I wrote this last year but it may be helpful to anyone feeling down about not being nominated/shortlisted this blog award season. I wasn’t nominated last year despite being a blogger for three years at that time (just over two years on Mr & Mrs T Plus 3 ) turns out a lot can happen in a year…the more you integrate yourself in the blogging community, the better known you become, the more your readership grows, the more likely you are to be shortlisted.
I’ve been really lucky to end up on two shortlists this year: one is for ‘Best Blog’ in The Regional Awards, South West the other is in the ‘Beauty and Fashion’ category for the BiBs 2016. I feel so grateful to everyone that nominated be and I am so excited about it. Yes, I would love to say I am an award winning blogger but I am also in a place where I don’t *need* one.
If you haven’t made the list this year, it doesn’t mean you won’t in the future and it really has no bearing on whether your blog is good or bad. We all work tremendously hard on our blogs and it is a hard industry to be at the top of your blogging game, so don’t feel despondent if it hasn’t happened for you yet. Just keep writing away, use your unique voice, create amazing content and build your readership the recognition will come in time. Promise!
On with the post…
(Written May 2015)
Earlier this year I took a risk. I put myself out there and asked for votes in the ‘Fresh Voice’ category for the BiBS awards-you know that awards ceremony at BritMums Live that acknowledges and rewards bloggers for all their hard work? Let’s just call it the Blog Oscars or ‘Bloscars’!
I did manage a few votes because some of you wrote about me in your blog posts telling people who you voted for and that seriously blew me away. You left left me messages and tweeted me telling me you had voted. Thank you, you gorgeous bunch I am so flattered and honoured that you chose to vote for me.
I even had an email from a reader who said although she wasn’t sure what these awards were all about she had voted for me because my post ‘A letter to my teenage self’ had really touched her and she thought I deserved it. I honestly can’t tell you what that email meant to me.
I allowed myself to think that I might, just might get shortlisted, perhaps even if I didn’t have the thousands of votes some of the others had, I could get that judges vote and go through on merit.
I waited up on the evening before the shortlist was announced to check the BritMums site as soon as the clock struck 12 and when it wasn’t announced until the following day mid morning. I sat and refreshed my Twitter feed every few minutes, getting myself more and more wound up as tweets came out saying ‘are you ready?’ ‘do you want to find out who is on the shortlist?’
Yes, yes I’m ready just announce it before I die of a heart attack right here on this very spot at my dining room table with my bloody iPhone in one hand…
And then the tweet I’d been waiting for popped up on my screen.
‘Click here to see this year’s shortlist’
So I did.
I searched the list for Mr and Mrs T Plus Three, but it wasn’t there.
Alas your votes and my votes (yes I voted on every conceivable device in the house!) were not enough.
And I cried my eyes out. Like the big baby that I am.
I felt so utterly deflated it’s hard to explain. I felt as though all those hours I have poured into my blog meant nothing. All those times I’ve stayed up until 2am in the morning writing away, changing my theme, my layout, defining my corner of the internet. All the hours I’d spent editing posts and photographs, promoting my blog were wasted hours.
I felt that I was not good enough and was so bitterly disappointed with myself.
Then I phoned Mr T and cried down the phone to him and he gave me a bit of a pep talk. So I started to feel better.
I realised something and it dawned on me that even though being shortlisted and potentially winning would have been an amazing achievement…
I don’t need an award to validate my blog or my worth.
I was overwhelmed with the amount of messages I received saying you were amazed and shocked I wasn’t nominated, thank you that meant the world to me and made the disappointment easier to bear. Let’s face it though there is pretty stiff competition. There are a lot of incredible fresh voices out there. I promise to not trip you up on your way to collect your award (just kidding!)
I am so very grateful for all the support I have received since starting this blog, for every single comment, for every time you share one of my posts, recreate one of my recipes or tell me something I have written has resonated with you and helped in some way.
Most of all I am grateful that you are here reading this today because that means that in some way I am doing something right.
That is why I do this, that is why I write.
Not for an award.
(but seriously, vote for me next year I still really want one)