Blog Your Book

Blog your book, from Beth Conny

Blogging a book works two ways:

  1. You can blog an existing book by breaking it into posts, be they chapters, sections or excerpts.
  2. You can write your book as you go, one post a time. The post can be a chapter, section or excerpt (e.g., one poem or short story).

A great blogged book is unique even if its premise is not original. Take diet books: thousands have been written about losing weight, but that’s because millions of people are interested in the topic. Offering a new method or perspective on weight loss has great appeal. Or not. If your book doesn’t deliver on its promise, it won’t matter if it is blogged, even though a blogged book is, generally, free. Readers won’t waste their time on books that are poorly written or organized. Nor will they continue reading if they sense an author is being “cheap.” That means the author is withholding his or her best writing, tips, plot twists, etc., with the goal of simply selling a product or service.

Both types of books should be sequential and have an inherent, logical order.  In other words, you’ll want readers to follow along easily. Each installment should be consistent in tone (unless you’re offering more than one point of view), layout and, perhaps, in length. I say perhaps because while some variation is OK, posts that vary from a single paragraph to hundreds of pages may irritate or disappoint readers. They won’t know what to expect from you. Speaking of:

Balance the expected and unexpected. All books straddle the fine line between the two. Readers expect books to be consistent in the quality and organization of content, and to have an inherent logic, with one post leading purposefully to the next. Nonetheless, posts need to be fresh, perhaps even unpredictable (such as in mysteries).

Put yourself on a regular blogging schedule. Your followers are forced to pace themselves according to your posts. Don’t keep them hanging. Nor should you inundate them with material, especially if you do so intermittently (e.g., 12 posts in 5 days; no additional posts in 5 weeks). Too, and obviously, you can’t post what you don’t write. Production goals compel you to write and/or rewrite; to rethink how your book holds together and if it delivers on its promise.

Don’t wait until you are an “expert” or a “writer.” You may be waiting forever. You don’t need permission to blog, just as you don’t need permission to self-publish. This is not to give you permission to wing it. Show your readers respect! But it does mean you don’t have to jump through hoops, namely, to have previously published or gotten a Ph.D. in a particular subject area. Perception is everything; perception begins with you. Have something important to say? An experience to share? A great yarn to spin? Go for it, write it, share it. Blog it!

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