Monday, November 29, 2010

Why Blog?

Quick Heads Up
I don't do this often, but in this season I love what writer Jennifer Slattery is doing on her blog for December. Stop by and be encouraged as she lists a top 20 of this year's blog posts. These aren't posts by her, but ones written by others.
Now back to our regularly scheduled post!

Why Blog?
by Edie Melson

For several years, blogging has been touted as the end all way of reaching an audience—especially for writers of all types. Now, enough time has passed that it’s possible to get a good statistical foundation of whether or not blogging really is a good use of a writer’s time.

And the answer is . . .
it depends.

I know, I can hear the groans from here, and I feel your pain. Everyone was promised, “Blog and they will come.” Well, that is only partly true and here’s the nitty gritty of blogging.

Blogging works for writers under these circumstances -
  • The blog/blogger has a clear purpose to blogging.
  • The audience is clearly defined. (For example, a novelist is writing for readers—not other writers)
  • The blog fits the picture of who the writer is. Or, in other words, it enhances—not contradicts—the author’s brand.
  • The rest of your branding makes sense with your blog.
Blogging DOES NOT work for writers under these circumstances -
  • The point of the blog is vague and undefined.
  • The audience isn’t clearly defined.
  • The blog leads readers to a different picture of the writer—not a deeper picture—but totally different.
Over the next few weeks I will address each point and show you how to make your blog work for you, instead of being a time waster for you and your reader. But for now, I’d like to know where you are with blogging.
  • Do you have a blog?
  • Is your audience for it growing?
  • Does it deliver results?
Chime in with your comments and questions.

And . . . Don’t forget to join the conversation!


  1. Edie, my blog, Morning Glory, changed my writing life! I asked the Lord for discipline and His answer was to write a DAILY devotional blog, one that teaches little snippets from God's Word. Has it been a challenge? Yes! Has it been a blessing? Yes!! Through my blog, I have found my voice. Through my blog I have been held accountable as a writer because my subscribers are expecting to see Morning Glory in their inbox every morning. I have connected with people all across the nation who have found me on Facebook and Twitter. It is so exciting! And the most tremendous blessing I have received of late is a note from a Jewish man in Massachusetts who thanked me for the words that encourage understanding between Jews & Christians, which by the way, is my platform!!!!!! I cried. HE GOT IT without me even having to spell it out. God is good :) If any of your readers want to check out Morning Glory, it is

    Bless you,

  2. Edie, you share such truth and thanks for giving us purpose and direction. Blogging has been a blessing in my life as "Simply" Sue. I developed that "brand name" for me as "A Speaker
    Who Writes" because I wanted to be able to write on anything God gave me to share once a week! So "Simply" Sue covers that! I have been amazed at the number of readers that pass my way monthly, and share and care for my posts, and what they share back! I originally thought this would be a good way too to get my platform out there for future speaking events,and I am sure that will happen as well. But for now I am content to help others in any way I can by bringing a little "hope with humor" to encourage them on to new beginnings. Thanks for all you do for so many, just like me! Blessings,
    "Simply" Sue

  3. Nan, thanks for sharing your blog with us! I love the way you expressed how it has impacted so much more than your writing life. We need to remember those lessons!
    Sue, I appreciate your comments on how your blog is touching others as well. You are both a HUGE blessing to me!

  4. Love how focused your blog is, Edie. You always have a "here's where we're going" plan.
    Blogging has worked well and not so well for me. I'm seeing success in one of my blogs even as I'm ending another blog. Interesting, isn't it?

  5. Hey, Edie. Great topic. I don't have a well defined blog and never really thought about it. I do have a defined website ( and it gets about 100k hits a month. The only problem is that other than a feedback form, I don't get to interact with my audience. So it doesn't have the personal touch of blogging. Adding a blog post is a stretch of my time, so I find myself torn between the 'duties' of blogging, and the mission of my writing.

    How valuable is a blog over a website? - Eddie S.

  6. With deference to Edie for any answer she providers: Eddie, my personal opinion on your question is that it depends on what you're aiming for. Websites were originally the only game in town (basically), then became the "landing point" you wanted people to find when they searched for you. As an author, for example, you might want any searches for you or your books to land on a page specifically designed for new or established readers and fans. A blog can help drive that traffic because it's going to (or at least should) have far more recent and new content than your typical website. Blogs can also provide people with personal insight into your work and help build branding.

    Now, though, the rules are changing again as social media pages, and indeed sometimes blogs themselves, take the place of a landing point for searchers. Your website might simply serve as a central feed repository for all your different online identities (Twitter, Facebook/LinkedIn, blog, etc.) Even selling your book, you might want to direct searches to favor an Amazon or other store profile page rather than a personal website. Your website's mission will largely impact how your blog should be structured.

  7. What a great post! I am really asking myself the questions you posed here. I believe my blog, is primarily for readers. Also, for other writers or anyone who has a passion for something and believes that passion is God stirring them to do something. I am a baby to the writing world and I'm sure I add lots or irrelevant details to my blog but I do feel like it reveals the deeper me and my heart. I never thought about what my platform is... oops? I am just an ordinary person, trying to become a writer...? A little overwhelmed right now... but that's good - makes me think! It is not growing too much, mostly because I haven't shared it with anyone, ha! I don't have anything published so I don't feel very credible yet. I will say this... It has been an awesome forum for me to express my thoughts and how God is working in my life. Any advice is GREATLY appreciated!

  8. Edie,

    I have to say AMEN to Nan's comment. My deovtional blog started out as daily. It is now twice weekly because I have a second blog which is posted twice weekly. But blogging taught me so very much about writing.

    Thanks for your insights.

    Jean and