Wednesday, January 13, 2016

The Business of Writing: Content of the Author Blog with #giveaway

Image c2015 by zzoplanet;
Depositphotos  ID 86051516.
Today on The Maze, I offer part two of my discussion of the Author Blog: its content.

If you missed my dissertation on the structure of the Author Blog, I invite you to take a peek at this post.

The structure-related topics I covered last week include the blogging platform, layout, and blog elements.

While blog elements are in fact a specialized form of content, for the purposes of today's post I intend to share my thoughts about the meat-and-potatoes aspect of the Author Blog: the individual posts.

Blog Content

The essential items to consider for any blog post include paying attention to use of applicable keywords, creating an interesting and useful title, embedding good images and videos, and structuring the post with a well-written introduction, body, and conclusion. For more information, view this article by Head Technologies.

The amusing Lili's Travel Plans blog has some great advice regarding all those posts you see in your Twitter feed that start with "How To" or "X Tips for Doing Y", if you're tempted to structure your posts in either of those ways. Unless you want to appear spammer-y, try to avoid those tactics in your headlines. Read Lili's full take on why here.

A Triberr tribemate of mine, eBooksIndia, could have called one of their posts "5 Tips for Becoming a Better Author-Blogger" but instead titled it How Authors Can Become Better Bloggers. Kavitha rightly advises author-bloggers to concentrate on developing a focus for the blog, being mindful of content, promoting your book via blog tours where you contribute guest posts to other blogs, building community by responding to comments in an engaging yet professional way, and creating a regular blogging schedule. To that impressive list I add the suggestion to support other authors by participating as a blog-tour host. The creation of positive karma is always a good thing for everyone involved. :)

Author Nikki Woods drills down even further to offer the following list of specific must-haves for content on an author's blog:
  1. Excerpts from your works in progress
  2. Writing tips
  3. Personal snippets or anecdotes
  4. Insight into your writing process
  5. Inspiration for your writing
Nikki's complete article may be viewed here.  I concur with her list, and I do offer these items from time to time on The Maze. Often, I combine items in a single post, such as a personal anecdote or aspect of inspiration with a work-in-progress excerpt. Obviously, what you elect to share with the world will be in direct relation to your comfort level.

If by now you're feeling a bit overwhelmed, please don't be.

The key to all of this is to achieve a balance of content so that your blog reflects whatever brand you have established as an author but does not appear as a 24x7 infomercial about your books. Programming that sort of content in the sidebar (as I have done on The Maze) is akin to TV channels pasting their logo into the corner of your screen: it's there if the visitor chooses to see it, but it can be tuned out while she or he is viewing the featured post.

And running a giveaway now and then certainly doesn't hurt.

Happy writing... and blogging! :)
Enter for chances to win a prize in this massive multi-author giveaway!
a Rafflecopter giveaway


All this month, you are invited to...
— Follow Kim on Twitter
— Follow Kim on Pinterest
— Subscribe to Kim's YouTube channel
— Leave a comment on any page of The Maze, especially if you have done the Twitter, Pinterest, and/or YouTube follow
... and each action this month is good for one chance to win a copy of any of Kim's e-books. Please enter often, and good luck!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Scribble a note on the wall of the Maze so you can find your way out again... ;-)