Indie Blogging 101: Networked Blogging

One option to get involved and gain attention for your work here on the Indie Writer’s Network is to participate in one of the many networked blogs.

What is a blog?

How did a strange word like “blog” come to be part of our everyday language anyway? The term is actually a combination of “web” and “log”, or “web log” which was eventually mashed together into “blog”. The first web logs were online journals (many still are), but they’ve branched out to become a standard part of most businesses as well. It’s a way of providing existing and potential customers regularly updated web content, which not only gives visitors a reason to keep coming back, but it boosts a site’s search engine rankings as well, which means that your site is more like to show up in search engine results if you have regularly updated content (in other words: customers are more likely to find your site).

How do authors use blogs?

Because most are free and relatively easy to use, many authors create a blog as their primary website for sharing information about themselves, their currently published and upcoming works, upcoming book signings, giveaways, and other events, and to create a buzz about their work.

What is a networked blog?

A networked blog is one of the many advantages of creating a blog on the Indie Writer’s Network. Outside the network, each of us is working alone, hoping others might just happen to come across our blog. Given how huge the internet is and how many author blogs are out there, gaining an audience can be an arduous, time-consuming, and frustrating task. However, the benefit of a networked blog is that it provides an instant audience: others on the network. While we can’t guarantee that because you post something on a networked blog it will be viewed, we can guarantee that immediately after publishing it, the post will appear in the activity stream, as well as the recently updated blogs list (listed under the main menu item: “blogs”). This gives your blog a much better chance of being viewed than it had outside of the network.

How do I find networked blogs to join?

Click on “Blogs”in the main menu. Scroll through the many blogs that have already been created. Community networked blogs include sites associated with a particular writing genre, such as Indie Sci Fi, and sites with The Indie Writer’s Guide, a growing source of information about all things related indie writing and publishing.

Community networked blogs include sites associated with a particular theme, such as The Indie Writer’s Guide, a growing source of information about all things related indie writing and publishing, and Indie Flash Fiction, a site dedicated to offering writers an opportunity to test their powers of concision, and sites related to a particular writing genre, such as Indie Sci Fi and Indie Fantasy.

How do I become a blog author?

All our community blogs have groups associated with them. For example, The Indie Writer’s Guide is associated with the group Revolution Indie. Indie Sci Fi is associated with the Science Fiction Writers group. To become an author of the blog, all you need to do is join the group.

 Who is editing the blogs?

You are. This is a community project. Your work reflects you as a writer. Be sure to take the time to work your way through the writing process before sharing your articles. If you find a mistake after publishing, you are welcome to edit again at any time.

What’s not permitted on networked blogs?

Articles that are written for the sole purpose of advertising your books, giveaways, or other promotions are not welcome.* Why? Because there are places to advertise these things already on the network (featured book ads, author directory listings, and the events calendar) and because the community blogs are for the purpose of sharing our knowledge and experience as indie writers. Keep in mind, the better you write–wherever you write–the more likely readers will be to search out more of your work to read.

The other type of writing we would like to avoid on the community networked blogs is book reviews. Why? Because there are lots and lots and lots of book review sites out there. This network was established for a different purpose. Also, this site was created to be a supportive network. A fair review site would include negative reviews as well as positive. We’re just not looking to create that kind of environment here. (If you’d like an indie review site, the upcoming RevolutionIndie.com will include reviews. Look for them there.)

*The exception to the self-promotion rule is of course if you have your own networked author blog. While the option to create a new networked author blog is not available  currently, there are quite a few author blogs on the network already, and this option will be available again in the future.

Anything else?

As with all the network, it is your responsibility to be a respectful writer. As you read in our terms of service when you became a member, we reserve the right to remove any article or member who is not respectful of other members or our guidelines.

Happy Blogging!

That’s it! You’re ready to share your knowledge of writing and publishing, make friends, participate in conversations, and grow your audience! If you have questions, please feel free to contact us at support@indiewritenet.com. We look forward to reading your articles!