Blogging as an author is fun, but it’s also hard work. (Check out this list of the biggest minor inconveniences of being an author who blogs). One surefire way to make it easier and worthwhile–one way to make sure you enjoy rather than grudge blogging–is to be a “selfish” blogger, as strange as that may sound.
Being a “selfish” blogger doesn’t mean the following:
- It doesn’t mean you ignore comments, feedback, and interaction with your followers. Blogs are all about interaction.
- It doesn’t mean you shouldn’t seek out requests for posts from your audience. It’s always great to give people what they want and need, and it’s a confidence boost to know people are caring about and benefiting from your blog posts.
- It doesn’t mean you post erratically or without a schedule/system. You don’t post “when you feel like it.” You work out a schedule that works for you: twice weekly, once weekly, perhaps even daily–and you stick to that. Your followers should know when they can expect new content popping up. You can always change a schedule if it becomes too much or it isn’t working for some reason: just keep people in the loop.
So what does being a selfish blogger mean, then?
- It means you blog according to your interests and needs, and to further your knowledge base in your area of expertise. Blogging naturally forces you to do that. It’s wonderful!
- It means you focus on blogging as a way to work through trouble spots in your artistic life. If point of view is being problematic for you, blogging about point of view is a good way to confront your issues and focus your attention on what’s currently plaguing a WIP. Only when you are getting something out of blogging will you find a sense of purpose in it and a reason to carry on.
- It means you keep your needs and your obligations in mind when you set up a blogging schedule. I’m a big fan of the motto “Do what you can with what you have.” If blogging four times a week isn’t feasible for you, that’s fine. Blog two or three times a week, or even once a week.
- It means you develop your own layout, tone, and style. And YES, you can do this while using keywords, using short paragraphs, and other tricks for engaging stock engines and internet readers who prefer to scan. There are “rules” for blogging success, but there’s wiggle room within them. And if you like, you can choose to ignore what the SEO experts say. That’s your call.
That is my take on blogging, anyway.
One of the most useful things blogging has done for my fiction is force me to focus on the “rules,” on why I do things the way I do, and how I can do things better. It’s brought me to contemplate the “scientific” as well as the artistic aspects of writing.
It’s helped me structure and organize my fiction-writing life, all because I am a selfish blogger.
In what ways are you a “selfish” blogger? How have you structured your blogging platform so that it benefits you?
If you enjoyed this post or found it useful, you might want to check out my collection of blogging posts here.
Also, a quick “Writing for You” update: release day is coming up soon! If you have a US mailing address, you can put your name in the hat at Goodreads to win a paperback copy of my writer’s handbook. Winner will be announced the day before release.