How Blogging Works
When I started blogging, sometime in the early 2000s, it was the season when blogs were like an abundant harvest; they were everywhere, bursting with content. The writer friend who got me started said a blog was like a digital address for a writer, a way people could look you up on the internet and see, “Hey, she’s legit!”
Over the years things have changed. Writers have more digital tools available to convey their legitimacy. Some people still blog and blog well. Ironically, the season in my blogging career when I was the most prolific and most creative was when I was an aspiring writer. And my early blogging did lead to the stage I am in now — as someone who writes for a living.
The blog led to some of my first gigs, and those, in turn, led to others. I have worked as a journalist, a columnist, an editor, a poet, and an author. My calendar is filled with deadlines. I’m also in a season of life with more obligations than I had fifteen years ago. My to-do list overfloweth. My blog suffereth.
Currently it serves as a repository for my published work, a series of easy links. Sometimes I review a book by a friend or promote a book I care about. Each time I sigh and wish I had the gumption to work harder to prune and nurture my blog.
When I got my book published in 2016, my blog was ready as a promotional tool. One reason I’ve kept posting something — anything — is in case I have a book again. Then my blog will pivot in purpose, focus on new fruit.
The writers who I think have found most success blogging have found a rhythm and focus that works for them. Many write every day, usually short pieces. They experiment with ideas not yet ready for prime time. They indulge in their own quirky interests. They also link to other published work.
Apart from my blogging and professional writing, I am always writing poetry. Every day. For a while I posted one poem a week on my blog, but then I’d want to work on this one or save that one to submit. I’d look back at an old poem on my blog, become mortified, and take it down. Eventually I stopped posting poems.
Poetry is the anchor of my soul — reading it, writing it, listening to it, journaling about it, sharing it. The next season of my blogging life will likely play in this field. But right now it lies fallow, awaiting seed.
To Blog and Not to Blog
See a “seasonal blogging view” in L.L. Barkat’s It’s Time for Many (Experienced) Writers to Stop Blogging
Then yet another season in L.L.’s Why Blog—From the Writer Who Said Goodbye to Blogging
Browse more resources for writers
“Megan Willome’s The Joy of Poetry is not a long book, but it took me longer to read than I expected, because I kept stopping to savor poems and passages, to make note of books mentioned, and to compare Willome’s journey into poetry to my own. The book is many things. An unpretentious, funny, and poignant memoir. A defense of poetry, a response to literature that has touched her life, and a manual on how to write poetry. It’s also the story of a daughter who loses her mother to cancer. The author links these things into a narrative much like that of a novel. I loved this book. As soon as I finished, I began reading it again.”
—David Lee Garrison, author of Playing Bach in the D. C. Metro