One decade ago, we were young mothers. We were writers. We were poets. We were artists.
We were sharing our hearts, not our top tens.
We treasured and responded to each comment, rather than responding to PR pitches.
We left comments to build friendship, not to build traffic.
We carefully selected creative words for titles, but didn't think about "keywords."
We published photos that told stories, without text over the top to woo Pinners.
We chronicled our births, our recoveries, our awakening as parents.
Then, 2008 arrived and companies knocked on our inboxes. They wanted to send us strollers and vacuums. They wanted to fly us to Hawaii and to their company headquarters. They wanted to pay for a little square on our sidebar. We were interviewed on NBC and ABC and the Huffington Post.
And, sometimes, we're not sure what to do now. In this world of Google Analytics, e-newsletter campaigns, e-book sales, how-to articles, and pinnable images.
Most of us have successful online businesses now. Some of us freelance. Some of us have book deals pending or behind us. Some of us kept faith and kept on journaling. Others are getting ready to launch new sites. Still others faded right out of public view.
I have respect for the "old bloggers." We wrote when no one was watching us. We wrote because the words spilled out of our chest and on to paper, because they practically stood up on our tongues and marched down to the keyboard.
Blogging has changed and, in so many ways, I am glad for the changes. I am grateful for the new opportunities that writers now have to influence and to create income. I am happy to welcome new bloggers to the table too.
BUT tonight - I raise my glass to the storytellers of yesteryear.
No matter where you are now - on a stage, on the morning news, or in your backyard with a book and a mug of coffee - I remember you. Your words still whisper to me from a bygone era.
P.S. I still treasure and respond to comments every chance I get.
*** A special shout-out to Adventures in Babywearing, A Holy Experience, Apron Strings Aflutter, A Year with Mom and Dad (now Happy Strong Home), Barefoot Childhood, Classy Mommy, Culture Mami, Design Mom, Discovery Street, Emerging Mummy (now Sarah Bessey), Everyday Carnival, I Never Grew Up, Lettner Livin', Mama Nash, Marvelous Kiddo, Musings of A Housewife (now JoLynne Shane), Rockin' Mama, Rocks in My Dryer, Scribbit, Such the Spot, SWonderland, Rookie Moms, We Are That Family, Welcome to Married Life, Workout Mommy, 5 Minutes for Mom, and so many more that I am undoubtedly forgetting.