Thursday, May 24, 2012

Which box are you in?

While browsing my Twitter feed, I came across a link to Neil Kramer's blog post, The End of Blog Niches. As a blogger who is a mom--I hate the term mommy blogger--I really connected with what he says about getting pigeonholed. It seems like the monetization of blogs & specifically the realization by marketers that we are a source of free or cheap advertising, has led to even more categorization. I don't say this to criticize blogs which are really focussed on one thing--fashion, or parenting, or food, for example--I say you go, girl! It's more about the fact that I've been agonizing with what direction I'd like to go as a blogger who doesn't fit into one little box. Lately I've wondered if I should focus more on one aspect of all the things I tend to cover here. Sometimes I think that this blog is going in too many different directions.
My kitties liked to be put in boxes...

Should I respond to more of the PR offers of swag for blog mentions & do more product & book reviews? I might be able to make more money--or some money at all, because a few free books ain't going to pay the mortgage--but I don't know if that's really my bag. It'd be a bit hypocritical of me to advocate buying new stuff when I am trying to go more minimalist by reducing consumption, reusing things, recycling & making it myself.

Or should I shift more toward cycling & activities in Vancouver? I'm all about the local & I love letting families know about all the awesome activities, resources & places to go in Vancouver. Biking in Vancouver is really a viable option for families & I really believe that cycling is a big part of the answer to how we can cut back on emissions from transportation. 

Then there's all the personal stuff around parenting; in his post, Neil mentions blogger Sarah Gilbert's term “Domestic Realism” to replace the somewhat condescending mommy blogger moniker. I think there's value in putting the personal stuff out there. Sometimes it's just the humour in parenting: if you can't laugh at all the crap (literally) you have to deal with, how else do you cope? Sometimes it's the stuff that wasn't out in the open in the past: post-partum depression, adoption, miscarriage & infertility, relationship issues, etc. It's cliche, but reading about "Domestic Realism" helps you know you're not alone. On the other hand, I struggle with how much of my personal life to put out there because it's not just me that's exposed here. Sprout is the star of the show a lot of the time: his online presence is already huge & he's not even two! How is he going to feel about this in the future?

Until I figure it out--if I ever do pick a box to put myself in--I'll just keep up with my multi-niche blogging here at The Sprog.

Do you struggle with putting a label on what you do? Does your blog fit into a niche?

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