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Writers’ Wednesday: “Playing in Traffic” with Your Blog

Still-life with fruit bowl, flowers and books

George Eastman House

On Wednesday afternoons, I want to blog about writing.

Anyone who has been reading my blog will probably notice what a learning curve I’m on.

I’ve been going back into my past blogs, posted as recently as two weeks ago; correcting mistakes, adding “widgets”, and “text”, “hot”  links to formerly unlinked websites.

I try to research and learn a little bit every day, there is always something to learn. It’s really fun!

I hope you’ll go into the Blog Archives on the left and take a look, if you find something I’ve missed, send a comment my way!

Also, if you’re interested in writing, you’ll find ‘Links’  for Writers‘ , to the right at the very bottom of the site.

I’ve seen how Blogging can easily become an obsession for me.

So, before going any further, I have to share this awesome prayer I found which spoke to my heart about this.

Check out the “Bloggers Prayer” and other ‘inspirations’ from writer and blogger, Anne Voskamp.

http://www.aholyexperience.com/a-bloggers-prayer/

Now, in what seems like a complete contradiction to the prayer above,  but taken in perspective isn’t, here are some practical suggestions, from Blogger, Seth Godin.

http://sethgodin.typepad.com/seths_blog/2006/06/how_to_get_traf.html

How to get traffic for your blog

My friend Fred, a talented blogger, asked me for advice the other day. Here’s a partial answer, with a few apologies to Swift: (and when you’re done with this list, feel free to read my post about shark attacks).

  1. Use lists.
  2. Be topical… write posts that need to be read right now.
  3. Learn enough to become the expert in your field.
  4. Break news.
  5. Be timeless… write posts that will be readable in a year.
  6. Be among the first with a great blog on your topic, then encourage others to blog on the same topic.
  7. Share your expertise generously so people recognize it and depend on you.
  8. Announce news.
  9. Write short, pithy posts.
  10. Encourage your readers to help you manipulate the technorati top blog list.
  11. Don’t write about your cat, your boyfriend or your kids.
  12. Write long, definitive posts.
  13. Write about your kids.
  14. Be snarky. Write nearly libelous things about fellow bloggers, daring them to respond (with links back to you) on their blog.
  15. Be sycophantic. Share linklove and expect some back.
  16. Include polls, meters and other eye candy.
  17. Tag your posts. Use del.ico.us.
  18. Coin a term or two.
  19. Do email interviews with the well-known.
  20. Answer your email.
  21. Use photos. Salacious ones are best.
  22. Be anonymous.
  23. Encourage your readers to digg your posts. (and to use furl and reddit). Do it with every post.
  24. Post your photos on flickr.
  25. Encourage your readers to subscribe by RSS.
  26. Start at the beginning and take your readers through a months-long education.
  27. Include comments so your blog becomes a virtual water cooler that feeds itself.
  28. Assume that every day is the beginning, because you always have new readers.
  29. Highlight your best posts on your Squidoo lens.
  30. Point to useful but little-known resources.
  31. Write about stuff that appeals to the majority of current blog readers–like gadgets and web 2.0.
  32. Write about Google.
  33. Have relevant ads that are even better than your content.
  34. Don’t include comments, people will cross post their responses.
  35. Write posts that each include dozens of trackbacks to dozens of blog posts so that people will notice you.
  36. Run no ads.
  37. Keep tweaking your template to make it include every conceivable bell or whistle.
  38. Write about blogging.
  39. Digest the good ideas of other people, all day, every day.
  40. Invent a whole new kind of art or interaction.
  41. Post on weekdays, because there are more readers.
  42. Write about a never-ending parade of different topics so you don’t bore your readers.
  43. Post on weekends, because there are fewer new posts.
  44. Don’t interrupt your writing with a lot of links.
  45. Dress your blog (fonts and design) as well as you would dress yourself for a meeting with a stranger.
  46. Edit yourself. Ruthlessly.
  47. Don’t promote yourself and your business or your books or your projects at the expense of the reader’s attention.
  48. Be patient.
  49. Give credit to those that inspired, it makes your writing more useful.
  50. Ping technorati. Or have someone smarter than me tell you how to do it automatically.
  51. Write about only one thing, in ever-deepening detail, so you become definitive.
  52. Write in English.
  53. Better, write inChinese.
  54. Write about obscure stuff that appeals to an obsessed minority.
  55. Don’t be boring.
  56. Write stuff that people want to read and share.

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