It seems like more and more people join the online tarot community every day, so I hope this may be helpful to some of you who might be thinking about blogging or just starting now. I’m no expert, but I’ve made it through a year, and I’m loving the process so far.
I’ve been so wrapped up in my illustration work lately that my writing has suffered a bit of the back-burner treatment, so this post is as much more for myself as for you, my lovely readers. It’s always good to check in on why you’re doing a thing, what the thing you’re doing does for you, and what, if any adjustments need to be made.
What can a tarot blog do for you?
Committing to a blog means committing to a regular practice of reflection and engagement with the topic of your choice. Putting your thoughts out there publicly and connecting to an audience holds you accountable both to keep your thoughts high-quality, and to keep them coming. It provides incentive to challenge yourself, explore new topics, and stretch your knowledge.
2. Plug into the online tarot community.
Blogging, joining groups and forums, following other bloggers, and trading comments are all fantastic ways to connect with other tarot practitioners. You don’t need a blog to join the conversation on other sites and forums, but it does push you out of your comfort zone and provides incentive to jump in if you’re shy like me. It’s wonderful to meet new people with common interests, and to share ideas and learn from folks with different approaches and backgrounds. I’ve discovered more amazing bloggers, authors, and artists in one year of active blogging than I did in fourteen years of lurking.
3. Hash out ideas and know thine own self.
Writing stuff down crystallizes all those elusive, floaty thought bits bouncing around your skull. If you feel a desire to understand your own ideas, philosophy, and beliefs better, nothing will get your farther faster than a regular writing practice. Blogging motivates you to keep writing, and writing begets self-knowledge.
4. Better your business.
If you’ve the notion of maybe, one day launching a tarot-related business, consider starting a tarot-related blog. You don’t need a blog to run a successful business, but it can certainly help. A thriving blog makes a great platform for offering readings or products. Your backlog of writings showcases your skills, ethics, knowledge, and beliefs to potential clients.
Blogging before you launch your business can also help answer some of the planning questions you’re bound to have simmering. Am I actually interested enough in this to invest my time and money in turning it into a job? Do I have enough to say on this to do it every day? What unique perspective or approach do I bring to the field? Where do I want to focus or specialize?
It’s not enough just to think about tarot. You have to use it and get feedback on your readings in order to develop skills, find your voice, and discover how much you love it. The writing helps to process and analyze whatever you learn by doing. If you’re not comfortable doing that publicly, you can tackle questions in your private journals as you shape your business.
(Disclaimer: I am neither a business coach nor a successful business person, so please don’t take this point as a proclamation of expertise. I’m neck-deep in the research and planning stage of turning my own art-making into a business, and this blog and the tarot decks I’m developing are a part of that process.)
5. Share what you know.
Help other tarot lovers by sharing what you’ve learned so far and adding your unique voice to the chorus. Be a part of a beautiful, open exchange of ideas. Encourage other practitioners as you encourage yourself.
6. Build a reference catalog.
If you keep your archives navigable, you’ll end up with a well cataloged record of all your best tarot musings. You’ll be able to track your progress and development over time. This can also serve as a reference for future readings and questions, and a file of draft-fodder for future creative works.
7. Add more fun and beauty to the howling void that is the internet.
What should you consider before starting a tarot blog?
The internet can be a scary place. Make sure you’re comfortable putting yourself out there. When you launch a tarot blog, not only are you throwing your thoughts out there for anyone to see, but you’re publicly identifying as a connoisseur of the woo arts. Remember that tarot and other occult practices are still misunderstood and frowned-upon in many circles. I don’t mean to discourage or frighten anyone, but it’s wise to do some soul-searching before putting anything online, and make sure you’re okay with the potential risks. Be safe.
You can always start a blog, see if it’s for you, and take it down if you don’t like doing it. There’s nothing wrong with that. (Though there may always be a record that your blog once existed because the internet is creepy.) However, if you’re taking up blogging with the goal of promoting an existing business or building a reputation, make sure you’re up for the commitment. Is this something you want to try out for fun, or something you really want to sink your teeth into? There’s no wrong answer either way, but it’s good to assess before you publish. Think about how often you want to post, and what kind of content you want to create. Write a few articles before launching your blog to get a feel for how long it takes you, and whether you enjoy writing for an audience.
You don’t have to be settled in your voice to start blogging, but it helps to think about voice if your blog is attached to lofty goals, like finding an audience or building a platform.
Something small and fuzzy in me cringes and dies every time I hear someone ask, “who’s your target audience?”
Attention is precious. Finding readers is a joy and a privilege. You don’t target an audience, you earn one, and you can’t do that without something to offer in the first place. Meditating on your voice can help you shape work worth offering up, but only in moderation. Stew on voice too long and you befuddle yourself, losing the drive to actually write the writings and do the stuff, which are more important by far.
Do think about how you want your blog to look, and whether you want it to be just a blog or part of a website. Do your homework before settling on a blog host. I won’t get into the nitty gritty of web design and shopping blog platforms here. Those are huge topics on their own, and there are so many resources that cover them way better than I can. It’s definitely something you want to look into before you begin, though. Keep any longterm goals in mind as you start, because some platforms are easier to change than others if you wind up somewhere that doesn’t meet your needs.
6. You don’t have to have it all figured out in advance.
You really don’t. Don’t let the details bog you down. I like to make lists and plan ahead (in moderation), but that’s not for everyone. If it makes your head spin and starts to discourage you, then jump in and get right to making and doing. No matter how much advance planning and soul-searching you do, there will always be more things to figure along the way. Don’t let the planning stave off the doing. Make. Write. Share. Repeat. You can always edit as you go.