Mark, Why Do You Blog?

I meet Mark from The Phantom M-pire during the June session of IWSG, Let’s Open it Up to the Group

His comment, “Hi Sydney, You have a lot of great advice here already, so I won’t pretend that I can add anything that hasn’t already been said. I will say, though, that as far as my ‘in the zone’ experiences go, they’re a lot like yours. I do that quite often and, sometimes, it’s like having a fresh pair of eyes on the story. Best wishes and keep writing!

Humble, encouraging and supportive. What more could you ask for? So, Mark, Why do you blog? 

I’ve spent the past five or six days really thinking about that and the answer came to me, late at night, when I was finishing up a blog post on how I’ve been trying to grow tomatoes in a bucket, of all things.

Way back when……back when I first started discovering and reading blogs, I started to get enchanted with getting a glimpse into a total stranger’s life. Their ups and downs, good times and bad, all that stuff. Why this appealed to me so much, I really can’t say. It was like I was kind of/sort of having a conversation with a total stranger and they were sharing their deepest, most intimate, thoughts with me. Of course, most of the blogs I was reading/following were of the “mundane” (to most people) variety and included such topics as comic books, writing, day to day activities, etc.

The more blogs I began to read, though, the more I thought ‘Hey, I like to write. I could, probably, do something like this. I had these thoughts of people coming across my blog and thinking ‘Wow, this guy is pretty neat!’ or something like that. A bit how I thought when I came across a cool blog. So, I set up a quick and easy blog on Blogger, because it looked to be the most ‘user friendly’, at the time….and went to work.

Then I realized that, while I thought I was a pretty neat person, I wasn’t necessarily all that interesting. I mean, I live a pretty normal life. I don’t cliff dive, jump out of planes, live in a cabin in the mountains, draw pictures for a living…..nothing like that. After a while, I resigned myself to the fact that I really didn’t have much of interest to “blog” about, so I stuck to just being a viewer. My blog went to the mothballs.

It wasn’t until a couple of years ago that I decided that I really wanted to be a writer. I’ve always loved writing and drawing as well as just creating things…..I figured writing would be where my greatest strengths lie.

I took part in National Novel Writing Month in 2011 and, actually, completed a novel…well, I mean, as far as getting 50K words down. I’m still working on the story so, maybe someday I’ll write an ending to it. Anyway, participating in NaNo brought me in touch with a ton of writers….many of them had…you guessed it….blogs.

Still a fan of reading blogs, I checked many of them out and, again, thought…’Hey, I could do this.’ So, that’s what I started to do….again. The main difference being, I was doing it for the exercise of writing….not because I was trying to be interesting or a neat-o type person.

I’ve had a few people say that they thought I was pretty neat and, honestly, that feels great. I am still a huge fan of reading/following blogs and still love glimpses into total stranger’s lives. I also hope people think the same thing when they visit my little corners of the blogosphere.

If they don’t, though, it’s o.k. My writing and my blogging is for me…for my writing exercise and to help hone my skills as a writer.

So, long story longer…..I blog because it’s a great writing exercise, it’s fun, and best of all, I’ve met a ton of great people along the way.

Thanks again, Sydney and happy one year anniversary in the blogosphere!

Misha, Why Do You Blog?

I have know Mish from My First Book  for quite awhile. She interviewed me on July 24, 2012 and her first comment on my blog was on September 18, 2012 in response to the Genre Favorites Blogfest (A Ninja Captain Alex creation).   

“I used to LOVE James Patterson, but it now feels like he just churns out stories without caring about quality. I mean, he never even writes his books any more. :-/”

So, Misha, why do you blog?

When Sydney asked me to write a post on this topic, I was sort of stumped. Not because I don’t have a reason for blogging, but because I have so many motivations for blogging that it’s difficult to pick one.

Basically, I started blogging because writing book after writing book highlighted the importance of building a platform. Easy, I’d thought. It wasn’t.

Blogging is actually very hard work, if you want to build a big following. And the bigger it becomes, the more work you have. So although having a following might one day be useful when I have a book to sell, it’s not really the reason why I blog. If it was, I’d have given up years ago.

No. Now that I’m actually writing this, I realize that most of the reasons why I blog comes down to one. You. Yes. You. The wonderful person reading this.

By writing something on my blog or someone else’s, I’m gifted with a wonderful opportunity to touch your life. If you comment, you get to touch mine in return.

I find that to be a wonderful experience. You advise me, guide me, sometimes you just listen to me or even commiserate with me. All that you require is that I do the same for you.

If you think about it, blogging is actually a profound experience. One we take for granted sometimes, but amazing all the same.

And I’m honored to be part of such an amazing online community.

Why do you blog? 

Tameri, Why do you blog?

My first 2nd year celebration post is from Tameri Etherton.  I meet Tameri on April 4, 2012. She commented on a blog post I wrote during the 2012 A to Z Challenge called H – History of Australia (Criminals & Drunks).  I’m sure the title had nothing to do with why she commented, but this is what she said, “I think ‘sculled’ is my new new favorite word (it was ‘goober’ until reading this). I’m assuming sculled means drank? If so, I’m totally using it in my next book!”
Thank you, Tameri, for all your support. So, Tameri, Who do you blog? 

That’s a tricky question. As writers, we’re told we need to blog, that we must find our readers and cultivate an audience, but to me, that seems trite. Dishonest, even.

I don’t blog to court fame, I do it for the simple reason that I like people and I always want to know their story.

Through blogging I’ve met some amazing people, like Sydney. People I wouldn’t normally have the chance to know if not through their presence online. Some of these people I’ve had the extraordinary pleasure of meeting offline. Whether I know them in person or just through cyber space, all of them have enriched my life in a multitude of ways that not only could I never count, but never repay.

That’s why I blog. As a thank you to those other bloggers out there and as a way to connect with people.

If my words can touch someone, then I’ve accomplished something remarkable.

If my words make someone laugh, then the world is a bit lighter for their laughter.

Words matter. Whether they be critical and harsh, or positive and full of hope, they influence the way we think, feel, speak, and live. I blog because my words are a connection from me to other humans out in the nether reaches of the Internet. They connect us.

And connections are what make my heart smile. Because in the end, a connection made is a friendship formed.

Friendships formed are stories shared. People are fascinating creatures with the most incredible stories to tell and I like hearing them.

What’s your story?