Blogging: A Saga
So it isn’t really a saga, but I wanted it to be dramatic, and if SMeyer can do it so can I!
Basically this post is going to take you through the very basics of starting a blog, posting on it, and networking to find bloggy friends.
If you have more technical questions I will be available in the forums to answer!
Picking a platform:
This is probably the most important decision you will make in your blogging journey. While you can switch later on, and it is becoming increasingly less annoying to do so, it is a pain in the butt and you may end up losing some of your stuff. I’m going to list the four largest platforms and list the pros to help you choose what will work best for you.
Blogger is my favorite of the free services. It is very simple to use and there are tons of free themes out there. You can put whatever you want on your blog with no problems.
I really dislike the free WordPress for several reasons. If you feel more comfortable on this platform though and don’t mind the restrictions you should get along well. You cannot put flash in your sidebars (meaning no author countdown widgets). The content management system is very sophisticated and easy to use. You also cannot customize your theme at all.
I really, really, really love Tumblr and I do believe that micro blogging (Twitter, Facebook status updates) is the way of the future. I just don’t think your future agent/editor will want you to be on Tumblr only (even though you can have a direct URL). The fabulous thing about Tumblr is that not only is it free, you can upload any type of media, write any length of post, and have any theme you want! There are no flash restrictions.
Self hosted WordPress(.org):
Which is my absolute favorite. You can do anything you want because you own it! There are thousands upon thousands of free or cheap themes on the web for your baby WordPress. You don’t have to worry about Google, or WordPress going out of business and giving you a month to move your life’s work!
- Do post as much as you want or as little as you want. You do not need a schedule. Keep it fun, and happy for you.
- Do give your readers an insight to your personality. We want to relate to you!
- Do share whatever you feel comfortable sharing.
- Do share your writing experiences, successes, and failures.
- Do not post out of obligation.
- Do not post angry.
- Do not use this space to lament.
- Interview other authors, or ask them for guest posts. They may reciprocate!
- Leave comments on author blogs. Join in on the discussion.
- Use social media to get the word about your blog posts out.
- Hold bookish contests.
So basically, have fun, be smart, meet others, and learn to love to blog!
Pamela van Hylckama Vlieg joined Larsen Pomada as an Associate Literary Agent in 2012 to represent young adult and middle grade children’s book authors, and adult romance authors. Over the past four years Pam has become one of the top YA book bloggers in the country at Bookalicious.org. She also partners her blog with Hicklebee’s, a children’s bookstore in San Jose, CA.
Pam writes supernatural YA and MG fiction and is represented by Laurie McLean, also of Larsen Pomada Literary. She lives in the Bay Area of California with her Dutch husband, two children–a boy and a girl, the perfect set–a Jack Russell terrier, a bull dog puppy, and a small guinea pig. It is her greatest dream to own a menagerie.
Pam is giving away a query critique, and a 30-minute phone call with someone who has a finished, polished MS!! Comment on this post to enter!
Head over to our forum, where Pam will be taking your questions on blogging and social media LIVE.