You want to be an author or make a living writing? Or work as a freelancer from home? Having a blog is a good thing. But posting too much is not. Here’s why.
I used to post several times a week here. Now I post once a week or sometimes less. It’s not that I don’t have ideas. I have lots of them and if I go personal, I would be telling you some interesting stories.
But I find myself holding back much in the same way as I abstain from social media. Getting views, likes, and comments provides validation and gratification. The more of them you get, the more you want to get.
Even if you separate yourself from all of that, disable likes, not answer comments all that much, blogging still requires a good dose of energy and a serious commitment.
Keeping a Blog Alive Is Work
Keeping a blog alive through the years is tougher than maintaining an active presence on social media. Over the years, I’ve seen many of my blogging friends post less and less until their blogs began to gather dust.
You can say that many popular writers have blogs. Indeed. But many of them created a blog after they published or released their best works, as a way to connect with their audience. Or else for them their blog is an essential platform for promoting their work.
That may not be your case. When we are at the beginning of our writing careers, we need to focus on the writing, to make it the best that we can make it, and that requires concentrated attention and a lot of work, that is, a lot of writing.
Blogging can be a distraction for a writer, same as with social media. It can make you focus too much on the writing process, on marketing, on interacting with others. It can fragment your writing experience and prevent the state of flow you need to get into for you to write awesome things.
Often, writing also requires for you to plunge deeply within yourself and lie there at the bottom of your inner aquarium undisturbed by social influences—unconnected and alone—before returning to the surface with a starfish or two, and a better understanding of yourself.
And then there’s the risk that by blogging every day and reading the same blogs all the time, you will end up sounding like everyone else and writing like everyone else. And you probably don’t want that, do you?
Blogging Shouldn’t Feel Like Work
In the past, I used to feel a bit guilty about not posting more often. Because I invested a lot of time and energy into this blog and every post was an expression of who I was.
But when life got in the way and I wasn’t able to post for a time as often as before, I understood that my blog wasn’t going anywhere, that it would always be there for me (so long as I renewed the domain name, anyway).
Blogging shouldn’t feel like work or like an obligation. When it starts feeling that way, it’s good to take it easier. Over time, blogging fatigue builds up, especially among us writers.
The same is true for social media. If you want to be a writer, the most important thing is to write. To give the best of your time and energy to your writing projects. Blogging, social media can distract you, derail you even.
By making it very easy to publish your writing, these platforms may prevent you from plunging deep enough within you and maintaining your concentrated attention on a specific topic for long enough to peel it down to its core.
The Bottom Line
My message, dear writer, is this: let’s blog, but let’s do it wisely, only when we have something good to say, something that requires us to express it. Let’s not let the attention that our blog can bring us or the ease with which it lets us publish things distract us in any way from our greater writing projects.