It’s nomination time for the MADS, and next month for the BIBS. For those of you who aren’t bloggers these are (to my knowledge) the two major awards for UK parent bloggers. Those that make it through to the next round will gain a lot of exposure, excitement and possibly the kudos of winning an award, exciting stuff.
Last year I asked for votes, and I’ll admit it, I really wanted to make the shortlist. I excitedly watched as the MADS released lists of those who’d received votes (even just one), and my name was there. I allowed myself to imagine seeing my name on the shortlist. I dreamed of attending the awards ceremony, which is, I gather, a glitzy party in a posh London hotel. Or in the case of the BIBS a posh affair tagged onto the annual blogging conference, all canapés and champagne, and recognition in front of lots of other bloggers. Very exciting, indulgent stuff for parents who spend a fair chunk of their time dedicating themselves to the needs of their children. I hoped and prayed that perhaps people where enjoying my blog enough to nominate me, that all the work I invest in my corner of the internet was about to be recognised.
Then the lists came out, I clicked, I held my breath, and of course, along with thousands of other bloggers, I wasn’t shortlisted for the MADS or the BIBS. Which doesn’t really matter, after all thousands of nominations are received, and there are thousands of parenting blogs, all vying for this opportunity. I certainly wasn’t alone in my disappointment. It’s just the matter of my ego, the performer in me that really wants to hear the applause. To be told that I can write, unequivocally recognised as a good blogger. I admit it, I wanted to be in that lucky few, and I wanted my ego stroked.
I realise now that I was never destined to be on that shortlist. The initial stages of these awards are numbers, plain and simple, votes added together to decide who makes that list. Obviously this is a completely fair way of doing things, numbers of votes equals number of fans equals winning blog, fair enough. My blog, as important as it is to me, simply isn’t ‘big’ enough. I don’t receive thousands of hits a day. I don’t have a prolific enough presence, and hence I don’t have enough voters and therefore will not make the shortlist.
Last year when the shortlist was announced I questioned myself, my blog, the effort, what was the point if nobody loved me (pity party stuff basically). Eventually obviously I got it, I love my blog, I love writing, it’s cathartic, pleasurable and it’s worth it in so many many ways, none of which are connected to scores or shiny trophies.
All that being said, nobody is making me enter, it’s entirely my choice, so this year I’m not going to!
If I don’t enter I can’t build this thing up, then fall down with a bump when the inevitable happens. If I don’t enter I’m saying to myself that I love my blog, I love my writing, people are reading and enjoying and that’s that. That’s really enough, I’m really enough.
To be clear though, none of this is intended as criticism of the awards, or those who get pleasure from entering, attending or even winning them. I’m pleased for you, the organisers, and those lucky enough to be recognised. You worked hard for it, and you deserve it, and I always feel genuinely happy, my disappointment isn’t focussed on being bitter.
So that’s it. I’m writing this to commit myself to not putting myself in the race, and by doing that I feel that I’ve won.