Blogging awards usually require the author to create a set of questions for their own nominees, which means they can be nicely tailored to fit the subject of the sites around them. But every now and then one comes along that’s off-topic and asks for something different from its winners; and it’s this type of award which inspires an alternative and important kind of conversation.
Luna from GamersUnitedGG Blog very kindly included Later Levels in her Perfectly Imperfect Tag recently and I’m incredibly grateful. Sometimes we need to step outside our comfort zones, and this award encourages just that by asking things more personal than video game questions. Instead we’re invited to share who inspires us, how we want to make a difference, and offer advice for those who doubt themselves.
The WordPress community is a wonderful one to be a part of. Members come from cities all over the world and we have different backgrounds, cultures and experiences; we’re so far apart in location and each hold our own unique view on life. Yet we have this amazing ability to gather in blog comments, social media responses and collaboration projects, and it feels as though we’re sitting right opposite each other.
We’re a huge, eclectic jigsaw puzzle for which the instruction manual was thrown out long ago. Each part is distinctive and has its own shape, but we come together to create this beautiful picture full of colour, contrast and balance. We no longer want to be constrained by the borders of the original image and so new pieces are added to our form every day, but there’s no danger of a single one of them not finding a place. We just fit.
If being a member of a community like that isn’t inspiring, I don’t know what is.
When one of us isn’t feeling so great, the others send kind words along with a funny GIF or two. When one of us is struggling with an issue, the others offer moral support and practical advice if it’s needed. When one of us needs help with a problem or project, the others are there to jump straight in and lend a hand. And when one of us does something wonderful, we all recognise their effort and celebrate their achievement.
So to the blogger who has just started out on their journey and isn’t sure of their place: you’re more than welcome here and we’ll be patient while you find your feet. Give us a shout if you have any questions or need someone to point you in the right direction. We’re looking forward to getting to know you better.
To the blogger who’s been doing this for a while but feels discouraged: don’t be so hard on yourself because your work hasn’t gone unnoticed. Tell us your opinions, start discussions and share ideas. Give us the chance to collaborate on a project and together we’ll create something amazing.
To the blogger who’s going through a personal issue and needs a break: focus on life and don’t feel guilty about neglecting your blog. Take all the time you need because we’ll still be here when you return and it’ll be like nothing has changed. And if you need any support or advice, we’ve got your back.
And to every single blogger reading this: you’re awesome and you don’t need to be more or less than what you already are. You’re in integral part of the jigsaw that makes our image as special as it is, and you bring a unique quality to the community that nobody else can. It’s great to have you here.
Thank you again to Luna and to others like her, who have been an inspiration over the past year and proven to be much more than simply ‘someone I met on the internet’. You’ve each taught me something new and shown me how I can improve both as a person and a writer. There are great things ahead of us, shining in the distance, and I can’t wait to see what we all achieve together.
They’d better find a bigger box for that jigsaw.