Let’s talk about blogging

I admit to not being the best blog friend lately. In my defense, I've been kind of busy. One of the things I did was to create a list in WordPress. I follow over a thousand blogs, but those who interact went in that list. When I'm pressed for time, I limit myself to that list.

Blogging seems to have slowed down from my point of view. I've been at this since the Fall of 2013, and I suppose that makes me an old timer. People come and go, and I've gotten used to that. I had many friends who simply disappeared for various reasons. It seemed like new bloggers came along, but lately that isn't the case.

Maybe I should clarify a bit. New ones are out there, but they seem to be different. This is reflected in the stats: My views are up, but my likes and comments are down. I miss the interaction.

I've discovered a few new blogs over the past year. I tried courting them, but I get nothing back in return. Maybe you know this game. You comment on an interesting post or two. Maybe you get a “thanks,” or a comment like. They never visit my blog.

This doesn't make the person's blog any less interesting, but interaction is important to me. If I get interaction, I'm likely to keep up and leave comments. If it's a one way street, I don't have time for that.

I find it odd that the likes have gone down on my blog, but the views are way up. I had a couple of posts this year that did phenomenally well, but they never made it onto my top ten posts.

For the top ten, I use a WordPress widget. I had it set to track likes as the criteria. The post about Spying With Lana had thousands of views, but didn't get the 45 likes to make my top ten. This is odd, because the percentage of likes to views has changed.

My post about writing a short story went crazy thanks to Flipboard. Again, thousands of views. Never gained enough likes to make the list. There were more commenters than likes.

Recently, I changed the widget to track views instead. This screwed everything up to be honest. The post about my PSA and prostate warning should still be in the top ten. My “about me” page should too. Spying With Lana should show up too, but doesn't. This setting seems to only track the last week of posts for some reason. It said it takes about two days to fully adjust, so I'll monitor the situation.

I still get a few people who like every post, but never comment. I always assume they like it from the WordPress Reader, but don't actually read the posts. I know everyone gets a few of these, and don't give it a second thought.

The fact is that I've noticed a change in blogging. This is data, and it probably means something. What can I do with the data to move my writing career ahead?

I love blogging, and the friends I've made here. I have no intention of giving it up. My readers come for various reasons, but I have a small loyal crowd.

Is it time for me to look for an additional platform? It isn't just the followers and friends. This is an author site, and I want to build interest in my books. Is there something extra I should be doing?

I've had private conversations with some fellow authors, and the consensus is that fewer bloggers are willing to help these days. This is a limited group, but it concerns me. Authors need hosts for cover reveals, promotions, excerpts, and more. I've always helped, and intend to keep helping, but again… This is data, and it means something, even if I don't know what.

When I asked for beta readers for The Playground, I had two people take me up on it. This is in stark contrast to The Experimental Notebook where I started turning people away after seven volunteers.

I will always need beta readers, but if I have to start paying for them, I might stop publishing altogether. My writing journey has never been about the money, but I need to break even. I still get the journey of self improvement without the worry of promotion.

I admit these are limited observations. Maybe a bigger view would produce different data. So I have a few questions for you as bloggers and as authors.

My views are exponentially higher than 2015. This is great! My likes and comments are down, and that's odd. What does this mean? Are people just stopping by to collect new Lisa Burton art? They're welcome to it, of course, (I use them for iPad and iPhone backgrounds too) but a comment or two goes a long way.

Could it be that I'm reaching more people beyond WordPress, and it isn't simple for them to like or comment? If so, that's great. I've run into that problem myself, and understand.

Are fellow authors having a harder time getting help with promotions, hosts, and pushes?

Have I missed the newest form of social media somewhere, and need to jump on the bandwagon?

Do you prefer interaction, or would you rather have people read and move on?

Has anyone else courted an interesting blogger, but the relationship never happened? Maybe I'm strange that way.

In any case, I'm on vacation for a few days, and hope to get some writing done. Today was all about errands, and those are out of the way. I'll probably post a little more frequently this weekend, and I'll try to catch up on some blog reading. I promise to like the posts I read.

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104 Comments

Filed under Blogging

104 responses to “Let’s talk about blogging

  1. To be honest… I think it is falling into the whole… takes to much time to comment and such. I have always struggled to get a lot of dialog going in my comments, but it seems to be slowing more every day. I know that my blog is posted and reposted on Twitter by various people, but they never comment. I personally want the interaction myself. That was one of the biggest things I loved about blogging from the beginning. The sense of community. But it would seem that online communities are shifting, evolving into something else. People are all busy on their smart phones, bombarded by input continually all day long. I think that they don’t even take the time to fully read things, because it is to them, too long. Just some things I have noticed too. The online world is continually shifting and it is hard to keep up…

    Ravyn

    Liked by 5 people

  2. I can only comment on this with my personal experiences. The Playground is dark, so I probably won’t read it. BUT The Experimental Notebook was a collection of varied stories, so I was interested and happy to be a beta reader. That’s just me.
    I have at least four people who Like a series of my blogs all at once, and who I know never read them. Sometimes people are dumb enough to leave a comment that, in fact, demonstrates they did not read it. (Or they think I’m dumb, whatever.)
    There are some posts I’ve had double or even triple my regular views on and are read regularly, without additional Likes or Comments. People sometimes message me to thank me for the info on head lice or cooking, but I think this increased viewing has a lot to do with sharing. A lot of people will click a link and read or look, but they don’t necessarily want to create a WP account. Even when they do, if they’re not part of the community, they don’t know the value of it. My husband, for instance, reads people here and there, but he seldom logs in, despite telling me at length how he enjoyed So-and-So’s post about dogs. I’ll share others’ links here and there, and I’ll go back, see that there is no indication that they read the posts, but then discuss it and find out, yes, they did read them.
    I also think some people would rather read without our knowledge. Well, I know this, lol, but that’s okay, we all have stealth readers, right?
    I hope you don’t switch platforms, surely WP is the best. Adding, doubling, simultaneous posting on other sites, that might bring more interaction. I dunno, I’m happy with my regulars. 🙂
    I started months before you, and you have accomplished much more than I.

    Liked by 1 person

    • People should only read what they like. I don’t expect everything to appeal to everyone. That includes posts as well as stories. I would never create an account just to leave a comment on say Tumblr for instance. WordPress is the best blogging site going and I have no intention of leaving. It might be that I’m reaching more of the non-Wordpress folks. That’s a good thing.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I think this is interesting as I am new to blogging and am still undecided about how much time to spend on my blog. I enjoy chatting with visitors, but feel I should post more often, which can be difficult to squeeze into an already tight schedule.
    Social media like Twitter is such an instant way to contact people and has made me wonder if perhaps the response time between leaving a comment on a blog and waiting for a reply, leaves people moving on to something else where the interaction is more immediate?

    Liked by 1 person

  4. These are interesting observations Craig. I’m sorry blogging is loosing some of it’s community for you. For me this happened quite a while ago. I’ve had a few bad experiences with blogging friendships but mainly I have less time to do anything let alone the writing I should be doing. I’ve always admired the amount of interaction you have through your blog. I always reply to comments on my blog but tend to only regularly read your’s and Margot’s (Confessions of a Mystery Novelist) again time is a factor. I read others occasionally and I have taken time to support real life friends with their blogs and comment on them but got no replies. One of them is a pro-blogger and seems to rarely reply and yet earns a decent amount from blogging. I have no idea where blogging lies in the marketing mix. I have a news board attached to my writing website that gets decent views and brings people to my site. It raises awareness but as for sales, for me the one and only thing that consistently works is face-to-face. We are in a world saturated by information and out brains can’t take it all in. We look for free information don’t have the capacity or time to interact anymore before the next bit of info is thrown at us. I hope some of this makes sense and doesn’t just sound like I’m having a general whinge. Anyway, I’m still reading your blog and I think it’s great 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Its so reciprocal WP. But like you say some bloggers will take no notice of your interactions which is ok, but given the platform gets deflating after awhile and it peters out…on to the next.
    A lot of people like and never read the post, I see it happen live, five stories get liked in 5 seconds. Whats the point…
    But for some bloggers liking 300 posts a day without really reading them is a sucess due to the returned likes, views etc. and increased followership. Really bloody sad, but its done.

    As for your drop in figures, I wouldnt sweat it too much. This time of year seems to have an effect. Your numbers sound dam good. As for interaction, see above, a lot of people only ever like which makes me wonder if they really read at all. Some are more timid and prefer to read but not get involved. Comments are gold dust and I am thankful for each one, although of course the more the better.

    Liked by 3 people

  6. My blogging waxes and wanes – especially now that I’m doing work and school. And I know I’ve become a bit of a bad blog friend. I need to refocus on it,as I miss blog interaction as well. It seems hard to drive traffic, hard to get likes, and hard to have conversations. I’ve played a bit on G+, tumblr, and Twitter…but while you can get a fair bit of likes (sometimes) on those sites, I think that the regular blog is best for interaction. Not sure. I still feel like I’m somehow doing social media “wrong.” They should have a class for it. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I haven’t been very active myself lately, but for me it has been the opposite. I have fewer views, but more likes. It’s odd.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I ask several of these questions myself. It would be awesome if stats could somehow quantify how much of a post people read. I thought a lot of people weren’t reading my posts but they assured me they were, they just did it by email, so never bothered to stop by and hit like or what not. Honestly though, don’t worry about likes. This is pure speculation on my part, but where the WordPress reader can be so limiting, I think a lot of people have found different readers that work for them. Which means less likes and such. Plus you could definitely be hitting a larger audience than WordPress as you pointed out.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I find the same about views vs likes. Way more views. I have attributed that to non-WP readers as a lot of people don’t want to “sign up” so they can interact. Or maybe I am writing crap and they read it but don’t really like what I have to say. Who knows? I also find that tons of people visit my blog and follow or like a post and expect reciprocity that I simply cannot give. I am only one person with a family and career and so I am selective about who I spend my time on. The dynamic on WP with follows and likes and all of that is very strange, feels almost artificial, and I find I am much more suspicious of people’s motives nowadays.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. This is an interesting post, Craig, and you’ve articulated several things I’ve been thinking about lately. I only have a limited time to look at blogs (like most of us, I’m sure), and am finding that I tend to stick with those people who interact, as that’s the most important thing for me. I have ‘courted’ (love that term) blogs before and got nowhere.
    On the Bloggers Bash this past weekend, we had a presentation by a WordPress employee which was quite interesting. He reminded us that, in order to blog effectively, we need to remember why we started in the first place. He went around the room asking people why they blog, and the variety of answers were quite interesting. However, if (like you and I) we are blogging to gain an audience, his feeling was that we should try as many different social media apps as possible, in order to reach the largest audience. Even Google Plus! 😀 He also talked a bit about a new app called Telegram – I haven’t looked at it yet.
    Like one of your commenters upthread, I’ve had plenty of posts shared on Twitter, yet don’t know if people have actually read them, or are just sharing. And I think that’s where WP can let us down. If people read our posts via email, but don’t hit like or comment, it doesn’t get counted as a view (as I understand it). So I’m wondering whether the numbers matter at all…

    Liked by 1 person

  11. I’ve tried with some blogs but don’t get a response often. A handful do and I appreciate it because I read their stuff, they usually read mine. I realize we all don’t have the same tastes in posts but I get a few likes here and there, like you, mostly from those who give and take. I do get likes elsewhere but although I try and stop by their blogs, oftentimes they don’t return the favor. I’ve been pretty fortunate to still be growing. I’m not doing so in leaps and bounds, but it’s been steady. I would like more interaction but with links, it’s hard to get that. I’m hoping my new Muse stories once a month will help. I still find your blog one of the most interesting out there!! I think blogs have slowed down in general. Of course, maybe I’d be hopping a bit more if I had more than just one story in an anthology…

    Liked by 1 person

  12. We’ve talked about this a few times, so you know I feel like I’m in the same boat. I stopped using my reader and only going through email because the reader caused me to miss a lot. That and it was predominantly reblogs, so I would see the same post 3-4 times in a row. I agree that interactions seem to have gone down. Personally, I’ve had a lot less time to read through really long posts. I try to do something, but this year has been insane as far as maintaining energy and time management. Maybe it’s not just me dealing with that.

    I find that it’s usually the same people responding and it doesn’t matter if it’s an excerpt, questions 3, info post, or a promo. Humor posts like the lists and Olde Shoppe skits tend to do a little better. That gets slightly frustrating because my blog is predominantly for talking about my books and writing. I don’t pay attention to anything more than comments since I care more about the interactions than likes.

    To be honest, it does feel like there are more bloggers staying in their territory. Come to think of it, does WordPress still do that Freshly Pressed thing or suggest blogs to people? I wonder if the platform has made it more difficult to find blogs. Kind of like wandering Facebook isn’t what it used to be.

    Liked by 2 people

    • That’s where I’m at too. My posts get the same people every time. Even a blog tour is hard, because most of us follow the same crowd. WordPress ditched Fresh Pressed some time ago.

      Like

      • Maybe that’s another obstacle that we haven’t really considered. WordPress’s changes might have blocked people from running into each other so easily. Blog tours and cover reveals are really strange these days. They feel like a necessity, but I don’t have much faith in them.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I keep looking for realistic advertising options, but haven’t discovered anything yet. That’s aside from blogging, but part of the game. People have seen too many tours and covers. I’m afraid they don’t have the muscle they once had.

        Like

      • It’s getting tougher. A lot of places closed up or got eaten by the bigger ones. I keep looking for interviews, but they’re even rarer. As far as cover reveals and blog tours, their lost luster is why I only do one of them when the book goes live. At least with volunteers.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I may do the next cover on my blog, and invite folks to share it on social media that day. Then when I need tour hosts, I haven’t used all my goodwill.

        Like

      • Exactly. That’s what I’ve been doing the last few times. To be fair, it’s also because I tend to get my covers right before the release time.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I try to do all of that ahead of time. I also have to get Lisa art. Well, I don’t have to, but it’s part of the culture around here now.

        Like

      • Things will probably be easier when I finish the big series and ease up the schedule. I saw this year how being quiet for a while can hurt all of the books, so I’m nervous about easing off.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Well, I’m screwed then. I’ve been really quiet as far as promotion goes. I don’t intend to do much this Summer either. I’ll blog and post some stuff, but a campaign to push a title is not on the table.

        Like

      • Summer is really slow and that’s regardless of promotions. Good time to take it easy and be picky about the advertising.

        Liked by 1 person

  13. I am probably guilty here. I will visit and like blogs but instead of comments I’m more likely to tweet.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Like the first comment from Random I believe it is indeed all about time. When I first started with WordPress I would not read postings longer than 300 words simply because there was so much out there. But I would not fail to comment because I think that is the bloggers payment for their work. You said,”Do you prefer interaction” and I can say yes I do, because whether pro or con the reader thought it was worth their time to communicate with me.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. I have people who “like” from the reader. My views are always higher than likes or comments. I too visit interesting blogs and get a “thanks for the visit” type response and nothing else. I follow a bunch of people who do not interact at all. I don’t mind and only visit them when the subject is interesting. I also have a hardcore of commenters, and I love each of them to death. These are the interactions that I enjoy. Book sales are almost non-existent as it relates to blog activity. I haven’t noticed a hard time getting help but have noticed a certain cliquishness among bloggers that becomes difficult to feel comfortable joining.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. I’ve talked with a few friends about this. I blamed myself for my hiatus after my dad died. I was only visiting a few blogs regularly and commenting. When I tried to get back into the swing of things, nobody was there. Well, some were, but nearly as many as before. Some of those aren’t even blogging anymore. That’s okay. I like making new friends. Yet, I’m going through the same courting experiences you described. It makes me feel as if I’m wasting valuable time if I follow, like, comment, engage, repeat twenty or thirty times, and the blogger never stops by my blog with a like, a comment or even a follow back. Seems there is a different crowd out there. I don’t want to say less friendly…I think people are so strapped for time…like Victo said…you post, you try to return comments on your own blog, but who really has time to journey around struggling to engage. I don’t work outside the home and it’s all I can do to hit my hundred email list daily (which I purge and replace repeatedly with people who DO interact). I don’t know what the answer is. I followed Anne R. Allen’s advice and made new accounts everywhere, snap chat, peach, pinterest, instagram, google +. I can hardly get to Twitter and spend way too much time of FB. Facebook used to be a fabulous platform to work off of, but changing their posting algorithms and charging for boosted post shot that to hell. I get no traction on Twitter despite what I try. I follow more than 1000 people and less than 600 follow me. None of it ever translates to book sales that I’m aware of. I’ve always loved the community on WordPress, but got really frustrated with the platform when they started all that, reader, editor and stats page tweaking. It’s really kinda sad.

    Liked by 4 people

  17. I definitely prefer interaction over views. While I first started blogging mainly as a way to vent, the connections are more important to me now.

    Liked by 3 people

  18. For me time has been an issue. I often have to forgo reading blogs altogether and when I do find time to check my reader (on the train or bus) I find myself wanting to read as many of the blogs I follow as possible, so my commenting suffers. Or sometimes I just don’t have anything of merit to add.

    As for beta readers, I never raised my hand because I figured you had a surplus of volunteers. Silly me! Count me in for any future projects please!

    Liked by 3 people

  19. Enjoyed reading everyone else’s comments. I’ll keep this brief – I think as the blogging world has exploded, there are more and more bloggers out there to follow and to be followed. This limits the time bloggers used to have to be active both blogging and comments. I think faced with the onslaught, some have given up!

    Liked by 2 people

  20. I tried the WP widgets for top 10 but I didn’t like the way they were configured. My posts that had the most comments never seemed to rank and those are the ones that got the most interaction.

    I’m like you….I follow a to of blogs, but I only interact regularly with a handful. That’s because a). I’m limited on time, and b). I interact with those who interact with me. I’ve got loyal followers and I want to be loyal to them in return. I have done the “courting” thing and sometimes it’s paid off, other times it hasn’t.

    Personally, I like interaction, too….even if it’s just a 1-2 line comment on a post. It’s makes a greater impact than a simple like, and I think it contributes to building friendships.

    My small circle has been very helpful with cover reveals and blog posts, but I’ve actually pulled back on submitting them, doing a lot of my promo on FB and other paid sites. When I have a new release I will always look to my blogger/writer friends for assistance, but I’ve stopped doing that with cover reveals.

    I’ve been blogging since February 2012 and my circle of friends now is drastically different than it was then. I might have 1-2 friends still remaining from that highly active original circle but most have moved on, vanished, or given up on writing altogether. Since then I’ve made new friends (hi, Craig! :)) and the circle has changed.

    And if I’m honest, my genre(s) has changed, so maybe it’s partly my fault.
    I also think that maybe, sometimes it involves in scouring out new blogs and interacting with them instead of remaining in our own small circles…and that involves the precious commodity of time!

    Thanks for a great post!

    Liked by 3 people

    • Great comments. My circle has changed dramatically, but as some leave others show up. I don’t know that I ever had a formal genre. There are a lot of good thought in the comments, including the idea that WP is more competitive right now too.

      Liked by 1 person

  21. If your increased ratio of visits to likes is because of non-wordpress users visiting your site, then that’s great. Maybe you can dig into some referral stats and see if it appears true.

    I know when I visit blogs hosted elsewhere, I won’t create an account just to leave comments.

    Liked by 2 people

  22. I have recently made a concerted effort to spend more time on WordPress after neglecting it for the best part of 2 years but it is hard. When I started blogging I was a bit of a loner living at my mum’s house, spending all my time in my room making connections etc.

    Since then I met a guy, moved in with him, got engaged to him, got promoted at work and started studying for a degree. I found myself with a lot less spare time on my hands. Now I have to make time, instead.

    Incidentally, I wrote a blog post this week regarding being a Beta reader. Whenever you have something you want read, send me a message!

    Liked by 1 person

    • That sounds like a pretty wonderful two years. Many bloggers only post a couple of times per month, or less. I have a goal, so I’m much more frequent. Appreciate you commenting, and I’ll keep you in mind for beta projects.

      Liked by 1 person

  23. Hmm…I’m not really phased by the likes. I’d much rather have folks interact with me, even if it’s just “Great post!” so I know I’m not wasting my time. I always leave a comment and share via social media. I figure it’s the least I can do for the blogger whose spent precious time writing the post. I’ve narrowed my list due to time-constraints, which is hard because there are so many fantastic bloggers out there. But I’ll always read my friend’s post to support them. Plus, I enjoy the blogs. I’m not sure I’m helping you to find the answers you’re seeking. Just sharing my experience, is all.

    Liked by 4 people

  24. 2016 seems to be the year of not having enough time. I get your blogs in my email and tend to read them quickly because I have a limited amount of time to get several things done before I must leave my house and get other things done. It’s the rush-rush-rush syndrome (and it sucks). So, sometimes, I don’t click over to your blog and like/comment. :-/ As an author and a blogger (I use that term loosely since I rarely make time to post new blogs – I’m trying to get better at it), I know the importance of interaction. But I try to use whatever spare time I have to write my novel (and I’m having difficulty even finding time for that). I don’t have a solution, but if I find one, I’ll be sure to share it. 😉

    Liked by 2 people

  25. For myself, I tend to comment on posts I really like, and regularly with a few of my blogging friends, but it boils down to time. I’m working hard at finishing the current revision of my WIP, as I have 3 agents waiting for the full, so I’ve cut back both on reading blogs (except for my regulars, including yours) and commenting. I still like to help out with promos, etc by sharing through Twitter. As for beta reading, right now my dance card is full. As you know, working full time, parenting, trying to write a novel or three, and trying to stay active in an online community is tough to coordinate (you, however, seem to excel at it).

    Oh, and more Otto 🙂 He’s adorable!

    Liked by 3 people

    • I find myself with no free time in doing all of it though. I appreciate your visits and see your card all the time. Writing time and reading time is a premium, and the world has to wait for a few hours then. There is an Otto video up on Facebook.

      Liked by 1 person

  26. I’d observe that people come to blogging with their own needs and desires. Some are just “flipping through the Internet” looking for a momentary interest. These will view but not comment.

    In your case, they might be attracted by Lisa’s art but then leave after they realize you have an actual blog about your career and it’s not just girlie art.

    Others are more focused on a single topic. Those may be the ones who share without comment. Or with a brief comment like “heck yeah!” So these people will be attracted by a post like the one you did on experiencing gender bias. Again, they’ll wander off when they realize you don’t spend a lot of time with their one topic.

    Then there are those I call “aggregators.” Their blogs consist entirely of reblogs, so they have a high volume and look busy, but don’t actually do their own work. Maybe they’re trying to earn money by getting the most “clicks,” who knows?

    The good news is, some are actually looking to network. Those are the ones who regularly comment and share, and if you comment they’ll reply or at least “like” your comment. Mostly these are other writers who are building their community of support and/or publicizing themselves. Just because they’re looking to network doesn’t mean you’ll click and form a blogging friendship, but the likelihood is better.

    With many people saying their interactions have fallen, my guess is that the first type of blog visitors may already have wandered on to the next big thing. The second and third types may follow you for a while in hopes of another post like the one that caught their eye.

    Aside from being yourself and being friendly, there’s not a lot you can do keep them. But for those who are looking to make connections, being yourself and being friendly might be all you need to do.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Those seem like reasonable conclusions. I’ve noticed all of those types before. I agree that my best approach is to keep doing what I’ve always done. Do you think there might be another media I should patronize along with everything else?

      Liked by 1 person

      • Every one has its own audience, so maybe think about who you are wanting to reach. If you’re after young people, definitely follow the trends. Personally, I think you shouldn’t take on anything you don’t enjoy, because you’d be less likely to stick with it.

        Liked by 2 people

      • I really dislike social media. I feel like I need to come up with something clever every day in 140 characters or less. It must be done, so I should limit myself to those I can keep up with.

        Liked by 2 people

  27. I’ve always found that people prefer liking than commenting and sometimes not even that. I’ve had posts with a good number of views but without a single comment, like or share. Then I have one with very few views but a good number of likes…

    Of course, this is me we’re talking about so “a good number” is usually around 3 for likes and 40 for views. I don’t really do very well on stats.

    Have fun on the holiday and get to the writing. I recently made the conscious decision to start writing more stuff that I like ad not get bogged down in the reviews and previews. I fell into a rut, writing for fun is liberating. Right now I’m working on short stories again, which feels awesome! 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    • I worked on a novel and a short story today. It wound up being a productive day, and I’ll post about it tonight. Stats vary widely. This situation has revealed itself over time. Like I said, my views are way up so I shouldn’t complain. It’s just strange that my interaction in the form of likes and comments are down at the same time. Except for this post, it got people talking.

      Liked by 2 people

      • I read the post and it’s always fascinating for me how different writers do their thing. I outline and then write chapters. I don’t focus on pages or word count, just on the chapter’s story. Do you write it all first and then decide where you’ll split the chapters? I’m intrigued

        By the way, I’m working on a few short stories and I put up an article yesterday with a poll for which one I should work on first. Would love it if you dropped a vote 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • I make a storyboard. Then I write the sections between my index cards. Those sections take as long as they take. I try to break my chapters at ten pages, but that varies depending on a good breaking point. I’ll look for your post.

        Liked by 2 people

  28. Relative newbie. Commenting here. Inviting all your followers to look at my blog and critique it – really. What one thing would you say generally I ought to attempt to do? Trying to do two blogs a week. Information overload…….

    Liked by 1 person

    • I appreciate the request for help. This is an old post, so you’re unlikely to attract my regulars, but I get alerted to all comments. Posts have about an 8 hour lifespan.

      Be yourself is first. Provide interesting, original content. Don’t become a mass reblogger. That way when you have something to share it gets taken seriously.

      Photos help. A heron might have looked good in one of your posts I read.

      Interact. Mom used to say, “If you would have a friend, be one.” This isn’t possible across a thousand blogs, but you’ll find some close to your heart, and might have something to add. It starts slow, and in my case builds slow. I have a pretty loyal bunch of regulars though, and consider them close friends. Have fun with it.

      Liked by 1 person

  29. I’ve wondered the same things – even as I rarely have time to comment on every blog I read myself. I also wonder about folks who comment but don’t “like.” I doubt I am anything approaching a “typical” member of the blogging community, but after 5 years, I simply let whatever happens run off the hill and post when it makes sense with my life to do so. I’ve never noted that attempting any sort of “formula” makes any difference what-so-ever. I don’t particularly like to interact with blogs that post several times a day, however – or even every day, with few exceptions – so if they are doing that to increase interaction of ANY sort, it is back-firing where I am concerned.

    I blame a lack of interaction overall on the proliferation of the one or two line “social” formats that pretend to pass for communication. Magpies on a wire. Still, it eats the hours for many. I don’t like text/tweet/snap platforms so don’t engage there myself.

    Even reading and liking FB comments can take a chunk out of an evening by the time readers catch up with what everybody’s cute kids had for dinner and why this or that politician is the demon’s spawn. LinkedIn has become little more than email phishing anymore, so I concentrate on blogs and blogging for the most part – but run away screaming at the first pop-up, scroll-over or hyperactive ad (or misbehaving ad script). I truly despise “push” formats.

    I’m particularly chatty so don’t expect tit for tat in return, but when I take the time to leave a comment I like to see an acknowledgment that indicates that the blog owner read it and appreciates the reality that minutes of my life have been used to do so. That’s sort of my bell-weather. “Thanks for sharing” gets old quickly and I stop visiting after a couple of those.

    Whenever I see that a blog has a string of comments without responses (which I read & “like” when one particularly catches my eye), it feels to me that the writer doesn’t *deserve* a comment from me – or anybody else, but that’s their business. Psychology Today bloggers are TERRIBLE about engaging with people who comment, for example, and it just feels terribly rude to me.

    When time is particularly short, however, I will occasionally “like” from the Reader (which I generally avoid otherwise), just to acknowledge that I’m still alive and want to support the blogger in some fashion. When I do that, I generally end up “reading more” of a few – usually those who have interacted on my blog – and might leave a brief comment in that case.

    I don’t “court” (as you put it) – but I do try to visit & interact with a new-to-me blog whenever I can – especially the blogs of those who follow me or comment on the blogs I follow. I am amazed, however, at how many haven’t linked their site to their gravitar profile. If it takes me time to search for them, that’s time I can’t use reading OR writing.

    I could go on – but then it would be its own article 🙂 and this is probably too long already – especially on a legacy post. (Your title intrigued me, FYI)
    xx,
    mgh
    (Madelyn Griffith-Haynie – ADDandSoMuchMore dot com)
    – ADD Coach Training Field founder; ADD Coaching co-founder –
    “It takes a village to transform a world!”

    Liked by 1 person

    • I live for comments, and thank you for your well thought out one. I’ve never heard the term legacy post, but I like it. To me the like button is a calling card. Let’s people know I was there when I don’t have something to contribute. Doesn’t mean I didn’t like the post, just means I don’t have something to add. If you look at the Gravitar as a calling card, it should be more than an image of some kind. It’s how you find me online.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I’m with you on the pleasures of comments — I’m currently living in a city where I have few “friends with bodies” as I like to say, so my virtual community has become all the more important to me.

        I may have coined “legacy post” – or may have unintentionally stolen it – but I like it too. I hate the idea that articles have a shelf life, as if everyone has the time to read everything on the web within 8 hours of its post date.

        LOL on the “nothing to add” – I’m not sure that has ever happened in my lifetime. 🙂 For me, it’s always lack of time (and and a kludgy keyboard that slows me down doesn’t help much).

        I try to take the time to click the images of my “likers” and return the favor – thus the gravitar comment.

        NICE to interact with you. Have always loved the name of your blog, btw – makes me smile at the humor of the reference.
        xx,
        mgh

        Liked by 1 person

      • Sometimes my friends post about things like female problems, and I really have nothing to add. My circle has many book reviews, and if I haven’t read that book, I still leave a card.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Ah – now I understand. There is one blog I follow targeted to men, and I am mostly a lurker there as well. Love your “card” metaphor. xx, mgh

        Liked by 1 person

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