Why I Keep a Blog

rss-symbol1I started this blog about a year ago, about two weeks after submitting my manuscript to Entangled Publishing. Optimistically, I read the guidelines of what the publisher expected of an author. One element was a presence on the internet. I had that, but not, I suspected, in a way that would be particularly useful. If I got published and if I acquired fans, a couple of them might be amused by tumblr blog: reposted pictures of gorgeous male models, most of them shirtless (some lacking pants), pictures of big cats—I love panthers and tigers—little cats and puppies, mountains and landscapes, a sprinkling of art, a lot of it fan art, and the odd quote or poem. The men make up the bulk of the blog. Yep.

I had a Twitter account with a few followers. A friend, my sister, and a couple of deluded people who thought my monthly tweets about nothing were interesting. I had a Live Journal where I posted the, ah, private chapters from my fan fiction. You know, the smutty stuff. And I had a Facebook page full of pictures of my daughter…and cats, and puppies. No shirtless men, only my gorgeous husband.

I needed a blog, a landing page where people could find out a little bit about me and follow links elsewhere if sufficiently interested. Somewhere that felt personal, but wasn’t too personal. No kittens, puppies or shirtless men.

I had never been interested in keeping a blog before. I don’t even really like using Twitter. It’s weird. I sort of get the concept of the small updates, but the bulk of them are things I really don’t need to know, and once you follow more than ten people, it becomes impossible to stay on top of the feed. It’s…weird. I approached blogging with a similar mindset. What would I write about and would any of it be interesting, or stuff people really needed to know? The short answer is: no. Nothing I put here is terribly original. You can find similar posts all over the internet; other writers rambling about writing, other readers rambling about reading. Bloggers rambling about blogging.

I did have something to post, though. A large catalog of book reviews I had written over last five years for SFCrowsnest. Put those together with the other reviews I’d been posting on GoodReads, add some info about my upcoming book, and I had a blog.

Then I started writing what I call Rambles. I have a category devoted to them. I like writing them. I sometimes worry I reveal too much about myself in them, but as I contemplate the release of Less Than Perfect, I realise there is a lot more of myself there than here. Mickey, my main character, is very much like me. She collects books and she likes order. She’s not terribly brave. But, she is resourceful and, when up against the wall, finds inner strength.

I don’t know that I can tie that little snippet of character back into this post without sounding contrived, but maybe that’s what blogging is about. Exploring your own character.

Back then, a year ago, I wondered if people would read whatever drivel I managed to post. I also wondered if I’d end up drowning in another feed. Would I have to read other blogs? Surprisingly, the answer to both those questions is: yes. Over two hundred people, willingly or not, follow this blog. (Why?) And I do spend more time than I thought reading other blogs. I don’t resent it, though. I’ve read some really interesting pieces, sometimes for inspiration, more often for information. I’ve joined a community, and it’s a lot less frenetic and judgmental than other social media.

Right, so that’s it, the ultimate ramble. The ramble about rambling. And blogging.

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