Blogging is an art. We know that. It’s about the writing, the subject matter, the prose. And yes, it’s about the design, the graphics and photos, too. But a great blog is much more than that. It’s really about the personality.
When a blogger writes a post, it is a reflection of who they are and what they feel at that moment. It is not about pleasing other people and making everyone happy. It is about sharing. Sometimes as bloggers, we say stupid and ugly things, and we regret it. Sometimes we are brilliant and amaze even ourselves. And sometimes we just feel like being silly and light. It’s about allowing insight into your guts, into who you are–putting it out there for the entire world to read. No guts, no glory. Love me, love my guts. Here are my passions, my loves, my hates. Running the risk that you might offend, embarrass your family, regret being so candid. Why take that risk? Because writing without personality is dead. Boring. And while boring writing (perhaps more gently referred to as technical writing) has its place, most blogs, even the technical ones, benefit when at least a little of the authors personality comes shining through.
Here then, without further ado, is a short list of the more personality-filled blogs I’ve been following for the past year. At least for the past year. Some for many years. These are the blogs I go to late at night martini in hand, or early in the day while sipping my morning coffee. They inform, inflame, delight, and oftentimes comfort me. Their self-revealing posts reassure me that as abnormal as I may be, I really am still perfectly normal. Whatever that may be.
Number 5: The Martini Chronicles
Tagline “Meaningful Ramblings of a Professional Diva.”
When I want to revisit life in corporate America, I head over to see what’s new on Lex Hilliard’s fascinating blog. With each visit I’m reminded of what life was like back in the day and what life would (or could) be like today had I continued my path into the legal field. While I don’t think I’ve missed much (certainly not the office commute) it’s still fascinating to keep up with current trends and ideas. Whether you a professional corporate diva, or a humble website designer working at home in your jammies, her blog is also chock full of sage advice that anyone can and should use. I particularly enjoyed this recent post “10 Things Every Professional Diva Should Do for Herself in 2013. In addition to offering timely tips on office attire and company etiquette, recipes for the working gal, and diva health advice, Lex also includes some fabulous martini recipes. How can you go wrong with that?! Besides you’ve got to respect a diva who uses her blog to give a shout out to other fabulous divas 😉
Number 4: Bitchin’ Wives club
Tagline “My personal blog that chronicles the life of an intelligent, creative, and ambitious woman who chose to stay at home while raising three boys and attempting to be a bitchin’ awesome wife.”
Well, that just about says it all right there. You just know from reading her tagline that this author is going to be witty, personable and probably more than a little self-effacing. Don’t you just love her already? And that’s not an easy feat when you’re the gloriously beautiful and talented person that is Amy. No wonder her blog was selected to the Top 100 Mom Bloggers of 2012 list.
I’d like to share a letter I just sent to my five-year old son’s teacher.
Hi Mr. Doe:
I was going through The Animal’s things from school and happened upon a plastic baggie with his name on it… The bag contained a wee little tooth. After a near meltdown that I had somehow managed to not notice that my youngest son had lost his first tooth (presumably last Friday, since the stuff I was going through was from his weekend papers), I called him over to see where it had come from. He showed me his bottom teeth and said “It already grew back. Look!”
I said, “Sweetie, whose tooth is this? Where did it come from?”
To which he cried plaintively, “What?! I found it on the floor!!” Like that automatically made it his.
So. I have this tooth…
I’ll put it in his backpack tomorrow for you to reclaim and hopefully give to its rightful owner.
Does this happen to other people??
Refreshing, talented and honest. She’s got the whole package, and she’s the real deal.
Number 3: Design with Christine
Tagline “What started out as an interest, for me, has turned into a passion. It is a part of me.”
This blog surely is my most guilty pleasure. First of all, I love interior design. But I especially love great interior design. And Christine is one of the most gifted, professional designers out there. But that’s only a part of the appeal of her blog. What Christine does that is remarkable — she offers her professional advice for free. Online. Yup. If you’re one of the lucky chosen ones, Christine will work her magic with floor layouts and style board specific designed for your room. She’ll hunt down just the right lamp, rug, chair, whatever, for your space and even provide the manufactures link. How’s that for amazing! But the most delightful aspect, at least for me and many of her readers, is her no-nonsense, straight forward delivery. Example, you say?
“You don’t even have enough width for a sofa, let alone the width of a sofa and the depth of a love seat. My arrangement had the width of a love seat and the depth of a chair, with no extra space. If you end up with a sofa, love seat and recliner, please don’t write and tell me. That kind of news is very upsetting to me.”
Gawd, I just love that! So refreshing. And even if you don’t give a whit about interior design, her blog makes for a thoroughly enjoyable read. Now, that’s talent!
Number 2: Thrifty Decor Chick
Tagline “Sharing simple, inexpensive ways to decorate your home”
This is best DIY/Decor blog by far. But trust me, the tagline simply does not do justice to this blog or to Sarah, the author and blogger extraordinaire. About a year ago, I fell into Sarah’s blog while Google “unique dining room centerpieces” and didn’t come up for the next three days. Life as I knew it went on hold while I poured through each post on her blog. (Yeah, I’m a little obsessive like that.) What a complete work of joy! Not only are her design ideas clever, creative and fun, but sometimes a bit tragic and hilarious all at the same time. When my worst DIY nightmare happens, I can always count on Sarah’s blog to put things into perspective 😉 This is one of my favorites: When DIY Goes Oh-So-Wrong. And check out her new wood and industrial table, a recent project that is pure genius. In a million years, I never would have thought to do this. Great writing and photos, fun videos and step-by-step tutorials, crazy ideas that work brilliantly (and sometimes better when they don’t) — all this makes for one fabulous blog by one fabulous chick.
Number 1: Tenth-Muse
Tagline “fabulous since 1973, drinking since noon.”
One of the original bloggers, Joelle Reeder is simply the best at everything she does. A published author, successful website and blog designer, extraordinary singer, blogger, martini creator…and the list goes on and on. Drop dead gorgeous, young, fun and fabulous, living in San Diego with an adorable and supportive boy friend and squeezably soft pet bunny, Lulu. Sounds like she has it all. Ah, but isn’t that the amazing thing about a blog. Read Joelle’s posts and you very quickly get a sense that Joelle is so much more than all that, and isn’t even really about that at all. Sometimes dark, deep and occasionally dirty, she pulls no punches and her writing delivers on every level. A true wordsmith.
I replied back that I am not a god-fearer, but am a responsible, successful entrepreneur with excellent credit and stable income. Their month-to-month set-up is not for me, but how much are they selling for? I said I’m in the market to buy (which is true) and I’d like to see the property right away. Oh, but I’m also a science-loving atheist with two same-sex live-in lovers, 4 pot-bellied pigs and a miniature pony. *waits* I knew by now that this was 99.9% a scam, but now I just wanted to see how far they’d go.
Tenth-Muse is of the most popular blog of all time, but only because Joelle has really worked it. Worked damn hard for it, honey. With each post, I always come away with a little more insight into the author, and a lot more awe for just how incredibly talented she is.
Well, there you go — my five favorite blogs for 2012. I encourage you to stop by and give them all a piece of your day. It truly is time well spent.