If You Build It They Will Come

if-you-build-it-they-will-come-haha-just-kidding-you-still-have-to-sell-itWhen I started writing this blog, I had no idea what I was doing. All I knew was I needed to start a blog. One of the agents I had queried, told me I needed a platform, and while it didn’t guarantee a book deal, it would make placing my book with a publishing house a lot easier.

So I read a book on platforms from Michael Hyatt and went to the WordPress site. I created my blog and decided to write about things I have learned, and/or had problems with during my journey to being published.

There’s so much we don’t know. So much I still don’t know, but my thought was if I shared information, it would hopefully help others to avoid some of the crazy mistakes I have made.

I was excited when I wrote that first blog. I sent it out to the world and waited anxiously for that first view. It never came. I wrote the second blog and again, there were no views. As a matter of fact, for almost six months, I wrote my blog faithfully with only a handful of views. I could literally count those views on one hand for each blog.

I didn’t know what I was doing wrong. I reread Michael Hyatt’s book and looked at a few articles on successful blogs. Guess what? I finally realized that just because you write and put it out there, doesn’t mean they will come. This is not ‘The Field of Dreams’, you have to do your part.

I began reaching out to fellow bloggers. Like me, they were trying to build their platforms as well. I started visiting the websites of bloggers who shared the same interests that I did. Not only did I gain some great information in the process, but I picked up followers. I didn’t have to ask people to join me. I read their blogs, offered comments on their writing, and they responded by checking my site out and doing the same.  I discovered this was a win, win for all involved.

A delightful surprise, was the friendships that arise from exchanges with other writers.  Totally unexpected.

I have added a block of time to my weekly schedule for reading blogs of fellow bloggers (those I follow, as well as new ones I would like to follow). It’s not a chore, it’s fun!!! And you will build your following 🙂

I would caution  that your writing has to offer something. Once those viewers start visiting your site, it’s up to you to keep them coming back.

-Jan R


If You Build It They Will Come

What Makes A Blog Post Great?

scratch-headWhat makes a blog post great? I wish I had the answer. I know some of the recommendations that professional writers and bloggers give. I try to abide by those rules and will share them with you today, but that still doesn’t cover why some blog posts do so much better than others.

Just recently I wrote a blog titled ‘Edit, Edit or Edit’. I thought it was a good post and offered some information that I didn’t know and never really thought about during the revision process, but there were some issues with the formatting.

When you pulled it up, the first paragraph was missing. Once I realized it, I tried to fix the issue but just couldn’t figure out what was going on. Where is a teenager when you need one 🙂

At any rate it has been my best blog so far. I totally don’t understand why. I’m happy that it got so much attention and attracted people to my site, I’m just puzzled. Because of the missing paragraph, it’s confusing at first. There are no visuals, as I deleted them trying to correct the formatting. It was embarrassing really-not up to my usual standard, but I didn’t have time to replace it.

The body of the blog itself was a copy and paste from an old blog-from back when I was writing to the air. I made some revisions but didn’t really put a lot of time into it. What was the draw this time? I still haven’t figured it out.

I have posted other blogs that I took my time and did a lot of research before writing, and I thought were great. They offered a lot of useful information, especially for beginner writers, but they were all but passed on. What’s the deal?

Some rules that I try to follow when writing blogs:

  • Be consistent-I post every Tuesday and Thursday no exceptions.
  • Keep my blogs short and concise-Usually between 300-400 words.
  • Offer useful information that I hope helps my readers.
  • Add graphics or a picture or two-more so for the appearance.
  • Make sure my posts are grammatically and structurally sound.
  • Try to be myself and not sound like a do-it-yourself manual.-One I’m working on :-).
  • I use the tags feature on my blog site to attract readers.

Do you have tips or tricks? I would love to hear from you 🙂

-Jan R


What Makes A Blog Post Great?