Welcome to Following the Whispers blog

Thank you so much for taking the time to visit. Hope you enjoy your stay. I blog here whenever I feel the need. This blog was created at the time my memoir came out, in February, 2009. Its motto was: creating a life of inner peace and self-acceptance from the depths of despair. Now, my focus is sharing this journey we call life.

“Only one thing is more frightening than speaking your truth, and that is not speaking it.” Naomi Wolf

“We are called human beings, not human doings.” Wes Nisker, Buddhist teacher

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs…(And) if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly.” Theodore Roosevelt

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Telling the Truth Tuesday - blogfests

Blogfests terrify me. I participated in the A-Z Challenge last year and it was totally awesome in terms of finding new blogging friends and increasing the number of followers. But I am working so hard on not worrying about increasing the number of followers and worrying about how many comments I get, and questioning whether a post spoke to people or not because hardly anyone left a comment and am I being a good enough blogging buddy because I don't visit all the blogs all the time. So I very rarely choose to participate in other blogfests, but then I think I'm not supporting my other blogging friends. You see why they terrify me?

So, this year, since the A-Z Challenge is about to begin, I am changing my attitude. I have written posts for each of the letters of the alphabet. They are scheduled to post. I have the link list in a page header on my blog so it will be easy for me to go down the list of participants. I will make every effort to respond to comments on my blog by checking out new bloggers and following where appropriate. I will get to as many participants as possible on a given day, each day. And then I have to let go and not judge myself or anyone else for that matter.

How about you? How do you handle blogfests?


Annalisa Crawford said...

I'm panicking a little bit about the number of people involved, and also about neglecting the blogs not taking part. I've started to accept I can't visit everyone - I'll be visiting as many as I can in turn and seeing how far I get!

This is my first time. I may be panicking even more by next week!

Tracy Makara said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tracy Makara said...

Whoa...only five days until it starts! Last year was so much fun, and I met several great people. I'm looking forward to it a lot...even though there were days last year in which I really struggled to get a post out. Honestly, I've been looking forward to this almost since the last one ended.

Tracy Jo said...

I am looking forward to it but I remember last year, really struggling a few days. I plan on just doing the best I can and letting go if I don't do quite as much as I expect. I really want those tabs across the top of my blog. Love your participants idea! Was that hard to do? Off to research. :-)

Karen Walker said...

Annalisa, the best advice I can offer is be gentle with yourself and do the best you can - that's what I plan to do.
Tracy, the only way I could do this is by writing the post ahead of time.
Tracy Jo, if I could figure out the tabs, you can - it's in design under Pages. You create a new (page) for each tab heading you want.

Bish Denham said...

I do it for fun, because I enjoy the challenge. The rest is icing on the cake.

Aleta said...

Oh! I'm looking for a challenge. I've never done an A-Z blogfest. Is there a link I can go to? I created my own A-Z challenge for myself when I wanted to write about my home state and that was fun. But I'd like to participate with a blogfest!

Susan Flett Swiderski said...

Gonna handle it on a wing and a prayer, as they say. The posts are written, but I'm just gonna wing it and try to hit as many new blogs as I can without turning my life upside down. (There IS life outside of the computer.) And I'm gonna pray my usual blog pals don't get upset if I don't visit their blogs as often as usual. Just do our best, and forget the rest ... ya know, the guilt, etc.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

That's a good attitude! Just start with the blog after yours and get to as many as you want by the end of the month. Not a race and no pressure.
Some of the hosts are determined to visit every single participant next month. With as many as I already visit a day, adding an extra fifty on top of that just isn't going to happen. So I'm not going to stress about it.

Shelly said...

I am still fairly new to blogging and have never participated in a blogfest before. I am going to check this out- looks fun and challenging, and how can you go wrong with those two?

This is my first time visiting your blog- I'm a new follower!

Gina Gao said...

I never took part in a blogfest before. I'm looking forward to participating.


Karen Walker said...

Bish, great attitude!
Aleta, I think if you click on the A-Z challenge pic at the right of my blog, it should take you there.
Susan, no guilt allowed!!!!
Alex, glad to hear you won't stress - stress is not good for us!
Shelly, I don't think you can go wrong with those two, so have fun!
Gina, just be gentle with yourself and have fun!

Arlee Bird said...

You've taken the right direction with your attitude I think. Blogfests are supposed to be fun personal challenges the way I see it. That's the way I approach them. I do whatever it is we're supposed to do and have a good time with it. That's why I try to be selective by usually choosing fests that are lists of favorites or something I feel comfortable doing. I avoid the complex writing fests or things that are just blog hops with nothing productive involved. Followers are nice but I've got a lot now and am not going to stress about just accumulating more.

In blogfests now--including April--I make my way around to as many sites as I feel comfortable with and try to visit those who have visited me. But stress I don't need.

The Dog Lived (and So Did I)
Wrote By Rote
An A to Z Co-host blog

Mary Aalgaard, Play off the Page said...

Great attitude for the A-Z Challenge. Sounds like you're well prepared. See you around the alphabet!

Ruth said...

I try never to think about how many followers I have. Just because they follow doesn't mean they read. And some people read but not follow.
I think the A-Z is pretty fun. My recipe site is going to be tricky because I don't have everything ready. I wanted to. Oh well. It will get done.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Karen .. I shall mix and match as you'll be doing - I'm sure I'll meet some great blogging buddies, but I'd rather have a few good ones, whose company I enjoy and comments I love receiving - without the guilt of being around all the time.

I have done half my posts! Such is life .. and I see one of my new followers is above - so I must go visit her after this ..

See you next week somewhere in the A,B,Cs ... happy times - Hilary

Jeremy Bates said...

wow, ur organized!
i havent written any posts yet... going to do it day by day!

Karen Walker said...

Lee, coming from the master and creator of the A-Z, these words mean a lot. Thank you.
Mary, yes, see you.
Ruth, thank you for the visit and comment - just try to relax and have a good time meeting folks and seeing what everyone has come up with.
Hilary, Amen!
Jeremy, yes, I am very organized. I just stress out too much if I leave things for the last minute. Sometimes spontaneous creativity can suffer, though.

Suze said...

This post was cute. I could hear your voice when I read it. :)

Talli Roland said...

Blogfests terrify me, too, because I stress myself out about replying to comments and getting around to everyone.

I'm sure you'll have a fab time doing the A to Z. Don't put too much pressure on yourself!

Karen Walker said...

Suze, thanks
Talli, that's the plan!

Joanne said...

Actually I've never participated in a blogfest, and usually just watch the activity from the sidelines :)

Carol Kilgore said...

I've only participated in one blogfest. Have fun with A-Z. I'll be reading and cheering everyone on for most of it. Then I'll be on a blog break.

Karen Walker said...

Joanne, I may take a page out of that particular book next time.
Carol, thanks. I love blog breaks too.

DL Hammons said...

I'm very selective about the blogfests I participate in. There are a lot to choose from and you can easily run yourself ragged trying to do them all.

It sounds like you have A to Z handled! Good for you!! :)

L. Diane Wolfe said...

I usually can't make it around to everyone, but with the A to Z, I know I won't be able to, so the pressure is off.

Tomorrow is a different story since I'm hosting the blogfest!

Karen Walker said...

DL, I'm pretty selective as well.
Diane, good luck - I'm looking forward to seeing the songs folks come up with tomorrow

Helen Ginger said...

I joined one blogfest with several hundred bloggers in it. I just could not visit even half of them. I felt so guilty. Don't think I'll do another.

Jo said...

I'm lowkey.

I blog because I like it. I blog because I enjoy writing. I blog because I think there is a lot of the exhibitionist in every writer (or maybe even, every artist, period), and I want someone to experience, and hopefully get something out of, what I've created.

To me, a blogfest, like the A to Z challenge, is a tool, but it should be an enjoyable tool... because once it becomes not-enjoyable, then blogging has lost its purpose for me. This isn't a "follow every rule or we will kick you out of the blogosphere" sort of thing, and it shouldn't be.

I don't take myself that seriously... If my blogs don't end up being quite as short as the insistence has been, eh. I'm not worried about it. If I don't get a lot of comments or a lot of new followers, that's okay with me. If I don't make it to as many blogs every single day as I'd like, it's okay. It's supposed to be fun, isn't it?

Give yourself a break and have a good time... :)

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