Friday, March 16, 2012

13 Blog Ideas Response

To respond to Michael Hyatt's "13 Blog Posts for Novelists," I'd like to start by saying this idea seems more purposeful and effective after receiving publication. In fact, I think it's even more effective if you have multiple publications and an established fandom. That said, I think his prompts for novelists are smart and I think the exercise could be valuable to a person who is working on their thesis or simply in the process of writing their first novel. Most of the aspects of the process he addresses are things that you should have some familiarity with intuitively, regardless of whether or not the novel is complete. Also, if you get stuck during the writing process, I think asking oneself some of these questions might serve to unstick you. For example, sometimes you start a novel in Madison Wisconsin, when you work the nightshift and have a full time internship at a publishing house. Before you finish, you move to your hometown and are encumbered by all manner of new variables that effect your psyche and as a result, your writing process. Therefore interrogating yourself about what inspired the novel might help one recreate that psychic/mental environment that has temporarily stalled out. This is a good way of what Robert Olen Butler would term, "reopening the passageway to the dream space." Additionally, I think these are exercises that could be minimized to relate to a short story, and can help young writers take a step back from their work and really consider the message of their content from a more objective stance. All in all, writing is thinking, and I think anything designed to help one evaluate the merit of his or her writing work is sure to yield positive results.


  1. I'm glad you blogged about this, Nohner, because I feel a lot of pressure as a writer to blog or tweet or engage in some kind of social-media-based promotion even though I'm not really interested in doing so. In fact, I have a blog but never post to it because I just don't care enough to engage the world in my every thought. I don't think writers who use these tools are doing anything wrong or violating some abstract contract among artists, I just think they're a different type of person than me. I wonder, though, to what extent the industry accepts that sort of toned-down approach. I'm pretty sure it doesn't and I'll one day have to grin and bear it.

    That worries me because I'm afraid I'll come off as transparently disinterested in my blog space, which will negatively impact the way my work is read. I think you should only engage in social and interactive media to the extent that you're comfortable doing so. For me, I'm not really interested in doing so at all. Of course, none of this matters now because no one cares about me or what I have to say. As you know, I spend a lot of time worrying about abstractions.

    1. Even as a media teacher, I sorta hate to blog. I like it as a teaching tool, but it's not something I have ANY interest in doing personally. I sometimes feel that way about lots of technologies - Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest. Even spaces I love can feel like a burden some days.

  2. I sometimes wonder if in 50 years, when we're investigating the great authors of the 21st century, will we dig through their blogs and facebook pages instead of manuscripts to get insight into their work?