Thursday, September 13, 2012

One Blog or Two?

I set this blog up in December 2007, with the help of my son-in-law. I didn't have any real goal in mind other than to have a web presence. I knew that a wannabe author should have that, but I wasn't sure I was ready to have an author web site. So An Arrow Through the Air became my web presence.

In June 2011, with the help of my son, I set up an author's web site. He recommended I have a blog with it, which made sense. A blog is nothing more than an interactive web page, he explained, while other pages are static. So he set up the blog page, ported over all the posts and comments from this blog, and I had two blogs. Easy-peasy.

I set about trying to differentiate the two blogs, even though they contained the same history of posts. The blog at would be my writer's blog, discussing what I was writing, how my "career" was going, maybe discussing writing techniques I was using. This blog would become more general, discussing life, liberty, and the pursuit of all things I pursue in life.

This conformed with the prevailing wisdom that a blog should be focused. Don't go discussing sports on a political blog. Don't discuss writing on a foodies blog. Makes sense. So my two blogs proceeded, a couple to a few posts a week each, like two paths diverging in a yellow wood, yet never losing sight of each other. I've never felt that I have truly achieved two very different blogs. Maybe that's because I'm too close to them. Possibly readers would find them more different than I do.

But then author and social media maven Kristen Lamb goes and writes a post like this, When Do Writers Need Multiple Blogs? She gave her answer in the first paragraph: "Um...never." Have one blog and blog about all your interests on it. Her reasoning for this advice: time. Since most writers have day jobs and families and homes to operate and maintain, two blogs is too much work. Put all your posts on one blog, she says. Trust your readers to read the posts they're interested in a skip over the rest.

No, I'm not thinking of closing down this blog, nor my other one. I find it interesting how expert advice from multiple experts can be so opposite. One says, "Establish a thematic blog that documents and promotes your brand. If you have other interests not related to your brand, start another blog for that." A second expert says, "Your brand is everything you do. Keep it all on one blog. Blog about one thing one day, another thing another day. Trust your readers to sort it all out."

I must admit that at present the first expert makes a little more sense, though I'm not dismissing the second expert. I probably need to try harder to differentiate my two blogs. I don't know if anyone has noticed, but I've been on a somewhat more regular schedule for blog posts, using alternate days: Sunday, Tuesday, and Thursday for AATTA; and Monday, Wednesday, and Friday for DAT. I don't know how long I'll keep that up, but I'm trying to be disciplined enough to maintain that schedule.

I'll keep Kristen Lamb's advice at hand, but keep the two blogs for now. We'll see what the future holds.

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