Monday, April 23, 2012

Blog Power

Post by Jenny

On April 12, in a post no doubt heard ‘round the writing world, Jessica Faust of BookEnds Literary Agency bid her blog adieu. As of yesterday, the post had 110 comments from saddened readers expressing gratitude for all they have learned from Jessica over the past five years. I did not leave a comment, but if I had, it would have been more of the same. I enjoyed reading the blog and found it to be enlightening and encouraging. I will miss having it as a resource.

Jessica confessed to having lost passion for the blog, but she also wrote this: “It doesn't seem like blogs have as much ‘power’ as they used to, especially with the ease and speed of sources like Twitter and Facebook.”

That made me think.

For anyone participating in the A to Z Challenge, as I am, April is a very blog-intensive month. Writing 26 alphabetical posts, and visiting, commenting on, and following as many blogs from the list as possible makes for a whole lot of activity in the blogosphere. In 2010, A to Z’s first year, there were nearly 100 participants. This year, 1,722 bloggers signed up to at least give it a whirl.

So, are blogs getting stale? The growth of A to Z alone makes me think ‘no.’ But the blogs themselves are what convince me that blogging isn’t in its death throes. I’ve read so many fun, quirky, thoughtful, poignant, personal, and informational posts that clicking through the list has become addictive and wish I had more time to do so.

Moreover, it must be the writer in me, but I enjoy the blog format more Facebook and twitter. I understand that those two cornerstones of social media are fast, effective ways to spread information. And McDonald’s is a fast, effective way to have a meal, but that’s not enough to get me in the door.

So, tell me. Do you get more information from blogs, FB, or twitter? Will you miss Jessica’s blog? Do you predict that next year’s A to Z will have more participants or fewer?

As for A to Z, only a handful of letters remain. It is the hope of the organizers that every participant finish with 100 followers, so keep discovering great new friends from all corners of the blogging world.

12 comments:

Dean K Miller said...

I get more useful information from blogs, hands down. A lot of twitter and FB links go to blogs anyway.

I too, like the blog format, and don't have to rely on mine to put food on the table...though I could stand to lose a few pounds. Hmmm...need to think about that one.

Too late into this whirl-o-wind called writing to get to Jessica's blog. Maybe I can fill the void....not!

Stacy Jensen said...

I've managed to post daily for the A to Z, but some issues arose that got me behind in my daily comments. I doubt I'll gain 25 new followers. I've been careful not to sign up for a lot of blogs during the challenge "just because." If I don't believe a blog will be a fit for me, I comment and leave. I quit reading a number of industry blogs, because I realized they kept me from writing — so I didn't realize Jessica quit blogging.

DeniseCovey_L_Aussie said...

Sad about Jessica. I much prefer blogging to other social networks. Im doing the A -Z again but really do think its a bit ridiculous to dedicate a whole month to everyday, nearly, blogging. I enjoy meeting/learning though.

Denise

Denine Severino Taylor said...

I think blogging works like this: if you enjoy what you're writing about, other people (not everyone) will enjoy it too. I've only been a daily blogger since January 2012 but I've been AMAZED at what a vibrant, connected, passionate group of crazy writers there are out there and I hope that's always the case! I've enjoyed the A to Z Challenge writing, but have really enjoyed making new connections more. :-) Denine

Patricia Stoltey said...

I still love reading blogs best, but I do find it a bit of a burden to come up with new topics for my own blog on a regular basis. That's one of the reasons I love having guests ...my work is the formatting, posting, and promoting while my guest has to do all the thinking. :D

Cynthia said...

Thanks for visiting my blog earlier today. I myself enjoy blogs- this A to Z challenge has really helped me flex my blogger muscle.

Beverly Diehl said...

I too am doing A-Z; I too am a bit overwhelmed this month. However, I love blogs and blogging.

For myself, writing something is better than writing nothing, and I am learning so much from other bloggers that I might not pick up on my own, just reading books (though I do lots of that, too.)

Nathan Lowell said...

I've been blogging since 2004 and here's the thing.

Blogs can be a lot of different things -- diary, web presence, content archive, whatever.

I have blogs for my teaching where students go to get the latest lesson.

I have blogs for my various fictional universes.

I have blogs where I expound on topics unrelated to those topics.

The point is that I have a goal and a purpose for those blogs. Sometimes they grow. Sometimes they shrink. Sometimes they're very active and sometimes I forget to post for a few months.

You know what?

They still work for *me* and that's the key.

Patti said...

I learn from blogs. They teach me how to make a mushroom sauce with shitake mushrooms, paint glass vases to look like pottery and how to handle a teenage daughter. I enjoy the variety of the subject matter and the dedication of the bloggers.

Yea to blogs!!

Enjoyed reading your blog this morning. Visiting from A to Z. But now I'm joining. Have a nice day

Jenny said...

Thanks, everyone, for stopping by and for your thoughtful comments. I'm glad blogs still have many fans. I learn from them, too, and laugh a lot. There are some funny bloggers in this world.

Kudos to everyone making the final push for A to Z!

Linda Osmundson said...

I write for this blog once a week and sometimes have a hard time coming up with a subject. I often refer to my defunct blog for an idea. I didn't get many followers so gave it up. I'm thinking it may be better to guest blog. I get more exposure. Trouble is finding someone who wants me as a guest!!

Linda Osmundson said...

I write for this blog once a week and sometimes have a hard time coming up with a subject. I often refer to my defunct blog for an idea. I didn't get many followers so gave it up. I'm thinking it may be better to guest blog. I get more exposure. Trouble is finding someone who wants me as a guest!!

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