Having mostly written university papers in the last 4 years, I can’t help but start this blog by giving you a classic, methodical overview of what you should expect from it. The Digital Diary, as clear as that name might be, doesn’t quite tell what kind of content its readers might have to come in terms with. I’ve divided this introduction into 3 main questions, so let’s start with the “What?”.
What is The Digital Diary?
The Digital Diary is a personal blog that doesn’t serve any commercial purpose. It’s the creative outlet of an inspired twenty-something girl in need to let her thoughts out into the world.
Usually one can tell a lot about a blog judging by its name. In case of the word “diary”, there are two main aspects that characterize its concept. First of all, a diary is a journal of personal experiences and thoughts. Keeping that in mind, The Digital Diary in not a diary per se, meaning that it doesn’t contain day-by-day remarks of events, people or any personal information that usually belongs in a diary. However it does contain thoughts – and in that regard, it is a journal of my life in a less obvious, “dear-diary”-y way. The second aspect of a diary is its legacy. A diary is what a person leaves to the world in terms of views, thoughts and beliefs. Very few of us are born to be great thinkers and change the world (I personally don’t consider myself one), but we are all capable of affecting others. By sharing opinions we push ourselves to reflect, discuss and ultimately, to grow as people. So if anything I write ever leaves you thinking even for a moment, I’d consider this blog a success. Because, the truth is – I’m doing this for you as much as I’m doing it for myself.
Why did I start The Digital Diary?
The idea of a blog is not new to me in any way, because I’ve always had a talent to put my thoughts into words and the urge to share them with the world. Back in 2010, when Facebook’s Pages feature was still the hottest shit in the digital world, I created a page called “Sunlight”, on which me and my best friend wrote short notes reflecting on our lives, on love, friendship and everything that a girl goes through during those wonderful years known as puberty. And we had it good! The page grew to proud 9000 followers and we received amazing feedback from our friends. It was our first and quite successful shot at content writing. Come to think about it, I should probably put it in my résumé. No?
In the following years, I was busy with university papers and my only creative outlets were photography and Instagram. But the need to write was always there. And writing overly long captions on Instagram was never really my thing.
So why now? Over two months ago, I saw a giveaway on Instagram promoting a newly launched web hosting company which offered a full year of free web hosting and a domain for the winner. I said to myself as a joke – “just participate, you’re not gonna win anyway. And if you do, then that could be your blog. LOL.” And I did win. Because life’s funny like that. So, for the next 2 weeks I was brainstorming blog names, concepts and content ideas in the hope that any of them could contribute to a readable blog. Rule number 1 for starting a blog is finding a niche and this is one of the reasons I hesitated for so long. If you don’t have a niche, you’d be all over the place and no one would really read your blog, they say. Be that as it may, I have always found it difficult to categorize myself in any way. I couldn’t even tell you what kind of music I listen to, because I listen to EDM in the morning and jazz in the evening. My point? – I am all over the place. But that’s okay, really. Why do we always feel the urge to label everything?
How is The Digital Diary going to work?
A fairly obvious question you’d say, though I would like to explain how this blog is going to work and why I chose to run it this way. First of all, as you may have noticed already – the content is in English. For those who don’t know me all that well, I’m Bulgarian born living in Germany. Therefore, it doesn’t make much sense to write in a third, non-native language – but I will, for a couple of reasons. The first reason is that I feel very comfortable expressing myself in English, as does nearly every citizen of the world nowadays. My daily life requires me communicating (and thinking) in three different languages, so for this project, I had to pick the one I’m most comfortable with. (This doesn’t mean it’s the one I’m best at, so don’t judge me for any mistakes – it’s still a foreign language to me.) The second reason I chose to write in English is my potential audience, which is shaping to be a rather colourful mixture of many different nationalities. So, whichever of my “native” languages I choose, it would lead to one or more groups being left out. And last but not least, I asked my Instagram audience in a poll a couple of months ago if they’d rather read a blog in English or German, and even though these polls are not as statistically representative as one would wish them to be, the result was still clear: over 75% voted for a blog in English. So… there you go!
At the beginning of this post I had mentioned something about non-commercialization and I would like to follow up on that. I know that a lot of bloggers are using their blog as a platform for monetizing their content, which I’m more than fine with. Here, however, I’ll try my best to stay away from anything that could make it more of a business than a blog. This is not because I’m a “special snowflake” that riots against media commercialization, but rather because I don’t see it fit in my blog’s concept. That being said, I cannot and will not promise there’ll never ever be any collaboration-based content – there might be. I just won’t let it affect your perception of my blog in any (negative) way.
Last but not least, I assume (and kind of hope) that 1 year from now, this blog would be a lot different than I present it today. Change is inevitable and much needed for every individual and as I change, my blog will change with me.
So let’s grow (old) together.