Writing about what people want to read…

thinktherefore

Since I have started this blog I tend to write about whatever is on my mind that particular day. I don’t plan in advance or write articles the night before to submit. I get up every morning, read the news, play around on Facebook, drink my coffee and write this blog. I have talked before about how random I am with my topics but now I have a tool to use to gauge just how random I am – and how people respond to it.

If I was to go by my blog stats alone I would only write about writing, women in combat, and more reasons why I don’t want to be a teacher. Those have by far been my most popular subjects. Sometimes I write things that I see as personal masterpieces that only garner two or three new hits and about 12 views and other times I write something hasty and it breaks records.

I have also learned how to pimp my blog without being a self-promoting jerk which leads to more people reading, but I only do that if it is direct response to something someone else has written and then I post a link to my opinions on whatever was written (I still get hits from the Small Wars Journal). Obviously, I would love it if every single one of my posts had some effect on people, good or bad. I want my posts to get people thinking about things in ways they haven’t before. When push comes to shove though, I write for myself.

Is that selfish? I don’t think so. Until someone pays me for my writing (I’m available) – I am just going to keep on doing what I’m doing and look at my blog stats like an EKG. Sometimes I flat-line, and sometimes it’s like heart attack. While I do enjoy the heart attack days – the flat-line days serve their purpose too.

To my fellow bloggers, I have some questions for you:

1. How do you choose your topics?

2. Does your blog follow certain rules everyday?

3. When you hit that ‘heart attack’ subject – do you find yourself writing more about it?

4. What influences your decisions to like or follow a certain post or blogger?

The reason I ask these questions is that I see many of my fellow bloggers who have thousands of followers and comment streams that go on forever and I am looking obviously to improve my own readership – while still maintaining my random nature. I understand that success takes time – especially in blogger land where there are thousands of us writing about everything from cake to world dominance, but there have to be some tricks of the trade that I am missing out on.

My main advice for writers is to stick to what you know and what you are passionate about. I have no worries on the flat-line days and I get truly excited on the heart-attack days. I feel that for being only a couple of months old – Tolerant People is doing pretty well. Most importantly though; I am really enjoying the process.

So to my followers and those who take the time to offer me feedback – Thanks! While I would be doing this even if everyday was a flat-line day; having you all here makes it all so much more interesting and worthwhile.

What is the one thing you would tell new bloggers to help them break into this medium? For those with huge audiences – how long did it take you and how did you do it? How do you engage your readers so that they like, share, and comment? What motivates you to write everyday (or whatever your schedule is)? 

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