Liz Strauss at Successful-Blog started a group writing project: What’s Your Blogging Metaphor?
A number of great posts have already been submitted. My favorite is How Do You Explain Blogging to Your Mom? by Char at Essential Keystrokes.
To me, blogging is a large city filled with hundreds of small neighborhoods. When you first start to blog, it’s like moving to a new city.
Perhaps you already have family and friends in your new home; a new blogger who has friends or associates who are blogging starts out like you – already part of a small community.
But maybe you moved because of your job, and you don’t know anyone in the strange city that is now your home. A new blogger who steps into the blogging world without any established relationships starts out like you.
Regardless of how you start out, though, soon you’ll be meeting new people. You meet people at your job; you get acquainted with your neighbor at the grocery store; you make friends at the church you join; you find golfing (or quilting or reading or …) buddies at the country club, quilting club, library reading group, or … As a blogger, you meet bloggers in your niche market by visiting blogs on your topic; you get acquainted with your blog neighbors as you check out other blogs in your community; you make friends and find buddies that share your interests through various social networks.
One day, you may be waiting in line at the post office or attending an office party or returning a book at the library. Your neighbor or your coworker or your reading group buddy introduces you to their friend, who soon becomes your friend. As a blogger, you will be introduced to lots of new blogging friends through the blogs you read.
In your new physical home, you’ll make friends faster if you reach out to join clubs, participate in community activities, and introduce yourself to people who share your interests. In your blog home, you’ll make virtual friends faster if you visit and comment on other blogs-introduce yourself and continue the conversation.
Suddenly, you’ll look around and realize the city that seemed so large and intimidating when you first moved in is really lots of small communities made up of people and businesses with something in common. The city comprises hundreds of these neighborhoods, but you may be part of a dozen or two. In the same way, the new blogger will look around and see that the blogosphere that seemed to large and intimidating is really lots of small communities made up of people and businesses with something in common.
In the physical location where you live, you probably stay within the communities you’ve come to know, enjoy, and find useful. But if you venture out of your familiar neighborhoods, you might find new friends and new experiences … just as you did when you first moved to town.
In the blog world, you’ll find new friends and new experiences if you expand beyond your familiar neighborhoods and carry the conversation into new communities.