Many of my writing colleagues ask me what to blog about. I thought I would share some of my ideas and I’d love to hear yours.
Ok, this is obvious. When you have reviews of your books or new releases, you need to share the love on your blog. When you are doing blog tours, you need to share where you will be and who you will be joining.
Author interviews are great fun, and readers love to read about authors. They are curious about what inspires writers to write what we write. You can interview authors either solely in your genre or you can branch out and interview those in other genres. I like to do both. That way I satisfy readers who read different things. I suggest you make your interviews as interesting as you can. Either read the author’s book ahead of time or tailor your questions to fit that author. You can get lots of information about them on their websites or their author’s pages.
Share what you have learned as a writer. What works and what does not work. For example, you might want to talk about how you select a point-of-view character. You might share how you go about plotting your books. How about how you develop your villains or secondary characters? You can talk about the editing process. What is it like working with an editor? How do you feel when your manuscript is rejected? Accepted? Where do you decide to place your manuscript? Your tips for finding an agent and then working with an agent. The list is endless.
Post something about using Facebook or Twitter. I recently posted tips about using Pinterest. Most of us writers are not very good about marketing ourselves. You can share your frustrations and what you have enjoyed. One writer told me she loved doing face-to-face talks with readers. But, she had trouble with the online marketing. Other writers tell me they enjoy the anonymity of online marketing and shy away from the face-to-face events. What have your experiences been? By the way, this post fits in this category.
You can share what you know about good writing. This could include writing dialogue or writing action scenes. See the post I wrote about this topic. You could also write about those pesky grammatical issues. Whether to use blonde or blond. And the one that drives me nuts: Is it lie, lay or laid, oops, I mean lain?
Why not post a short piece of fiction? Readers love to read what you write. Give them a taste on your blog. Go back to the stories you’ve written and see if there is something you’d like to post.
I’ve had a good time recently introducing my characters to my blog readers. Some writers even blog from their character’s point of view. This keeps your creative juices flowing while you are awaiting edits or a decision on your last submission.
When you read a book, good or bad, share your thoughts about that book on your blog. You can also add it to Amazon and Goodreads (getting more bang for the buck). Your blog readers love to hear what you thought about a recent bestseller, for example. I’ve written several reviews. Here’s one example.
Because I write mysteries, I talk about the challenges of mystery writing. If you write science fiction or fantasy or romance, you can do the same thing. The point is to help readers understand what goes on in the mind of the mystery writer.
I suspect many of you have ideas that you’d like to share. Many of you have found more readers interested in one type of blog post than another. Let’s hear it!
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Matthew Peters says
Thank you for this informative post, Joan. I come here oftener than I comment, but I always find useful, helpful, and interesting content here. Really first-rate job!
Joan Curtis says
Hi Matt. Congrats on your launch day. I hope it’s going well. I love your blog. You certainly provide excellent content. That’s the point. Not just to sell books, but to add content that our blog readers might enjoy. You do that very well on your blog. That’s why you have so many followers and we like to comment.
Sheri Chapman says
I totally agree with Matt! I LOVE your blogs! They are ALWAYS informative and useful. I love your ideas and your professionalism. You inspire me! My only wish would be that I have more time! LOL!
Joan Curtis says
Hey Sheri. You gotta make a bit of time for blogging. I’d suggest doing a blog editorial calendar. List dates for posting and topics. Do that once a month and then you don’t have to think. You just go to the calendar and churn out the blog for that topic. That’s made it easier for me.
Susan Bernhardt says
I like to blog about human interest stories, things going on in my life. Or little scenarios about the characters in my Kay Driscoll series. Kay Driscoll and her best friend, Deirdre love to blog, via my website, about healthy foods and herbs, gardening, going to the farmers’ market, romantic meals, trips to the art museum, etc.
I try to keep my blogs fun. I think of it as a platform for myself or a guest blogger to talk about anything that is interesting about my/their lives. After The Ginseng Conspiracy came out, I also started doing author interviews. I try to limit those to once a month.
Great post, Joan. Lots to think about.
J.Q. Rose says
Thank you for the suggestions for things to blog about.(Wait. That is not exactly a writerly sentence. LOL) Blogging is one of my favorite pastimes.I feel connected to readers through blogging. But I don’t share photos of family or talk about family too much. I guess it’s a privacy, security thing with me. I like to keep my personal and author selves separate. Do you think that discourages a “relationship” with the reader?
Joan Curtis says
Hi JQ. I’ll weigh in on your questions and maybe some other writer-readers will as well. I agree that we want to keep our professional writer self separate from our personal self. But, I do think readers like to know more about the person who writes their favorite books. You can share bits about yourself discreetly without showing pics. I’m not really interested in knowing what a writer ate for dinner or to see pics of their last trip. But, I might want to know if their dog sits with them while they write or if they have to interrupt their writing routine to play with their three-year-old. I think there’s a balance.
What do others think?
Sheri Chapman says
I believe in balance in all things. I do include pictures, but I don’t go overboard. I think our readers may have a certain level of curiosity about us and who we are as people. One of my favorite upcoming authors has a facebook account, and I am now friends with her. She is very human, and I enjoy getting to know her, but she may share a little too much – but then again, she is probably not friends with all of her readers, (I don’t know.) I do like to write with my dog on my lap, btw! 🙂
Joan Curtis says
Hi Sheri. It’s hard to figure out the balance between letting our readers know about us and privacy. Because I’m not “famous” (yet :-)) I feel okay with sharing bits about myself with my “friends.” Of course, my FB Author’s page is very different with different posts than my personal page. I’d love to see photos of your dog if you can stand seeing all mine of my cat.