Does blogging still help writers?

Some people say that blogging is dead. I don’t think that is quite true. A lot of people have let their old blogs go dead. Others have destroyed their chances to gain readers by filling their blog with pop-ups and ads. But I believe that blogging still has benefits for writers, such as the following:

1. Blog hosting services can give you a good-looking and free author web site. need a web page these days. But for the new author, particularly if self-published, it may be too great an expense to build and maintain a static author page. A good blog, however, can serve the same question and it won’t cost you.

2. A blog gives potential readers a free sample of your writing.
Some time ago, I encountered a self-published writer who had a blog full of misspelled words and incomprehensible sentences that seemed to have key words missing. He did himself no good with his blog posts. But if YOU can put out correctly spelled blog posts with readable sentences, your potential reader will be able to see that you know some of the basics.

3. A blog helps you interact with readers
Someone finds a link to a book of yours. Perhaps he buys, perhaps not. But with a blog, your potential reader can look at your blog posts, comment, and interact with you. It will help him think of you not as a stranger, but a friend.

4. Blogging helps you network with just the right fellow writers
Writers need other writers. Sometimes you need help that you can best obtain from other writers— people who will volunteer to be beta readers or to review your books. Since other writers might need these same forms of help, they are the most likely to help you.

5. Blogging helps you find your True Readers and fans.
Every time I blog, I attract some readers and repel others. When I wrote about the March for Life, I got comments from prolife blog followers. But I may well have lost a follower or two who supports abortion wholeheartedly. When I talk about my faith, I become more attractive to people of my faith and offend the atheists. When I talk about my genres, I attract others who like those genres. Before long, my blog has a group of followers who like what I like, and are potential buyers of any books I have on the market.

But these benefits are most available to those of us who work on our blogs, improving our layouts and finding good blogging schedules. Participating in blog hops is also a way to make your blog more effective.

Question: how has your blogging helped you? Are there ways you can work on your blog to make it better?

Poem of the Day

When a shadow appeared on the water,
I looked up to see a monk crossing the bridge.
Stay, I said, so I could ask
Where he was going.

But, pointing at white clouds, he moved on,
Answering without words.

An anonymous sijo by a Korean author. Taken from the book Sunset in a Spider Web: Sijo Poetry of Ancient Korea. Adapted by Virginia Olson Baron.

One thought on “Does blogging still help writers?

  1. Love the Sijo.

    It is all a matter of comparison, isn’t it? I do not know what my writing life and sales would be like if I had not started a blog. I keep losing followers — so following the wry humor of Mark Twain, I must be doing something right. 🙂

    I have made a circle of friends — this circle expands and shrinks as life takes its toll on the lives I intersect with. I am enriched by the interaction with my blogging friends. I sometimes think I am the best kept secret on the internet. But anyone can quit. Not everyone can persevere when the way is rough and dark.

    Always get something meaningful from your posts. Thank you for them, Roland

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