Twice this past week, I’ve heard the same question from writers I know:
“Josh, would you please stop plagiarizing my writing?”
Just kidding. That wasn’t the question. At least, it isn’t the one I’m going to talk about in today’s blog. The real question is this:
“Josh, how do you blog so much? I would run out of things to say.”
Let’s be honest, if you’ve been reading my blog consistently, you’ll know that most of it is drivel and I don’t have all that much to say. But for the sake of argument, let’s pretend that I’m saying worthwhile things (at least some of time). How do I find something to talk about nearly everyday?
I cheat. That’s right, I cheat. And the best part about it is that I’m doing it using rules. I say this because I’ve set up my blog to run along a certain format. If you are a writer looking to post consistently to your blog, I’d suggest that you do the same thing.
Here are my rules:
Monday – “I am” post. What have I done this past week? What is a label that could apply to me? What story from my past could I start with the phrase “I am”?
Tuesday – Free day. I can talk about whatever comes to mind. A few of the recent categories of posts include flash fiction stories, book reviews, my job, a response to some interesting link that I find online, meta-blogging, word origins, and current events. My blog doesn’t follow a specific focus (like the experts will tell you it should (and they are probably right)), so I have the freedom to write as though in a journal and share things that I find interesting.
Wednesday – Multiple series post. Lately, I’ve been working through 15 Icebreaker Questions. Those questions are going to give me 16 weeks of posts where I know exactly what I’m going to write about. It’ll be 17 if I do a retrospective post at the end. Series of posts are nice because you’ll know what to expect from yourself.
Thursday – Another free day. See Tuesday’s rule.
Friday – Links post. Surf the web, find some places worth sharing, share them. Boom!
Saturday – Lego prompt post. When I have time to take a picture, I’ll set up a scene with my Lego figurines and take a picture. Now it is up to other writers to make something of the photo. This encourages interaction on my blog and hopefully saves someone the pain of having to come up with an idea for their own post.
Am I suggesting that you follow the rules that I’ve set up for myself? No. Make your own rules. If you want to focus your blog posts (which you probably should), then develop rules that relate to your focus. If this were a gardening blog, I’d probably want to follow something like this schedule: Monday – Plant feature, Tuesday – Gardening tip, Wednesday – Gardening book review, Thursday – How to use a specific plant in cooking, Friday – Garden pictures (inviting readers to send in pictures of their own gardens), and every now and again, I’d throw in a guest post from some gardening friend or expert.
If you think you’d run out of things to blog about, you probably won’t. I haven’t yet. Will it take more time than you want to give it? Probably, but that’s a different question, isn’t it. (Look, I just found the topic for another blog post for another day!)
Happy blogging fellow writers!
P.S. Happy Birthday to my big brother, Bob! I don’t know if you still read this drivel, Bob, but I hope you have a great day either way.