5 Author Blogging Tips, Spamalot, and Other Updates

 In Kell's Blog

Hey y’all! I know … I’ve got some explaining to do! Each of my followers got something like twenty-eight emails this Wednesday. I bet you were confused … a lot of you contacted me to let me know, which I really appreciated.

I’ll explain that in this post along with giving you my best author blogging tips and some updates (including blog tour signups for Souls Astray and info about a new project I’m launching with Reveries Co.).

But I won’t keep you waiting any longer. Read on, noble personage!

Because that’s probably 83½% of the reason you’re here, let’s start out with my beyond amazing {somewhat lackluster} blogging tips for authors! But first I want to address a couple things.

Should writers who want to be authors blog?

I’ve seen a lot of newish writers ask this question. And I don’t have an easy answer!

Blogging isn’t for everyone, but I think a lot of writers could benefit it, and I would advise you to give it a try, perhaps on a free WordPress.com blog, for a couple months at least before making your decision to launch permanently into the blogging world (or not).

Some people have said that blogging is dying out, but I hope not! I really enjoy it, and if I end up the last of the bloggers fifty years from now, so be it. Still, I think it’s still a very real way of reaching readers and showing off your work. You’re going to at least need a website either way as an author.

What can writers blog about?

Well, to get some inspiration, I’d suggest following some other blogs of writers in your genre (or in others) to get some ideas! Everyone’s blog, like everyone’s personalities, is gonna be different.

You can post reviews, updates on your novels, writing advice, random life updates, pretty pictures, DIYs, interviews, peeks into your process, and on and on. The possibilities are endless! I’d also suggest digging into some of your other hobbies for ideas. 😀

Basically, be creative. Put out posts you’d like to read – or posts you’d have liked to read a couple months ago, even.

And now …

5 Author Blogging Tips

1: Figure out who YOU are first.

*everyone in the room has an existential crisis*

Seriously, though, before getting into blogging, it’s helpful to figure out your brand—which, as an author, is an extension of yourself.

If I were to introduce my brand, I’d be like:

“Hi, I’m Kellyn Roth, a Christian & historical fiction author. I write in a messy, informal style because seriousness is boring. You can recognize my swoopy, elegant-casual font and purple colors.”

Brand is a combination of personality, identity, and appearances (e.g. purples and swirls).

2: Know your audience.

As with pretty much anything on the internet, you need to know who you’re talking to, what you’re offering them, and why.

For this purpose, I suggest putting together a “profile” for you ideal blog reader. Remember, it should be similar if not identical to what your ideal reader for your novels (if you’re seeking to expand on your author platform with your blog).

Include as many details as you can

And then narrow those details back down into something basic so you don’t go crazy trying to remember it all (though keep your detailed profile to refer back to, of course).

My audience could be stated as such:

“I write for those in search of honest stories which touch on the highs and lows of life in a clean, original way.”

I cannot tell you how long it took me to figure that out! And I didn’t add that I write for people who have a sense of humor, but eh. 😬😝 They’ll figure it out … or stomp off offended. Whichever comes first.

3: Be a giver—not a taker.

Always, always be focused on what you offer the reader, not what the reader offers you. Unless you’re a bestselling author, talking about yourself all the time is not gonna fly.

You want to build RELATIONSHIPS, not just numbers, and you’re not going to build relationships if you’re focused on followers, dollars, and all those things that come from gaining the trust of your fanbase (not vice-versa).

For this, I like to write a bit of a mission statement which keeps me centered on my purpose as a writer.

“My goal through all my writing, including my blog, is to entertain intelligently and address the truth without hesitance.”

So yep, I’m mostly here for entertainment purposes (*snickers*), but I want my amusingness to be intelligent (*coughs because I have told 253 stupid jokes today alone*) and never let it be said that Kell didn’t tell it like it is, because truth matters.

I could add something about helping young writers to that, but of course I don’t do that as heavily through this blog as I’d like. That happens more through Reveries Co. and writing forums I’m a part of (and of course I give lessons).

4: Long, skimmable, correct, and amusing.

Here are my best tips for the actual content of your posts:

 

  • Let it be long.

 

      • You’d think shorter posts would do better, but actually upwards of 1,000 words is recommended and something like 1,500-2,500 is ideal. If you want to write shorter, that’s fine, but know that longer posts do better with SEO (which basically means Google likes them more).

 

  • Let it be skimmable.

 

      • If your reader can’t scroll down the page and get the general idea in half a dozen words, you’ve done it wrong. Make sure you’re not forcing them to read huge paragraphs with all the pertinent info. Let them just read a bit if that’s their desire—and move on with their busy lives.

 

  • Let it be correct.

 

      • Don’t leave out the spell check! Make sure it’s easily understandable and well-written. Be sure to apply everything you learned about writing a great book to this piece of nonfiction! This will also make you seem more professional and worth reading.

 

  • Let it be amusing.

 

      • A good dash of humor or even just something engaging is always a good way to go! Not always (depending on your audience), but it’ll make you seem more real. Just be yourself—everyone has their unique sense of humor. (Mine is idiocy …)

5: Never get too big.

Look. I don’t care if you’re Jane Austen. As you grow your subscriber base, as you become a “bigger deal,” NEVER get so big that you won’t interact with the “small fries.”

To put in a very honest way: if you act condescending towards a writer or blogger of any age or level, you are a jerk. So don’t be a jerk.

I see a lot of authors and bloggers who don’t have time for anyone outside of their special circle of friends and “big name” peeps. They don’t seem to want to help out younger writers and bloggers.

I don’t get it! That ten-year-old with a brand new WordPress.com blog which frankly looks as new as it is was YOU not so long ago! What would if feel like if everyone treated you like dirt? Be kind—and help them get where you are even quicker than you did.

So … get a bajillion subscribers and be a big deal. You can and will do it! But be sure to use any influence you gain to help and support, not degrade or hinder.

That is all. Thank you. *tosses head*

Sorry for the rant, but *coughs* it hits close to home. I felt pretty unwanted in the writing community for a while. It takes time to squeeze in—and I wouldn’t consider myself nearly “there” yet, either. But it’s gotten a lot better, thanks to people who were kind to me despite my inexperience.

So yeppers.

Thanks so much for reading my blogging tips!

And now …

An Explanation of Spamalot

As I mentioned before, most of my blog subscribers probably received something like twenty-eight emails, supposedly from Reveries.

They were (supposedly) written by Sarah Grace Grzy (that was probably the most confusing part as I’d just posted a review of her book), and containing a lot of Lorem Ipsum (which looks like a foreign language but is in fact Latin-based nonsense filler text). They were mostly fashion-based, I think.

Anyways, I didn’t even realize this until I popped onto the computer twenty minutes later to discover about ten people had emailed, messaged, and contacted me on every social media, etc., platform imaginable … informing me that I might want to check my blog.

It took me a bit of blinking at the twenty-eight emails and eventually pulling up my blog to realize what had happened.

Basically, if you look around you, you’ll notice that Reveries is changed (though it’s still a work in progress with a lot of things missing)! That’s right—new theme, new layout, new look. It is being created by Estetico Designs, a business owned by a dear friend of mine.

However, while the designer was working on importing the new theme, she accidentally imported a lot of example blog posts … which were them sent out to my email list!

Whoops! A bit confusing, and inconvenient for you, but thankfully, there was an easy answer that wasn’t, “Reveries has been hacked by aliens from the planet Terminii.”

I did my best to warn you via social media, but I knew I shouldn’t post until Saturday, especially since I didn’t want you all to click through to a still-under-construction blog.

Again, I’m super sorry! But I hope all’s well that ends well.

Thanks for understanding!

(On a random side note, due to all those emails I got a sudden spike in stats! xD Well, now I know how to get y’all’s attention …)

And now …

Blog Tour Signups for Souls Astray

I’ve decided to run a blog tour to celebrate the release of Souls Astray … from May 4th through May 8th! Would you like to join?

Fill out this form

I’d love to have bloggers of all types join this team! It’s going to be so much fun.

Also, I’ll probably send out the eARCs mid-March/early April, so you’ll have plenty of time if you’re a reviewer. (I’m way ahead of the game.)

The Reveries Co. Email List

This is another announcement I’m excited about … a brand new email list for Reveries Co. which will hopefully be an amazing resource for writers!

As you can tell, there will be a lot of fun and helpful tips, tricks, and other resources! I’ve always hoped that Reveries Co. would be a huge help to writers of all stages, and we’re definitely getting there.

Click to join!

Thanks so much and have an awesome weekend!

TTFN!

~Kellyn Roth~

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p.s.

Did you enjoy my blogging tips? Are you a blogger … and if so, why and what do you blog about? Were you confused by my spamming incident? Are you able to join the blog tour for Souls Astray?

Showing 20 comments
  • Julia @Lit Aflame
    Reply

    See, I thought of messaging you, but then I was all “nah, I bet a bunch of others have already done just that.” – thus why I should listen to the little voice in me brain more. ;P

    Those were some super great tips, Kell! My blog is focused on inspiring people to live meaningfully. <3

    PS. And I joined the Reveries' email list – woot woot!

    • Kellyn Roth
      Reply

      Haha! Yep! 😛 It was well-covered. It took people all of ten minutes to start emailing me. 😉

      Thanks, Julia! 😀 Nice.

      Ah, awesome! Hoping the first email will go out on the first Saturday in March!

  • Mary
    Reply

    Your blog looks super pretty!!!

    Haha, yeah, I had flipped open my computer and one moment later a loooootttt of emails started coming in and I was like, “UUUHHH…I THINK I’m gunna email Kellyn!” 😆

    Awesome tips and great post!!

    • Kellyn Roth
      Reply

      Thanks so much, Mary! 🙂

      Haha, yep! It was pretty insane. 😛

  • Caleb E. King
    Reply

    Haha I was going to inform you to about all those emails but I expected other people probably would. XD
    It’s good it wasn’t a spam!

    • Kellyn Roth
      Reply

      Yep! Well, it was sorta spam … but also not. 😛 Haha!

  • A. Kaylee
    Reply

    It is so pretty! I love the new look!

    Congrats on Souls Astray’s blog tour!

    I love how you (really) did the Reveries Co. Newsletter! 😉

  • Lisa
    Reply

    I love all your tips!! Especially the last one!

    Lol I saw I got twenty eight emails from Reveries posted by SG and was just, “ehhhh Kell is redesigning, wish she didn’t have to repost all her content”. XDD

    • Kellyn Roth
      Reply

      Thanks, Lisa! 😀

      Haha, yeppp, pretty much! 😉 Though that wasn’t my content, haha!

  • Faith G
    Reply

    Great blogging tips! The only one I wasn’t sure about was the longer posts thing… I don’t always read super long blog posts unless I’m more invested in that blog. Personally, I like not as long posts better (depending on the subject of the post). Buuuut, that’s also just me. 😛 And if it does better with SEO and whatnot, that’s always a plus. So, I don’t know. You’ve done a lot more with blogging than me, so I’ll take your word for it that longer posts do better. XD

    And also, thanks for explaining that spamming sensation… I was a bit perplexed. XD

    • Kellyn Roth
      Reply

      Well, longer posts do do better with SEO and whatnot – so they show up in search engines because they tend to take them more seriously! I think it’s important for them to be skimmable, though. I don’t really like reading all the text in a long blog post, either! But if it’s easy to read (e.g. I can just scroll down the page and get the info I need), then that makes it better!

      Haha, yep, it was sure weird!

  • Merie Shen
    Reply

    These tips are great! Your blog’s new look is great too– and I definitely signed up for the Souls Astray blog tour. 😀 Can’t wait!

    • Kellyn Roth
      Reply

      Thanks so much, Merie! 😀 I’m loving it – not quite finished, but we’re getting there. Also, thank you so much! It’ll be great to have you.

  • Bella Putt
    Reply

    Awesome tips, Kellyn!

  • Allison Grace
    Reply

    I love this post, Kell! Why have I not read your blog before? *glares at self*
    But seriously, this site looks marvelous and I can’t wait to read more later!

    • Kellyn Roth
      Reply

      Aww, thank you, Allison! <3 Nice to see you here!

  • Hannah Brown
    Reply

    Thanks for the good tips! I would have never thought that someone want to have a blog post skimmed XD.

    • Kellyn Roth
      Reply

      Haha, yep! Or it can make it easier to read in the first place.

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