29.03.2007 | 09:23

Four years

My blog turns four years old today! To celebrate that, it was time for a new look. Almost all pages have been updated by now. I chose the same free template Jussi uses on his pages now and tuned it to look more like me. (Could you believe that earlier I could not keep a diary for four days? That's another story, though)

How did I become a knit blogger?

(Add the special effects for flashbacks here as I look to the distance...)

Year 1995. Vaasa University, Department of Communication Studies. I made my first web pages in 1995. Luckily they're now lost in cyberspace. However, the picture of me posing with my pal's Great Dane Igor before going to a tasteless party is still on my web page more than 10 years and 20 kilograms later. Oh, the nineties. The web design was so charming.

Years 2002-03. Espoo. Own domain (or Jussi's domain that I made... asked him nicely to take into use.) LAN! I found knitting again and started searching for information. There were lots of English pages but almost none in Finnish. There were no company or yarn shop pages, just few personal ones, so I decided to do something about it as I was making my own web pages anyway and I wanted more content than just "Hello, my name is Marjut, welcome to my web pages".

I kept on knitting and thought it might be fun to be able to check the details of the knitted things, for example, how much time I spent knitting, and it would also be nice to be able to make notes of other interesting things. Using the web for that was a natural choice, so a blog-like page appeared on my web pages exactly four years ago: I wrote without any introductions that I bought some yarn from a seller on the local market place. (I still haven't knitted anything else but that swatch from the yarn.) Soon I found out I have readers.

I did not think of the style of the blog that closely. When I got readers, I turned outwards and started to write for them also instead of just scribbling down things for my own joy. I have to admit that it took a while to get used to the idea of having readers - how would I address them.. you? I've decided to talk about my life when it's relevant and to leave out ranting, politics and religion of this blog. Of course, it would be boring if everyone else did the same.

It's easy to blog about knitting. I cannot blog about news, daily life or relationships or want to express my opinion on different things. There are people who do it better than I do so I leave it to them.

Development develops (like we say in Finland)

neuleblogit_2004.jpg On my blog's first birthday I had listed five (5) other Finnish knitting blogs in the sidebar. What's amazing is that four of them are still active but in different addresses now. I spent the second birthday with some 30-40 other knitting blogs and last year I had invited about 200 knitting blogs to the virtual party.

I cannot and want not to list my favourite knitting blogs because I'd forget some anyway. I still follow the first Finnish knitting blogs because I've learned to know the writers virtually or in real life. I also find new favourites regularly as new knitting blogs start.

I like blogs that show the writer's life also outside the knitting world. I don't care that much about grammar or flawless style (even though it's sometimes difficult to read badly written text and the mistakes may make understanding difficult). I like texts that take you away and show that the writer is... how could I say it? Present.

I think "present" is a good word. I get carried away when the writer has found her own style and writes in a vivid way (and I do not mean that I want social porn and revelations but that you can see the writer's personality between the lines), no matter if her life is the same or completely different from mine. I don't have any kids but some writers describe their children in such a colourful way that I really enjoy reading that. It does not matter either whether the knitted items are simple or complicated, the style of the writing is more important.

What do I get from blogging?

I win friends and influence people. Really. I have found new friends and with the Finnish knitting ezine Ulla we have inluenced the knitting world. Does it also count that I have lured people into knitting and buying yarn? Or that the founder of the Finnish knitting mailing list Päivi asked me to be the co-moderator of the list?

I appreciate all comments. It's good to see that people find my pages useful. That's what I aimed for, and it's good to see that I have accomplished that. It's also wonderful to see that some people have been reading my blog from the start. I don't always remember to reply to all comments (I also forget to reply to my mails) so I want to thank each commenter now. Thank you! I'm completely overwhelmed.

blog_07.gif I like meeting new people, knitters and knitbloggers and blog readers. I'm still amazed when I hear that someone reads my blog. Without my web pages and my blog I would have not met all of you either virtually or in real life and my life would be a lot more boring.

The Finnish knitting blogs also have nice commenters, there aren't many flames and provocations in the comments. I have got only few nasty comments and over 2400 nice ones. (Some of the comments are my own.)

What's next?

Next I read this and realise that I wrote a lot and forgot to say many things.

I also wait for the day when someone recognises me. Many people have already spotted Jussi, but not me.

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