What I’ve learned in over ten years of blogging

I started blogging when I was about 10 years old. I know that seems crazy and unreal – even though 10-year-olds these days are video-editing TikTok experts. But really, the proof of my early blogging days is still there. A friend of my mum’s made me that website, which I first used to collect little stories on family holidays. Later on I started sharing my ‘fashion inspiration’ and even had categories called ‘eco chic’ and ‘budget buys’. I loved it. I was quite a creative child, wildly inspired by fashion magazines. And I knew very early on that I wanted a creative career that included lots of writing, collage-making and coming up with content ideas.

The main thing that pops into my mind now, is that I started blogging with no intention of it ever getting noticed. Apart from my mum, my sisters and my aunt, I didn’t even want anyone to read my blog. On the contrary. I was terrified by the idea of anyone finding out I was writing and publishing on a website. Especially at age 13 to 15, when I used to write personal diaries and published them on a now long gone blog called Shoot A Glance. I only spoke about it on Twitter, but – so I thought – no one at my school had Twitter. Besides my friend Pablo, who I didn’t mind reading my personal stuff anyway. Of course, as it was destined, people at school figured out at some point that I was writing a blog and I suddenly felt exposed.

It was then, and with the uprise of Instagram, that I started blogging differently. I started seeing it less as a diary and more like magazine-style website on which I could review beauty products, share snapshots of my outfits and inspire people with my lifestyle. I was still young, and still awkwardly ashamed of anything I put online. But I was also in peace with people knowing about it and felt more like it had become a part of me.

I know that some OG bloggers have experienced that same, awkward phase in which you LOVED blogging but it was your little secret. That’s different for people who start blogging now, I guess. With Instagram being their main starting point, blogging now feels like an extra means of self-promotion more than a creative outlet. It’s something I’ve struggled with a lot in my most recent blogging years: letting go of the thought of writing for my audience, for opportunities and for growth. And writing more for myself, just because it’s what I like to do. Just like I did back in the days of Romy’s Plaza, sat at my mum’s desk and making collages in Photoshop like I’d never done anything else.

Maybe that should be my blogging intention for the upcoming time. I should embrace my old spontaneous, carefree methods more. Instead of overthinking everything so much. I shouldn’t worry whether people read my blog – because like I used to worry that people might read it, I know worry that people might not read it. I do feel more responsible about what and how I write now that it’s not just my mum, sisters and aunt reading my blog but also an audience of girls who are influenced by me in some way. And blogging has also become a (very tiny) means of income for me now, too. But that doesn’t mean I have to stop seeing it as a hobby, a creative outlet. Right now, I’m writing on the couch while it’s pouring with rain outside. I’ve got a scented candle burning next to me, and a cup of coffee in my hand. A fuzzy blanket cover my lap and jazz music is playing throughout my living room. And in this moment, really, writing feels just like it did when I was a 10-year-old obsessed by Emma Watson.