From the comments on the last post I get the feeling some of you think that I’m saying writers shouldn’t blog.
Many of my favourite blogs are by writers. I love writers’ blogs! I love reading about their struggles with their writing, about their thoughts on craft, their battles with their psychotic neighbours, the zeppelins they build. I love learning how different most writers approach to writing a novel is from mine. In fact, later this week I’ll be posting a bit more about outlining versus winging it. Cause who gets tired of that topic? Not me!
I frequently encourage writer friends to start blogging. In fact, I feel a little swell of pride about certain writers’ blogs because I’m convinced my nudging them is part of why they started blogging. Go me!
There are a gazillion positive effects of blogging: direct communication with other writers and readers you wouldn’t otherwise meet, becoming part of communities,1 having fun, talking craft, encouraging everyone to try fresh mangosteens2 etc etc.
And, yes, if your blog entertains people there’s a chance that some of them will wind up buying your books. All I’m saying is that if that’s your sole motivation for starting a blog then odds are you will be disappointed.
It’s rubbish that starting a blog is an excellent way to flog books. The majority of brand new blogs have teeny tiny audiences. It takes ages to build one. And if all you’re doing is flogging your books you will never build an audience. Because a blog full of exhortations to BUY MY BOOK is pretty much the most boring blog in the universe.
Which does not mean that I don’t want you to buy my books. I do! But only if you want to and if you can afford it. But I’m just as happy with you borrowing them from the library. Support your local library!
Or not reading them at all. Life’s short and there are many wonderful books. I totally get reading Dorothy Dunnett’s Lymond chronicles or King Hereafter or anything by Jean Rhys or Angela Carter or Jane Austen before you’d read my books. I’d certainly rather read them or Alice in Wonderland or way too many books to name than anything I’ve written.
Quite frankly I’m just as thrilled by the people who enjoy this blog as I am by the people who enjoy my books. The fact that there’s often no overlap between those two groups is awesome. It means I can amuse people who have zero interest in YA or fantasy but have a fascination for cricket or mangosteens or quokkas or any of the myriad other topics I crap on about.
Which is yet another reason I love blogs so much. They’re places where we can share and discuss our obsessions. There are few things more fun than that.