The Blogging Sisterhood • Celebrating 1000 Posts

blogging sisterhood

In the control panel of my blog, the counter for the number of posts sits at 999. I hesitate to write the 1,000th post because it should have some kind of significance. I can’t just write a flippant flyaway piece, it has to be memorial and interesting, it has to mark the occasion with importance.

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Then, as if by divine intervention, my friend Elena Peters from Living with Batman bestows on me a blogging award. It’s an award I’ve never heard of before called the Sisterhood of the World Blogging Award, and one I think might even be a little silly, but the questions she poses give me food for thought. They are the perfect questions to answer on the occasion of 1,000 posts. So here we are.

How did you choose your blog name?

I chose the name head-heart-health to signify a change of focus in my life from weight loss to wellness. At the end of 2009, I left behind my old blog Thin Enough to Go To The Gym on Blogger and started afresh on WordPress. I see the title as a variation on body, mind and spirit. I did not know at the time there was an organisation in the USA called head, heart, health and hands — if I had known I would have chosen something different. I also would have chosen not to have the hyphens in my URL — I didn’t anticipate how hard a hyphen is to find on a mobile touch screen.

When did you write your first blog post and what was it about?

I wrote my first post on Blogger in February 2006. It was a chronicle of how much I weighed, how much I could lift and how far I could run. Of course, I wasn’t at all happy with any of it. I want to be slimmer, stronger, and faster. My blog continued in the same vein for three and a half years during which time I competed in two body building competitions and developed bulimia. I found myself drowning in a sea of self-loathing in September 2009 and decided it was time to give up dieting forever. I closed my old blog and began the one you are reading now. You can read my first post on this blog here.

Has your blog changed direction since then?

My main focus has remained the same – positive body image and self-love, but I’ve expanded to include topics such as sex and relationships, mental health, and aging disgracefully.

What is the most time-consuming task for a blogger?

The most time-consuming task (after writing posts of course) is finding the right image. I am aesthetically sensitive and have to have beautiful pictures on my blog. It takes me awhile to find the right image and to give it the ‘Katie’ treatment.

How many hours in a day do you spend on your blog related tasks everyday?

I spend nearly all day everyday on my blog. I am trying to go back through my archives and clean up my posts, add new images and re-share on social media. Most of my work pre-dates Pinterest so I’m making new images for my old posts.

What would you like to see happen more in the blogging community?

I would like to see bloggers be more like we were in the beginning — pouring ourselves out on the page and connecting with each other. We didn’t know or care about SEO, or page views, or niches, we just wrote and commented on each other’s posts. It was the wild, wild west and we were cowboys.

What is the worst piece of blogging advice you have ever read or been given?

I hear the same thing litany of advice all the time — write on one topic, brand yourself, use keywords, guest post on bigger blogs, build an email list, promote yourself on social media. I’ve pretty much ignored all of the advice and been moderately successful.

In my experience there are only three things you need to do — be different, write well, and offer authentic helpfulness. The rest is all a waste of time if you aren’t nailing individuality, storytelling and generosity.

What has been your most read post and what was it about?

My most read post is 10 Things You Should Know Before You Kill Yourself which is about what happens to those left behind when someone completes suicide. It goes viral about once a year.

Why do you think it is your most popular post?

A lot of people search on the term ‘how to kill myself in my sleep’ and because I have those words in the post, it comes up on the first page of Google. I get emails several times a week from people who say that post has helped them stay alive. I am grateful if my experience helps just one person.

Excluding direct blogging advice, what pearls of wisdom would you give a new blogger?

I would tell new bloggers to stop stressing about everything. You don’t need to know what you’re doing, you don’t need the right URL, you don’t need anything except the desire to pour out your innermost thoughts and feelings on your blog.

There is far too much blogging about events and not enough blogging about the big ideas. We should be talking more about the important things — death, grief, pain, love, change, success and disappointment — and less about what we ate and what we wore. The internet is so saturated with information now that we can’t make a difference unless we’re saying something no one has heard before, or something most people are too afraid to admit.

Success used to mean being a big fish in a small pond. Now the pond has become an enormous lake polluted with shit. It no longer matters what size fish you are — success comes when you can lead others to clean water.

So, I’m meant to nominate 10-12 bloggers to receive this award and to ask them ten questions of my own. But I’m not one for following rules.

I do have a few questions though. If you’d like to answer them in a blog post, please be sure to leave a link in the comments so I see your post. If you just want to answer them in the comments, you’re more than welcome.

  1. What has been your biggest life transformation? What led you to the place where you knew you something had to change?
  2. What do you value most in the world?
  3. What do you know now that you wished you would have known when you were younger?
  4. What causes you the most pain … and where do you find comfort?
  5. What do you wish you did better?

I can’t wait to hear your answers. Thank you for reading my stuff and connecting with me — it means the world to me.

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For fun, I’d love to know who is still around after all these years. If you started reading my old blog and you’re still here, please let me know in the comments.

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About Katie Paul

Embracing my midlife sexy while exploring modern love & relationships • Devoted to all things beautiful • Master of Arts in creative writing & non-fiction writing • Join the hottest group on FB → Sassy Midlife Women

54 thoughts on “The Blogging Sisterhood • Celebrating 1000 Posts

  1. I always enjoy reading posts like this, then I want to curl up and hide coz my blog is in no way up to any kind of professional standards, It’s just a place for me to write… and as a bonus I get to be a little less lonely because sometimes people read what I write and leave a comment. I vacillate between thinking it would be a good idea to make it look more professional and tweet/pin/bloglovin/blogher and not seeing the point of any of it.
    Sorry I’m not answering any of your questions. I’m just typing a response.
    Congratulations of 1000 posts.

    1. It’s just a place for me to write… and as a bonus I get to be a little less lonely because sometimes people read what I write and leave a comment.
      Yes, this. Perfect. Keep doing what you’re doing, Wendy, you get to make all the rules. Thanks for the great comment.

  2. Congratulations on your 1000th post! It truly is an amazing milestone. I’m so pleased that you decided to accept your nomination and chose this piece to mark this special occasion.

    You are an inspiration and a mentor to many, including myself, and your wisdom and heart is what makes blogging for everyone special and relevant.

    I agree that sometimes we all get lost in the numbers and the rules when it comes to blogging. We need to get back to what’s important, to why blogging began. It began with a voice, your voice, everyone’s voice, sharing experiences, touching someone’s soul, making a difference for one, paying it forward.

    You, my friend, embody all of that and more. You are everything that is right about blogging and our community.

    I wish you continued success, however you wish to define that but in my eyes, you are already there.

    I look forward to reading your next 1000.

    Your friend,

    Elena

  3. It’s too damn early in the morning right now for me to answer your questions–that’s deep shit, and all I can think about right now is getting my 14-year-old daughter to her first day of 9th grade/high school without puking (her, not me…although I used to do that every year on the first day of school).

    But I absolutely wanted to say Happy One Grand Posts to you! You were one of the first people who commented on my blog in March of 2014, and I’ve loved you and your spunky, kinky spirit ever since. Blog on, my dear, blog on!

    1. I shouldn’t have posted this on the first day back at school, but I can never keep up with you people on the other side of the world 😉

      I like spunky and kinky as descriptors. You’re a bit of alright yourself.

  4. wow 1000 posts! I look forward to the next thousand or so that you throw out into the big bad blogging world 🙂 I love how you speak your mind and don’t hedge around tough issues – it’s good to read thought provoking stuff. ~ Leanne

  5. Blogging is a lot of hard work but is so much fun when we don’t get too caught up with the ‘must-dos’ of SEO and apps, etc. I absolutely agree with you about the 3 things bloggers should do!
    And yes, congratulations on the 1k posts! Fabulous!

  6. The fact that people who were searching about how to commit suicide, came upon your post and had a change of heart is mind-blowing!! I am so proud to know you, that you have actually saved lives!!
    Congrats on your 1,000th post!! May you post many amazing 1,000’s more!

  7. I really, really enjoyed reading this! I haven’t read blogs in a while and I thought I visit D.Parker’s Twitter to start off and found this! CONGRATULATIONS! 1,000 posts- WOW! Well done!

  8. Having read all of your posts and been around “since the beginning”, congratulations on 1000 posts.

    There have been differences of opinion between us over the years, and good healthy debate – which has been a pleasure.

    I totally agree the Blogosphere has changed and my blog has become purely selfish – I am just using it as a vessel for my thoughts. I highly doubt anyone reads my blog these days. I sometimes think of starting a “helpful” health/wellness blog, but don’t really know if I care enough to do so.

    1. Hi Liz

      How lovely of you to still be around after all these years. Even the days we were fighting seem so long ago and whatever it was about, I’ve completely forgotten.

      Perhaps I’m getting mellow (or senile) in my old age

      x

  9. Congrats on your 1,000 post milestone. That’s an tremendous accomplishment. PS: Your line, “It was the wild, wild west and we were cowboys.” was awesome. I may use it myself one day. lol.

  10. Congratulations on your 1000th post. What an accomplishment! I am approaching my 50th and expect the computer to break out in song the day I push ‘publish.’ I suspect yours has gone on a celebratory cruise (or should). I look forward to checking out your writings.

  11. Wow – brilliant Katie! Just brilliant. I love what you said about key words, SEO and all the shit out there. I started 13 months ago knowing absolutely nothing and quickly found myself swamped with dos and donts from ‘experts’. It is an absolute minefield. I still have major doubts about what I am doing but since ‘meeting’ all you lovely bloggers – mainly in the USA for some strange reason – I have learnt a lot of useful stuff. I am so relieved to have read this post because it echoes my gut feelings. I am going to take the questions you have put at the end and write something just for my own development.

    I was really interested to hear you talk about your most popular post which I will find and read. Since Dr. Margaret Rutherford (I think it was her!) did a post on depression and suicide, I have been plucking up the courage do something about my former husband’s suicide. I still have issues with it 15 years on and usually avoid all suicide related stuff. Thanks for all the thought processes this post has kicked into gear! A wonderful post – you are a talented writer. x

    1. I’m sorry to hear of your husband’s suicide and know intimately how tough it can be. Sometimes the smallest things are a trigger.

      On the other hand, it gives me great comfort to know another suicide widow – especially one further down the road x

      1. Hi Katie, thanks for your replies to my recent comment – very sweet of you – I know you are mega busy. Just wanted to say, I was not a suicide widow. I had divorced him before it happened. We’d had an ongoing argument, mainly over the children, for quite awhile. it was a very complicated situation. Then suddenly, he simply ended it all. Won’t say any more here as this was a happy positive feature that I really love! x

  12. Hi Katie!

    First off, congratulations on 1,000 posts. That’s remarkable and a testimony of your commitment to writing. I started blogging back in 2008 and THAT seems like forever so I greatly admire your dedication. So many bloggers start out like a house on fire but it’s the true writers that stick with it over the long haul.

    Thank you also for sharing a bit of your background with all of us. It’s fascinating to see where we’ve all come from and what got us to here. But mostly, I want to thank you for speaking out in favor of authenticity in our writing. As you say, “There is far too much blogging about events and not enough blogging about the big ideas. We should be talking more about the important things — death, grief, pain, love, change, success and disappointment — and less about what we ate and what we wore. The internet is so saturated with information now that we can’t make a difference unless we’re saying something no one has heard before, or something most people are too afraid to admit.”

    From one cow-girl to another, keep doing what you’re doing! ~Kathy

  13. Congratulations on your 1000th. I’m one of your newer readers and am totally intrigued by your direct, hold no punches style. When I write, I share the real me with whoever wants to read, but it’s scary to do it. Finding blogs like yours gives me courage to continue, so thank you.

  14. Congrats on your success and wow youve been blogging since 2006! You are so right about so many things and i loved how you said that all that matters is that you are being different and offering help. That’s what i want to do. It’s amazing that you’ve helped so many with your suicide post- besides all the page views, followers, etc- that’s when you really know that your blog has done well. That is real success! Thanks for this 🙂

  15. Congrats on your 1000th post! I love reading your blog & look forward to it every day. It’s thought provoking, helpful and just plain well done! Can’t wait for your next 1000!

  16. Congratulations Katie! Meow – you have been at this for a long time. I’m inspired that you have kept your content so fresh! I feel sometimes like I’m writing the same thing over and over.

  17. Here I am at 76 looking back, having entered blogging & social marketing just a few years ago. My answer to all your questions is the same, It is never too late to start again. Discover your passion and express it. The rewards are internal.

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