Monday, April 18, 2011

Thin

Sorry I've been absent for so long! After going off the radar while I worked on edits, I managed to catch the nastiest cold/flu/virus/whatever that I've had in a couple years. Even with antibiotics, these damn germs are holding on for dear life!

So, I realized something in my recent blogging adventures. I'm NOT a blogger. In the month of February I blogged every day. I scheduled posts ahead of time, and I put a lot of thought behind what I did. But when March rolled along, I didn't blog at all. I'd managed to burn myself out in the course of four weeks. Another side effect from my mad February blogging schedule: it caused me to lose a lot of my creative drive. I was putting so much thought into blogging, reading blogs, commenting on blogs, and following new blogs, that when I was done with the blogging portion of my day, the thought of writing wasn't quite so appealing.

Granted, I've been in revising mode. I didn't want to disrupt that groove because I knew I'd be working on edits soon. I have a hard time switching gears from creating to revising. But, really, blogging is creating. I had to plunk down new words once a day. I'd worn myself a little thin.

We're all eager to brand ourselves. We've all read the articles, heard our friends talk about how our careers as writers are staked on our on-line visibility. But if we don't have a product to peddle, that product being our novels, all of the visibility in the world isn't going to do a damn bit of good. I think about some of my favorite authors, take JR Ward, for instance. She doesn't blog. But she posts to her facebook page almost every day. She's interacting with her fans constantly. She also posts on forum pages and is active on her website. But as far as I know, she doesn't blog. At all. In a recent article in RWA's RWR April issue, Ward said that she forgoes a lot of appearances, as well as real life activities for her writing. She basically said, hey, my fans are in it for the books. And it's my job to give them what they want. Without a book to sell, I don't have fans.

Now, it's easy for Ward to put her platform on the back burner. She's already built a tremendous fan base. But I think the moral of the story, at least in my case, is this: don't over do it. Everything in moderation. It's not necessary for ME to blog every--single--day. It's perfectly acceptable to blog once or twice a week. Or once every couple weeks. It's okay to blog in the form of my favorite song, or a quote I want to share, or a joke. It's okay to write an essay or blog about my current work in progress. As long as I'm popping in, saying 'hi' every once in a while, I think readers will be okay with that. I'm going to keep writing blog posts, reading the many blogs I follow, commenting. I'm not going to attempt to be that super-blogger that I know I'm not. I tip my hat to those of you that can blog once a day/five days a week. I envy your hundreds upon hundreds of followers. I wish I could follow in your footsteps. But I can't. And that's okay too. I'll continue to network and build my platform through facebook and twitter. I'll continue to blog with my UF/Para-romance sisters at Magic and Mayhem. And hopefully, you'll continue to pop in every once in a while. You know, just to see what's up!

What's your opinion on blogging? If you don't see a post a day, do you unfollow blogs? Are you okay with the occasional blogger? What's your take on blogging? Love it? Hate it? Undecided?

5 comments:

funny in the 'hood said...

I've been blogging since 2008 and I'm burned out big time. While I was writing the manuscript I'm now querying, I hardly blogged at all; I simply didn't have the time and like you, blogging is creating and I simply didn't have the ability to switch gears. Nor did I want to.

I read so much lately about how you have to have this huge online presence with Twitter, and blogs and Facebook and while I agree to some extent, all of that takes away from writing the actual books. I don't care if my favorite authors blog. If they have a website that lets me know when their next book is being released that's great but I don't need to read about their everyday life.

Also, reading and commenting on blogs takes time and that's an hour where I could have been writing, revising, or editing my fiction which is what I'm really focused on.

Tracey

Sandy Williams said...

I am SO with you on this. I've realized I'm not a blogger either. I used to be back when I first started out, but there are just so many other writers out there that do it better than me, and you're right, it does take creative energy. That's why I'm happy to be part of the Magic & Mayhem blog. Once a week, I can handle. Well, I think I can handle it. I'm having trouble coming up with a blog topic today. lol

I also think I'm going to focus on my FB page more than my own blog. That format seems to work better for me. Plus, I'm planning to do guest blogs closer to my release date, so I'm definitely still planning to have an online presence.

I still feel some guilt, though, over not being able to blog 5 days a week like all the experts say you should.

Seleste said...

I'm with you. I can barely keep up on guest blogs and such. I enjoy doing blog posts, but I just don't have it in me to always be on top of my own blogs (the problem with two author names? Two *#(%^^ blogs). I really need to figure out which venues work best for me and stick to them.

Matthew MacNish said...

I love blogging, but it can occasionally get in the way of writing, and I don't like that.

It's hard to find the perfect balance.

Jenna said...

I've been a horrible blogger lately. I just don't feel I always have much to say, but I enjoy being able to put it out there when I do. As for unfollowing blogs...well, I usually don't, just because Blogger has made it a hassle for me in the past. I'm more likely to scrutinize a blog before following it, so I don't wind up with yet another dead blog on my following list. If there hasn't been a post for more than six weeks, I usually won't follow it.