I stumbled across this old blog post at Kidlit.com about writers blogging. Mary’s advice, in very short: don’t feel like you have to blog. If it feels like a chore, don’t do it. Another interesting point she makes:
“If there’s one thing I’ve learned about the Internet from actually working for it for all those years, it’s that users come to the Internet to see, “What’s in it for me?” They want valuable content that speaks to them. They Google: “How do I get this stain out of my white carpet?” “Is it okay that my baby is turning sort of purple?” (It’s probably not.) “How do I stop the hiccups?” “What’s a great summer BBQ recipe?” Most writing blogs — and most blogs in general — are about the writer of the blog, not about the user.”
Very true. I think this is also what stops people from actually blogging, too. I’ve seen friends start blogs with great enthusiasm and gradually blog less and less, and eventually their most recent post was from months ago. Part of it comes from lack of interest in the project, but I think part of it is also that people don’t really want to craft a post about their thoughts or lives. It’s hard work and doesn’t necessarily add much to the internet.
For me, blogging is about sharing. I don’t post a lot about what I’m working on or who I am. I blog because there are so many awesome things to share (here, mostly about writing and reading young adult/children’s literature), and it’s way easier to collect and share these things in one place. Hopefully that means something close to good content. If I can share these things with my friends, awesome. If I can also share them with people I don’t know but who have similar interests, even more awesome.
So true! To blog well you have to really care about something, and you have to want to share that love with others and learn from them, as well!
I agree. I don’t tend to follow blogs where writers constantly blog about their WIP like a status report. I like to learn something new, get challenged, or have a good laugh or a good cry. Like everything I read, I suppose.
Keeping a blog interesting is pretty hard work. Mary’s advice is good. What can you give back to the world? Share something inspiring.
Oh, and Round One finalists of the 50 First Lines challenge are up. Round Two just started. I really liked your lines, too. Very punchy. I could see any of them as a great jumping off point.
I really like your comparison about reading blogs to reading other things–why should your online reading be different? But I think a lot of bloggers forget that.
And thanks for the heads up about the 50 First Lines! So excited to see what people come up with!