Maybe Authors Shouldn’t Blog

I can hear outrage coming from all over the publishing industry. And elsewhere too.

I know I’m a blogger myself, so let me explain.

According to CBS research David Poltrack, only 8 percent of Americans read blogs regularly. That’s 24 million people. From a Pew study, 39% of Americans have ever read a blog–57 million.

(I know, it’s a bit of a segue, but I’ve got a dozen other things to do today)

So is it worth the time spent blogging?

For some authors, it most certainly is. If you’ve found a sizeable readership, then hell yeah! Keep doing it!

But if you don’t, maybe it isn’t. And it’s not a failure on the blogger’s part if the blogger fails to attract an audience because goodness only knows what will attracts an audience.

There are many authors who started blogs because their publisher/editor/agent/other authors suggested it. I’ll discount the drive-by bloggers who only post about their latest releases every few months here.

I’ll give you….Author X! I’ve seen many Author Xes online, and I’m sure you could probably name a few yourself.

X tries. She does everything blogging gurus tell her to do. Blogs very regularly, does contests, links like mad etc. But she can’t find an audience who sticks with her. She’s been at this for a year.

Is it worth continuing to blog? Because maybe it isn’t.

The Pew study link is courtesy of Tim Worstall (yes, I’ve been trying to be good and reading blogs on economics but I do not think it’s been an edifying experience for me).


3 Responses to “Maybe Authors Shouldn’t Blog”

  1. January 31, 2007 at 7:58 pm

    Seems to be the people who shouldn’t blog are the ones who simply can’t put their heart into it. They are much less likely to offer somthing interesting, like you do. *butter, butter, grin* But that’s just me.


    ps. Thanks for dragging me into the blogosphere. I’m having fun.

  2. February 1, 2007 at 8:20 pm

    I’m not sure whether authors should blog. James Bartholomew has done a very good job with his “The Welfare State We’re In” for example, but Ross Clark’s “How to label a goat” is more a series of press releases. Freakonomics however is a very good blog.
    The other way around though, I think it does work, blogging as a method of getting a publisher interested in you doing a book.
    Well, so says this blogger who has just agreed a contract.


  3. February 1, 2007 at 8:31 pm

    I agree that it probably does work the other way around. I don’t read many food blogs, but I can name at least 3 foodbloggers who’ve received book deals off the top of my head.

    I’m actually thinking more of fiction, because novelists don’t necessarily have a Topic to Discuss all the time, and we are all really boring people. LOL.

    And congrats!

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