My blog is very much a blog of two halves, instinct tells me that, my stats confirm it and I know how to cater for it.
On one hand we have the traffic sent via my semi viral pins on Pinterest, the people who come for the bullet journal info and leave.
And then on the other hand we have the loyal readership, the ones who share my work on Twitter, who follow me on all social media platforms, the ones who leave me lovely comments, the ones who come back time and time and time again.
I'm not stupid, I know my blog has grown in the past year and a half (ish) and I know it's done well for itself. I know my stats are good, I know I'm very blasé about 150 million Pinterest impressions, I know it's doing better than alright. And I also know that's down to the loyal readers of my blog - they return every day, every week, they read EVERY SINGLE THING I ever write and they seem to enjoy it. And relate to it. And like how I write.
But I also know I am by no means a celeb, I am not the next Zoella, my blog isn't making me millions (hell, it's barely making me hundreds). There are a thousand bloggers I look up to, who's names I see, who's blogs I follow and they're the people who, when they follow me on Instagram or tweet me back I get a bit fangirly and like OMG SOMEONE BASICALLY FAMOUS actually spoke to me.
And so that's why I was so shocked to see my name on the Blogosphere Award shortlist.
Me, my blog have been shortlisted as one of 5 people up for the Blogosphere Mag Lifestyle Blogger of the Year. One of 5. Out of thousands of nominations. Me.
Can I get it across even more how shocked I was? And how massively humbled I felt to be shortlisted alongside the actual famouses (I mean, Vix is shortlisted in the same category as me let's be real here). The girls I am shortlisted with are people who's blogs I follow, have followed for a while, real people that I read and people who's Instagram's I lust over and tweets I favourite.
And I'm only flippin one of them.
I woke up in a hotel room in Devon on the last day of my anniversary trip away, having the loveliest time in the baking hot sun and my phone was alight with messages. All I could see was Whatsapps from my blog squad all screaming OMG GWENNAN at me and then that cheeky screenshot and accompanying message from Hannah that started it all off;
And from that moment on, from when I clocked what was happening and saw the official tweet from Blogosphere Mag and got the official email today confirming it all - my phone hasn't stopped buzzing from people sending me messages.
So a little note on the Blogospehere Awards for this year and my nomination;
1. Obvs cos it wouldn't be blogger award season without some people feeling a bit put out over the nominations there's been a lot of talk about how male bloggers should have their own category because it's a female dominated industry. For one, can you please just let us have this? It's female saturated and we're bloody killing it - that doesn't mean male bloggers aren't too. Every academy award and musical award and high profile awards panels around the globe are debating whether or not to scrap gender specific awards and here we are with a magazine promoting completely general neutral categories, that ANYONE could have been nominated and shortlisted for and we're complaining because there isn't gender segregation? Let's not.
2. Similarly with the 'I thought Blogosphere were trying to promote new bloggers but it's the same old faces every award season' tweets. I am going to hold my hands up here and say the biggest reason I was so shocked about my shortlisting was because I am NOT a big blogger and when I think of the names that haven't been picked I feel like I've robbed one of them of their space. Put me and Vix up against eachother and there's no competition over following and blog reach and it's obvious, yet we both got nominated by lovely lovely people and now those lovely lovely people are voting for us. We both got exactly the same chance because ANYONE COULD BE NOMINATED and it forced the Blogosphere panel to look at less recognisable faces. I feel like living proof the shortlist is celebrating big and little bloggers and the ones in between and I'm bloody loving the choices if I'm honest.
3. I can't even put into words how much everyone's messages meant to me. My phone was going crazy all day, I had to charge it 3 times in the car and in the end Joss was like 'ffs turn your internet off and plz help direct me home before I accidentally take us to Scotland.' From my blogging squad who broke the news to me in the best way, to those of you who replied to my Insta story with all the Queen emojis, to those who DM'd me, texted me, commented on my Facebook and to the seemingly billions of you who tweeted me to say you'd voted or even nominated in the first place and who shared the link to voting - I bloody love the bones off each and every one of you. What got me (and made me a bit teary) was not just the 'I've voted for you' but the real genuine excitement I could feel oozing out of every word on every tweet. The actual genuine pride some of you displayed for the fact that I got chosen and that meant the absolute world because for each and every one of you that did that - I genuinely would have felt SO excited and proud if it had been you. Say what you want about the internet and social media friendships and the blogging community; you can make some real genuine friends on here.
I'm only going to share this in one single blog post, I'll add it to my sidebar and I'll tweet one link a day but I don't want to feel like I'm canvasing for votes. I don't want to become like I'm running for UK prime minister too (although..........) but I just kinda want a reminder forever that I got shortlisted for this, it's a big deal. So, whether it's for me, for anyone else in my category or for anyone at all on the shortlist, get researching blogs and get voting!