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When Blogging Means More than Money

I emailed Cary Miller this morning to ask how hi Cancer NewsWatch blog is going (you might remember I mentioned it a while ago – Cary’s wife Lori is battling cancer and he started the blog (I think after a conversation we had) to do something positive in the midst of a pretty terrible situation.

Cary answered with the following email (I’ve got his permission to post it and have edited it slightly to delete a few personal things. I’m posting it because I think it’s an amazing story of how blogging can make a serious difference in the lives of both bloggers and their readers. Check out how other bloggers are rallying around Cary and Lori at this time.

‘Hi Darren, welcome back : D

And thanks for asking… things are going really well, I’m slowly getting the hang of what I want to post, and how often, and more importantly I’ve already made some great new friends, via Cancer NewsWatch and ironically, via all those great guest bloggers you had, and all the great commenters too. I’ve had some great, and rather heart-felt talks…. I really appreciate everyone supporting my efforts.

Oh! perhaps the biggest thing you missed, as far as my site is concerned, was that after reading about our story via ProBlogger, Scott Randolph and his friends over at Triathlon Training Blog decided they wanted to run their triathlon in the name of Lori & I, and help raise some money for both cancer research, and also to help us out personally, as we are struggling with ever-deepening debt due to our situation. Anyways, I don’t know how much they’ll raise, but of course it’s the thought and support that really count. Scott had wanted to see if you’d mind writing a post about it, but you had just gone on your trip, and I thought it best not to bother you. Oh yeah, and then seeing that, Allen Heat, who is one of your loyal readers and is only 15, decided to dedicate a week’s worth of his graphic design downloads to Lori, too. What a sweet, sweet kid. He’s going to grow up to be something incredible, I’m sure.

The most exciting thing for me is all the cancer patients and caregivers I’ve made contact with through the blog, and I have to say that when someone writes something like “hey, I just wanted to say thanks for sharing your story, and all of your great research” it really touches me, and lets me know I am actually helping someone, and that is the greatest reward i could ever imagine.

Oh yeah, and it’s got my wife Lori a lot more into her own blog, which is starting to get a really great readership, and has helped her to really reach out and connect with people, which until recently she has had a hard time doing. That alone is priceless.’

I’m really amazed and excited by the way that blogging has helped Cary and Lori find something positive in the midst of a devastating time. I’ve long been a believer that blogging can make a difference, that it gives a voice not only to those seeking fame or fortune but those who have something profound to share with the rest of us about their lives. This is one of those times.

As the ProBlogger community can I urge you all to stop by Cary and Lori’s blogs to give some encouragement but also to help out financially either directly or through the Triathlon Training Blog’s challenge if you’re able.

About Darren Rowse

Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn.

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Comments

  1. Yes, nice story. I keep bumping into Cary at various watering holes and comment spots around the blogosphere. It’s so good to be positive about misfortune and carry the fight out into the world.

  2. Allen Heat says:

    I blog for two reasons:

    *My passion to create and design graphics (main)
    * To earn some money (secondary)

    But meanwhile i focus on these two things, i always say “why not giving a hand if you can? it won’t hurt your blog for sure (in my case), it may help others, and maybe yours too….

    I was moved by the Millets’ struggle story, where i first heard about it in the Triathlon Blog, and decided that giving a hand, no matter how small it is ( i have mid-low readership), will be an act that might not just help Lori and Caty, but will also give me self-satisfaction…

    by the way Cary: I prefer to be called youngster :P (j/k)
    Allen Heat

  3. Sometimes I sit back, and I’m still amazed at the reaction and support we get from folks when the read about this.

    I think what we are doing is a good illustration of the friendliness of the blogging community, and the impact that a couple of people and web site could have.

    Most importantly, when all is said and done, hopefully we’ve been able to help out some folks who need it, even if only a small amount.

  4. Ken says:

    Wow, can I just say this gave me great inspiration to finally get to work on a blog for my own chronic disease, diabetes.

    I hope like Cary and Lori’s blog, it will help others get through the hard times. =)

  5. Cary says:

    Good Morning… (it’s 7:45am here in California)

    I can’t imagine a better way to greet the day than to cruise over to one of your favorite blogs and find people saying nice things about you…Thanks everyone : ) Darren, you are more than kind to write such a great post about us. Like most blogs, we can certainly use the exposure, and I have to tell you that when fighting advanced cancer, every single kind word makes a huge difference. Truly.

    John, it’s true… we’ve been fighting for nearly three years, but in the last 6-months or so have really connected with others and tried to tell our story wherever people would listen. It has made a world of difference, both for my wife & I, and for those we’ve met (I hope.) By the way, you are a very prolific commentor. It’s nice to really meet you!

    Allen, I promise not to keep bringing up your age…sorry. I just think you are an amazing youngster ; ) and I want the world to know.

    Ken, you should absolutely start up that diabetes blog! When I started researching the idea of my Cancer NewsWatch blog, I was a little dismayed to find that while there were a few large, very impersonal commercial cancer blogs just re-hashing news stories, there wasn’t much in the way of real commentary or personal opinion in regards to research, treatments etc. I wanted to offer information that people could really use, as I have collected a vast database of research info, much of which never makes it’s way out of obscure cancer journals. Anyways, I try to bring a personal edge to every single post, and I hope that sets me apart from the rest. I bet it would do the same for you : ) Commercial blogs are fine, of course, but I’m guessing they don’t exactly foster a community in the way that the more personal ones do… I’ll be happy to link you up when you get yours started. We have to stick together.

    thanks again, friends

  6. [...] The blogosphere never ceases to amaze me… I woke up this morning to find that Darren at ProBlogger, (one of my favorite blogs, by one of my favorite bloggers!) had written [...]

  7. Toby says:

    Cary’s and Lori’s blogs are wonderful examples that blogging has become an important social networking tool. In addition, it’s really nice to see worlds within the blogosphere converge.

    Business/marketing blogs should support cause or “heartfelt” blogs. It makes sense to me since blogs are all about people – it portrays the humanism of the blogger.

  8. Melody says:

    Fascinated by the little details. Having recently started “a little blog” to help bridge the gap between those who are intimidated by the mere concept of blogging and all the resources available to teach us bloggers, I was struggling a bit to find exactly what I wanted to write about today. This entry was exactly what I needed. I’ve written a bit about it and although page hits are still quite low, I know it’s likely to inspire the few who read it.

    Thank you, Darren, for what you do and the way you do it. And thank you, Cary and Lori, for choosing to connect with others through this horrific experience.

    Peace – Melody

  9. Fred says:

    Hello,

    I first met Cary here, more than one month ago. His feedburner counter was at 0. Now he have around 35 readers that follow his story and his writings. The number is always growing, why? Because he is a great gentleman, a good blogger and an inspirating person.

    He wrote about a problem that reach many, many people and he wrote it in an elegant way. So, you want to know how to build a readership? Read Cary’s writings, send him emails, discuss with him, and then, you will learn.

    Salutations,

    Fred

  10. Stephanie says:

    Lori and Cary are inspirations, aren’t they! I’m so happy to see the blogging community embrace their experience. :)

  11. Cary Miller says:

    You are all far too kind….

    Thank you.

  12. Aeryn says:

    Lori and Cary are my heroes. They are an inspiration to everyone they meet! Personally, whenever I feel a little down or have to go through a treatment, I always think, “If Lori can do it then I can too.” hahahaha!

    I love them! :-)