#AuthorToolboxBlogHop – Branching Out Your Blog

This post was written specifically for the #AuthorToolboxBlogHop.

I’m going to start off with an assumption but I think it’s a reasonable one. If you’re a writer, then you most likely have a web page or blog of some kind. The question is; what are you posting on it?

A bit about yourself, that’s a given. After all, you are using the page to publicise yourself and your work. So you include some information about what you write, maybe some sample short fiction. If you’ve taken the plunge and you have books available, then you’ll want to include information about where they’re available.

So far, so straight forward. But unless you’re churning out new short stories week in, week out, that’s going to get stale fairly quickly. You want people to have a reason to keep coming back to your page and one of the best ways to accomplish that is to offer a variety of content that will keep people interested. And you’ll also want to be posting consistently. Too large a gap between posts and the easier it will be to miss them when you do put something out there.

Here are some suggestions for ways to expand your content, in no apparent order. Some of these I do myself, some I’ve seen on other sites. And this can help with the consistency of your posting as well. The more options you have, the more frequently you can post them.

  • Blog/Journal

As I said above, chances are you already have this so I don’t need to go into too much detail about this. You can write about your progress with your writing, other hobbies that interest you, events happening in your life, pretty much anything you damn well please. But if you’re anything like me, then you might find occasions where you’re scheduled to put a post out and you’re drawing a blank on what to fill it with. That’s where you might want to consider some other options.

  • Reviews

Technically, you could consider this a 2-for-1 deal. If you’re reading books (and if not, why not?) then adding reviews accomplishes a few things. First and foremost for this article, it gives you something to add to your page. Secondly, reviewing makes you think about what worked and what didn’t in the book in question and you might find something that you can apply to your own writing. Finally, if you also copy the review to Goodreads, Amazon or other sales sites; you might help out the author of the book as well.

  • Interviews

Similar to the above, doing interviews helps both you and your fellow writer. You get a post, they get the opportunity to talk about their work and reach new people. Or, if you’re reticent about approaching people to interview them, then I’ve seen some people do interviews with their characters instead.

  • Goals

One that I do frequently is a post listing out my writing goals for the month, as well as a review of how well I got on with them. Not only does this give me some scheduled posts to work with, it also lets me lay out what I want to achieve and give me a degree of accountability as a result.

  • Guests

Another option might be to include guest posters. Not only will this give a fresh post, but it could offer a contrasting opinion or viewpoint to your own. And, it could also bring your guest’s usual readership to your site.

  • Fun & Games

Here you can do whatever pleases/amuses you. For example, for several months now I’ve taken part in monthly games on Twitter, the most frequent of which has been #Authorconfession. Since these games usually involve a daily question, I’ve got into the habit of posting my complete list of answers towards the end of the month.

Alternatively, I’ve seen other fun ideas on other blogs. K. Kazul Wolf has done posts listing all the amusing typos found during editing, while R.B. McConnell often has hilarious live tweets of her watching a film with her main character Snowflake and then posts the full conversation on her personal blog, as seen here.

Or you could take part in something like the #AuthorToolboxBlogHop

Don’t forget to read the other Author Toolbox blogs, just click the icon below. 

Nano Blog and Social Media Hop2

 

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17 thoughts on “#AuthorToolboxBlogHop – Branching Out Your Blog

  1. JJ Burry says:

    I recently started my blog. Your ideas for branching out are intriguing, but they leave me with a few questions…

    How often do you post something new?
    Do you have a rotating schedule for these posts so followers know what to expect on different days?
    How often do you suggest adding new blog posts?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. WriterDrew says:

      Thanks for reading. I’ll do my best to answer your questions although I should point out I’m hardly a credible source.

      I try to keep to a 3 posts a week schedule as much as I can. Only a few of these have a fixed time, such as the monthly goals at the beginning & end of the month and the Twitter game answers at the end of the month. And of course #authortoolboxbloghop at this time. All the others are either as they occur to me or, for reviews, as I finish a book.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. JJ Burry says:

        Thank you for answering! If it works for you, then you are a credible source. Everyone’s different, so whether or not it works for someone else is another matter entirely.

        I’ve had a few ideas about posting more than once a week, but I haven’t been able to figure out how that would work. It’s nice to see that you don’t necessarily have a set pattern for posting (not counting he exceptions). It gives me hope.

        Do you find not having the set schedule for posting each week helps you more? I read someone else’s post a few weeks ago where they post three times a week as well, but they on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. I can’t remember exactly, but each day was devoted to a different aspect: M for book reviews, W for own stories, and F for craft advice… or something along those lines.

        I’m not sure what would work better for me, so I’m seeing what works for others.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. WriterDrew says:

        When I moved to 3 posts per week I started off on a Mon-Wed-Fri schedule. That didn’t work quite so well for me so I switched to a Tue-Thurs-Sat/Sun. That seems to work better although there are times where it doesn’t exactly work out. Life has a tendency to mess with that occasionally. As for doing specific types of posts on specific days, I’ve yet to be that organized.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Kristina Stanley says:

    I love finding something new in a blog. I’ll have to look into the Fun & Games part. Just a side note – I run a series called Mystery Mondays where other authors post a writing/editing/publishing tip and then promote their work. And by mystery I cover many genres – the story just has to have a hint of mystery. This has been a tremendous help in extending my platform and getting to know other authors. If you’re interested, contact me and I’d be happy to have you on Mystery Mondays.

    Liked by 1 person

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