October 26, 2007
Always Be Jabbing. Always Be Shipping. Always Be Firing. It's the same advice, stated in different ways for different audiences.
My theory is that lead generation derives from Google rank and that the best way to increase Google rank is to be like a professional fighter: neither jabs nor haymakers are enough. You must be always jabbing and you must regularly throw haymakers. Blog continuously to keep your hit-rate and link-traffic high and write longer pieces, containing the high-value words associated with your niche, occasionally.
When people ask me for advice on blogging, I always respond with yet another form of the same advice: pick a schedule you can live with, and stick to it. Until you do that, none of the other advice I could give you will matter. I don't care if you suck at writing. I don't care if nobody reads your blog. I don't care if you have nothing interesting to say. If you can demonstrate a willingness to write, and a desire to keep continually improving your writing, you will eventually be successful.
But success takes time – a lot of time. I'd say a year at minimum. That's the element that weeds out so many impatient people. I wrote this blog for a year in utter obscurity, but I kept at it because I enjoyed it. I made a commitment to myself, under the banner of personal development, and I planned to meet that goal. My schedule was six posts per week, and I kept jabbing, kept shipping, kept firing. Not every post was that great, but I invested a reasonable effort in each one. Every time I wrote, I got a little better at writing. Every time I wrote, I learned a little more about the topic, how to research topics effectively, where the best sources of information were. Every time I wrote, I was slightly more plugged in to the rich software development community all around me. Every time I wrote, I'd get a morsel of feedback or comments that I kept rolling up into future posts. Every time I wrote, I tried to write something just the tiniest bit better than I did last time.
The changes, to me, were almost imperceptible. But from a very modest start – a 2004 new year's resolution for professional development – I'd say writing this blog is now, without a doubt, the most important thing I've ever done in my entire career.
I won't say I got my job here at Vertigo back in 2005 because of this blog, but it was definitely a factor. I was interviewed on .NET rocks, and I've been interviewed online not once but twice. I've been invited to speak at conferences. I am approached for book deals every few months. I exchange email regularly with Steve McConnell, one of my programming idols as a young adult, and he once asked me for advice on blogging. Joel Spolsky actually recognized me and invited conversation when I attended the Emeryville leg of his world tour. Charles Petzold sent me, completely unprompted, a signed copy of his latest book. People offer to send me incredibly cool free swag on a regular basis.
As near as I can tell, between RSS stats and log stats, around 100,000 people read this blog every day. Ad revenues that I've only reluctantly taken are significant enough now that I've actually entertained the idea, in my weaker moments, of becoming a full-time blogger. That is how crazy it's gotten. I would never have predicted this outcome in a million years, and writing it all down like this actually freaks me out a little bit.
I mention these things not because I'm a big fat showoff (or at least that's not the only reason), but because I achieved all this without being particularly talented. It was done one small post at a time, with no real planning or strategy whatsoever, beyond the simple incremental suck less every year kind. I am continually amazed and completely humbled by the success of this blog. All it took was a basic commitment to keep jabbing, keep shipping, keep firing.
If anything, what I've learned is this: if I can achieve this kind of success with my blog, so can you. So if you're wondering why the first thing I ask you when I meet you is "do you have a blog?" or "why don't you post to your blog more regularly?", or "could you turn that into a blog post?", now you know why. It's not just because I'm that annoying blog guy; it's because I'd like to wish the kind of amazing success I've had on everyone I meet.
I'm just trying to share my easy one step plan to achieve Ultimate Blog Success: find a posting schedule you can live with, and stick to it for a year. Probably several years. Okay, so maybe that one step is really not quite so easy as I made it out to be. But everyone has to start somewhere, and the sooner the better.
So when was the last time you wrote a blog post?
Posted by Jeff Atwood
Writing six pieces a week is a lot...
How much time do you think you spend on each post on average?
I come for the porn, I stay for the zombies.
Well done Jeff, you big fat show-off! :p
I've only recently discovered your blog but really enjoy reading it. I think the problem with most people is the time commitment. Time between blog posts on my blog is usually measured in months.
Of course, actually having readers might be encouragement enough so I guess it's a matter of bootstrapping.
Actually, I'd been meaning to ask you a question: I haven't yet seen comment spam on your blog and wondered what system you currently use? (I've already searched for spam in your archives and just wondered if there's been some update).
I try to blog on a regular basis, but wonder whether I could ever keep up with the ambitious schedule of 6 posts per week. Heck, I consider it a good week if I've blogged once during that time!
Did you find that you initially struggled with coming up with topics for your blog posts, and if so, how did you overcome this?
Jeff, based on my own informal survey of top-tier bloggers, it seems the most important step might actually be "start in 2004".
I'm not claiming success yet but I did pick up on your advice of committing to a regular schedule a while back in something else you wrote.
Like I say, fame and glory are still not quite here (I'm expecting it any moment) but if nothing else it improves the writing 'muscle'. That is I think the more that you write the more you can write.
Most of my problems just coming up with topics to blog about. My blog is lucky to see 1 post every 3 months. Where do you find you "inspiration" for each post's topic?
Sorry Jeff, but you are kidding yourself - you are like one of those rock or sports stars that tell kids that "hard work" and "self-belief" got them where they are. It is a crock - you achieved it because you *were* talented, and no amount of hard work could have made up for it if you weren't. Just like I realise (now!) that I was never going to be Bruce Springsteen, however many hours of my misspent youth I devoted to that - and believe me, it was many, many more hours than you've spent writing this blog!
The hardest thing I'm facing right now, is finding topics worth blogging about. I do a lot of programming every day, and solve some problems I find interesting during the spur of the moment, but not interesting enough to devote a blog post to it.
Writer's block... Yikes!
Jeff, as I read your post I started to get 'that itch' - that euphoric "I have to do this now" feeling. If this were a blog post, I would have to insert a pic of Rocky Balboa doing one of his old school, extremely cheesy workout routines to the tune of Eye of the Tiger. No one here can tell me they don't know what I'm talkng about.
But your post was anything but cheesy. Like most of your posts, the signal to noise ratio is incredibly high. That's not the norm. That's why I'm here, and why I keep coming back. I don't have time to read 20,000 posts a month like Scoble. I have a job, a family and life that needs to be shared with the real world.
A few here have mentioned your 'motivational' tone in this post. I pulled out my 2007 List Of Must Do's and "Start a #!!! Blog" is still on there for the second year in a row. I WILL start my #!!! Blog this year and dedicate the first post to you. (I'll be sure to mention the dedication is unsolicited and does not reflect any implied endorsemeny by CO. I could just be more 'noise' after all...)
Thank you sir.
I recently started reading your blog and started to learn so much through the materials and links, especially the reading suggestions. This blog in particular is what I was expecting to read from you; How you find time to write so many different things almost every day.
@foobar :-D !!!
Btw, I also enjoy this blog. Quality, man. Quality.
I've been reading your blog for a while now and have often thought about starting my own blog but didn't think I could find anything to write about or thought I should use the blog as an excuse to learn something new. After reading this post I'm starting my own blog with a modest schedule of twice a week. We'll see how it goes but after just sitting down for an hour I've got about 5 topics lined up I want to write about. This is alot more fun than I thought it would be so far.
Dude, while I'm with Syd in that you have raw talent and a care-free opinionated writing style, with flashy toys and free books thrown in - that hooks me in... I still like the motivational tact of this post and I keep meaning to resurrect my blog, I just can't stand blogware at the moment, I'd rather Twitter.
What boggles my mind is that you make any money from those little ads. :) Awesome.
Meta-blogging is like masturbating?
Feels good, but nobody wants to see you do it?
I think one of the more difficult things about starting a blog is finding a good name for it.
I think your story is applicable to software development in general as well: as long as people continue to improve themselves, put time into their work every day and for a long period of time, you will reach the goals you've set (well, as long as they're reasonable of course;))
Sometimes people ask me: "How did you write those 300K lines of code, you can't have written that all by yourself". But it's true, and not because I'm talented, but because I keep focussed on the work, keep on going, day after day, week after week.
But boy... 100K readers... I just barely have 3000 daily subscribers :D
I'm not quite sure if frequency of posting guarantees success. OK, I guess it depends on what Jeff calls success. If success means improving your own writing skills, ability to express yourself, organizing the thought process, enhancing research skills, and other aspects of personal improvement, then indeed, frequent posting can (but not necessarily will) help achieve success. But I suspect that the majority of bloggers (especially beginners), equate success with the number of hits (readers). Now, this sort of success does not depend on the frequency of posts. In fact, many accomplished bloggers (Steve Yegge, Michael "Rands" Lopp, Robert X. Cringely, Joel Spolsky, to name a few) are not frequent posters. As a subscriber to many blogs, I prefer authors to focus on quality of their posts rather than quantity. Somehow Jeff managed to achieve both, but most bloggers simply cannot produce more than one quality post per week (at best). I'm not saying that you should not keep writing more often, but if you keep posting crap, I doubt that you will gain a wide audience.
I think that the primary indicator of success in blogging (or anything else for that matter) is the desire to write (or do whatever you desire to do). If you have this desire, i.e. if you cannot keep yourself from writing (and it does not matter whether you have readers or not), then do it, and do it as often as you can. If you are lucky, maybe someone will mention your blog in a popular publication, you will be successful in gaining readers. If you do not have this desire, i.e. if you can keep yourself from writing, write for personal improvement, but do not expect to gain many readers, and please do not post too often.
This is true for any regularly published online content. A few years ago a company in another city gave me a call; not for a phone interview; but because they wanted to put me on a plane, fly me to the office so I could meet *any of the many groups I could work in*.
I was somewhat baffled, my resume is by no means stellar, so it must have been something else. I asked the group on the phone *your sure you do not have any questions?* The reply was an eye opener:
*When HR sent us your resume, we immediately visited your site. We emailed the link to every IT group in the company; who subsequently crawled your entire website. We also downloaded your code and looked at work you have done with Open Source projects. We already know we want to hire you - we just want to know if you want to work for us.*
Ever since that time I have made sure to regularly update content whether it be tutorials, admin guides, new code or just plain interesting stuff.
I think it takes a particular attitude, to start blogging. The difference is between waking up in the morning with "Mmmh... I feel like writing" and "Mmmh... I feel like reading" in your mind. It's the difference between starting a topic and joining/commenting a topic.
You can improve, you can gain an audience, but will you always have something interesting in your mind to blog about? I'm not sure I would, and that's one of the reasons for me not having my own blog. Nothing is worse than trying to write when you got nothing on your mind. You end up with your readers complaining about the quality of your posts, like it happens sometimes on WTF.
As for me, I usually wake up with "Mmmh.. I feel like playing Warcraft/Soccer (depending on the season)"... too bad I gotta work on a stupid Credit Workflow Management application instead :-P
I've been blogging for 2 complete months next week and I've really enjoyed it.
At first, I decided to have 2 posts a week, one on monday or tuesday and one on thursday or friday but at this rythm, I was getting more and more lazy. Now, I try to log in every time I find something interesting to write about, at least two times a week.
I've been blogging for about a year and nobody reads it because there are too many text blogs out there. I think you would have better luck vlogging. Vloggers don't have so much competition and they get more feedback than a text blog does.
How much time do you spend on each blog entry Jeff? You tend to consistently come up with some particularly well researched, high quality, meaty stuff, but that takes time. I guesstimate that if I were to go for the same quality and frequency I'd probably be at it for 4-5 hours a day at least, if not full time.
you are like one of those rock or sports stars that tell kids that "hard work" and "self-belief" got them where they are. It is a crock
It's true. There is an aspect of "I lost 50 pounds in one month! You can too! (Results Not Typical)" in this post. My results may be atypical.
Talent (particularly writing talent) helps. There's no doubt about it. Still, you can accomplish a lot through sheer effort. And most people don't even try, so the very act of setting a goal and working towards it sets you apart from the majority of your peers.
Who needs talent when you have intensity?
Writing six pieces a week is a lot...
To be fair, my goal is 5 posts a week now, and I don't always meet that. But I never dip below 4. Like it says in the original Larry O'Brien quote-- they don't all have to be haymakers. You just have to keep throwing punches. Some of them will land, and the more you do it, the better you get at it.
Pick whatever schedule works for you. And be realistic. I think starting with one post a month, like Catto, is a fine goal. Try to slowly ramp it up a bit over time as you get into the groove, and you're on your way.
it seems the most important step might actually be "start in 2004".
But in 2004, that advice would have been "start in 2001". The only thing that's certain is that until you start, you cannot reap any benefits.
Lesson: start NOW.
I couldn't agree more with you that success takes time. My favorite quote is: "It took me ten years to become and overnight success." This is more true than most people believe.
I've been posting on my personal blog for two years now, and I can definitely see the growth. At first it's almost imperceptible. You get excited to hit your first thousand unique visitors in a month. Now there isn't a day where I don't hit four figures of unique visitors a day! Yes, each day I now get more traffic than I did for each of my first 2-3 months!
These things take time and effort, but if you keep at it, success will come.
Hey Now Jeff,
I remember the interview on DNR you stated the same thing to set a number of time to post as a goal for your self. Because I heard you say that I've been attempting to post 1 per month, plan to increase next year. To answer your question the last time I posted was 10.9.07 Your blog is great, I've learned so much from you in such a short time (less than a yesr). As always thanks for the info.
Coding Horror Fan,
Jeff, great post.
I have had a blog for a couple years and have found it difficult to keep a consistant posting schedule. Your post is going to motivate me to post on a regular basis, even if the content is not that great but to get in the habit of being a regular blogger.
Nice one Jeff, thanks for the advice. My own blog is dead new, and I've been wondering how to get people to read it (although the nice people at Fog Creek read and commented on my FogBUGZ 6.0, which was nice). Thanks for the advice.
I find the hard part is finding good external references to back up or balance my own thoughts. Sometimes Google is just too powerful and fishing the stuff you really want out of 1.2 billion results is hard going.
I'm just finishing up college, and my blog was the primary factor in getting my second internship at a Fortune-10 company. I didn't see my blog as very successful until I received that inquiring email out of the blue. Cheers!
So, when is the self help book coming out?
Thanks for the inspiration! You have a dedicated link on my blog's nav pane. Still waiting for the visiting masses....
Thanks for letting us all benefit from your "personal development"!
I gave up my blog shortly after realizing I had nothing left to say. That's an even more important skill than writing every day. But my urge to be creative ends up surfacing in other ways. Right now I'm one of the few people posting anything interesting (IMHO) to the website Twitter.
My problem was always that I simply didn't have enough to say. I'd have 3-4 things I wanted to say in a month at best. Just not enough for a reasonable blog. I think many people might be like that.
Congrats, Jeff :-)
We love Coding Horror !!!
I totally agree with you on this one. If people would spend more time blogging and less time posting comments on other blogs...
Committment/consistency is only half the battle.
What's made this blog great is that you are able to express and clearly communicate your passion. People who are passionate about computers (and programming) read this blog and are touched.
I recommend taking your ad revenue and getting
a) a dedicated host with lots of bandwidth
b) Digg-like commment threading! :)
This is good stuff, up to your usual standard, but I need a more nuts and bolts kind of post.
What software do I need?
Do I need to run my own web site?
You did a bit on how to handle the pictures, and that was good, but I have no idea where to actually start.
And by the way, I really, really hate HTML. So I need an editor that hides that awful stuff away from me.
I am one of the 100,000. Love your work.
Keep it up.
Keep it up! You always find ways of articulately explaining those little things about software/development that always creep up in the back of my head and start nagging me but that which I don't have the time to organize and/or write a page about.
There's no telling how many people I've turned on to your blog. It is great. But if you didn't have a new post as often as you do, I would have stopped reading a long time ago. Cheers to years (of hard work).
Whew! I just had to go whip out a note on my blog. Thanks for motivating me.
Maybe I should start adding other subjects besides my running and bowling...may give me a bit more room for interesting topics.
I would attribute your blog success for the following reasons:
5. MS-leaning (?!)
Good job, keep up the good work.
Congrats, Jeff. It is definitely true that blogging, like most things, is 1% inspiration and 99% perspiration.
Good ideas are a dime a dozen, but people who stick with the program and constantly and consistently try to improve are rare.
While you're congratulating yourself on your blog, I'd like to add my thanks for all the informational topics and best of all, positive outlook and call-to-arms promotion. Coding Horror is like a Positivity Blog for programmers. Your featured post on Worse Than Failure is spot on. Your Elite 3 monitor club is superlative. Your pragmatism on programming communities is measured (but I wish you'd use more open-source software). Your controversial topics have depth. Your page design is refreshing (but where are the post categories?). Full content RSS feeds FTW. I also love your game topics. You are going to talk about your mice bindings, right? :)
You talk about writing blogs regularly improves your blog-ness and writing skill. Has it directly improved your programming skill?
I myself blog, but its more vanity/diary stuff. I am planning on starting a new blog focused on a particular piece of computing, not because I think I can educate, but because I am hoping to be educated by the commenters and the research. I have already made a list of topics to write about, so writer's block be gone, at least for a while. After that I will fill the cracks with some meta-blogging and dreams of blogging for profit. :o
Just looking back over your post archive, what happened between March and May 2004? There's a "suspicious" gap in this period.
All in all it's an excellent blog.
The problem that I have to trying to find something worth writing about.. something that people will want to read.
I have several things that interest me, inside my brain is an annoying little man with a remote in hands and he's constantly changing the channels.
The web site I posted was acquired back in '98 or 99 cant remember. But I got way before this hole blog thing started and my intent was to develop a webazine (for lack of a better word)
Things get in the way, and projects get pushed further and further back.
I know what you mean about being persistence, thats the key. Allot of folks do tend to give up way to early.
I do like to write, have been told I was good at it, but I'm still sitting on the preverbal fence.
So I think the first stage for me is to focus on what I want to write about. Which is way to hard for me, I'll probably just bounce around between life, netowrking and pc games. to be continued...
BTW I just fund your site today, I was looking up info on the vista memory usage.
Thanks for you consistently interesting site. This latest article is (no surprise!) making me think about the benefits of blogging. I have an operational question. Would it be worth starting at group blogsite (like googles) or via one's own domain? Is there a software framework you're using that is especially good?
I've finally broken down and started to blog again. Jeff, thanks for the inspiration and the motivation to keep a schedule. :)
It seems to me that it's mathematically impossible under market capitalism that *everyone* makes a living through blogging; similar to a pyramid scheme - where does the money come from? From advertising corporations. Where does that money come from? From consumers. Where do their money come from? From blogging? There's got to be lossage at several points in the iteration of this purported perpetuum mobile.
Best wishes to you, though, Jeff, because this is a good blog.
@Sunnan - Certainly, but not *everyone* reads Jeff's blog. And a tiny proportion of those that do will be motivated enough to take this advice and follow it.
For that small proportion that actually does keep jabbing, shipping, and firing, the chance of "success" is high. Of course it helps to keep a reasonable definition of "success".
Those who read this blog are in effect self-selected to have a higher chance of success. :)
One of your best posts in a while, good job.
Great post -- this blog has inspired my own writing. A few thoughts
1) You rarely run out of topics. Each post gives rise to numerous footnotes and tangents which can become follow-up topics of their own (from my experience: e and natural log; centralized version control distributed).
If you're the typical geek, you have dozens of interesting, saved items in del.icio.us you could revisit for inspiration. Motivation, not ideas (or even time), is the scare resource for bloggers :)
2) Blogging is introspective. You start off thinking you'll tell the reader something, when in fact you discover things about yourself. What are you drawn to? (Me: math programming). What parts of writing do you like? (Finding non-obvious insights). What's your style? (Visual; information-dense; conversational approach).
In my experience, blogging helps answer these questions in a way pure "thinking" cannot.
I just wanted to mention that a fail safe way to help yourself get noticed in the sea of blogs is to have a completely unique (to the internet) subject. I blog on a ghost town located near me, and so far, besides my info there is barely anything on that particular subject online. I get lots of hits and I'm number one on Google (plus I appear in probably 15 of the top 20 results, due to related pages and photo albums I have on the subject).
Thanks! -Sarah - Insan Art
Hi Jeff, those were really inspiring factors!
but if we all had a blog, who would read them?
I only discovered your blog today from the CUSEC website - looking forward to hearing you speak. not sure if I'm going to go and start up a blog now or not...
While your advice is good I would note that it is much easier to be "famous" as a technology/computer science blogger than another kind of blogger, since a disproportionate number of people on the internet are interested in those things. I work on a blog about academic philosophy, which is perhaps the equivalent of a programming blog, but for different crowd of technical people, but obviously I see much less traffic in part, I think, because many of the people interested in the subject barely know how to use the internet. Certainly they don't spend a significant amount of time looking for new online resources on the topic. Fortunately, I don't blog for the sake of my ego, but because writing is simply something I have to do professionally, and a blog is just one more way to practice.
Good stuff man. While there are lots of blogs, lack of perseverance alone does a good job of dispensing with most of them rather quickly.
One thing that helps me is keeping a backlog of topics. Inspiration doesn't always strike when you sit down to write; there's always a motivator (for me at least). When that hits, I jot down a quick outline and dip into that backlog on a steady basis. This keeps me from blowing through a lot of good topics in one day and ensures I'll be able to update with regularity.
Very nice. I've only been blogging since April of this year, but I average a little over one post/day. Since my blog is closely related to an off-line community--the neighborhood surrounding Malcolm X Park in West Philadelphia--one of the ways I've found to motivate myself is to essentially promise people that I'll write a post to the blog about their event, business or activity. Because I do a lot of writing in my other life, I enjoy sometimes just posting a photo, short video, or scanned item rather than writing a lot. I also have very modest expectations of large readership. My chief difficulty is trying to develop a readership in a community that has very little computer access.
Thanks for the advise. Now I feel better. At least now I know that the blog cannot be a success overnight. Hopefully in a year or two I'll have visitors to my blog.
Very insightful post Jeff. Thanks for the added motivation you big fat showoff! :P
I just wanted to say, thank you. This post finally inspired me to set up my own blog, admittedly it took me a while after your post but I have now done it.
I can only hope that my blog is as good as yours.
I don't fucking understand people. What has Jeff achieved that doesn't sound like a boxing analogy. Seriously STOP been O.K. trying to improve by writing more and more of the same convoluted crap. JUST GIVE UP, knowone 'll resent you for it. They'll probably commend you for not plugging your link to them and their friends every 5 seconds.
I've just started this whole blog thing and i know im a great writer and i know my works not just what i've been pondering when i should be working in my grey branded office. So im happy to continue. If i thought i was ok or a bit shit, I'D GIVE UP.
oh and jeff, my latest guides HOW TO BE A WRITER, might pick up some tips.
Thank you for the encouraging article. I've just started my own blog and have 3 full length articles on there now, so am averaging about 1 article per week. Do you have any figures showing how your blog traffic have increased over time?
I had started my blog a while back and shelved it, and now I came across your blog and revived it... I'm going to try to take it to the glory! (expected in 2011)
I have been reading your blog for some time now.I had been thinking of starting a blog since a couple of months, after reading this post and some related posts on your site i finally did. Thank you for your insightful posts.
P.S. If blogs were a commodity, yours would be gold.
A friend pointed me to their peice, and I am glad she did. I really like what you have to say about keep plugging away at it. Get better, and Rome, as your website, blog, or what have you, will improve. I have recently started a push on my own blog, American NonFiction a zine in blog form, three times a day.
Your post has inspired me to keep up the work. Thank you
Heartfelt Departing Sentiments,
Great article. I've recently started a blog (http://www.samalamadingdong.com) and i've got to say that maintaining a high level of activity really does take considerable effort. I do enjoy writing though, and although i'm not doing a lot of that for my posts i think i do get to interject some of my humor and talent into each post. I agree that it's all about being committed and consistent - i'll try take my own advice!
Can I translate it in Hindi and post translation in my blog? if yes, pl drop me a line to raviratlami at aol dot in
Wow. What a great post! You've really buoyed me up! I started blogging in July of 2007, but really consider my serious blogging started in December of 2007. I've been getting down on myself, because even though I think my blog is well designed (for not self-hosting) and my writing's *okay*, I've been thinking that I'm not as good as this blogger or that blogger and I've always known that writing hasn't been my strong suit, so what the HECK am I doing blogging?! Where I have to WRITE? A LOT? And I'm not even good at it!
So thank you for this post. You've encouraged me to continue what I'm doing and not give up. Thank you thank you thank you!
I post daily. When I have time I stockpile posts, so I try to have at least 5 spare. My aim is 100 spares!
I'm trying to post daily, but I fell off last week and missed 3 days. What I've tried to do to make it easier is to schedule several posts on the weekends so I don't physically have to post daily. I need to do what Shane is doing - have quite a few in the hopper so I always stay ahead.
Thanks for the inspirational post. I know there are many of us who struggle with this and need posts like this to keep us going when we don't feel like it.
@Filini says: ...will you always have something interesting in your mind to blog about? I'm not sure I would, and that's one of the reasons for me not having my own blog.
This brings to mind a relevant quote by H. Jackson Brown, Jr.: When you have nothing important or interesting to say, don't let anyone persuade you to say it.
Also apropos, Many of life's failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up. (Thomas Edison)
What an inspiration!
Writing every day is key. I've heard said enough to believe its potency. I loved this article because it speaks to everyone.
Great post. It's easy to get discouraged in the beginning, but I also recommend sticking with it for a year.
In December 2007 i've started my blog Gaming Horror, shortly after i've read this post and became inspired. After a slow start and partly due to a severe knee injury my blog received only 4 posts in nearly a year. I'd almost given up, for months i even didn't remember that i actually had this blog!
Since October 2008 i'm blogging regularly and started to see the benefits. What re-ignited my interest in blogging was the fact that even though - until then - i did nothing else but rant about Mass Effect's stupid manual override system (and related issues), some people did find my blog via search engines, on a regular basis (like 20-40 page views per day). Apparantly they've had similar issues or frustrating moments like i did.
After i started updating my blog regularly those numbers jumped up pretty quickly which motivated me even more. It's like riding a wave! Just catch the right keywords and surf on it, then people will start watching and reading. I also posted static pages about topics that i've heavily invested myself in lately, including Scrum and indie game development - the latter has quickly grown to be one of the most popular pages of my blog even though (at the moment) it's just a mere collection of links with annotations.
I'd really love to welcome anyone who would like to come over and take a look at my blog. If you want to learn more about myself, please visit my virtual CV over here: http://www.gaminghorror.net/about/
Oh, and ... thank you, Jeff! :)
It's always refreshing to read about somebody who started from very humble beginnings and is now so successful. As I have just started blogging it's inspiring to know that every professional blogger was at some stage right where I am now. I have a saying, persistence over resistance and it has stood to me fairly well so far.
If anything, what I've learned is this: if I can achieve this kind of success with my blog, so can you.....It's not just because I'm that annoying blog guy; it's because I'd like to wish the kind of amazing success I've had on everyone I meet.
I also use something called the rule of 5. Basically you do 5 things every day that takes you closer to your goal. I'm not saying to post 5 things every single day but doing 5 small things that improve your blog daily will hopefully in the long run pay off for me.
I think writing a blog and mantaining it is a great thing. I try to use Python and GAE framework. Work goes on. :)
You are missing another key element, Jeff. You are not a raging egomaniacal asshole like half the programming/computer bloggers running around. You post regularly, you post interesting stuff, and almost none of it is "look at what I just did, aren't I great?". People like you, which is why you will get the benefit of the doubt on self aggrandizing posts like this one.
You have to be an active member of the blogosphere, visit and post comments on other blogs as well. A good comment will attract traffic to your blog.
Health and Beauty
I am ashamed to admit that as an apprentice blogger, I only wrote a blog post three months ago.Scouring my pc my results were zero...no comments or sales.Having done some keyword research,I picked a keyword with less than 10,000 competing sites and only 100 searches per month to include in my headline. Is this another myth exploded?
But now I've been told about an entirely new approach that can guarantee you'll get traffic targeted with sniper precision... and even better, there's a Wordpress plugin we can all use to get our blogs armed with this seriously powerful marketing firepower.
blogs has been popular for many years and maybe i have miss the most popular days. but now i meet the most popular time in micrabloging . and it rised last year then more and more people know it and love it. enven the show the affection it this public place. it's really a very good way to communication as well as blogs.