Happy Birthday to My Blog – The after party

I wrote here a couple of weeks ago about the one year anniversary and threatened to impart a few thoughts on my year of blogging, so here you go.

My thoughts on keeping up momentum.

A lot of people seem to start out with much gusto and quite quickly falter when they realise that you wont actually get many readers at all when you first press submit.  Hitting the first year was important for me as I read that 90% of bloggers throw the towel in before they reach that point and I was determined to not be one of those.  Apparently 80% of people who hit the first year don’t make it through the second so yes, the chances of success are slim, but then again what do you regard as success?

Whether you write for pleasure or for profit I think it goes without saying, though I am going to say it, that you have to have a degree of tenacity.  You need to love what you are doing and if you do and work on your craft and engage with others then over time you will build up a following.   Perhaps that is the best you can hope for?  You can only control yourself and not others so as brilliant as you may be and as fabulous as your writing is you might just struggle at first.  I think some of my first posts had four or five views at best – and even now when I have 650 or so followers I might still only get 40 or 50 views for a piece if I’m lucky – so you have to be patient and work for the reward.

For me I have always avoided the idea of a follow for a follow.  I will check out most people who follow me in the hope that their work or they themselves are interesting – and if they are I follow – otherwise I move on.  It is not at all personal – I just like my reader feed to be full of things that I can engage in. I know of bloggers who work damned hard at flitting around from blogger to blogger liking and commenting (often with the same comments) to try and get them to follow them in return.  From what I can tell this does not necessarily create an engaged and interested following.  You reap what you sow and I think that type of insincere approach gets the same in return.  You can tell because the blogger will have a complete lack of engagement with their work despite a number of likes.  Comments aren’t everything, and people can comment without reading, but when a piece has 40 likes and no comments at all on a subject that cannot go without comment that makes me wonder.

I might be wrong but I don’t think I am.

So where was I heading with this?  Not absolutely certain but here’s a few bullet points on my thinking if you can’t be arsed to read all of the rest of my thoughts up there:

  • Write regulary.  If I follow you I want to read your stuff.  It will make you a better writer too.
  • Engage and be engaging – people can be more interesting than their work
  • Consider the length of your post.  I’m surprised you got this far.  People have a short attention span.
  • Don’t be afraid to repost earlier posts.  They are probably fab and worth another look.
  • Take joy in what you do.  It shows and it is infectious.
  • Don’t take it personally if no one likes your stuff.  It might be shit, it might be that people don’t get you.  Who cares – you’re creating stuff and that’s awesome
  • Share someone else’s work now and then.  I should do it more and will.  You should too.
  • When you think you can do it anymore or don’t want to then that is precisely when you sit your backside down and do something,  There isn’t enough creativity in the world.

I think that will do for now.  Until next time.

Michael

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