Why did you start a blog? Are you getting what you wanted from it, or has your experience gone in an unexpected direction?
Here are the reasons I can think of for blogging, starting with the most basic:
- You like to keep an online diary, which, as we know, was the original purpose of a blog. A web log.
- You have opinions and you want to share them.
- You want to socialize but are shy or busy, and blogging allows you more control over how and when you socialize.
- You want to interact with like-minded people.
- Writing practice, argument practice, formatting practice, etc.
- You are building a social media presence.
- You are promoting your writing, art, photography, business, etc.
- You are trying to acquire customers for your freelance editing, graphic design, writing, or other skill-based service.
- You intend to create a blog that gets so much traffic you can sell ad space and make money.
- You are hoping to leverage your blogging popularity into a full-time career.
I am a writer and began blogging a few years ago to “get my name out there” and to generate interest in my writing. So you can say I got into it for reasons 6 and 7. I have accomplished neither.
The lack of achievement on latter objective–promoting my writing–has to do with the fact that I have little to promote. My stubborn resistance to self-publishing practically renders my blog useless, since writing novels is my game and I haven’t sold one to a publisher yet. Also, let’s face facts. The only people we are blogging to are other writers. Potential readers don’t troll WordPress looking for new novelists. This is an echo chamber.
As far as a social media presence goes… I have done zero research and am speaking anecdotally, but I don’t see much overlap between blogging and other forms of social media. This blog has almost 3000 followers. I’ve been on Twitter for a two years and have 160 followers.
Do you want to hear about a social media experiment I’m conducting? Four days ago, I created a second Twitter account with a different name and much more Twitter-friendly identity and have collected close to 200 followers already. I also started a WordPress blog associated with that account and have made two posts. Not test posts, either. True content-heavy, image-saturated, well-researched posts that should appeal greatly to my new followers. I have gotten all of 7 hits.
My preliminary hypothesis (and common-sense observation) is that blogging does not draw the same audience as do Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, and the like. Ergo, blogging does little to build your social media presence, and your social media presence does little to promote your blog content.
I’ve left out one major social medium that is unlike all the others, and it seems to be the only one that offers a path to the top of whatever mountain you are climbing: YouTube. More than a couple of YouTubers I’ve followed when they had fewer than 100 subscribers are now regularly appearing on MTV and other youth-oriented television channels and making a living at it. I’ve even made a few dumb little videos of old Motown songs–built from scrolling B&W photographs and nothing more–that sans any promotion have collected 10,000-20,000 views and counting, which is more than I can say for any WordPress post I’ve written. Maybe I should invest in video equipment.
How about you? Have you ever thought of packing it in as a blogger or does blogging offer its own intrinsic value? All opinions and perspectives welcome!
August 16th, 2015 at 4:53 pm
Hehe, I saw what you did their with the photo and the “point.” Good post, by the way. Connecting with like minds and improving my writing skills are probably my top two reasons for blogging.
August 16th, 2015 at 7:39 pm
I had to ponder the images for a moment, since this piece doesn’t particularly lend itself to visuals. I usually fall back on horror.
For sure the biggest unexpected benefit from blogging is cyber-meeting so many cool people.
August 16th, 2015 at 5:18 pm
I blog because I enjoyed other people’s blogs, my comments seemed reasonably well tolerated, and it allows me to get all those words out of my head and meet nice people.
The editor on my blog puts up with whatever I care to share, and my lovely followers, some of whom comment, keep me from thinking I’m talking to myself.
There is an advantage, for me, in putting out a blog post rather than making a note of something interesting in a notebook: I write MUCH more coherently (this is an effort) when I think someone else might read what I write. And the subject doesn’t get lost in my mountain of notebooks, never to be seen again. It’s DIGITIZED!
I stick to the point, revise to have some kind of reasonable order, and add headlines.
Posts that are too garbled stay in the queue in draft mode. (I know, I know – what’s out there is not, well, perfectly organized. You should see the culls.)
It’s good for my thinking AND people talk back to me about subjects I’m interested in (I started them).
You have a lot of outlets to meet and talk to and work with intelligent people; I’m a homebody.
I’ve met an amazing array of nice AND helpful people via the blog (and comments on other blogs).
So I blog because I like it.
Now I’m facing self-publication, and I have another site for the books; I’ll keep that one relatively free of my personality, more about the characters, etc.
I don’t have that many visitors – but maybe I have as many as I can handle?
I hope some of them will be the core to marketing Pride’s Children (a tiny core from those who’ve read the whole thing). That’s good enough for me, for now, and I’m perfectly happy with organic growth.
I know I’ve been slacking off – editing is a very intense experience. I’m almost finished.
Good luck with your search for traditional publication – a friend who had been writing for years finally got a publisher to take her on, and she’s delighted. I’m happy for and with her, because that’s what she wanted.
August 16th, 2015 at 7:44 pm
I’m glad for all the contacts I’ve made as well. So many interesting people I never would have met otherwise.
Part of my problem is that I never defined what “promoting my writing” looks like, so there’s no way to tell if I’ve been successful at it. Similar to what you said, I find that writing about writing helps me understand the subject better. I seldom have a clear idea of what I plan to say when I start a post, and thinking about the message as I go is a learning experience.
August 16th, 2015 at 5:19 pm
Oh, and I’m not pretty enough for Youtube.
August 16th, 2015 at 7:46 pm
I don’t think many of us are. I heard a movie director say (I’m paraphrasing), “Everyone in a movie is so good looking. If you want someone who will appear ugly or insane on screen, just grab any normal person off the street.”
August 16th, 2015 at 5:19 pm
Meant to say: if Youtube is you, go for it.
August 16th, 2015 at 7:48 pm
It’s an investment if you want equipment and software to make professional grade videos. Such is life.
August 16th, 2015 at 8:05 pm
I know what you mean. Bad equipment – you might as well not bother.
I’m getting my ducks in a row to do the audiobook for Pride’s Children; here the investment in professional sound equipment and a properly deadened recording area are prime considerations.
My plan is to pay for studio time with a sound engineer – as a way of shoring up the amateur here.
I find I want to do the reading – but not the production. If the economics are even possible, since it is a long book, I’ll go pro. I like ‘as read by author’ books.
For video you can be ugly – but you must have something else to compensate. I have a friend from Wattpad who is a professional actor. He produced a short video he uses as part of his portfolio:
It’s a minute long. He knows what he’s doing, IMHO.
August 16th, 2015 at 6:12 pm
I started a blog as an adjunct to a non-fiction book I wrote, and it works pretty well; the two media complementing one another. The book explores its subject matter in depth, whilst the blog facilitates interactivity at quite a high level now. I don’t do any social media, and only interact on WordPress. I enjoy the sense of community that has built up over the past 15 months, and can say I’ve made genuine friends along the way, with some meaningful off-blog messaging. It all takes quite a lot of maintenance, and probably would not work for me the way it does were that absent. Thanks Eric; good to hear from you.
August 16th, 2015 at 7:51 pm
Thanks for the comment. That makes a lot of sense. Non-fiction supported by blogging rather than fiction supported by blogging.
I’m not sure if the value of social media isn’t overstated. I know few successful writers who spend much time on Twitter or Instagram. It’s the rest of us clamoring for attention.
August 17th, 2015 at 11:54 pm
I’m always coming in at the end of the conversation. You raise some excellent points and I’ve had many of those some questions and conclusions. I know my writing has improved because of blogging and I’ve met a handful of interesting people, like you. The Youtube point is interesting, because I’ve been thinking of doing more of that. Although, I’ve done a few Youtubes and they haven’t attracted 100s or MTV – they were storytelling videos. You did spark an interesting discussion though. As I’m preparing to self-publish a second book and have been striving to establish an on-line business, blogs are considered essential for such. As for me, my blogs have been all over the place and that may be part of the reason I don’t have active followers. But, all in all I agree with much of this discussion. You have an interesting and active group of followers.
August 18th, 2015 at 9:04 am
I say this as an outside observer more than any kind of expert, but branding seems to be the 21st century approach. I, like you, tend to let my creativity go in a multitude of directions, which probably isn’t helping build an audience. I don’t think people can point to either of us and say, “That’s so and so. She does X.” That’s part of my social media experiment. Using a different name and conveying a singular identity, I’m trying to build a brand and seeing how it works.
August 16th, 2015 at 9:01 pm
I never intended on becoming a blogger, as it is the type of writing I don’t specialize in–the entire having to come up with something new every few days thing. However, to get anywhere a person almost needs a blog to survive in any form. In the last two years, while I’ve been absent from wordpress, I’ve learned…
Twitter – Is a very iffy thing. I’ve been on Twitter for several years and still have less than 200 followers – I keep gaining 5-10 and losing 5-10, which leads me to the conclusion that you must already have some kind of serious fame to have a lot of followers there. What I don’t like about the platform are the people who follow you just so you follow them back, then they unfollow you.
Pinterest – The point of social media is social interaction. How is this possible when you cannot search for groups on Pinterest that easily, can’t join them unless you beg a poster in a group, and generally have to use an external, independent website just to find the groups at all.
Facebook – The algorithms that operate based on interaction also apply to business Pages, especially true since they set up that system of paying for exposure. If you have 100 followers for your page, only about 20 are probably seeing your posts in their feeds although they follow you. It’s horrible. People want to see what they follow.
Instagram – This is probably one of the most responsive I’ve had, since I do photography, however there’s a lot of people who A. Follow you but have private accounts so you don’t really know anything about them and they never interact. B. Spammers who try to advertise getting hundreds or thousands of followers (a lot of this) C. People who try to advertise their own crap in the comments under your posts (which I delete without second thought).
Google Blogger – One platform I had for a very short while – Google began deleting my own photography from my own blog with no explanation, so I came back here.
Squarespace – It has a blogging platform for websites built in, however I never got any response out of it and if I didn’t post something practice every day, I’d start hitting 0 website visits.
WordPress – I returned to this and people actually do shit. However, there are some who Instant-Like a post so fast that you know they didn’t read it, and those people never comment so you don’t really know why they are doing what they do.
August 17th, 2015 at 10:38 am
I really am not a fan of Facebook at all, partly because it seems so artificial (people who dislike each other in real life calling each other BFF and all the heart emojis. Please), and partly because half the websites out there force you to have a FB account if you want to interact. I tried a FB band page a while back and there were all kinds of seemingly arbitrary rules designed to keep people from finding your music (no links until you get a certain amount of likes and dumb shit like that).
I can see why Instagram would work for you as a photographer and an artist. I have an Instagram account but have never posted anything. Lol. It seems like the ultimate celebrity vanity site. Like, “I need an ego boost. Let me post something on Instagram and get thousands of likes.”
As a writer, I guess the only thing there is to do is write. I keep the blog going so it’s there when I need it.
August 17th, 2015 at 7:48 pm
I’m actually considering dropping the FB page all together because it gets so little activity compared to everything else.
August 16th, 2015 at 11:56 pm
What about Medium? I cannot say I know very much about it but it seems like it would be a good place to share your writing. Not saying I think it would be the answer and means to accomplishing your aforementioned objectives but I am just curious if you are familiar & what do you think about it?
August 17th, 2015 at 10:40 am
I honestly don’t know anything about it but I will look into it. Who knows, it could be the sweet spot! Thanks for the suggestion.
August 17th, 2015 at 7:40 am
Sadly I’ve come to the same conclusion although I’m doing worse than you. I have about 250 followers after 5 years and average about 7 hits a day. When I actually post something it might spike to about 20. Strangely, the post of mine that gets many more hits than any other is one I wrote about how to block Tumblr. I’m glad that’s helping someone because to avoid WW3 in my house I have not been blocking tumblr.
But I digress. I’ve seen the same success with Youtubers (btw the asdfmovie9 is out! I like trains!) I’ve considered, and not quite dismissed the idea of producing a little movie of one or two of my short stories, given I know some young people who may be interested in helping out. But me being essentially a lazy perfectionist it isn’t happening yet.
August 17th, 2015 at 10:52 am
People in the 20-30 age group seem much more adept at manipulating social media in their favor. I’m not trying to sound like some old curmudgeon. I stay up to date on pop culture, TV, music, etc. Each generation has a savvy with things that developed as they came of age. I can program the shit out of a VCR lol! For real, I used to set my VCR without even turning on the TV to see the menu and I never got it wrong once. Yay for me.
Part of the problem for us (writers) and blogging is that the people we are trying to attract as readers of our fiction aren’t the people reading blogs. I already mentioned in the piece above that writers writing for writers is an echo chamber, but beyond that, the average age for WordPress bloggers has to be 55. I think the content they want isn’t necessarily “Hey, I’m one of a million writers trying to get noticed. Follow me?”
I also think it’s a mindset. People don’t think of social media and then think, “Where can I spend 20 minutes reading a long story?” In other words, looking for a short story or novel is one frame of mind, and social media is another.
August 18th, 2015 at 8:36 am
I’m not sure if success with manipulating social media is restricted to an age group. Unless its their job I think younger people have more time and enthusiasm than 40-somthings like me to get on social media. I simply don’t have (or make?) the time.
Para 2: Agree 100%. Our target audience simply don’t read blogs.
August 17th, 2015 at 8:12 am
I am an introvert. I do not like to talk on the phone. I can only take in-person conversation for so long before I am exhausted. Blogging allows me to write out what is mulling around in my mind without draining me. It (a blog post) might not be important to anyone else, but it is important enough to me to write it out. And that brings me to the main reason I blog. I blog to encourage myself to use my voice, which I suppressed for nearly 50 years. I am also a photographer and share my very photos on my blogs (I have three). When I have the energy, I produce the occasional not-very-good YouTube video. My teenage son is much better at YouTube videos than I. Finally, I blog to share my experiences with those who might need encouragement. The moment when someone comments on a particular post that I helped them acknowledge something in their own life that just wasn’t right or WAS right, is priceless.
August 17th, 2015 at 10:58 am
Getting to know people through blogging is interesting that way. You hear their inner voice first, which is obviously the reverse of how you got to know people in the pre-internet age. I’m always surprised to hear people say, “In real life I’m shy” after I’ve been reading their posts and experiencing their passions, arguments, and ideas. There are some really articulate and insightful people out there who are apparently uncomfortable in a conversation, and I’d never know if they didn’t say so at some point.
Photography and blogging seem to be a good match. It’s much easier to pull people in with a captivating image (not that I’ve ever taken one, but I’m using my imagination here) that it is to get a commitment to read 1000 words.
August 17th, 2015 at 11:21 am
I started blogging for the same reasons you did and also at the insistence of a journalist friend who argued that everyone needs to have a web presence in this day in age. To that latter point, I’m minded to agree: I know that when we look to hire people at work, the very first thing we do is look them up, not in search of dirt or a reason not to hire them, but rather to get a sense of their uniqueness and personal interests, which can tell you much more about a person than any canned answered to equally canned interview questions. But I digress from the main point of your post.
My experience in blogging for three years now has been fairly underwhelming in terms of gaining followers and “recognition”. But like you, I don’t yet have a book to promote – I’m not even at the submission stage yet – so I’m keeping my present expectations firmly in check.
It’s true that readers don’t go browsing blogs looking for new authors, however readers do follow the blogs of authors they love, so I consider blogging now an investment into the future. It’s taken me three years just to become decent at it; hopefully in another 2-3 years, I’ll be awesome, at the level of some of the long-time blogging author greats like Chuck Wendig, John Scalzi, or George R.R. Martin.
Ultimately, though, as with all my writing, I do it for myself. I’ve come to discover I actually like blogging – much more than any other form of social media (although I’m starting to like Facebook as well) – and that my motivations have been shifting more towards #1 and #2. I find I’m really shit at remembering all my accomplishments (I only ever remember the bad stuff), so it’s good for my frame of mind and my ability to practice gratitude to write about these things. Also, I find I that writing about certain topics and issues helps me clarify my thoughts them, which further helps me in my offline life.
So I’ll be sticking with blogging for a while longer yet. Even if my writing career never takes off, I could see myself still doing it, shifting the main focus of it to whatever new activity I came to pursue instead.
August 17th, 2015 at 12:32 pm
I wonder, though, if you can’t just jump into blogging once you already have a book out. If a moderately successful author joined Twitter, she’d probably have 15,000 followers in a week, even with no prior social media presence. I’ve been beating this drum here for a long time, but I seldom see expert advice (e.g., you must have a social media presence, you have to write in an active voice) born out by evidence.
I’m a glass-half-empty person, though, so don’t take my rantings too seriously! 😉
Like you, I’ve used my blog for reason # 2 above, but it has probably been to my detriment, since my passion subject is racism and a lot of people really really don’t want to think or hear about it. Several regular readers have stopped coming around or interacting with me since I’ve gotten more vocal/confrontational about it. Oh well.
August 17th, 2015 at 7:06 pm
I do think it’s possible to jump in once you have a book to sell (so too does Jane Friedman, who is one of my favourite industry experts). If nothing else, waiting until then would probably feel less like you’re shouting into the void and no one online gives a sh*t about you.
In the case of myself, though, I think the time I’ve been at it thus far has made me a better blogger than I was when I first started out so there might be something to say for getting a bit of practice in before the book. Ultimately, I think you just have to love it, because if you truly don’t, it’s never going to work for you, industry best practice or not.
As to the people who don’t like what you have to say against racism (or any other social issues you might choose to write about), those people are not your true audience so their loss shouldn’t be mourned. Even if we don’t explicitly blog about these topics, our politics always come out in our stories, so they probably weren’t going to like your work anyway. So just blog your passion with pride. Or, you know, don’t blog at all if you don’t want to.
August 17th, 2015 at 7:38 pm
I have actually noticed an evolution to your blogging. When I first started reading you (I forget the old name you used), I thought your material was very thoughtful and patient but at times almost too meaty and solid, like people looking for a handful of potato chips are getting a loaded baked potato instead. As I’ve said before, I think you and I connect intellectually, so I welcomed the challenge of reading you, but I probably wouldn’t have read that many 2000-word posts by someone else.
Over time, your content has gotten more breezy and personal, which in the general scheme is the best voice for a blog. I wonder if, when you move onto the revision stage for your novel, you find the writing voice evolving a bit there too.
August 18th, 2015 at 3:03 pm
Thanks! I’ve been trying to cultivate a style that’s more accessible yet still captures my natural writing voice. I’ve also become more comfortable in general with being more personal online and determined for myself how much of my life I’m willing to share. When I first started blogging was my first foray into social media EVER, so I was nervous about it and therefore creating emotional distance with my words.
August 18th, 2015 at 4:04 pm
“Blogging” is definitely a type of writing voice. I have to switch up voices at work depending on the type of content I’m producing. I enjoy the challenge of that.
August 17th, 2015 at 2:07 pm
I started blogging to gain discipline with writing. That’s changed. Now I don’t care about being a “real writer.”
At this point, I blog (and follow other blogs) to expand my horizons and enjoy the exchange of ideas ~ like many shows on PBS, posts may be educational, amusing, eye opening, or inspirational.
As far as other forms of social media, I’m not interested except for brief forays to FB to see what my nieces and nephews are doing.
August 17th, 2015 at 4:54 pm
Social media seems (I’m using “social media” as a singular concept) like a distraction from one’s goals, not a tool to support it. As is often the case, the expert advice (you must build your social media presence) comes with no context, and it really should.
I’ve long admired your ability to not be overly serious about life and think of your blog’s general message from time to time when I’m getting frustrated with myself. It’s in my nature to be hypercritical, so I’m not sure I can really eliminate that, but your periodic reminders have been legitimately thought provoking over the years.
August 17th, 2015 at 6:38 pm
Life isn’t one-size-fits-all (or even most). Instead of listening to “them,” we benefit when we look within to see if we are headed in the “right direction” for us.
Usually when we are being “hypercritical” of our choices, it’s because we’re comparing ourselves with others rather than weeding our own garden.
And, now, one of my favorite lines from Home For The Holidays:
Her: “What’s the point?”
Him: “There is no point. Bogey, Bogey, Par, Par, Bogey.”
August 17th, 2015 at 4:02 pm
Interesting post. Numbers 6 and 7 demand extra work. It has been done successfully in the past. It was easier when there weren’t millions of blogs out there, but if one puts in the effort, still achievable.
I see some writers blogging as a means to promote their books, etc. When all a blogger writes about is their upcoming book and other overt marketing pieces, I’m turned off. If many readers are like me (thankfully they all aren’t), the writer won’t have huge sales via blogging.
Vlogs are growing in popularity as you even observed with your YouTube accounts. Some social media experts are predicting that videos are the future…
“Also, let’s face facts. The only people we are blogging to are other writers. Potential readers don’t troll WordPress looking for new novelists. This is an echo chamber.”
I would tend to disagree … In the past, a good percentage of my readers were from Facebook referrals, not fellow WordPress bloggers. I haven’t checked my stats recently though.
Numbers 2 and 5 are the reasons I started blogging. I’ve become a much better and disciplined writer because of blogging.
August 17th, 2015 at 7:14 pm
I agree with your disagreement that only other writers are blogging. People are blogging about all sorts of things: food, gardening, travel, mom bloggers. I do, however, think other writers will be one’s only audience if writing is all s/he blogs about.
August 17th, 2015 at 7:27 pm
Thank you for clarifying what I was trying to say. I was a bit vague. What I meant was: Blogs that are about writing and are generated by people who identify as writers (in the traditional sense of writing fiction or non-fiction in a goal-oriented way) tend to draw other writers more so than readers who would then go out and purchase the blogger’s book. I’m trying to sell my stuff, you’re trying to sell your stuff, and we just end up talking about writing without doing much to improve our reach.
Or I’m just bad at self-marketing and am projecting my shortcomings onto the rest of you. I’m very open to that possibility.
August 18th, 2015 at 3:15 pm
No, I understood what you meant. What I meant was that by blogging about other things you’re interested in besides just writing, you might attract blog readers with those same interests who also become interested in your writing as they get to know you as a person. According to Kristen Lamb’s book, the role of social media isn’t to “sell your stuff”, it’s to sell yourself.
August 18th, 2015 at 4:05 pm
That’s the tough part for a lot of us, isn’t it? I don’t feel that interesting.
August 17th, 2015 at 10:15 pm
Ah, I hadn’t even thought of it in that light. True. Thanks for broadening the conversation. 🙂
August 17th, 2015 at 7:19 pm
I know what you mean about reading blogs that are only trying to sell a product. If I put aside my list of reasons and just talk about blogging for blogging’s sake… I aim to provide some sort of interesting or entertaining content so people will get something from it, even if it’s a laugh or engagement or a chance to articulate an opinion. If nothing else comes of it, perhaps I do well on that level.
Re: Facebook and referrals. Perhaps because you are younger than me and very certainly because you are more likable than me 😉 , you may have more contacts and could be better at using social media in general. Maybe you have the savvy to navigate between the different forms and use them to your advantage in ways that I don’t grasp. of course, if I used my real name on Facebook, I’d have a wider network.
If you ever need help programming a VCR, give me a holler. 😎
August 17th, 2015 at 10:36 pm
August 18th, 2015 at 9:06 am
August 18th, 2015 at 12:22 pm
Way back in the dark ages, circa 2007, I started my blog for the same reasons as you. i was thinking of a 2nd career as a freelance editor. But the blog didn’t attract many followers and after a couple of years, I stopped posting. I then “revived” it in February 2013 mainly for reasons 1-5: I’m an introvert and blogging seemed (seems) like a good way for me to express myself without public speaking and having to make facetime. It has improved my writing, and I’ve learned a lot from my community, but I don’t have the time or the will to make my blog anything more than what it has become: a place to share my thoughts with my friends, and occasionally a new friend.
Initially, I did get sucked into the whole insanity to get more and more followers, to “grow” my blog, get Freshly Pressed. All that was “goal displacement,” a distraction from the writing I really wanted (want) to do and the kind of friendships I really want to have. I prefer unconditional friendships and the pressure to read and review, read and review, the transactional relationships, finally got to me. It’s one of the many reasons I’ve taken a step back. Another is my ventures into poetry and creative nonfiction and wondering whether I should be posting my writing (poems, short stories, essays) on my blog rather than submitting them to journals, etc. It’s not that I’d be giving my writing for free on my blog. Some of the journals I’m interested in don’t pay anything but print copies. i just still want that validity for my writing that comes from seeing it in print, even if the print is a literary journal with a circulation of 20 🙂 I’m definitely regressing to my old-school ways, but I feel comfortable with that.
I think we each need to find our own way toward what we want, once we figure out what we want. I do like Twitter but only as a mechanism for sharing blog posts and articles that I like. Facebook will always be a double-edged sword for me. I’ve been meaning to close my Instagram account since I don’t use it. I’ve already closed Tumblr and LinkedIn. Medium looks interesting, but I don’t know if I can juggle another blog.
Everything is image-oriented these days. I’m not much of a photographer. I just want to write.
August 18th, 2015 at 4:01 pm
Sure, even if a journal has a circulation of 20, someone decided your stuff was worth publishing, so that’s legitimizing. I suppose, in an old-school way, have publication credits impresses the next place you submit to, because it shows you are serious.
Getting my stuff in front of as many eyeballs as possible is always in the back of my mind, so I certainly tailor my blog content to be enticing (without going for total click bait… that’s not a way to build readership). There’s always the old old school way, which is throwing money around for advertising. I don’t have any, though, so I’ll have to figure the social media thing out one way or another.
If we ever hang out, you don’t have to worry about being shy. I can talk enough for both of us.
August 19th, 2015 at 9:07 am
And I would be happy to listen 🙂
August 27th, 2015 at 9:33 am
[…] What is the “point” of blogging? […]
August 28th, 2015 at 3:26 pm
I’ve thought about giving up on my blog, it has just not caught on. And I have not found a way to connect with people to get more followers. Now, I’m having great success with Twitter, I have over 2000 followers. And I picked up two job opportunities through Twitter. A little connection work on Twitter seems to go a long way, not so with the blog.
I started the blog to work on my writing but have less time for it now.
August 28th, 2015 at 5:09 pm
I guess you have to try a bunch of different avenues and see what works for you and decide if you are getting out of it what you put into it. It’s frustrating to be a raindrop in a storm and trying to get noticed.
With Twitter it’s easier to trade follows as well. I can’t read all the blogs of all the people who follow mine. There’s not enough time. I hope it continues to work to your advantage.
August 29th, 2015 at 5:00 pm
I started blogging for two main reasons: to practice writing creatively again (although about non-fiction topics) and to share some of what I’ve learned with anyone who happened to stop by. I now continue largely because of the incredible community support I’ve received. So the “like-minded people” is likely the biggest reason I’ve continued to blog. Now that I’ve opened shop as a freelance editor, I suppose it will also be about maintaining my profile, but I’m not inclined to host one of those “me me me” blogs. I like to think I’m helping people and providing something of value, otherwise what’s the point? Great food for thought here, Eric.
August 29th, 2015 at 11:31 pm
That interview you gave the other day was very informative and comprehensive. Great stuff. I’m trying to motivate myself for freelance editing, but I’m worried it will take over my personal writing time if people start taking me up on it.
I dislike posting about myself, but those posts tend to draw more attention. Really, I’m not that interesting! Lol.
August 30th, 2015 at 4:15 pm
Thanks, Eric! I hear you about not having time for both writing and editing…I need some way to stop time for a while. 🙂
August 30th, 2015 at 6:35 am
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September 3rd, 2015 at 6:16 am
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April 19th, 2016 at 1:56 pm
I really enjoy just the aspect of writing daily. I was updating my blog the other day and I can see how much my writing has improved. I think of blogging as my 10,000 hours worth of writing practice before I achieve professional status a la Malcom Gladwell 🙂
April 19th, 2016 at 9:08 pm
Your writing definitely has a high level of professional polish. I don’t always comment, but I do often read.
I wish I had the motivation to post like I used to.
April 19th, 2016 at 9:11 pm
Thank you. I really appreciate that. Why did you stop blogging? Did you find that you couldn’t figure out the point of it all anymore?
April 19th, 2016 at 11:58 pm
Haha! Good question. My job used to be about 65% editing and 35% writing, but in the past year and a half or so it has become 100% writing. I simply don’t have much juice left to write outside of work.