More Blogs Than One

A year ago when I was waiting for my books to be published, I kept myself occupied with setting up a variety of blogs. I told myself I wanted to test blogging platforms so I could help my fellow authors pick the best one for their needs, but that wasn’t my excuse for setting up a bunch of WordPress blogs since I was already familiar with the site. The truth is, I became enamored with the custom colorizer, and ended up with five blogs, identical except for color.

The blue blog, this one — Bertram’s Blog — chronicles my struggles first to become a published writer and now to become a published selling writer. It was my original blog, and the one I still consider my blogging home.

The red blog, Pat Bertram Introduces, was intended to be an authors’ blog, where I introduced the writers I was coming to know via networking sites. When so many of them ignored my invitation to be a guest, I decided to turn it into a blog for interviewing my characters. (I’d forgotten that until just now. Never did introduce them!) To get the blog going, since at the time it was too soon to introduce my characters, I decided to introduce other writers’ characters. If you’d like me to introduce your character or characters, you can find the instructions on the Character Questionnaire page. At the very least, it’s a good way for you to get to know your own characters.

The purple blog, Book Marketing Floozy, was intended to be a blog to promote my books. I was talking (online, of course — that seems to be where my life is lived nowadays) to a fellow author about promotion, and she cautioned me against signing up for too many social networking sites. She said that I ran the risk of becoming a marketing floozy, just popping in to peddle my books, and then disappearing again. Since I’ve never been one to take advice, I signed up for several sites (though in the end, I did more or less take her advice — I spend most of my time on Facebook, Goodreads, and Gather.) And I started the Book Marketing Floozy blog — I decided that if I was going to be a book marketing floozy, then I should flaunt my flooziness. Again, since it was too early to start promoting my books, I started collecting articles about book marketing and promotion by different authors. The site is now indexed for easy reference, but there is no article about my books, though I did mention them in passing in one of the articles I wrote. Too bad. I did like the idea of being a book marketing floozy.

The yellow/orange blog, Dragon My Feet, was an import from Live Spaces. I set up a blog there using a gorgeous dragon template, and since I mostly talked about how I was procrastinating, I called it . . . You get the idea. So now I have a blog name that, while cute, really makes no sense. And the blog itself makes no sense. It’s become a dumping ground for any article that doesn’t fit with another of my blogs. I have guest articles that are too self-promotiony for Bertram’s Blog. I have a few of my attempts at reviewing books. I have photo essays. Checking out the blog just now, I notice that thirteen of the past fourteen posts are related to books in some way. Perhaps I should turn it into a book blog? But that would be work — finding guests, reading books and writing reviews — and I am inherently averse to work.

The green blog, Wayword Wind, is a poor, loveless thing that sits there getting greener by the moment because of all the moss it’s gathering. I have not posted a single bloggery because I have never quite figured out what to do with it. I planned to post articles about the various themes and research in my novels, but alas, I can’t think of anything to say that isn’t already in the books. I should have talked about the swine flu and how it tied into A Spark of Heavenly Fire, but I didn’t. I could talk about the twelfth planet and the various conspiracy theories I mention in my upcoming book Light Bringer, but I won’t. Been there. Done that. At one time I thought of posting quotes and then giving a commentary, but I really don’t have much to say on any subject except writing. I discovered this recently when I started yet another blog simply because I like the WordPress theme. (Do you see a pattern here?) I call it The Mind of Pat Bertram, but since I seldom post to it, you can see how little is actually on my mind. Then I thought of turning Wayword Wind into a blog for posting my progress with Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way program, but since I haven’t actually been doing the program, it fits more with Dragon My Feet. Because of the way I spelled wayword, it seems the blog should be about writing, but I already have a blog about writing.

So, here’s my conundrum. It’s not as crucial as the one that haunts me about how to promote my books, but it is a niggling one. I have a blank blog!!!!! What do I do with it?

(The title of this article was once used in reference to me by Lisa Brackmann, author of the soon-to-be-released Rock Paper Tiger.)

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14 Responses to “More Blogs Than One”

  1. Jill Lynn Says:

    Maybe you should roll all the blogs into one… using a rainbow motif, of course :-)

    • Pat Bertram Says:

      Jill, that would be the smart thing to do, since basically they all have to do with writing in some way and it would be easier to keep going, but then I’d have four empty blogs taunting me.

  2. Smith River Says:

    One blog is certainly plenty. There is only so much this online medium can do for anyone since very little money can be generated on the Internet without a physical market presence for the product whatever it may be. This is why sales are poor to partly hopeless for such products no matter who has them or what they say between the covers.

  3. otherlisa Says:

    OMG! I had no idea it was THIS many more blogs than one! Yeah, I would try to consolidate them a little. I have the one blog and facebook. I’m going to put together a more formal author website that will incorporate other kinds of stuff, but it’s really all I can do to keep up on my one blog.

    • Pat Bertram Says:

      Lisa, this isn’t all of them. I have a blog where I post articles about my WIP — sort of a notebook. I have a blog where I post my 100-word stories. I have one where I post the snippets of poetry I used to write. I have a blog on MySpace and Redroom. I contribute to the Second Wind Blog, and I contribute to The Write Type, another multi-author blog. Admittedly, most of the blogs are more like static websites, and I post used articles on some of them, like MySpace and Redroom. What can I say? I had a lot of time to fill from the time my books were accepted until they were published.

  4. joylene Says:

    Now I feel terrible. I’ve only been keeping up with your blue blog. Ooh, rainbow colours, I like that. Good excuse to take things a little easier, Pat. I don’t want you wearing yourself out. Course, as long as you’re having fun…

    • Pat Bertram Says:

      Joylene, that’s why I can’t consolidate the blogs — I like the rainbow colors, too. I forgot — that’s how we met — you did a character interview for my red blog! And yes, I do have fun with them. I’m learning that’s about all I can expect from them, and that’s okay.

  5. James Rafferty Says:

    Hi Pat. In addition to posting to your blogs, you sleep sometimes as well — perhaps to post to dream blogs? :-)

    It sounds like you enjoy juggling the multiple blogs, but as others have suggested, you might consider squeezing the focus down to one or two. Given the multi-author blogs you’re on and your various book writing / promotional activities and discussion groups, you’ll probably make good use of the time you free up.

    It reminds me of my reason for not doing Twitter so far. Whose really got the time if you have a real life too?

    But the world of promotion has its own timetables and agendas. I never thought I’d be promoting work related stuff on Facebook, but that notion went out the window about a year ago.

    • Pat Bertram Says:

      Actually, Twitter is easy — I just link my Facebook status to it, and both update at the same time. Sleep, what’s that? I think I’ve heard of it before, but never quite got the hang of it.

  6. Pat S. Says:

    Need another reason to consolidate? Folks only have so much time to read blogs. They have their own stuff to keep up with. I try to keep up with friends’ blogs, but I just can’t read all the blogs al the time. Nobody can. And too many blogs starts making an author look like they’re not able to maintain focus, and are more interested in blogging than the work of writing. And they quickly lose their brand identity. It would be nice to think you could have it all, but sooner or later, an author has to choose a brand and spend their energy on that. If you just like playing with templates and creating sites, why not hire your services out to authors who have neither the time nor inclination to start their blogs?

    • Pat Bertram Says:

      You’ve given me much to think about. I’m not sure I have a brand identity yet, though I’m still working on it, which, perhaps, is the purpose of all the blogs — to figure out my identity as an author. I still like the tag line Wendy created for me: crossing genres with style.

  7. Sheila Deeth Says:

    I never even noticed the color codes. But I followed your blogs and thought how very organized you are, and dreamed I’d get several one day and be similarly wise. So now I’ve got one blog and write fairly regularly on fairly random topics. It’s about as random as me which I guess is par for the course.

    • Pat Bertram Says:

      Wise? Wouldn’t that be nice! I am getting more organized, though, which is what this article is all about — trying to find the focus for the blogs so I don’t have to think about them as much.


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