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To blog or not to blog?

By On Sep 20 2012, 11:48 pm

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A little over five years ago when my first book came out, I had a website. As far as online promotion went, that was it. People would find me and my books if they wanted to, I thought in complete cluelessness. I’m not a sales person I can’t force anyone to read my stories. A little while later I heard about blogs. Like a website but not as static. You could create one for free and update it as often as you wanted. Apparently THIS was what writers had to do in addition to having a website if they wanted to reach out to readers—provide regularly updated content in between book releases. So I created a blogspot and found I loved writing those posts. I talked about everything from writing craft, to childrearing problems, to social issues. The occasional comments I received were the only indication that anyone was reading what I wrote but they and my love of blogging kept me going.

Then a little later I became aware of this thing called facebook. I avoided it because I figured between writing books, working, mothering and blogging, I couldn’t possibly fit anything else in. But eventually I succumbed, only to be informed someone had mentioned me on twitter. Why? I wondered. I didn’t even have an account. So… I created one. Now I facebook, tweet, pinterest, link in, I’m on various yahoo groups and goodreads, I’m on a group blog (insert shameless plug for the Down Under Divas), and I contribute to several romance blogs and the Samhain blog right here when my name pops up on the schedule. I love doing all this. But what I’m finding is that because I’m tweeting my every random thought, putting funny pics on facebook and updating my bookshelf on goodreads, when it comes time I need to update my own blog, I’ve run out of things to say.

Yep, me running out of mindless chat. It’s astounding.

I could always of course post a picture of a hot man. I love going out to find those. But in recent times the issue of copyright infringement has come up, making many bloggers gun shy when it comes to capturing pictures from elsewhere on the web and posting them without knowing where the picture originated. All this has got me thinking. Is blogging a dying art?

(Please note: I am aware of the irony here. I’ve written an entire blog post on how I have nothing new and shiny to blog about, and suggested blogging might die out altogether on a blog).

I’m not talking about the ‘big’ blogs here. I’m referring to the personal blogs that writers have been faithfully updating with their latest news, the ones that aren’t supported by advertising and don’t have huge followings. Do writers need to keep a blog anymore? And if so, what should we be putting on there? Mine seems to be used almost exclusively for excerpts and cover reveals now, promotional stuff. All those thoughtful posts about the writing craft and my life have disappeared from my personal blog, as I tend to save them for the guest post positions or my group blog. I’m very time poor, after all. I can’t do everything (BTW this post has been X-posted on my own blog, which you can vist here. A cheat or an efficiency? You be the judge).

So readers what do you think? Do you still regularly visit author blogs? And authors, do you still use yours in the way you once did or have other social networking sites taken over as the predominate form of communication between you and readers?




(and if you go to my website, you'll find ALL my links right there on every page, including a link on the toolbar to my still functioning blog :) ).



6 Responses to “To blog or not to blog?”

  1. Suzanne says:

    Hi Sami,
    Interesting Post. I think all writers and authors need a website and a blog. Yes, it’s hard to keep it up to date with what’s important to a reader. But there are other avenues, like for writers as well as readers. Blogs give the reader a personal glimpse into the life of the author as well. I go to blogs but not often lately as writing, and judging comps, and reviewing has become my major task at present.

    I still love skipping on over and finding out something about the author or writer no matter what it is. As a reader I’m also always on the lookout for a good novel to read. :)

  2. Imelda Evans says:

    It’s hard to keep up, isn’t it Sami? At the moment, I am maintaining my blog, because I enjoy it and find the discipline more useful than not. But who knows how that will pan out in future. I do think Kylie Griffin has the right idea though – you should only do what you can do without compromising your writing and without resenting it. Your fans want the next book more than your blog posts, I’m sure! You could always do a newsletter every so often, if you find the blog is just too much to handle!

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