Wait. I seriously haven’t written this post yet?
I’ve never talked about why you, as a writer, must have a blog?
What’s wrong with me?
But since we’re both here, I’ll write it again. This time I’ll put a “bloggy” spin on it: a “top 10” list, to prove to you how awesome and important a blog can be.
Ready? Here you go: 10 Reasons Why You Need A Blog.
1. Because everyone else is doing it.
If you’re not blogging, expect that there’s at 4 billion other writers who are in direct competition with you who are. They’re doing their best to promote their work, get their name out into the world, and they’re building a fan base through their blog.
Why aren’t you?
Peer pressure isn’t always the healthiest motivator, but in this case you have my permission to jump on the bandwagon.
2. You’ll probably sell more books.
Oh yeah — part of that last reason is that you’ll make more money if you blog. You have the opportunity to connect with other writers, readers, and possible fans of your work, and they’re ready and waiting to hear what you have to say.
I say “probably” though because you could certainly launch a blog and put absolutely nothing on it, letting it collect cobwebs and outdated, broken themes, until the vast Interwebz eats it…
But you wouldn’t do that, would you?
3. You can build a long-term career from it.
I’m working toward this myself. People find the blog, read some of it, decide to subscribe, hear that I’ve got a few books released, buy one, and then
love it so much they start their own blog about it buy the others, and everything I release down the road.
You can do this, too. If you truly have something to say, and can say it in a pseudo-meaningful and concise way, you can make money doing this. Do a lot of it, and you can make a part- or full-time career out of it.
4. It’s a great way to practice saying what you have to say.
I touched on this in the last reason, but blogging is a great way to get better at — you guessed it — blogging. Not just blogging, though: the process of writing in a concise, organized way regularly will take your writing skills to a higher level very quickly.
I started blogging back in 2007, and it was difficult. I didn’t know what to say, how to say, or how to write in an engaging enough way to get people to listen. However, I stuck with it (over the course of numerous blog relaunches), and I’ve now built up a sizable amount of blog posts that have allowed me to become a much better writer.
Give it a reasonable shot if you’re serious about writing, and see where it takes you.
5. Its a great escape.
Okay, it’s not as great as a real escape — going on a cruise, vacationing at a beachfront resort, or even visiting the in-laws, if that’s your thing. However, blogging can be a great release from the mundane, and a welcome retreat from the day-to-day grind.
I had a job once that required me to blog — I had to write about things I didn’t care about, and I had to try to do it a “bloggy” sort of way. It was torture. Don’t make blogging something you have to do; make it something fun and relaxing. Don’t force yourself to post every day if you can’t honestly maintain that sort of pace — start slow, and see where it goes.
6. It can make you more attractive to a future employer — or publisher.
By exercising your skill and knowledge of a particular subject or industry, you’re forming a stronger opinion and cultivating deeper connections about things within your field.
If you’re a blogging romance novelist with a following of a few thousand, those few thousand people look much more attractive to a publishing company than the romance novelist who’s only got themselves and a few cats.
7. It’s a great way to meet other writers.
You’ll get to the point as a blogger when you realize that you can’t do it alone. At that moment, you’ll turn to the other blogs you’ve been reading — the feeds of your favorite writers, authors, and bloggers who you’ve come to admire (and probably resent a little, too, for their success). These people are your close network of coworkers — they’re the people who will entertain your questions, story ideas, and guest posts, and they’ll be there to help you get to the next level.
One of the amazing things about blogging is that even closely-related blogs in a niche market can work together in a non-competitive way, helping one another grow and share readership. Cultivating these relationships only helps you build bridges, and that’s a huge long-term gain.
8. It’s fun.
Did I mention that blogging is fun?
You get to sit down and just write whenever you want, and then see it published whenever you’re ready. It’s an exhilarating feeling when you receive your first comment, first email, first subscriber, etc., and these tiny goals and hurdles lead to bigger and better goals. It’s a constant race, but it’s built of smaller victories and successes, and that’s a cool feeling.
9. It’s yours.
Further, no one gets to tell you what to blog about. If you’re interested in writing about your neighbor’s fish, you can do that. You can literally invent a topic or format, and test it out however you want. You set the schedule, you create the content, and you get to control the output.
You’re your own boss, and that’s always a pretty good deal.
10. It’s virtual.
Your business exists wherever you want it to be — at the airport, at home, at work, or at an undisclosed location somewhere around the globe. You can move anywhere you want, and with a simple internet connection run your business and blog whenever you want.
I’ve blogged offline plenty of times, too, paying for a quick connection to upload and publish the posts — then I shut my laptop and continue doing whatever I want.
It’s the ultimate in “virtual living,” and as a writer, it could be a great way to generate income while you’re traveling to the settings in your books.
Give it a shot.
If you haven’t tried blogging yet, for whatever reason — you don’t know how, you don’t believe it works, you can’t figure out what to write about — leave a comment on this post. Let me know why, and I’ll offer input if I can.
I believe in the system, for these and many other reasons, and I think it can really do great things in your own writing career!