Writers Who Blog: Spread Your Net Wide

I got a Facebook memory a few days ago that made me smile. It was a post I made about reaching my first 100 blog followers. While I don’t post nearly as much as I used to, what I did in the beginning gave this blog a good boost and has established a system where the blog receives views and new subscribers daily. I am thankful.

I credit a lot of things to that (to include the support of fellow bloggers who share my posts).

I also credit the diversity of what I post and this is what I want to talk about today for those of you who are writers looking to use blogging as one of your author platforms for networking and meeting new readers.

Everyone has to find that thing that works for them. If you are struggling, consider spreading your net wider by diversifying your content.


This isn’t my first blog. This is actually my third blog.

I started my first blog in 2012 and my second blog shortly after that. I named my first blog after my first novel, The Aftermath, and the second one “A House of Poetry,” I dedicated exclusively to poetry. Neither of these blogs did very well, and I eventually deleted the second one after transferring the poems over to this one.

These blogs were dedicated to one kind of content. On my poetry blog, for instance, I posted poetry and nothing else. I did not talk about myself, my life, my likes or dislikes. Every post was a poem. Some of them got good feedback but mostly, the blog sat there. Lonely. Thirsty. Empty.

When I started this blog, I changed my perspective on blogging. While I did not do a good job with naming it (named this blog after a book I was writing…authors…not a good idea…chances are you will write other books…name your blog after yourself), I decided I would widen my net and diversify my content. Every day I was posting something different. News, music, random thoughts, poetry, quotes. I took part in challenges (like Colleen’s Writer’s Quote Wednesday) and took the Writer’s 101 Blog Course offered by WordPress.

I was posting five and six days a week, following other bloggers and commenting on their blogs. I met blog and author friends I am still in touch with today. I reblogged other people’s posts and promoted them on my social media. I followed the blogs of people who had been blogging for a while and applied their advice. Jason Cushman’s Opinionated Man blog was a huge help in understanding things like hashtags and such.

In the beginning, I was obsessed with growing my blog. I was nominated for blog awards so much that after 13 nominations I stopped doing the Blog Awards (you can still find them on the blog awards page up top).

Before I knew it, three months had passed, and I was over 300 subscribers in.

After a while, I switched it up and started sharing blog tips with others so new bloggers can level up their blog too.

I also started sharing writing tips based on my experiences that may be helpful to others and publishing book reviews.

I was eventually included in Reedsy’s Best Book Review Blogs list where I remain today.

My rate in the beginning was about 100 subscribers a month.

As the blog grew I did away with the WordPress part and upgraded to a plan that would allow me to use a dot com domain name for a bit more professionalism (I was never interested in going self-hosted).

Writers, Spread Your Net Wide: Diversify Your Content

I don’t have millions of followers, of course (I still consider this blog one of the little guys …I should be much further along by now hahaha). But what set the stage for this blog’s foundation in the beginning was being myself, posting about more than just my writing, interacting in the blog community and celebrating every step of the way. Most importantly, I actually enjoy blogging so I was learning and having fun.

Now, I have to say it. It’s important that writer bloggers are authentic. A different topic every day was something that worked for me but that doesn’t mean it will work for you too. Post consistently and be authentic with your content. Talk about the things you like, your life, the things you are passionate/knowledgeable about. Don’t try to mimic someone’s style or repost information from other people too much. Be yourself.

What I’m saying is, there is more to blogging than drafting a post and hitting the publish button.

If you are struggling with your author/writer blog, consider diversifying your content. Spread your net a little and try to understand how to blog outside of posting your stories. What are tags? How do we use them? How does pictures enhance the post? Is my follower button visible so people can follow me? Am I following anyone else? Have I supported someone else blog? How does my blog platform (in this case WordPress) work?

…and so on

Just something to consider.

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The PBS Blog Podcast Ep 7 – The Power of Passion and Purpose

Today we’re talking the power of passion and purpose. I believe it is always wise to follow your passions because they are connected to your purpose. Your passions reveal what it is you were put on this Earth to do. When you invest in your passions you invest in your purpose. And this purpose is not just one thing but a combination of things and is revealed to us, I believe, little by little as we grow and develop into who we were meant to be.

Be sure to subscribe to my Soundcloud page for notification of new episodes.

Episode 7 – The Power of Passion and Purpose

 

What Keeps You?

First, let me just take a few seconds to thank everyone who supports this blog for doing so. For reading, commenting, liking, re-blogging, and overall being apart of this journey with me.

As I sit back and I reflect on this part of my writing life, I know it’s not easy to endure with someone, be it a part of their blog or other more important aspects of their lives. That said, I am always thinking about growth, expansion, and elevation. Part of that process is to notice deficiencies and to admit mistakes. Even in blogging, without an acknowledgment of failure, no one can grow.

That said, my thoughts went on and I thought, when a blog grows, do the people who follow that blog ten and twenty followers in still find the content worthy three hundred and four hundred followers in? When your favorite blogs grow, what keeps you coming back? That said, what keeps you supporting this blog? What can I do better far as content is concerned that will keep you tuned in? I’d love to hear your insight!

In case some of you don’t want to comment, I’ve designed a poll. Don’t get me wrong, you can poll as well as comment but I have to have the poll as a back-up in case yall get all shy on me! Just choose the category that most intrigues you and that you’d like to see more of:

Writer’s Quote Wednesday – Dedication

For this week’s episode of Writer’s Quote Wednesday, hosted by Colleen of Silver Threading (although I must warn you that her website has been recently hacked into by some guy. I think his name is Ron something. Anyway, I won’t tell Silver if you won’t because he’s doing an excellent job in there. I just hope there’s food left in the fridge), I want to talk about investing in your best, and dedication:

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Lisa discovers writing is not so easy

I don’t know who the author is behind this quote. It didn’t come from a book or google search. I was actually watching the Venus and Serena documentary on Netflix the other day and I heard someone say it. Immediately I pressed rewind and typed it down in the notepad on my phone. This quote struck me abruptly. I’ve been thinking a lot of my need to perfect my skill and my sometimes obsessive outlook on writing in general so I found these words refreshing. I know that I have to continue to improve on my skill so yes, I will say that I’m a perfectionist. I believe strongly in the power of excellence and putting forth my best. If I put forth my best, what else can I ask of what I reap? I love to write and to do so by any means necessary. This I feel is necessary to keep the creativity flowing so that I can be in a consistent vacuum of tuning and editing and re-editing and evolving. If I’m going to improve then I must persistently act. Sometimes my action leads to failure but even that is worth it. No one ever truly succeeds until they first know what it means to fail. In short, this quote stood out to me because I’m so this person!

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My level of concentration on anything that I’m doing has got to be tight. My dedication has got to, in some ways, exceed the norm in order for me to really be satisfied with what I have accomplished. I have to at the very minimum try. Putting my everything into a project and what comes from that I am satisfied with. What more can I ask for if I’ve done everything I can? What more can you do if you’ve done your best? That’s it. There’s the answer. I pace myself but I also sincerely believe in investing in my best. Why thump out 2,000 words Lisa when you have it in you to do 20,000? Don’t get me wrong, your best doesn’t have to be the top, sometimes it’s the bottom. Sometimes its crawling. Sometimes it’s just starting. Sometimes your best is getting up out the bed this morning and writing a paragraph. Heck, sometimes your best is getting out of bed! It is liable to change from day to day and you just gotta work with what you have that day. Needless to say I found this quote especially inspiring for me personally.

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Until next week, yall be great.

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Writing 101: Assignment #6- The Space to Write

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Step #1: The Early Morning Wake-Up Call

An hour or two after the sun has risen and the birds congregate on my windowsill with their songs. When the sky is still a combination of yellows and orange and reddish highlights all tap dancing on the clouds. I write best during the time of day when the wind is still waking up and blowing not too harshly; just enough to sway the leaves. Not even the branches, just the leaves will do. When the air smells like you just bought it from the store this morning. That first early morning wake-up, after morning prayer and just when the creative juices are new and fresh. This is my ideal time of day to write.

Step #2: Coffee

Freshly brewed dark roasted Folders that grabs my throat by its hinges and engulfs my body before racing to the tips of my fingers; I arise to the occasion of the coffee cherry. After I started teaching and tutoring a few years back, when my daily routine consisted of chasing three and four year olds around the room and getting on my hands and knees to see which monopoly piece I would be, I developed a love (OK an addiction, whatever) for caffeine. And it, the coffee bean, must accompany me in the next phase of our adventure.

Step #3: Solitude

Give me neither food nor noise. Lock me away from society, I no longer live here. Put me instead inside a quiet place. Though I would much rather be somewhere in the country, swallowed up by trees and grassland, my home office will have to suffice. Where I shackle myself to solitude and feed from its delicacies. My fingers march to the beat of songs that can only be heard inside my head. I am not here in this office. I am instead in another place. That place where only writers go. I’m an introvert by nature but writing is when I am the most reserved. Let the rushing sound of my heart and the beating of keys be the only noise in the world worth paying attention to in this moment. Please, I beg of you, dare not shatter my concentration with the world and its worries, for I am not of the world.

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On day 15 of Blogging U, we will be asked to refer to our list of ideas, as provided by fellow bloggers, to complete that days assignment. For this reason, I am asking you to submit writing topic ideas to my contact page. Is there something you would like me to write about? Creative writing ideas? Topics? Poetry? Short stories? Let me know. Again, I’ll have to refer back to this list on day 15! I’m really looking forward to your ideas. Thanks a lot.