Monday, November 28, 2011

The Curious Lifecycle of a Blog

There have been a lot of articles lately on whether or not blogs are dead or have been replaced by Twitter/Google Plus/Facebook etc. (There is a particularly brilliant post over on Roni Loren's blog about the ten stages of blogging, which is a must read. What stage are you?)

A lot of bloggers, some quite high profile, have expressed increasing blog fatigue. (Although for the record, I would like it noted that here at Shrinking Violet we copped to blog fatigue YEARS ago, and consequently instituted a rather robust hiatus policy. ☺ )

When Mary and I started this blog nearly five years ago, there simply weren’t many blogs on promotion or marketing for writers, and even fewer for introverted writers. In 2007 there were about 50 million blogs total, an intimidating enough figure. But in 2010 the number of blogs rose to152 million!

In addition to this blog, we both had personal blogs, my own going back to 2006. That’s a lot of blogging and it makes sense that at some point one would run out of things to say.

I haven’t hit that point yet. But. I do find I have less and less to say about marketing and promotion. There are now millions of blogs and sites out there that all talk about this, some ad nauseaum. And frankly, there’s not much I can say about the subject that I haven’t said before somewhere on this blog.

That doesn't mean I'm done blogging. What that does mean is that I won't be blogging as often. Especially with a couple of gnarly deadlines breathing down my neck and a whole calendar full of travel in the coming months. I simply need to give myself permission to take some of the pressure off.

I figured fellow introverts would be the most understanding.

I DO plan to be back, but it most likely won't be until after the holidays. At that point, I'm sure I will be starved for talking about all sorts of things.

I hope you all have a wonderful couple of months and use the time you aren't reading Shrinking Violets for recharging your batteries!


Becky Levine said...

I do feel like I'm starting to repeat myself--but then again, I always get a surprise comment that reminds me that not everbody (really?) heard me the first time! :)

I'm spending more time on the personal, too, which-honestly--is how and why I started. So, yes, probably less profitable promotion, but I figured out long ago that if I'm not enjoying blogging, I'm doing something wrong.

I feel like I check in more with people on Facebook, but I keep a list of my favorite blogs & at least check out their topics. And, often, Facebook does lead me somewhere new, which is always fun.

I wonder if there isn't a cycle for blogging, so much as a cycle for individual bloggers?

Kay Theodoratus said...

I'm lucky. Without planning, I set up my blog to comment on other blogs that interested me and doing book reviews. So far, I haven't run out of idea.

Enjoy the holidays, all of them even if they aren't part of your tradition.

Kimberly Lynn said...

I completely understand where you are, Robin, and the amount of time I spend blogging isn’t near the breakneck pace and quality as yours.

It’s so difficult to keep up with everything online, but the Shrinking Violet Promotions blog will always be in my number one spot. The other 152 million can “sit and spin” as my mom always says.

Happy Holidays to you and Mary,
Kimberly ♥

Caroline Starr Rose said...


Natalie Aguirre said...

Totally understand. I won't have been blogging for a year until February, but even blogging once a week is a lot of work. I hope people don't stop blogging because you can say more with a blog than Twitter but I wouldn't mind if people blogged less because it's hard to keep up.

aquafortis said...

It is hard to keep up with both the blog writing and the blog reading. I find myself taking hiatuses (hiati?) on both every now and again, and lately it's been the personal blog that I've been neglecting. I can't help fretting about how much I want to put online, about whether my personal stuff will interest people or whether I'm better off focusing on writing- and reading-related posts and keeping the focus off myself. (Which is not great marketing, I'm sure...)

Anyway, I hope you both have a lovely holiday and a well-deserved rest!

Susanna Leonard Hill said...

Not sure I can pinpoint my stage exactly, but I can certainly relate to all of them! Have a great hiatus and a wonderful holiday season!

Kimberley Griffiths Little said...

The problem is, Robin, that reading Shrinking Violet recharges my batteries!!! I will be lost without you! Enjoy your holidays, my friend!

Tena Russ said...

I started blogging in 2007 and have gone through all stages, including the one where I've given my blog last rites. Then recently I read a post by Seth Godin that inspired me to keep posting. Paraphrasing, he said to write every day and turn off comments. I've always admired his intelligence and his brief but punchy posts. When I resumed blogging a couple of months ago, I decided to post three times a week. It was too much. Now I'm down to twice a week, which feels about right. My Facebook friends know when I post, so I do get readers from there. But my posts are really intended to be a conversation with myself and to keep the writing muscled flexed. If someone else wants to know what's on my mind, they are welcome to read about it. All the best on your hiatus. I enjoy your blog and look forward to seeing you later.

Anne E.G. Nydam said...

I'll miss your posts - I've found so much here to make me think. I look forward to reading whatever you find to share again once you've had a chance to recharge. In the meantime, don't worry about not being "the perfect blogger" (whatever that is) but enjoy the break.
As for the stages of blogging, I had to laugh at the comment about posts on adverbs. I did a post on adverbs early in my blog, only mine was about how great adverbs are and how sad the world would be without them. And I've cleverly managed to skip most of steps 2-5 by starting my blog with such low expectations of readership and impact! =)

Liz Michalski said...

Shrinking Violets always gets my week off to a good start, so I'm a bit sad I won't have that to look forward to for a little bit. But I do understand, and I hope the break lets you recharge.

When I started blogging, I almost immediately adopted your once-a-week policy, with time off for good behavior in the summer. This schedule definitely helps keep my motivation up.

idose said...

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Wild About Words said...

Good thinking, Robin. Hope you find time and energy to meet your deadlines and all the other parts of this lovely job.
Happiest of holidays to you and your family!

mondal said...

I'm spending more time on the personal, too, which-honestly--is how and why I started. So, yes, probably less profitable promotion, but I figured out long ago that if I'm not enjoying blogging, I'm doing something wrong.
British Food

Ms. Yingling said...

When I started, I didn't think anyone would read what I wrote. I was pleasantly surprised and made a lot of good blog friends. Now, I use my posts as an auxiliary memory, so whatever happens. I won't be disappointed!

Karen S. Elliott said...

I am not an introvert, but I do get blog fatigue now and then ... what do I write about? I just don't feel like it. I've got too much going on.

About six months ago, I started theme weeks. And though it is still a lot of work (checking submissions, verifying links, getting photos), it takes the pressure from my shoulders to create. And it's been a lot of fun and a great way to meet and work with new people.

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