*Welcome to this week’s addition Wisdom from the Writer’s Journal. It is my pleasure to pass the pen off to blogger, Rachael Ritchey, the author of The Beauty Theif and Captive Hope, the first two books in the Twelve Realms Series.
Rachael is also the mastermind behind the #Blogbattle extravaganza that competes weekly. All are welcome to participate.
To find out more about Rachael, you can do so by following her on these platforms:
And now without futher ado here is Rachael and:
Escapades of an Indie Author & Publisher: 7 Ways Blogging Makes You a Better Creative Writer
First off, I gotta say thanks to Candice for this chance to share on her blog! It’s not every day I get the opportunity, and she is a lovely hostess.
If there’s one piece of advice I could tell you today, it’s this: I write, therefore I blog.
I hear the “huh?” reverberating through the air. Rene Descartes said these famous words: “I think, therefore I am.” It’s generally seen at the most basic level to mean something along the lines of “because I have the ability to think there is no doubt that I exist.”
So, “I write, therefore I blog” is best interpreted “because I have the ability to write (and want to be a great writer) there is no doubt I should blog.” Want to know why this is true?
Blogging can and does make us better writers, and here are seven reasons why that is so:
1) Can give you a focus and vision
Blogging can be willy-nilly, but the best blogs have a focus, a reason for being, and they stick to their vision but in the most creative ways.
It’s easier to create consistency when you start with a specific focus such as “Writer Advice” “Funny Anecdotes for Life” “Short Story Paradise” “Poetry Corner” “A Sarcastic Look at Everyday Living” “Little Blessings” “A Place to Be Creative” “Current Science” “Science for Science Fiction Nuts.”
If you notice from these pithy, visionary statements, they range from specific to not-so-specific, but you will also observe that each one gives you an idea platform from which everything on your blog can spring. For me, the focus of my blog is “Escapades of an Indie Author & Publisher.”
If you find your focus or vision changing over time don’t be afraid to update your blog to reflect that. The only advice I’d give in that regard is make the transition easy for your readers. If you go changing names and titles it can really confuse your loyal peeps (that’s ‘people’ for all you non-nerdy-savvy people out there)! I learned this the hard way, so take heed, my friend.
2) Opportunity to create a personal brand
Having a personal brand, something people recognize and often remember, is essential for writers who plan to share their writing with the world.
A personal brand involves using consistent branded content, like a signature with pictures, words, or even logos that are unique to you. Your individuality will shine.
When you create a personal brand you are helping to solidify your focus and vision, which will in turn, help you write with purpose instead of rambling about, talking a lot without saying anything at all.
3) It requires you to write regularly
You don’t have to post regularly to have a blog, but all the best writer-bloggers do.
Writing regularly, even if you like to write fiction but blog non-fiction topics is essential to any writer improving his or her skills. A blog that is regularly maintained is a huge asset for turning oneself into a writing master.
All the best advice givers say one should write every day, even if it’s just a shopping list. The thoughtful act of pen to paper or fingers to keyboard helps move thoughts through the mind, and anytime you make the effort your writing craft will improve; like any other skill, practice makes perfect. Blogging is a perfect and central place to keep your writing and make it shareable.
4) Practice your editing skills
Yes, we all must edit (even if we have an editor) because if we leave mistakes all over the place people will begin to notice and will run the other way.
Writing for a blog gives you plenty of opportunities to improve this essential writing skill because if you are writing regularly you are also making mistakes more often, which in turn require fixing.
Hey, whether we like it or not, being able to edit our own work as much as possible is one of the most important things we can do as writers to make our readers (and editors) happy when they read our work.
5) Be social and read more
Blogging makes you a better writer because you start to make connections with other readers and writers who also blog.
When you are spending time reading other blogs you are learning what works and doesn’t work; what you find interesting and not so interesting; and what others enjoy reading.
Reading (and mentally editing) makes you a better writer because you are regularly exposed to the written word with different voices, styles, and creativity. It’s like visiting the Baskin Robins of writing when you socialize in the blogging community; you not only see all the choices, you have the opportunity to try them out yourself.
6) Offers the opportunity for feedback on your writing
Since you are now focused with a vision for your regular blog writing that reflects your brand with edited prose, and you’ve begun to build a following by being social you are ready to receive feedback on your writing which can be both encouraging and difficult.
By blogging you put your creative work out there in small, easily managed pieces that give others the ability to read quickly and make comment.
Writers need feedback on their work so that they can stay grounded and gain valuable insight from extra pairs of eyes, people who see the world and imagine things differently. This is a huge way a writer can learn and grow. Blogging is such an easy and essential way to get feedback and become a better writer every day.
7) Connects you to other writers
This is one of the most essential ways blogging improves your writing skills because it puts you in contact with other writers who have more experience to offer you as well as those with less experience to whom you can offer assistance. After all, one of the best ways to learn is by teaching.
Other writers are fantastic at offering encouragement and help when you get stuck or need advice about a variety of writing topics.
This also gives you a great network of friends to help improve & promote your work (and vice versa). Writers are a supportive, encouraging lot. We love to help each other in any way we can, so you can’t go wrong by blogging when you will have a plethora of on-hand, skilled, talented, and gifted writers at your disposal, all ready to lend a hand!
It’s abundantly clear that blogging is not only a fun activity, it is a perfect outlet to help us become better writers. If you aren’t blogging yet, now is a great time to start. You’ve already got a great beginning network of fellow writer/bloggers right here, so jump in and have fun.
Remember, I write, therefore I blog!
Thanks again, Candice, for letting me stop in and share some insight on why blogging helps us be better writers. It’s been fun!