QOTD: What influences which blogs you read?

Thursday, May 10, 2012

I've been pondering this question recently, as I've noticed my reading trends circle more and more tightly around two main components, which I've detailed below. I'm not proclaiming these as mandatory requirements to capture my interest, nor am I necessarily proud that these are what snag me into the boat, hook, line, and sinker, but there's no denying anymore that I gravitate towards specific bloggers.

1). Faith // Photography // Writing Ability // Connection*
I've lumped these categories together, because even if a blogger is lacking one I generally stick around to find out if I am ultimately compelled enough to become invested. On the other hand, if their is no connection, but all other components are there, I usually continue to read, waiting for the connection.

*Generally, if I have a personal connection to the blogger, I will return regardless of their writing ability, point and shoot photos, or profession of faith.

3). Whether they have a boy in their family.
This is the one that I'm kind of annoyed with myself about, but it's really the lynch pin to reading new blogs. Certainly, if we are personal friends or established blogging buddies, I harbor no ill will and love you no less if you do not have a male offspring, but if we don't have that history . . . it's been a lot more difficult for me to warm up to new blogs without a boy. This is most certain if they're missing the majority of those necessitated in #1.

So, I'm wondering, do you feel the same? What key attributes succeed in pulling you back repeatedly? And if you're a mother, do you find yourself more attached to blogs of families similar in nature to the make up of your own, including if you have both boys and girls?



c said...

I find myself drawn to bloggers with 2 boys, like me. Better still if they're roughly the same age (2.5ish and 8 months-ish).
I really love that your blog is a combo of parenting 2 boys, like me, and inspiring photography, which is something that I love but am nowhere near your skill level.

(I don't have a blog myself, but I follow you on IG and you followed me back a few months ago, user name carmensebert, my boys are Jack and Ted).

Tess Weber-Popejoy said...

I started reading when you were pregnant with Isaac. I'm not sure how I found you but I loved reading because we were both pregnant with boys due not too far apart. I've been a faithful reader ever since and now that I'm preggo with my second boy I love your blog even more because I love seeing the interaction between your boys - makes me super excited to see how much my boys will love each other. Also, you say things with words so well but your photography can say just as much without a single word. Another reason why I'm back everyday!

Megan said...

Honestly? One of the first things that influences me before I even read their posts is HOW their blog looks. I know, that's terrible. Totally judging a book by it's cover. But its true ... if I can hardly read their posts because of the font, or the layout is whack, or there's music playing... I'm pretty quick to exit.

Then, just like you, I look for similarities. Whether it's kids (YES, especially 2+ boys!), faith, their pictures, crafty blogs, etc... I'm pretty quick to become a faithful follower/commenter.

Jill said...

I was thinking about that the other day because I'm a big culprit of finding blogs from all of the place, adding them to my reader (because I'm drawn to them for some reason) and then I never return to them again. I'm also a bad blogging friend when I don't read the blogs of friends that read my blog. It's a sin, maybe, but I always just find myself reading those that I've read for years or those that I have found a "connection" with outside of comments and blogs and just run with those blogs/relationships.

I'm not drawn to a family/blog because of boys, but since you mentioned it, I cannot really think of too many bloggers that I follow without a boy. Is that weird?

I like following family blogs of people that have kids that are close in age with my child or that have a family set up where the kids are close in age, since that's going to be my life (really soon) and I like to see how they handle it (or don't handle it).

Outside of that, I'd have to think about my rhyme or reason for my following of a blog. Usually if they are crafty or have great pictures/photography skills or are a natural parenting type, I'm drawn to them as well...

Great post. Makes me think.

Blue-Eyed Bride said...

Love this. I'm like you with number one. If the writing is honest and makes me think and feel the love within the writer's family, I stick around. I also read blogs by women with lots of great ideas. And the boy thing! Absolutely me too. That's why I appreciate and love your writing so much.

Unknown said...


Lori! said...

For me, it's all about my connection to the blogger's voice and blog content.

Two favorites:

Molly said...

Good food for thought. I wish I remember exactly how I found your blog. I *think* it was from a comment you put on Kristal's blog.

But I do remember one of the very first posts I read on your blog. It was about your college days and how you were a bit lost and then found Tony. It was so honest.

Those are the kind of blogs I read. They have to be honest. They have to seem real. If I go to a blog that is just happy happy happy all the time, I know that's not real. And I'm sorry, but I just can't relate to bloggers who exude happiness 24/7. We all know that's not reality.

Your faith is another thing that kept me coming back. Probably because I wished I had more of it at the time. It's weird but reading blogs about faith have inspired me to seek God probably more than anything else. Because I was envious of those feelings! I wanted them for myself.

I have to feel a connection though. Have to! Or I never get invested.

Sally said...

I have followed your blog for a year or so now, but have never commented before. I decided this was a good post to say "hi" on.

The blogs that I am drawn to are ones that either give advice/hints that I can use or ones that I can relate to. For example with your blog you are a Christian, we're about the same age, you're married, and you have a boy about the same age as ours. Since college I have kind of been a step ahead of my friends as far as life progression (marriage, kids, buying a home) so it is nice to not feel so alone.

Raquel said...

i ran across your blog from Tess (childhood friend) and just enjoy your REAL LIFE down to earth posts. i also love your photography... within the last year i've purchased my first "nice" camera and enjoy checking out different people's photography.

generally, i stick around with people that are artsy, not too negative, and are christians.


Sara said...

I found your blog through a few friends' feeds, and I am now a faithful follower. I enjoy reading about your adorable family and watching your boys grow. I have a little man of my own so I like seeing what's going with your little ones. You have a way with words and writing in your blog that draws me in, and your photography is stunning.

I've noticed that I am drawn to bloggers that have families with children; food bloggers; and photographer bloggers. So, in my eyes I think it's normal that we stick to reading what we know and are comfortable with. :-)

Rose said...

Good question! I like to follow blogs where people are honestly sharing their story and how they navigate this thing called life. I enjoy blogs where people are open about their struggles and joys and not just trying to find some gimmick to make money on. Some blogs I follow religiously and read every day while others I have a really hard time getting into. I'm not sure what it is? Sometimes to think about, for sure.

mrsmeyer said...

Usually it's about food, actually! I ready food blogs a lot. I have no idea how I got to yours but I'm enjoying your blog a ton.

kari said...

Honestly? I'm like you, but I look for bloggers with girls. Most of you Nest girls have boys, and I love reading all about them. When I look for new blogs though, I look for girls. :)

I also look for crafty blogs, I love crafty blogs.

April said...

It's refreshing to read blogs of moms (especially with 2 boys like me) that can just be honest about how amaaaazing and exhausting parenting is. I love it when I'm reading something and its something I could have (or have already) wrote about myself.

And fabulous pictures of adorable little boys is great too!!

Ericanandy said...

I've read your blog since it started. We were on DNR together. I go through "blog phases" in which I'll follow one and then stop. I came back to yours because of the boys. (No reason I left it). Especially now that I have two boys of my own right around the ages of your guys. Then I also got a DSLR for my birthday and I love the way you tell stories with your pictures.

So like others I like pretty blogs, blogs with boys, blogs with faith, blogs with AP approach, and blogs that "homeschool or craft".

Adrienne said...

Brilliantly phrased :)

I follow for faith reasons, good writing, and also other married people.

Erin said...

Interesting to think about. Like you, if I know someone in real life, I'll keep reading regardless (as long as it's not super boring).

I go in phases with blogs - I went on a mass unsubscribing spree after I had Annie, and I think I'm going to need to do it again. My GR is currently at 400+ and I find myself just reading the blogs I REALLY want to read, and leaving the other ones for when I'm truly bored, which hasn't happened yet.

Commonalities of blogs I like are people that post consistently (usually at least a few times a month) and are honest with content that is more than just photos and happy stories, but where the posts aren't TOO long and they don't post TOO often (multiple times per day). (I apparently have a very short attention span) I don't follow many non-parent blogs, I just find I can't relate to them at this point in my life when 99% of what I think about is parenting and my kids. I don't really care if they have boys/girls/whatever but I do find it somewhat more interesting if their children are the same ages as mine. I also find that I don't really care if the blogger even shares my views on parenting or life in general - I follow a bunch of people who have widely differing views from myself in terms of politics, faith, parenting, work, etc and that is what makes them interesting to me. As a general rule, I do try to steer clear of blogs that piss me off. I can always go to the Bump for that :)

Anonymous said...

I look for blogs about life, parenting (although I don't have kiddos) cooking, baking, home repair etc.

I agree with another commenter and shamefully, I totally judge blogs by their look sometime. Lack of pictures (even if they're bad), I'll pass. Proper grammar is important as well. :)

Meredith said...

A lot of the "regular" blogs that I read were D&R girls who had gotten married around the same time we did, bought houses around the same time we did, and then had kids roughly around the same time we did. It's been kind of fun to go through those life stages together!

But as far as finding new blogs, I don't think the gender of the kids matters to me as much as the visual aesthetic, and then also just enjoying reading their writing and feeling like we have similar values!

Meredith said...

Oh! And also, for me one of the biggest things is someone who blogs with semi-regularity! I hate finding a blog that I love and then noticing that their last post was MONTHS ago!

Angie said...

I tend to follow bloggers that have kids around the same age of mine. Or I may skim through and read a post where they've have a similar struggle in parenting as I have and it will pull me in because I feel I have someone to relate to. I also like to follow food blogs so I can get ideas for new recipes. I agree with with the other comments that when someone doesn't post very often, its a turn off. I deleted at least half of my reading list when I went back through because so many hadn't blogged in at least 2 months or more.

I also tend to lean towards blogs of photographers such as yours. Sometimes I don't like blogs that are literally ALL pics, but honestly I think if all your posts were ONLY pics I'd still follow because you take such amazing ones! And yes if I know the blogger personally I will automatically follow. OR if they are from the same state as me (Iowa!) I will follow, just nice to have bloggers that know what you are talking about when it comes to your home state and I don't find many from Iowa so I usually will follow instantly, at least for awhile to see if I like it.

Abbey said...

I could have written this post, Leah! Of course mine would be families with girls :) But, like you I always continue to read (and are invested in) my friend's blogs and people that I care about.

Although I have to admit even if they have all the components listed above, if I have an inclining that they feel "superior" I will not read the blog. I tend to like humble bloggers. Does this even make sense? It's very hard to explain, but very easy for me to pin point when reading a blog for the first time.

Always love reading your blog :)

Jen | Our Life Accounts said...

Ok, my last comment I swear. I've had this post starred in my phone to come back and comment on once I was on a computer. For me, faith and honesty are probably the most important. I appreciate when someone can be real and tell their story. Writing & photography skill certainly help. :) I read to be inspired, learn and connect so I have a variety of blogs that I follow. Some for their story, some for their creativity and some for their humor. I hope the fact that I'm having a girl won't dissuade you from reading still! Maybe next time it'll be a boy. :)


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