To blog or not to blog…

time

There have been conflicting reports lately (ironically, on blogs) about the benefit of blogging for writers. Jane Friedman had a guest post by LL Barkat, who gave compelling reasons that writers should stop blogging. Then she had a follow up (written by Dan Blank) that gave reasons to keep blogging as well as advice on when to kill a blog. Both actually make good cases, and it’s gotten me thinking about my blogs.

I have three blogs. The first one I ever had is called The View from the Sunroom and is a mix of personal stuff: life over 40, family, recipes and cooking, health. I enjoy it… but I rarely think about writing on it. Because of that, I don’t have many followers and don’t get many hits. On the one hand, I’ve used it when I can’t find some recipe I created. On the other… well, it’s not really a good use of time.

My second blog is for my non-profit, Ten Eighteen Inc. This blog is updated somewhat sporadically, but it’s important to have, because it’s the way I get my trip information, as well as things I want donors to know but don’t need to add to the website, out there. I promote it some, and it links to the website (and vice versa), and it’s the easiest way to disseminate that information, so I will keep it.

This blog is my writing blog, and I enjoy it. When I didn’t write for three weeks, on my last Uganda trip, it definitely lost momentum, which is a lesson learned: write and schedule blog posts ahead!  I don’t have a huge following, but I do have enough to make it worth the time. Plus, the homeschool mom/teacher in me enjoys passing on information in hopes that you will find it useful or thought provoking. It’s a keeper, as long as I’m still enjoying it. If it ever begins to feel like a chore… Well, we’ll cross that bridge when we get to it.

What about you? A lot of readers of this blog are bloggers themselves. How do you feel about the time and effort you put into your blogs versus the return/reward? If you read the above to posts on Jane Friedman’s site, what are your thoughts? The digital age moves fast. Blogs have been around awhile now. There are certainly ones with big followers and a lot of success, but like other things, it’s not for everybody, and not everybody is going to hit it big, even if their content is great. A lot of things are like that, including books and restaurants… So how about you? Thumbs up or thumbs down on writers and blogs (or other professions and blogs)?

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11 Comments

Filed under Writing

11 responses to “To blog or not to blog…

  1. Why is it that people feel the need to take a yes or no stand on practically everything, particularly something so variable? Blogging works for some writers, and not for others. I hate social networking and refuse to join the big sites. Blogging is my primary way of reaching readers. Because it’s about writing, it’s aimed largely at other writers, but many of my subscribers aren’t writers. I’ve been blogging for several year, both on WordPress, where I often post excerpts, and on Live Journal, where, yes, I post entire works. Blogging works for me. It doesn’t work for everybody.

    • I agree – there are a lot of “you MUST do this” and “you must NOT do that” in self-publishing/writing. I think, as long as it’s working and you enjoy it, you should do it. I’m keeping two of mine for sure. The third is just something I don’t think about doing, which probably means I shouldn’t be spending time on it! Thanks for your comments!

  2. Thanks for the thoughts. I blogged a three week trip to Ireland years ago but I have been tossing an idea around about a new blog. I didn’t want to do one if it were to become a chore. I wanted to be passionate about it. It could even be turned into a book. But it will be time consuming and that scares me. With one book I am currently trying to pitch and another well on the way, I want to write my novels. So for now I think that is what I will do.In the meantime I think I will write some of the posts that may end up on the blog. ( advice from you I will gladly take) Thanks as always Jennings for staying abreast with the writer’s life.

    • It’s all about the time, isn’t it? Time we aren’t spending on our books… *sigh* I am planning to make my NaNo posts into a book – but WHEN I’ll have the time for that, who knows?? Good luck!

  3. “Blog! Don’t Blog! Be on Facebook! Facebook is for chumps! Twitter! No, nobody does that anymore, do this instead…”

    So we do the hokey pokey as they instruct us and we’ll all be super duper successful by Christmas? Uh-huh, sure thing.

    Maybe I roll my eyes at arguments like this because I don’t blog for professional reasons. I never expected anyone other than my family and maybe a few friends to read my blog. I do it because it’s fun, it lets me write and express myself outside of my fiction, and I love connecting with people through their blogs and letting them get to know me through mine. I don’t think my blog will ever help me sell a million copies of a book, but that’s not what it’s for. I feel the same way about any social media; if it’s enjoyable, I’ll do it, but I’m not going to pin my hopes and dreams on 140 character quips when Twitter really doesn’t appeal to me. I’d rather spend my time improving my fiction and putting fun stuff on a blog I enjoy than stress out over social media strategy.

    Maybe blogs aren’t the most efficient way to market books. That doesn’t mean that every writer in any category should stop doing it.

    • Well said! I have tried other social media besides Twitter and FB and hate them. I know all authors are “supposed” to be on Goodreads, but I think it’s a pain in the you-know-where and I finally just quit even looking at it (I actually forgot I’d set up a giveaway there for 4/27 until today!). Triberr? Can’t even figure it out. Linked-in? No. Google +. Nope. I’m with you – I’ll do what I enjoy, and not do the others. 🙂

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