One of the most difficult activities for a self-published author is to keep up with their blog. Blog authors in general come and go because of life’s responsibilities or simply because over time they run out of things to say. When I started blogging a few years back with Nightmirrors, my intent was to talk about all things horror. All things soon become no things LOL. Then I revived the blog and somehow all things became things related to horror movies. I’m not a movie reviewer, I’m more a commentator as I prefer to look at movies from a more general view – philosophy, psychology, social implications or roots. Interestingly of all the articles I wrote, the one that got Freshly Pressed was Don’t Write That! A post that dealt with not movies, but writing. My readership went to 5,000 people and then settled back to around 2,000. As I got engrossed in republishing my first novel and publishing my second, the Nightmirrors blog became difficult to keep going – and readership faded.
It wasn’t of course just the publication process nor was it my responsibilities alone that created the lull in writing. A part of it was that I had written all the “top of mind” ideas that we all have when we start blogging. At first we have ten or twelve posts we want to write. We come up with five or six more as we go on…and then the bottom starts to fall out. We no longer know what to say and posting every couple of days becomes once a week, then a few times a month and then whenever and finally never.
My issue is not writing. I write a weekly blog at work, company eBooks (can anyone tell me the damn proper spelling of ebook, Ebook, eBook), short stories and of course my novels and erotica. The issue I struggled with at Nightmirrors blog was that I got myself into a corner with the “movie” angle and didn’t see a way out. My solution was Writing in a Dead World. I wanted to talk about writing and the writing industry with people who also were passionate about the topic. I knew (and know) that there are hundreds of other writing blogs out there, but I thought I could bring a little bit of insight to readers. Having gone through and being still engaged in the self-publishing journey, I felt those experiences might help or at least be interesting to others.
The problem I immediately discovered was that writing or trying to write a blog each week is a challenge. You need to have an idea, you need to write the idea, you need to find a title and a picture for the idea and then post the idea. I give a lot of credit to those who post every day. I don’t know how they do it…but then of course I figured out a partial solution. You see the issue most bloggers face is they write too broad on their topics. An idea that can be five posts winds up stuffed into one. I’m a planner when it comes to all things writing and yet other than a lits of ideas I didn’t really have a plan for sustained and interesting blogs. The funny thing is that at work I have all the marketing and intellectual material outlined for the rest of the year, so what I knew at work, I didn’t know here. Humans are funny like that.
So I did a couple of things. I organized my individual blog ideas into subjects. Then I broke those subjects down into blog size chapters. Then I wrote most of them in advance. Today I have:
*A 3 part series written on Print on Demand Costs and Services.
* A new page on the Self-Publishing Process 101
*A blog on the 5 Things that Will Kill Self-publishing
* Audio Books – Is anyone listening,
* 5 part series on the Five Mistakes I Made with My First Novel
* 9 parts of the 17 part series Right that Novel.
It was a lot of work so I really hope somebody reads them LOL. The big question now isn’t what to write – it’s what to post first and how often to post and on what day or days to post – in business we call these “good problems to have.” I could take five months off and just post them one a week. I could do two a week. I could do one a day for a month….no way. If you’ve been consistently blogging for a while I’d love to hear your thoughts and secrets for how to roll this out and what frequency you would use.