Or, how not to be a good blogger.
I used to have to stop myself from posting every day. Not from physical exhaustion—I was in high school when I started, so I was secretly blogging without my parent’s knowledge, waiting until 2 a.m. to make a cup of instant coffee and tip-toeing down to the basement with my HP laptop to tip-tap-type away. At the time, that secret was exhilarating: it was my secret life, and I was a double agent: Student by day, fashion blogger by night.
I wasn’t scared of my parents finding out about me writing on the internet (it’s a scary thing for them, still); I was afraid of creative exhaustion and seeming a little too eager; therefore amateur. I wanted to be sophisticated. Chic. All in an effort to sound older than a 16-year-old who wrote online instead of studying for the SATs.
Two diplomas and two domains later, I’m celebrating my 10th blog-versary.
I use “celebrating” loosely. There’s no champagne involved, no big announcement for you to happen upon at the end of the post. And though it’s no milestone worthy of Moët (I almost forgot about it, to be perfectly honest) it’s worth acknowledging at a personal level. And at a cultural level too, I suppose, if you want to make a reference to how the digital landscape has evolved and blogging has been rendered archaic by vlogging (same concept, different medium—but that’s another thought for another day).
A decade is a lot of time. A significant amount, by typical standards, but mainly, this blog-versary is but a major marker of the time gone by. A signifier of who I was nearly a decade ago versus who I am now. Time is money. Time is everything—and it’s flown by so quickly that I have to hit pause and remind myself to live a little. Breathe. Remember the girl who started up on Blogger (RIP) all those years ago.
ABC isn’t the same space it was five years ago. Eight years ago, I blogged under a completely different name: La Couturier, something I coined when my francophilia was at an all-time high and I was obsessed with fashion. The incorrect pairing of “la” and “couturier” was intentional—a cheeky callout of the unfair gender discrepancy in the haute couture and fashion sphere that was dominated by men designing for women. I didn’t call myself a feminist then; I barely knew what the word meant. Little did I know, though, that this self-created string of two words—“la couturier”—would be a primitive (but vital!) precursor to the issues that now preoccupy my thoughts.
After a few years writing anonymously under “La Couturier,” I outgrew the space. I re-branded, learned how to code, then finally revamped it to what it is now. I went from writing “How to Be Fabulous” (cringe) and being selected as one of 20 bloggers selected to write for POP Magazine to this. The change has been palpable throughout the decade, and still I’m restless, never satisfied. I feel another facelift brewing. Keep your eyes peeled.
The marketer in me would disapprove of all those changes and migrations—which without doubt has been the overarching cause behind the major drop in stats—but seeing as this blog has become a reflection of my self, it would’ve been stifling, deadening even, had I been resistant to transformation. Resistant to starting over, tabula rasa. After all: A trapeze artist cannot swing from one bar to another without letting go of the other, as They say, just as one must release the old in order to fully embrace the new. One never ignores the sage words of the omniscient They.
It’s not to say I don’t miss the old me—the drive, the enthusiasm (excessive at times), the writing, even—because I do. I’ve lost that voice along the way. My essays have since been trained into whittled-down, byte-(ha)-sized lists. I’ve become irresponsible with my posting “schedule.” I’m writing less, complaining more. But despite everything, this sporadically-posting limbo has never been more honest. At the core of it all, ABC has been an accurate representation of my state of mind. I’m figuring out who I am. I’m figuring out what’s next and more important, what feels right.
TL;DR: We don’t need to celebrate this anniversary; I only ask that if you feel like sticking around, please be patient with me as I figure out where I go next.
I hope you continue to stay along for the ride.
. . .