My blog is one year old! In this past year, I’ve posted 30 times, have had nearly 300 followers, and over 3000 viewers. For a first-time blogger, I will call that a success.
My most popular posts.
However, I believe the majority of people who visited the time travel post were referred by a conspiracy website where someone tried to draw some tenuous connections between me and the deceased bassist of The Iron Butterfly who shares the same name. Oh well, any traffic is good traffic, right?
Lessons I’ve learned.
- Have an original platform:
Creating a unique theme for your website is a great way to stand out among the thousands of other writing blogs out there. With a relatively original platform, you will be the first person to come to mind when writers and readers encounter a specific writing problem. For me, that platform is science in science fiction. I have received several science questions from authors over the past year and have tried to assist them with the science in their stories. I even received one question from a best-selling author!
- Write regularly:
This is obvious, but I feel obligated to mention it. The more posts you have, the more people will find their way to your site. Once you haul them in, chances are they will stick around to see what other posts you’ve written. Having an archive of posts will continue to draw in readers even if you haven’t managed to post anything new in a while. The longer gap between posts, the more likely the reader will forget your name, the content you offer, or their interest will have faded.
- Write quality posts:
This requires planning, patience, and quite a lot of research. Readers aren’t going to come by your blog if all you talk about is yourself and the day-to-day minutiae of your existence. Most people search for blogs because they are interested in learning something new, or are trying to find quality reading material, or an answer to a specific question. I try to keep my posts longer than 1000 words.
- Make writing friends:
I have met many other writers through writing websites and while writing for this blog. I would even call some of them friends, even though we’ve never met. If you’re lucky, these friends and acquaintances will help spread your name around and direct people to your website. Doing the same for them isn’t always expected, but it’s appreciated.
On that note, here are some websites that have been great resources for me. They are run by some very talented writers, friends, or host amazing writer communities and forums.
Things I’m going to try next year.
- Guest posts:
There are numerous other areas of science in which I have no expertise, so new perspectives and advice will only help my readers. Plus, getting other authors and experts invested in the success or your website, if just to improve their own success, is the definition of a win-win. I would also like to volunteer to write more guest posts for the same reasons. The more my name shows up on other quality websites, the more readers will recognize and remember me.
- Post some of my writing:
This applies to those short stories or novels that I do not intend to professionally publish. They may provide a separate means of drawing in traffic and serve as a sample of my writing to future prospective readers, agents, and publishers.
Thanks again to all of my readers and followers and writer friends. I like to think I write and maintain this blog for myself, but the truth is, I do it for you!