Bloggers vs. Writers: what’s the difference?

Well, after sharing my most embarrassing moment with you folks last week, I had to take a few days off to recuperate my sense of self worth (for more on that, read this). It also helps that I have a great husband.

Anyway, in the last week or so, I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about my whole new career in writing.  Because you see, it really isn’t enough to just say “I’m a writer,” in the same way that it really isn’t enough to say “I’m a teacher.” Well… do you teach elementary, middle, or high school? English, Science, or Social Studies? Oh, you teach yoga? Nevermind. Take lawyers for example. On one hand, you’ve got corporate lawyers; on the other hand, there are criminal defense lawyers, and on the third and fourth hand, prosecutors and ambulance chasers–endless niches in a complex business.

Writing is no different. There are all kinds of writers that do all kinds of work for all kinds of reasons. And that begs the question…  What kind of writer am I? 

The first distinguishing decision I felt I needed to make was a hard one: am I a blogger, or am I a writer? And further more, is there a difference?

First, I believe there is a difference between a writer and a blogger. Don’t get me wrong. I love blogs. I love my friend Whitney’s design blog. Sometimes I can’t take my eyes off apartment therapy, Cup of Jo, or YoungHouseLove. Still, the majority of blogs I find are written by women, and are stacked with DIY’s, how-to’s, product reviews, home tours, recipes, and pinterest pictures, not inspiring writing.

Again, don’t get me wrong. I love all of those things, and I’ve even tried my hand at making this blog like all of those other ones. The problem is, I’m bad at pretending I am an interior designer, cook, handy-woman, style-hound, and writer all in one. (read: I’m not.) As a writer, I believe I need to separate myself from the talented crowd of bloggers that teach us all how to make creative crafts, furniture, and food–because they’re much better at that than me.

There is no reason for this picture here, but isn’t Cooper so cute?

So, we’ve established that there is a difference between the “typical” blog and the writer I want to be. But there’s a problem. I have a blog. In fact. You’re reading it right now. The temptation is ever-present to make “Growing up Gibson” a full-time gig. A post-a-day. Two posts a day. But let’s be honest… my life isn’t that interesting (and neither is yours, by the way). To really find good stories, I need to meet, know, and understand other people in my community. Not promote myself.

And the other problem? There’s this illusion out there that if you get enough followers, enough comments, and enough traffic… you can strike it rich and sit in your pajamas all day and just blog for a living. But in reality, there’s only a slim chance I’d ever make a penny on this little site of mine. It’s clear that although I do have a blog, I don’t think it’s that typical, and I don’t think it’s financially viable.

So, I guess I have to be a writer. So what does that mean? Do I drop the blog altogether? Slow down posts? Forget about Growing Up Gibson altogether? I’m not sure.

I’m still working on it.


What do you think? Is there a difference between a writer and a blogger? What is that difference? Should I drop the blog and focus just on writing for print? What are your thoughts?