I shall be signing off for a couple of days, to make time for my dear wife and child as we move house.
Before I leave you to the vagaries of the Internet I would like to register my thoughts on what I have learned over the past few weeks and months.
1. Blogging is a social activity, not a business activity.
I suppose this goes for all social network related activities, be they blogging, Facebooking, Tweeting and the like. The many articles I have read on the subject of self-publishing with the help of the Internet stress with one accord the first principle of: Don’t be a douche. Don’t go for the hard sell, don’t badger people, don’t just talk about your own book, and don’t make yourself a nuisance.
2. The every-day blogger is a rare animal (or should be).
I’ve tried posting every day. When I started this, I assumed it would be as easy as copying and pasting a few chapters from my books, with not further work required from me. This I did, but I have come to realise (by reading other blogs and people’s comments on those blogs) that this is not always a good thing. Maybe we new bloggers always get caught up in the heady thrill of seeing our words online — but it doesn’t usually last, and the quality quickly deteriorates.
So, two to three times a week seems like a good amount, and so this is the amount I will be posting (at most) from now on.
3. Put up or shut up.
Or, “Have Something To Say.” I much prefer reading blogs that give me advice or the benefit of experience, to those in which the blogger really doesn’t have much to say but they’re going to say it anyway. Now, I know some people just blog for their own benefit, so I’m not criticising anyone. But for a blog to be beneficial to a readership, it seems best for the person blogging on it to have something worthwhile to share.
There are more points, but they start to descend into personal opinion before long, so I’ll stop there.
When I come back, I will have the following blogging schedule:
Monday: New chapters from whatever I’m working on. From the 21st this will be Coals of Fire Part 1: Ash.
Wednesday: Lifting the Lid, being ongoing observations on my own craft of writing, how I got where I am and where I think I might go.
Friday: Catch of the Day, and any other great things I have found on the Internet that week.
The rest of the time I will be visiting other blogs and trying to contribute to the community. And writing. I mustn’t forget to write (makes a note).
So farewell for a few days. I’ll see you for the launch on Coals of Fire on Monday. Spread the word in any way you care to, and if you’re on Twitter check out #CoalsOfFire.
Take care, and have a great weekend!