This weekend I went to a conference, and one of the workshops I took was titled " Blogging: A Must For a Writer." The presenter was Anne R. Allen, who has a blog...www.annerallen.blogspot.com...about writing. When I was signing up for the workshops, I hesitated about hers because I already have a blog, but then I decided I could always use some new tips on blogging. Her information was solid and helpful, so I'm going to pass along some of it to you.
IMPORTANT TO DO:
1. Read other blogs and comment, comment, comment! That is one way to get your name out, besides making the blog author feel good. Always leave your own blog address in your comment, then those who read the comments can find you. She also said it was important to respond to the people who leave comments on your blog.
2. Your name should always be in the title of your blog. "Cutesy" titles relating to writing, or to your family, or to your dog, are great if you are not concerned about readers, editors, publishers, and agents finding you on the Internet. But if you are blogging seriously, with the intent of making your presence as a writer known, then your blog absolutely has to have YOUR NAME in the title. She talked about how search engines look for new names in any field...business, writing/publishing, medicine, etc... and if your name is not in the title of your blog, you can't be found by anyone.
3. Publishers, editors, and agents DO look at blogs. If you've had an acceptance from a query, even if it's only for a partial, the publisher or editor or agent will probably look you up on the Internet, especially if you've given the name of your blog in your personal information. If your name is not in the title of your blog, this is not going to make a great impression, even if your blog is well-written. Putting your name in the title is the number one thing to do with your blog. (Great...only my first name is on the address of my blog, and my name isn't on the title at all. Guess that means I have to change it...can you do that with Blogger?)
4. Use TAGS...as many as possible. This was an interesting comment. I've never used tags, didn't know they were important at all. She said that the tags, again, were a way for Google and other search engines to find you. You should tag the name of anyone mentioned in your blog post, as well as the main topics of your post. Anne called it Search Engine Optimization! Something else I need to start doing!
5. Keep to a schedule! Anne suggested once a week, and on the same day each week. She said that if you have nothing to say, DON'T POST! This was mainly for people who are new to blogging, but she was insistent about how you needed to have something of worth to post about, not just post because you're taking a break from writing, and can't think of anything else to occupy your time!
6. Anne talked about privacy settings, and said you should turn off Word Verification, because it does NOT prevent spammers, and it's annoying to most who come to leave comments. I definitely agree about that, I hate those dumb things! She also said that comments over a week all should be sent to you for approval, because old ones attract spam.
7. She talked about how your blog should look. She suggested using only a very few pictures, and NO MUSIC! You should definitely have an "about me" page, and she also suggested other "gadgets" such as "followers," "subscribe," "share," and "search." Blogger now has pages you can add as well as the gadgets, so that's a big plus.
These were all the "positive" or "should do" tips Anne gave. My next post will be about all the "negative" or "should not do" tips. Stay tuned!
Until next time,
That's a wrap.