birthday flowers

Nine Hundred Words About Nothing

When I started these Saturday catch-up posts, I thought they’d be a way to get back to what I think of the “good old days” of blogging: you know, the days when blogs were “personal journals”, and you just wrote about whatever happened to you that day, even if what happened to you that day was exactly the same as what happened the day before, and the day before that, and the day before… you get the picture.

I miss those days sometimes. I wrote a bit (well, OK, a LOT) about that in this post, and since then I think I have managed to get some of that “olden-days of blogging “feeling back, partly through doing these rambly, don’t-necessarily-need-to-have-a-set-topic posts, and partly by just reminding myself that it’s OK if not every post gets a million comments. Or, you know, six comments. I did move the ‘diary’ posts I mentioned in that older post back to the homepage, though, partly because my mum kept missing them completely, but mostly because I was kidding myself if I thought I had enough to write about to justify giving them a whole entire section of the site.

The fact is, the vast majority of the time, my life just isn’t that interesting. I look at other blogs, and the bloggers are always at events, or meet-ups, or doing other super-important bloggy things, and meanwhile I’m walking the dog and watching Call the Midwife, and that’s my life, most weeks. And honestly? I’m fine with that. I mean, I get invited to those events too, but I turn them all down, because, to be totally blunt, making awkward conversation (and any conversation involving me has the potential to be an awkward one, trust me…) with strangers who’re ultimately trying to get me to write about something I’m not really interested, in just isn’t my idea of fun. I did that as a journalist, but as a blogger I don’t have to – so I don’t.

I don’t enjoy going to PR events, and I don’t particularly enjoy reading about them on other blogs, so I just don’t bother, and go about my life as usual. And I like it. I really do. And I love blogging – even although it’s changed almost beyond recognition from what it was when I started out. I keep reading posts recently about how blogging is SO HARD, and how no one can ever understand how HARD it is, and and I just think, “really”?  Sure, blogging has its challenges, and I think ANY job has its downsides (I actually have a post scheduled for tomorrow about some of my blogger ‘pet peeves’, just to balance this one out!): if you’re blogging for a living, you’re running a small business, and yes, that is going to be hard and stressful, in ways that only other full-time bloggers will be able to understand. As jobs go, though, it’s a pretty good one: I genuinely love it, and feel very, very lucky to be able to do it, so, for me, the downsides (and there ARE downsides) are outweighed by the many positive things I get out of it.

But it doesn’t really give me a whole lot to write about, sometimes. I mean, some weeks are fine. Some weeks there’s a new gnome in the garden, or a towel elephant in the bedroom, or… I just proved my own point there, didn’t I? People (or some of them, anyway) tell me they like those posts, which is great, but some weeks I don’t even have those kind of things to write about, and that’s when The Panic sets in, and I think, “What if I can’t ever think of anything else to write about, and then I never blog again and have to get a ‘real’ job, in a mine or something?” Because WHAT IF, people?”

All our dreams can come true iif we have the courage to pursue them

This week was one of those weeks. Next week probably will be too. And the fact is, it’s not like nothing has happened. There was my birthday, obviously, and that was nice. There was cake, and there was cava, and there were lots of lovely messages from friends and family, some of which made me want to ugly-cry. (I didn’t, though. I didn’t want to waste my mascara. That stuff ain’t cheap, you know.)

There were also some things, and not just this week, which I would have written about if this was the Ye Olden Days of Blogging, and I still thought it was perfectly fine to just write about whatever came into my stupid head, because it’s not like anyone would READ it, was it? So hells yes, I WILL just tell you aaaallll about that crazy thing my neighbour did, and hey, isn’t my neighbour crazy? Let’s all laugh at my crazy, crazy neighbour! Obviously these days I don’t write that stuff, because that would make ME the crazy one, and also because my neighbour would probably come knocking on my door, all, ‘Who YOU callin’ crazy?!”

There are so many things I can’t write about. And before you all call me out for vague-blogging (Which, as you know, is one of the cardinal sins of blogging…), I’m not talking about juicy gossip or dramatic secrets, or even things that are particularly interesting, to be honest. They’re just the little things I wouldn’t have thought twice about writing about five years ago, but which I have to think a million times about now, and then decide that no, it’s just not worth it. Which I guess is why I currently have 21 unpublished posts in my drafts folder, and worry that I’m going to run out of things to say. Which is funny, given that I’ve just written almost 1,000 words on that very subject. I’ll stop now.

How was your week?

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  • Hahahaha. I love this.

    I love how you say blogging is easy. Because I guess it is. I mean, it’s hard as in you have to put in a lot of time – but that’s only if you put pressure on yourself to put our a certain amount of posts, or promote, or try to gain followers etc.

    It’s only as hard as you make it, is what I’m trying to say.

    My full time job is hard. My full time job keeps me awake at night because I’m worried that I’m not going to have enough overtime budget to cover my departments and someone just called in sick and I’ve got to go to that horrible 3 hour meeting on Monday and I didn’t get all my next steps done and now I’m going to have to spend all morning baking bread instead of doing performance reviews because my baker called in sick and I’m probably going to get in trouble for over spending waste because sales were low and we had to put £90 of pears in the bin because they went out of date because NOBODY LIKES PEARS IN BARNSLEY yet distribution keep sending me them. Help.

    That stuff is hard.

    But blogging comes easy to me and the only thing I find hard is that I wish I had more time to write more posts because all I want to do is write write write.

    I do quite like events, though. Although most of them are in London so I can’t go. I’m awkward as hell, but I’ve met enough bloggers in Leeds that there’ usually at least someone I can go with and cling on to!

    If you ever run out of things to write about, I’m sure Rubin can write you a post or two.

    Corinne x

    March 14, 2015
      • I didn’t think you were saying it was easy! I guess I’ve been reading a lot of posts where people have been talking it about it being hard lately and I’ve been getting jealous as I’d love to have it as my job (not having a 2 hour commute seems like heaven!). Though I know there’s more to it than that. I’ve been thinking about it a lot lately and the uncertainty around next months pay cheque makes me to nervous to make it more than just a dream!

        I don’t think events are like high school. I always find them just to be like… going somewhere with people and there’s other people there too, who are with other people. And we all happen to have a blog.

        You just tend to stick to who you know and might say hi to some bloggers you know of via Twitter. The bloggers I hang with are of varying popularity and niche. I always thought events would be more mingly – where bloggers randomly talk to anyone and hand out business cards. Turns out we’re all as awkward and scared as each other! Ones in London might be a bit different though.

        March 14, 2015
    • As a new blogger the “my neighbour did this” issue isn’t one I cope with so much. I try to write things I think people want to read, but sometimes I am guilty of just writing because I need to write, and it’s maybe not 10 ways to live life perfectly or whatever, it’s just a big old ramble (hence why no one reads me! ;-0). But I’m not a professional blogger so I don’t have that pressure, though I try to put a little bit on myself to just make my blog a more desirable read I am never going to be someone who just writes reviews or life advice or whatever, sometimes I just need to write about what’s happening and if no one wants to read it that’s o.k. Anyway I ramble! I have to say the blogging p.r. circuit sounds a bit tedious, don’t blame you for skipping it in favour of gnome watching! Just a thought re: your unpublished posts – if you’re not sure about some of them, why not put up a few titles/descriptions of what they’re about and let your readers pick the one that they most want to read? A weekly or monthly thing? I just wish I had that many unpublished posts, just a thought! 🙂

      March 16, 2015
  • Steph


    luckily for you Amber, you have ‘the gift’ – even if you ran out of words to say you could probably publish your shopping list and we’d still find it interesting! I already worry about running out of stuff to write about. I haven’t quite shaken the fear of people wondering why on earth I’d think people would want to read about ME! Sometimes your ‘non-topic’ posts are some of my favourites!

    March 14, 2015
  • I think it’s difficult in any job when you have ‘the fear’. Sure, for me, it’s less. I’m a solicitor by day, people will always need lawyers and if my area of law dried up I would move to another area and be paid all the while because I’m an employee (if you hear me rubbing my hands together in glee at the idea of people needing lawyers that is simply your prejudice talking. We lawyers are nice people. If you pay us. Ahem).

    But then the joy of a vocation as opposed to a job is that it flows. You ‘get’ the job, you have an instinct for it, and you generally have a good gut feeling as to whether your choices will work.

    For you Amber, much as this blog is about style, fashion, beauty, it’s also got a really strong heart, and that’s because you’re the heart of it.

    You know that people follow you for an upbeat, generally optimistic, sensible view (with a side of abject horror in the case of evil gnomes and neuroses. Which are basically the same thing, right?)

    I enjoy these off-topic posts sometimes more than the outfit posts. Partly because I’m not confronted by how insanely glamorous and THIN you are and partly because these posts are just the same as curling up with a good friend on the sofa and chatting about the things we would never say in front of our colleagues or acquaintances. It makes me feel better about myself knowing that I’m not the only one who can have worries and struggles, and it gives me hope that maybe I can deal with them with as much grave and good humour as you do. I know that, if I did, my other half would be thrilled!

    So in summary (lawyers, charging by the word? Never!) keep going. These posts are the heart of your blog, for me at least.

    March 14, 2015
  • I meant grace and good humour obviously. Evil gnome must be in my keyboard…

    March 14, 2015
  • Irene


    I always try to think of something smart to say in comments, but, uh, I can’t. So I’ll just say that I really enjoy these posts because you can make even random ramblings sound interesting and funny 🙂

    March 14, 2015
  • TinaD


    I doubt you are likely to run out of words. But maybe words aren’t necessary all the time? I realize that, in print journalism, photojournalists get something like 10% of the recognition that editorialists do (unless you are willing to go take photos of warzones… I’ve been to warzones… Not recommended…) and that, in internet terms, pictures have become the sole province of Instagram, but perhaps, in instances where the week doesn’t pony up uncontentious stories, it might manage a nice photo essay? I, for one, could do with one or two more pictures of those roses, and perhaps some Rubin action 😉

    March 14, 2015
  • Fran


    Unpopular Opinion: I prefer a blog which allows me to see the writer as a normal person doing normal things and sometimes having uneventful down periods. I get a bit irked by the ones that try to always make out the blogger to be as busy as a UN secretary, because as you wrote yourself, life is always edited for writing, but I’d say there’s a healthy medium. 🙂

    This said: the photos of the roses are gorgeous! Would it be all right for you if I used the first one as a private laptop background?

    March 15, 2015
  • Trudy


    I just found your blog recently and I already love it. You truly do have a way with words that makes just your ordinary day sound so much more interesting than those bloggers who are all ‘Oh I had to go to [insert exotic location here] this week for [insert random blogger’s conference here], and I’m so super busy and I’m SORRY I haven’t posted 12 outfit posts this week because I was at [insert exotic location].’ Anyway. Anyone sound jealous much?! Please just keep doing what you are doing 🙂

    March 15, 2015
  • Brenda


    I subscribe to your posts through Bloglovin’, and I also follow a bunch of other blogs too. I only check in once every couple of weeks or so, so all the blogs I follow tend to pile up. Oftentimes, I will skip the others and head straight to yours because I like it the most. I enjoy your writing, your funny thought processes, and your stories. Oh right, and the fashion! Absolutely love the fashion!

    March 15, 2015
  • I love this post! When I first started blogging back in the summer, I was completely sucked in by the ‘find your niche’, ‘every post needs a topic’, ‘you must work with PR/ brands to be considered successful’ ideologies. Which are all well and good if that’s what you want to do. But actually, I’ve found that after a few months I got a bit bored of those kind of things. I actually LIKE just reading about normal people with normal lives. And funnily enough, people seem to respond to posts about my normal life too. Now I obviously don’t treat my blog like a diary – I’d bore even myself with tales of early mornings, bus journeys and lunchtime trips to Tesco – but I’ve stopped worrying about leading an exciting ‘blogger life’ and focused on sharing the slightly more interesting bits of my pretty average life. And if it’s all really dull and I run out of things to talk about? Well it’s not my job, so I can just leave my blog be for a bit and come back when I’ve done something. A bit like I guess it was in Ye Olden Blogging Days…
    Jennifer x
    Ginevrella | Lifestyle Blog

    March 17, 2015