Blog Cogs Or Blog Logs

Recently I read an insightful article about blogging entitled “Are You A Blogger Buddy Or A Blogger Bum?” In a succinct way, the author, John Sherry, pointed out ways bloggers can either make themselves appealing or odious.

It’s a sobering subject, or ought to be, for those of us who write regularly and/or who consider blogging a plank in our writer’s platform.

Just a short while ago, agent Rachelle Gardner wrote a series of posts on the difficult discussions agents sometimes have to have with clients. One of those had to do with a writer’s public image.

Has it occurred to you that as an author, you’ll be a “public figure” and people will form opinions about you based on every little thing? You want your public image to be inviting, so people will want to buy and read your books.

Now, if you’re unagented and uncontracted, and not trying to sell any self-pubbed books, then you don’t have to stress out about this quite yet. But keep in mind that when you’re out there trying to build a readership, everything matters [emphasis mine].

So I started thinking about blogging and what I appreciate or don’t. Mind you, I think Mr. Sherry’s lists are excellent. These are just my add-ons.

Blog Cogs
(or The Things Bloggers And Visitors Do That Make Blogs Better)

  • Give kind and encouraging feedback
  • Engage in discussions (and take part in polls 😉 )
  • Share articles on Facebook or Twitter
  • In their posts, link back to you and your articles
  • On their site, answer your comments so you know you’re not merely talking to yourself

Blog Logs
(or The Things Bloggers And Visitors Do That End Up Creating Rot)

  • Skim read posts but comment regardless
  • Nitpick posts
  • Critique posts line by line
  • Hijack post comments to discuss a favorite topic that has little or nothing to do with the subject at hand.
  • Refuse to admit an error or apologize for a mistake

Quite honestly, I find this an intimidating subject because I’m quite sure I’ve done all the Log things at one time or another and I’ve neglected the Cog things far too often. But writing about it makes me want to do better, and that’s a good thing.

What about you? What are some of the things you’ve observed as you bounce from blog to blog? Any blogger you want to give a special shout-out to for the excellence of their content or for the way they interact with visitors?

I think we’ll all be better Cogs if we limit the shout-outs to the blogs that are doing it right, don’t you think? 😀

Published in: on May 26, 2011 at 6:42 pm  Comments (8)  
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8 Comments

  1. Very good (and sobering). You’ve inspired me to be more coggish 🙂

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  2. The whole “public image” bit can become paralyzing if you let it go too far.

    But yep, as a published writer you do have to not only take into account how people will relate to you, but how your actions will reflect back on your publisher as well (unless you’re self published).

    Hopefully I can start being more of a Cog. Good stuff to remember, thanks!

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  3. Yours is a high quality blog, Becky, and has been for years. Keep up the great work.

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  4. Well, in the interest of engaging in discussion, I’m with you on all the cog things, but I don’t agree with most of your log things. I mean, on my own blogs, I don’t mind at all if people hijack the thread or critique me line by line or nit pick. I don’t care if they never apologize when they’re wrong. The only thing I don’t like is if people comment and argue without actually reading the post. I have suspected that a few times. It makes it difficult to have a conversation when one party is not reading what the other party has said.

    But I think you are probably in the majority with your list of log things. I think others may mind if a thread is highjacked and if their posts are nitpicked, so I try to be mindful of that when I post on other people’s blogs. I forget sometimes.

    I couldn’t agree more on the linking back to articles, deal. I try to use the posting to facebook and twitter sparingly because I don’t want people to ignore my links or to think I’m a spammer. I only want to link to articles that I think are really outstanding and that I think my friends will enjoy and benefit from.

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  5. I learned a lot about blogging from author Brandilyn Collins, who sadly has taken off her blogger hat. She really did know how to encourage comments and engage her readers.

    Current bloggers I think qualify as Cogs include Morgan and Sarah Sawyer, each for different reasons.

    But my, there really are LOTS of good bloggers. Take a look at any of these discussion threads, and it’s pretty obvious! 😀

    Becky

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  6. *blushes* To give credit where credit is due, I would never have started blogging if it wasn’t for your encouragement back at Mt Hermon last year 🙂

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  7. Just looked at it again after posting it to Twitter. I think I’m leaning towards the Log side.

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  8. […] article that I like by Rebecca Miller is on how to be a better blogger. If  you’re not interested in reading the whole post, here’s the gist of […]

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