Saturday, July 31, 2010

Let's Get Bloggy

Blogging isn't easy. With so many people doing it, you'd think it was one of those things even a cave man could do. The truth of the matter is, it isn't hard when you have something to say and time to put it down in words. The problem arises after blogging for months or years to not repeat yourself. Even harder is the time commitment. Even bloggers who spout off anything that comes to mind without regard for anyone's feelings, grammar, spelling, being overly personal, facts, etc. still have a time investment. Thoughtful bloggers may spend hours trying to get a few paragraphs to sound just right.

I and a number of other writers, who also blog, were recently wondering if our blogs are worth the time invested in them; time we could be spending writing, reading, cleaning our houses, weeding the garden, going to the temple, or doing hundreds of other tasks we sometimes let slide in order to blog. On one hand blogs are a great way to interact with people who share our interests, family, fans, or others with whom we wish to stay in touch. Blogs are more personal than social sites such as Facebook and provide greater options for interaction such as contests, instruction or explanations, previews, or reviews. Then there's the matter of are they being read?.

I decided to make blogs the focus of the next contest. Just answer a few questions.

1. How many blogs do you read a day? a week?
2. Do you blog?
3. Do you like behnd-the-scenes details about the writing and production of books?
4. Are you interested in the various blogs that run contests (such as mine)?
5. Have you ever bought a book because of a friend's blog review?
6. Just comment on any aspect of blogging pro or con.

Commenters names will be entered twice in the next drawing. Each follower's name is automatically entered. The winner will send me a wish list of LDS novels and I will send one of the books from the list to him/her. Occasionally the books on a winner's list are all already spoken for, likely to be Whitney winners and therefore aren't available until after the next Whitney Awards, or for some other reason aren't available. In that case I'll ask for a second list--or you can just give me a longer list to choose from to begin with.


Kristie said...

Yes, I do blog. I read about 5-10 a day, depending on the day.
I enjoy reading blogs that run contests, probably more so because they run contests.
I also read the chapter of your book Shudder that you have on here, and now am saving up to buy the book!
I also tend to think that my favorite authors are some how "superhuman". It is nice to know they have the same "issues" that I have. Or at least the housework, kids, family ones. :)

Jolynn_Reads said...

I don't have a blog.
I have Chronic Back pain, and sitting is the most painful, But on good days I read abt. 10 & other days nothing.
I also like the contest blogs best!
Contests are now like a hobby & it helps me forget my pain.
I like to hear about the idea the author had when they wrote the book. What they were thinking about when they decided to write the book.
To save money, I usually check books out at library, instead of buying.

Stephanie Humphreys said...

I read too many blogs every day, but it helps me feel connected in some way to all my writing friends and acquaintances all over the world. I do have my own blogs, but I don't post as much as I used to. It seems to take so much time and sometimes I feel like I am repeating myself. The behind the scenes details of writing are interesting to me. I love seeing the process other authors are going through.

Contests are okay in moderation. Sometimes it feels like that's all a lot of blogs are now. I like to win a contest as much as the next person, but so many of the contests require so many steps - comment, blog/facebook/twitter about it, and other random things. One or two can be fun, but it takes so much time to do those extra things just to enter a contest. Unless I am very interested in the prize, I usually don't even bother. I have bought a book because of a friends review. I love to read the reviews of others and almost always do before I pick up any book.

Thanks for giving us something to think about.

Lisa said...

Yes, I do blog with a photography emphasis, sometimes including pictures of families I've shot and sometimes random other pictures that I find curious. My biggest challenge is to find something that might appeal to a bigger audience then just those that like to take pictures or have their pictures taken. I limit myself to reading no more than a dozen or so a week. I love to read about the mechanics of writing as that is the adventure I plan to start next.

Britt said...

1. I have a TON of blogs in my reader. I end up skimming a lot just to keep up!! If I don't check it daily, I get really bogged down.
2. I have a book blog, a family blog, a writing blog and a Stampin' Up project blog!!
3. Most of the time, yes. Every once in a while I feel a bit mired if it's a really long detailed post, though.
4. LOVE contests!
5. I don't buy many books without reading them first, largely because it's just not in the budget. I frequently put books on hold at the library, though, after reading a blog review.
6. The Utah book blogging/author community is AMAZING!!

Kelsi Rose said...

I read many blogs everyday, probably too many. I enjoy reading about my friends and their lives since I don't live around many of them any more.

I also enjoy learning new things, which is one of the reasons I follow so many authors and cooking blogs. I like to pretend that many of authors/foodies are my friends, even though the chances of us actually meeting are miniscule.

Prizes are nice, but it really isn'tsomething that draws me to a blog. Some of the blogs that I read that offer prizes are so wide spread, it is pretty much pointless to enter. Prizes do get me to comment though. I usually have some thought in my head from what I read, but I often don't take the time to comment, but the chance to win a prize is incentive enough to get out of my shell and make my opinion known.