I recently read a blog post by an editor and writer who said that writers don’t need a blog. She advised that the time spent on blogging could be best spent writing. Yes, I said that correctly. I read this on her blog.
Her previous entry was about building an online presence.
Okay, who’s zooming who?
Do you absolutely need a blog?
If you are a fantastic undiscovered literary genius who is only waiting on the publishing world to wake up to your fabulousness, much like J.K. Rowling with her twenty-one rejections of the first Harry Potter book, you don’t need a blog. Are you that writer? Good. You probably should have a blog to share your genius, but you don’t need one.
Should you have a blog?
I have this argument all the time with my online writer’s group. Generally the consensus is that you don’t need a blog.
But we get ahead of ourselves. Let’s talk about the down side of blogging.
1.) You don’t have time.
2.) You don’t have anything to write about.
3.) Building an online presence takes time.
4.) No one would (or does) read it anyway (see hidden reason #8)
5.) People with lots of followers started at the beginning of blogging (see hidden reason #8)
6.) It’s a lot of work with little gain (See hidden reason #8)
7.) There’s a lot of blogs out there. I’m sure one more will just get lost in the crowd.(see hidden reason #8)
And the biggest hidden reason for all these excuses:
8.) You don’t know how to blog.
Blogging gets a jaundiced eye from “serious” writers. After all, how can you take a piece of writing a thousand words or less seriously? One federal judge even handed down a ruling that journalist bloggers aren’t real journalists.
Personally, my opinion is that writers should blog. Why?
1.) Writing is writing. Every word you spin into sentences is another step into your professional development as a writer.
2.) Having something you should post to regularly helps you to develop the discipline to sit and write, even if you feel like you have nothing to say. Writing is an intellectual muscle that needs exercise. Exercise it.
3.) If you don’t have time to write, why are you a writer?
4.) “A writer that has nothing to write” is an oxymoron. If you can’t find something to write, you are trying too hard. It’s true that blogging isn’t going to produce your master work in progress, but it help to loosen the neurons in your brain that got stuck from trying to produce perfection in prose.
5.) Blogging done right helps you make connections in the professional world you want to inhabit. People get to know you. Heck, you just might make some friends across the world.
In my astrology career (don’t snicker, it’s how I make my money along with writing.) Anyway in my astrology career benefited enormously when I started my blog Astrology Explored. Before that I was a barely known local astrologer. Now I have readers around the world and clients from all over the United States. As a bonus I get freelancing jobs writing astrology for other people’s websites based on what they see in my blog. Certainly blogging raised my professional profile. So yeah, I’m going to say you should blog.
Now if your issue is that you don’t know how to blog and make your efforts count, that’s something else altogether. We can work on that. Look for future posts on the subject. Until then, you can read Five Things You Can Do To Improve Your SEO and Increase Traffic.
So having had my say, what do you think? Do you think blogging is helpful? A waste? Or do you want to learn more?
Photo modified and published under a Creative Commons License issued by Flickr user cambodia4kidsorg.