Why I Blog continues this week with Jim from Busy Dad Blog. Jim has been blogging for over five years and is one of the most experienced Dad Bloggers kicking around the internet. Let’s get going with the interview, but first, a little about Jim.
Jim Lin is a digital strategist by day and a dad blogger by whenever-he-finds-the-time. To the outside world, his blog is a repository of lighthearted parenting adventures; to Jim, it is a roadmap that helps him piece together where he’s been the past few days, when he suddenly wakes up drooling and disoriented in the office. He enjoys parenting, Scotch and training Muay Thai, all of which explain the above.
Jim, how long have you been blogging?
I’ve been blogging 5 and a half years. Like Yoda in internet years, equivalent that is.
How did you learn to blog and why did you start your blog?
I started my blog because I had a 4 hour round trip train commute to and from work. I tend to fall asleep when I read, which isn’t the best state of being when you’re riding the LA Metro, so I blogged to stay awake and alive. I chose to blog about my adventures as a dad because social media didn’t really exist back then and I needed an outlet to share 500,000 pictures of my kid and me building Legos. Prior to starting my blog, I had never read one, so I really learned by doing. When your only reader is your mom, anything you put out there about her cute grandson will of course be awesome.
Have you learnt anything specific from blogging?
I’ve learned that the internet is at once wonderful and horrible, so it’s best to stay open to opportunities but grow a thick skin. Remember folks, when you close that laptop, the internet stops existing. That’s the best part about it.
List 2 benefits you can see from starting a blog?
1) Connections: the best thing about the internet is that you can find all kinds of people on it (in fact, I met my girlfriend because of blogging – that’s kind of like the mother of all connections). I was the only guy in my social group with kids, so I didn’t have a peer network of people who could relate to that part of my life. Blogging enabled me to meet other folks who could relate to the day to day challenges, chuckles and triumphs that can only be had when you are physically, fiscally and emotionally responsible for other miniature human beings.
2) Voice: When you make connections, you find your voice. Having a voice and being able to “field test” it with an audience is one of the most satisfying things in the world. Face it, we ALL want to be heard. Having a blog gave me an avenue through which to achieve that. Of course there’s social media now, so you kids have it easy.
Do you have any specific tools that you use for blogging? i.e. plugins, evernote?
None whatsoever. I’m a very freestyle (read: lazy) blogger. I write what I feel like, when I feel like it… unless it’s part of a sponsored campaign or series, in which case I do some of my best and most timely work (hey, it’s beer money and I take it dead serious). I use Evernote to organize absolutely everything in my life, but I actually use it very little for blogging.
Where can readers find you blog and how can they get in contact with you?