I am not a how-to blogger.
You know the kind. They tell you how to instantly improve your blog in 3, 5, 10, 30 easy steps. They talk about platform and SEO and influence. All of those things are important and I do read some of the good how-to bloggers out there, but I don’t count myself among them because I’m a writer; I find more challenge and value in poetic, reflective, personal writing than I do in building my particular brand of advice-giving. Everyone wants to give advice, but no one wants to take it.
Yet I do think it’s important to take time, in light of launching my new and improved blog, to share some things I’ve learned in the last three years since starting She Writes and Rights. So over this week I’ll share one key element of blogging every day, three in all, one for each year that I’ve blogged. The list could go on forever, but when we boil it down and strip away all the specifics, the things I’m sharing are the most essential parts and they can be implemented in a lot of different ways.
Because it’s not just about what to do, but why and how to do it effectively.
So here’s my thought for today :
Be diligent, even if no one is paying attention to you.
Even if your stats tell you that you only have three readers, and you know for a fact that one of them is your mom and the other two are you and some stranger that lives in Romania, be diligent.
Diligence is about consistency, habit, and building your voice.
I lose my diligence easily. My habits ebb with my mood, and for a long time my writing suffered because of it.
The thing that helped me break my habit of non-diligence was creating a weekly series, or blogging about the same general topic on the same day each week. I don’t always follow the series rule, but generally, you can expect me to share a post in my bookish series on Mondays, poetry posts on Tuesday or Wednesday, short, freeform essays/poems on Wednesday or Thursday, and my Inspired By posts full of lovelinks every Friday.
This strategy has helped me face the blank page without fear. It has taken away the “what should I write about?!” anxiety that comes with blogging, or writing in general, for that matter. In effect, I’ve given myself a weekly assignment, or prompt, to help me focus my thoughts.
And that’s the other thing, if you create a structure of consistency, cranking out 500-700 words suddenly doesn’t seem like a big, scary deal anymore. Or, in my case, editing it down to 500-700 words doesn’t seem so hard. Miracle of miracles, I’m learning to write more efficiently. My English profs would be so proud!
What are the ways that you’ve learned to be diligent in your blogging? Or if you don’t blog, how have you learned to be diligent in your work?