Should Authors Own a Blog?

by Keira on August 14, 2010 · 6 comments

in About, Authors, Between the Sheets

between

I have two thoughts on this subject. The first is of course! The second is heck no! In the end I decided to put together some pros and cons discussing the matter. Feel free to jump in with more ideas!

5 Pros for Authors Owning a Blog:

  1. You are the editor. You can treat it like a newsletter or diary. You get to decide what goes up and what doesn’t. Want to talk about your sex life? Go ahead, but it may be a little TMI (too much information).
  2. You’re easy to write about. Who knows you better than you? There’s so much you can take from to inspire others with: your writing schedule, writing process, writing life, future books, etc.
  3. Your fan base gets a regular update on your life. They came to you, they want you, if they wanted someone else they’d go look them up and follow them.
  4. Everything is somehow about you. Even with guest authors, they’re your friends and acquaintances, mentors, fellow authors, publicist, etc. so while you’re sharing the floor, you’re still in the spotlight.
  5. Increases Your Book Sales. It’s searchable and drives traffic to your main website and your books and can very easily increase your sales.

5 Cons for Authors Owning a Blog:

  1. Providing constant content. How do others do it? How do they provide fun quirky content day after day to keep readers interested and coming back? It’s a heck of a lot of work and can be stressful. You could be devoting that time to writing more books or personal time.
  2. Building a readership for a blog is tough. Why struggle getting noticed when readers and reviewers would gladly share their blog readerships with you? When something comes to you as a great blog idea, ask one of them to host it. Chances are they’ll jump on it (see last point). You’ll get coverage (and pro point five) and they’ll get good free content. It’s a win-win deal.
  3. Do you really want to get that close to your readers? You love them and hearing from them, but do they really need to know what you’re doing all the time? Where’s the line between the public you and the personal you?
  4. You’re not internet savvy. The idea of writing a blog gives you chills. You just master Google for research and now it’s time to start a blog? Which platform should you use? Is it easy to use? Does it look professional? You wouldn’t even know where to start!
  5. It doesn’t sound like fun. You would much rather read other people’s blogs than write one yourself. There’s no shame in that and really there are plenty of ways to get out in front of readers. Channel your time and energy into those and relax.

Middle Ground: if options one or two aren’t for you there’s always co-opting. You can easily share a blog with fellow writers in your genre or under the same publisher. That would cut out the time you’d have to devote to upkeep in both content and promotion. Plus it gives you another way to network and reach readers.

Leave a Comment

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

1 katiebabs August 14, 2009 at 5:49 AM

Blogs are great because they are free and great PR to go and on and on why people should read your books.

Also, where else can put put up hot men or cute animal pictures?

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2 Jennifer Leeland August 14, 2009 at 11:00 AM

Blogs are NOT for everyone. If an author doesn’t like to blog, it shows. It’s better (if an author hates/can’t blog) to find another way to be present for fans.
I have a cp who LOVES Twitter, hates blogging. Some people LOVE Facebook, hate MySpace. *shrugs* It’s important to find the thing that works for the individual.
I love blogging. But that’s ME.

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3 Isabel G. August 17, 2009 at 12:03 PM

It’s great for authors to have other ways of connecting with fans because it gets people more interested in their books. Plus, if someone was not already familiar with an author they could read more about them and their books and become interested in buying their work in the future.

However, even though I like when sites are updated with new information I understand that people have their own lives. I do not expect authors to update regulary and I do not stop being a fan of any author or person for not doing so.

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4 Curtis Chappell December 16, 2009 at 5:07 AM

All very valid points indeed…Innate skills and talent aside, a blog forces you to create (if you take it seriously) which is a good thing.

Though I reckon it matters what you write…

I can’t imagine you’ll find much inspiration for the character development of the protagonist in a romance novel by reading or writing blogs ( I could be wrong).

But as an non-fiction writer, the internet is one of my many resources and a daily inspiration for the next book…

In this age, you’re living under a rock if you’re an author without a web presence, so even if you don’t plan to interact with your readers, a free blog is a walking bill-board if you use it correctly.

Write On!

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5 Mandy D. August 16, 2010 at 8:26 AM

I think that blogging is a fantastic way for authors to reach their readers. I know as an avid reader I enjoy nothing more then hearing how the works ‘under construction’ are going for my favorite authors. Granted a blog is not for everyone, but as a fan I am quite keen on the idea. Keeping yourself personable and approachable is key in my book for turning fans from just mere readers into those that will stick with you and your work for the duration.

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