With the advent of social media platforms like Facebook and even more platforms like Pinterest and Instagram, there has been chatter out in the interwebs that blogging is dead. Sure it is. Until you seek publication or get published and your editor asks about your platform, and your followers and your blog address. The blog is still relevant but ironically this electronic tool seems to cause more agony for writers than ecstasy. Truth is, with all the work on our craft we do while writing poetry and stories, writing about writing or writing about ourselves can become loathsome.
So here’s a solution. TA DA! (Insert sound byte of two-year-old’s pan and ladle solo as drumroll here) Guest spot on someone else’s blog. Find a writer you know, or a topical blogger you follow and actually volunteer to do a guest spot. I can assure you that if you are a writer and you query Rani, she would be quite generous in allowing you a guest spot or two. (She and Kristina make me do it.)
Again, I encourage you to expand that big brain of yours. Writers write best when they write what they know and I personally know a lot of different things. From Kenworth trucks to green chili chicken enchiladas, I am a wealth of information just waiting for a forum. And so are you. Even if you can’t come up with a topic but you still want to try the exercise, it is possible that the blogger you frequent has a list of topics from which you could choose. I know. I don’t want to write on my own blog, why would I want to write on someone else’s blog? Because it will give you not only a fresh perspective but the opportunity to write for a fresh audience. Just like one dimensional characters are a drag, one dimensional writers are a drag. So don’t be a drag. Consider volunteering for a guest spot.
The Blog adjacent
Blogging can be cumbersome. I get it. My own blog is pretty much inactive these days and I know I do myself a disservice as a writer. But there’s that 90-year-old dementia sufferer, the toddler, the husband, and the day job so writing time is severely limited. I’m percolating a novel too, so I know eventually I will have to get back in the blog saddle. It’s why I don’t squeak too loudly when Kristina MAKES me guest blog.
So here is another thought. If you’re a writer, you’re a reader. Consider in lieu of a full blown blog post, the extended comment. Instead of the latest sticker or GIF, actually write something back to someone. Blogs are wonderful for this, but it can actually spark some conversation on Facebook. I urge you though, be more creative than engaging in a verbal duel over politics. You’re better than that. Don’t dive into the morass of banalities and diatribes. Find something cool to comment about.
Some of my favorite blogs back in the day when I blogged daily were the ones wherein my readers locked on and left a flurry of comments and conversations amongst themselves. There was synergy created in those posts as my writer friends were inspired to go and post longer blogs about whatever was discussed. I even belong to a writer site where there is a minimum character limit which forces a reader who wants to comment to actually say more than one word. I actually believe texting is damaging to our ability to write complete thoughts. But that is a blog or perhaps a blog comment for another day. So get out there and do some commenting on blogs, or as I used to call them, “blogments” If something you read spoke to something in you, say something back to the someone who authored it that will mean something.