I recently started watching the show Californication. Don’t judge me. My husband likes it and I think I may like it. The jury’s still out. Whatever else you can say about the show, it does make a writer think. Last night we watched an episode in which the main character proclaimed that blogging isn’t really writing. I had to stop the show at that point. That’s not true, I proclaimed to my husband. Before he even had a chance to reply (I don’t even know why he’d try), I quickly amended my statement. I do see where he’s coming from though, I said and then started the show up again.
Just as newspaper articles are not always fine examples of writing, it is not always the purpose of blogging to write literature or showcase writing talent. There are tons of reasons to blog – to market a product, to bring your name into the limelight, to vent frustrations, to review a product, to explain how something works. The list goes on and on.
I can’t deny that some – perhaps even the majority – of my blogs don’t even come close to literature. And that’s okay. My blog has two purposes: to market myself and to introduce readers to my writing. As a self-published author struggling to do all my marketing myself, I have done and continue to do an obscene amount of research into how to sell more books. It’s pretty much unanimous. Everyone thinks authors (self-published or otherwise) should have a blog. So I have a blog to try to bring my name in front of potential readers.
I also use the blog to introduce readers to my writing. In the digital world of two-second soundbites, it’s not always advantageous to write long blog posts to showcase writing talent. People just don’t always have the time to read everything they may want. So sometimes I write little snippets that I know are in no way ‘literature’ to attract some attention. According to my research, lists of 10 (10 things I love, 10 books you need to read in your 30s, etc.) and blogs with pictures are the most re-blogged and read. Which means I sometimes write these types of blogs in the hopes that some kind person in the Internet universe will re-tweet it or re-blog it or maybe even read it.
These silly blog posts are also a showcase of my writing as the majority of my books are humorous (because I prefer my mystery and romance with a huge side helping of laughter). Maybe the post doesn’t show my writing to the best potential, but if I can make a reader laugh with a silly blog post about reading addiction, then there’s a chance the reader will check out my books. And that’s all an indie writer can hope for.
To answer my own question then, blogging is not always ‘writing’. And, depending on the purpose of the blog, it doesn’t matter.