Friday, September 21, 2007

Friday Link

Friday is now my Sunday which is very weird. I know I have done this before.....yet three years ago my weekend was Thursday (being Saturday) and Friday (being Sunday). I eventually got my head around it. Now the weekend has changed here - Friday is still Sunday as stores open later and things are quiet and we do church yet Saturday is Saturday - novel I know- but the weekend is backwards. It's very bizarre having your Sunday before your Saturday if you know what I mean.

Thanks to writer Susie Vereker I popped over to journalist Danuta Kean's blog where she is talking about how important or not blogging is for novelists. It's an interesting read and what hit me most was the comment about it must be authentic voice and its about building relationships. It made me think about why I blog. I blog to be in a community - a community of writers and readers. Why do you blog?

17 comments:

Lisa said...

When I started blogging in April, I did it thinking that I wanted to connect with people who'd made a major life change. I had decided to commit to writing (although I still have a full time job) and I knew many people had walked away from soul-killing jobs to pursue their dreams of painting, arranging flowers, catering, writing, starting a non-profit -- lots of things. It never occurred to me initially to blog about writing since I didn't have anything to say about it (I thought), but very quickly, that's what happened. Like you, I felt a sense of community with a few people I'd never met, but who were struggling with the same things I was. The others were all on their own paths and in different places, but I felt I'd connected with people who understood what I was doing and who even understood me. I soon found that if I posted about things I'd learned, had questions about, was afraid of, or didn't grasp, there were people who would have a dialogue with me about it. People like you :) I think the article speaks to something very important and I think we've all seen blogs that were started by novelists as part of their marketing plan. There's nothing wrong with that and many of them get a lot of visitors, but I'm not sure they've got the type of "community" that many of us are lucky enough to be part of. As a reader, I'm not really all that interested in regularly visiting a novelist's blog, if it's only about "the book" and it's only a vehicle to sell more of them. I'm interested in the sharing aspect and actually building relationships with people -- some of whom I've spoken with, met and exchanged email with -- friends.

Nell said...

I blog because I enjoy it. I vent a little about the day job, (altho my boss has started reading it now)I talk about my writing -the ups and the downs. I talk about my home and it's surroundings as I love to know where other people live and how their lives differ from mine. I enjoy reading my friends blogs, keeping up with their news. I like to read other blogs that teach me things about writing, marketing, IT stuff.

UN PEU LOUFOQUE said...

I started initially for a competion that shall not be named, rather half hearedly as I realised very swiftly I had neither the floral print tablecloth nor the right wellies to be a journalist for that particular magazine but by then the seed was sown and along came this strange woman and her household and I have blogged them ever since. I found I had to then develop another blog for more personal postings and my views on life.

I am amazed at how supportive the whole blogging thing is, as a born loner I find that I now have some really good friends that I can talk to and discuss things with without the probelm of having to decipher social signals, something which I am crap at, and without the need to tidy up and brush my hair in order to have them over!

Ray-Anne said...

What a great link - from a completely different prospective.
I started a blog about the time of the RNA Conference this year in July because I was reading so many other blogs at that time. Plus I was adding comments to the E-Harlequin boards, but decided that my own voice and interests were separate from that.
So yes, I can see the point about it being a personal relationship building tool. And yes, it is branding in the sense that it is my own voice. My own interests and it does have personal stuff on there.
I do not use it to promote my work.
Why? I do not have a book to sell.
That, for me, is for a website.
I do not have a website and have decided not to have one until I have:
* a pen name - duh. obvious. but there has to be a name on the cover which is the same on the website
* a book/ books to promote and make contact with readers who come to me through the book.
Does that make sense?
Lots of food for thought here.
And my poor brain is already spinning this morning.
LOL Ray-Anne

Lazy Perfectionista said...

My blog has a couple of purposes. I started it so I could record the books I read and what I think of them. I also wanted to write more, and posting about things that happen to or around me seemed like a good plan. Then I started writing a novel, stumbled across the Novel Racers, and have made some lovely friends, got lots of ideas and inspiration.

Jen said...

Blogging FORCES me to write. I do often (always?!) waffle on about halfwitted claptrap but I do think the about the words I use to do it.

I think it's quite an accessible way to write for an 'audience'. I read somewhere that, no matter matter what the subject matter, a blog will only succeed if it's written well.

I've met some fab people through it too - some of whom I've met and others I hope to meet.

It's amazing how much of a connection you can build with someone by reading their blog. Blogging rocks.

Rebecca Burgess said...

Blogging, besides being a great place to network with other like minded individuals without washing my hair, provides a place to ramble about ideas that pop up but aren't necessarily something I want to develop into a full blown essay.

With a blog you can mix up content. Sometimes it's personal (hopefully not too personal) sometimes it's about some bit of research you've done, maybe you're highlighting someone else. You are the author and editor, you get to decide what's worthy.

I also use my blog to run my online book club. It's such a great way to connect with people far beyond my own home town about great books. So glad I thought of it:)

Lisa, I completely agree with you. I think it is painfully obvious when authors blog only to promote their books. For me, they hold my attention for awhile but let's be honest, they are indulging in a close cousin of navel gazing: Novel gazing gets boring pretty quick. Tell me about your book, hell you can tell me about it every week. If I like you and your work I want to know how it's doing. But just like I don't expect my friends to only ever listen to me ramble about my kids, authors shouldn't expect people (except stalkers of course) to hang around if all we're reading about is their current Amazon ranking.

cs harris said...

A community--yes, that's it. It's like a circle of pen pals. I began mainly to show my publisher that I could still "do something" from the chaos of Katrinaville, but I continued because I found I enjoyed it. I enjoy other people's thoughts and insight, and making friends. I've also found I enjoy writing what frequently are essentially "columns," something I've never done before, and very different from writing fiction. As a mere promotional tool it would be a huge waste of time!

Lane said...

I started blogging because it was an outlet... a way to say something .. .anything. I thought it was said into the ether but bit by bit (thanks to the Novel Racers) it has become a community. I would never have believed a couple of months ago that I would now be 'speaking' to people who are trying to do the same thing as me, or seem to be 'on the same wavelength'. It's a connection that was lacking before and it's flippin' fantastic.
xx

Helen said...

I started blogging initially as I stumbled across the novel racers, but then I found it had two purposes.

1) It warmed up my writing muscles. Usually I start my day blogging and it starts me off. My creative writing tutor always used to say warm up your writing muscles before you start writing your novel or short story, just like an athelete would with real muscles. So I use blogging for that.
2) I feel like I am at work and all you other bloggers are my work mates. Occasionally we meet up at the water cooler and have a natter, then it's back on with the work.

liz fenwick said...

Lisa, I love your blog journey and I love you blog. I agree with you about authors who only promote books ones feels they are being made to it.

Nell, your blog is so you:-) I am always astounded when I read the pace you keep up with family, work and writing on so many fronts. It is a personal blog that is very unigue.

Un Peu I too am astounded at the support and friendships that have grown from blogging. In reality I may meet very few of these people but their friendship has become very important.

Ray-Anne , me thinks you blog is soooooooo lovelty to look at. What delicious hero have you posted today?

Lazy P. I too review books I have read but never thought of keeping track of them way. So pleased you found the Racers.

Ditto Jen :-)

Blog Book club Rebbecca - what a brilliant idea. The last two books you have chosen were only US based at the moment. Maybe your next selection?

C.S. the community is great and you share so much of what you have learned which makes it a fantasic blog learn from. Thanks :-)

Here , Lane, I was thinking your blog was an outlet for your little friend :-)

Helen, it's a good thought that blogging is warm up as it puts words on a page:-)

So pleased that Danuta's blog caused such a good discussion!

Alyssa Goodnight said...

I blog for writerly camraderie--to stay in touch with people who understand my everyday joys and woes.

One day though, maybe it'll be to keep me in touch with all my fans. ;)

Thanks for the link.

Sezzie said...

Hi Liz - yes I'd love to join in the new race! I am starting an MA in Creative Writing in a week so I need to start on another novel!
Sarahx

liz fenwick said...

Alyssa happy to post the link and thanks for stopping by.......

Sezzie, I've sent you another message........great to see you again here :-)

sheepish said...

I haven't read the other blog yet as I became too confused by the thought of Sunday coming before Saturday. I have enough trouble keeping track of the days when they follow each other normally!!!!
Glad to see that your little cat has settled in alright. Do you have to stay in the Hotel for long?

Carol and Chris said...

Hi Liz

I started my blog when we moved to Thailand so that my friends and family (especially my Gran who's 84) could read about what we were doing, see photo's and know that we were both ok. I've discovered two things

1. It's bridged the physical gap we don't feel like we're so far away. I get advice and comments on what I'm doing from friends and family - usually via e-mail but it means that I feel involved in their lives and they feel involved in mine!!

2. I now feel part of a community too....two really!! A community of people like Chris and I who are living in Thailand and a community of creative people like you, JJ, Caroline, Jen and Lane. I'm not a writer (and never will be!!) but I also struggling with creative demons and the advice offered on how to conquer them when writing works for when your drawing too!!

C x

liz fenwick said...

Hi Sheepish. Yes, it's very confusing. The cat is fine and yes we are in here for a long stretch......beginning of November. However, I do love the villa we are getting so it's worth the wait:-)

Hi Carol, I am seriously impressed that your 84 yr. old gran reads blogs. Now that is one hip pensioner :-)

I agree with all you say especially about the creative process being similar.....there is so much to be enjoyed by being part of a creative community.