Tuesday, January 5, 2010
Do You Have a Dead End Blog?
Issues of privacy in this age of identity theft and abuse are a real threat, but on the other hand why would a writer invest the time and effort to create a blog and publish posts about their work or writer's journey only to make themselves completely anonymous?
For aspiring writers and authors, blogs are a wonderful tool to build a platform and develop a following of persons interested in their work. Bloggers such as John Scalzi and Lisa Shearin have built a large community of readers by utilizing their blogs to reach new fans. That's not likely to happen if readers aren't able to establish some form of two-way conversation. It's difficult enough to attract traffic to a blog; why wouldn’t a writer invite visitor feedback?
Concerns about spam or inappropriate comments can be handled on most blogs via options to moderate comments before they are posted or to have the submitter solve an encrypted code before the post will be accepted. If bloggers are worrried about people accessing personal informtion in their profile, an easy way to avoid that is not to include anything sensitive, but still allow a way for readers to make contact, even if it's encoded [i.e. Lgreen 2162 (at) aol (dot) com]. That will filter out spam or bot attempts to snare the blogger's email address, but allow like-minded humans a way to connect.
My advice to authors/aspiring writers would be to to use your writing-related blogs to their full potential by allowing visitors a way to interact with you. Also, if you have an informational website set up to promote you and your work that doesn’t feature some sort of contact method, be sure to link to your blog so readers can reach you.