written about her kids, her husband, her weight, food, clothes, airline travel with kids; really, whatever strikes her as interesting. Brittany Gibbons is a gifted writer, and, yes, her acerbic, funny style may put you in mind of 1997, but she makes it work. She complains about other people, but she mocks her own flaws. And you can’t help but root for her when she does it.
- The simply-named Zachary Maichuk’s Blog is well-written and always fascinating to read. It’s a crime that more people don’t know about this well-spoken, opinionated, doctor of clinical psychology. He blogs on Occupy Wall Street, political correctness, human behavior, and whatever else he wants to write about. Sure, he’s moralistic, and maybe a little smug; but he’s also approachable and friendly and never boring.
- I almost forgot Wil Wheaton‘s blog, WWdN: In Exile. Wil is a net celebrity: an actor, a beloved personality, and a skilled writer. Some of his ramblings about geek culture, Star Trek, and gadgets are more focused than others, but they’re all well written.
I’m sure there are more of these gems out there. Anyone here follow any well-written personal blogs like these? Tell us in the comments!
Neil Fein is a freelance editor who specializes in novels. If you’ve written a manuscript or are getting close to finishing, you can get in touch with him here, and even ask for a free sample edit. He’s also the guitarist in the band Baroque & Hungry, he rides his bicycle as much as he can, and he paints when the mood strikes him.