time management

Writing & Blogging – Finding the Balance

In North Carolina, it’s common knowledge that if you don’t like the weather, have patience. It’ll change in a day or two.  After the blizzard of 2016, to which residents of coastal NC were casual observers, we had a couple days of rain and then a warming trend. Today (Sunday) saw a high in the upper 60’s and plenty of sunshine.  When days come along like this – you have to take advantage of them.  I grabbed some paper and a pen and headed to the park.

 

Dreams do come true for those who dare to believe in themselves

View from my Sunday writing desk – a picnic table at Stump Sound Park

The change of scenery provided me with an escape from the distractions of home. Scenes unfolded and the words came. It was wonderful – so wonderful, I’m thinking that a weekly writing escape might be in order.

And then comes my blog…

I stumbled across a blog post talking about the reasons a blog is a waste of time for a writer and that prompted a lot of thinking on my part.  Am I a writer who blogs? Am I a blogger who writes? Does it really make a difference?

If you are a writer, I’m sure you can relate to the dilemma so many of us face.

Over and over, we are told:

Build your platform!

Grow your audience!

Blog!  Tweet!  Pin!

And we do it or at least we try…

But in doing so, it’s easy to lose sight of the reason we’re doing all of this – because we want to write books – we want to share our stories – and the time we’d spend conjuring those tales is instead spent on creating content for our blogs and being good neighbors over in Twitter-land…

Maybe that’s a necessary evil.

I’m not sure.

What I have learned is this –

Blogging doesn’t equate to selling books.

And neither does tweeting.

Writing more books, however, definitely increases the likelihood of sales.

Not convinced?

On Twitter, I follow boohoos of authors.  Some do nothing but scream “Buy my book!” I admit it – I ignore those tweets.  Others share links to their blogs – offering great content – maybe an interesting podcast – and if I find them helpful, I sign up for their emails. On occasion, I might purchase an e-book.  But the thing is – that’s not an everyday occurrence and just because I find a twitter account informative doesn’t mean I’m going to buy the author’s books.  The same holds true with blogs.

I don’t think I’m alone in this…

It’s not that I don’t appreciate the author’s efforts.  I do.  But my goodness – who has the time or the financial resources to support every writer we come in contact with?

When it comes to my blog-

I try to offer interesting content. My followers/daily traffic is increasing. I know that building a following takes time.  That being said – all the blogging and tweeting really haven’t made a difference in my book sales.  And that’s okay.  I like blogging. I’ve made connections with people from all over the world – friendships that were made possible because of our blogs.

What’s it going to be?

My focus will be on my writing.  That’s my dream.  BUT – I’ll continue to blog and if blogging leads to a book sale then great.  And if blogging continues to open doors to different parts of the world, allowing me to meet new people and share ideas with them, that’s even better!

What about you?  How do you balance blogging, writing, and all the rest?

Time Saving Tip:

In an effort to maintain my social media presence with a minimal time investment, I’ve turned to Hootsuite.  If you haven’t tried this scheduling option, I’d encourage you to check it out.  By scheduling your tweets, etc – you can in effect be in multiple places at one time.  I may be at work but Hootsuite is sending out my tweets/facebook posts, etc – making me look active.  Hootsuite also provides links to relevant content (blogs) that you can share on your various accounts. Best of all – it’s free. (There is a paid option available.)