As you consider launching a blog as a writer to feature your work, I suggest you start with these three simple principles.
Plan for Longevity
Many blogs start with a great flurry of activity, then fade away after an initial burst of energy in the first months. So it’s very important to find a frequency that you can sustain.
In my experience, the key is to find a pace that you can keep going for a long time – a year and beyond. This will yield better results.
Therefore, your core commitment should be for less frequent, rather than more frequent posts. Consider: if you write a good post at least once a month, then your oldest post won’t be more than a month old! Write more frequently if you can, as long as you maintain your minimum commitment.
Too often, you’ll hear that you must post wildly often, in a frenzy of blogification! You’ll hear that you must post at least twice a week. Nice idea, but do you have the time to do that? And shouldn’t you be writing other things . . . working on that novel, that article, that white paper, the poem, that short story . . .?
To keep it under control, but yet develop a real consistency, plan to blog less frequently. Keep track of all those ideas, but when it’s time to post, choose the best one!
Clearly, I’m not a fan of blog blather. Quality often will prevail over quantity in the literary business.
Show Your Personality
The more personal, the better the blog.
Good writing starts with an abiding and sincere passion: yours! What gets you charged up enough to write about?
Your blog is your voice, your personality, your best ideas and experiences.
Someone said that while a website is like a brochure, a blog is like a conversation. You don’t want to sound like a generic announcer (boring) . . . or like an implausible carnival pitchman (over-the-top).
Talk like you really talk – especially when you’re excited about something and want to share it with a friend.
Write with a Spirit of Giving
This is the real magnet for readers – and the heart of the whole concept of blogging. Start with your own experiences and passions and personality, but consider what is most valuable to others. And give it away. Generously.
People aren’t coming to your blog to hear every thought you have or recent occurrence in your life. They are coming to read something useful.
And they aren’t trapped in an elevator with you.
So keep it short.
In the end, the success of your blog will be based on the solid foundation of those three principles. It’s simple.
Blog Post by Philip Martin, director of Blue Zoo Writers and Great Lakes Literary (www.GreatLakesLit.com) and author of How To Write Your Best Story and A Guide to Fantasy Literature.