Use Other Blogs to Improve Your Blog

Diane Lynn McGyverI’m in the middle of a revision, but I’m not talking about a novel…well, that’s happening, too, but that’s not the topic for this post. Since I had a review of my Writer~Dreamer~Publisher blog, I’ve been implementing many of the suggestions to make it more user-friendly, less cluttered and…more popular.

This is why readers—the ones before the major overhaul—have noticed the change; it was recommended by a reviewer. My hope is that new visitors will be able to find what they need faster, getting them in touch with the information they want without searching through more than a year’s worth of blog posts.

As I implement these changes, I’m also on the look-out for other things to improve my blog. I do this by taking note of how other people—writers in particular—set up their blog and websites (which sometimes don’t look like blogs but are the cover for them). If I like it, and it fits my theme and it makes a reader’s visit more enjoyable, I add it.

Recently, I visited Valerie Douglas’ blog/website. I initially found her because she’s a fantasy author like me. My intentions when visiting her site was to learn more about one of her books; was Not Magic Enough the first in a series, the second or a stand-alone book?Not Magic Enough - Valerie Douglas

While surfing her pages, I realised how simple it was to navigate, so I took a closer look at the menu in the side margin. That’s when I noticed her page “Work in Progress”. It contained projects she’s currently working on, including titles, a few book covers and cover blurbs.

That made me think about the novel I’m working on—book two in The Castle Keepers series, Scattered Stones—and the books I plan to write after that. I’m also preparing two short stories for released this month.

A “Work in Progress” page is great for the writer and the reader because:

the writer commits to the project, and sometimes, we need that self-imposed deadline even if there’s no solid date to finish. If we keep telling ourselves we’ll get to it, then we may not get to it for years. If we advertise the fact we are working towards releasing a certain title, then we feel obligated to get it done.

the reader is aware of upcoming books by the author and doesn’t miss the release of a particular book, especially if they are waiting for the next book in a series.

So…here’s my “Work in Progress” on my McGyver website.

Interesting enough, when I began listing the books I want to complete along with tentative release dates, it put my next few years in perspective. Instead of think, within the next year, I’ll have this, this and this book done, I’m instead looking at 2013, 2014 and 2015 before some projects are completed.

Do you have a list of writing projects waiting to be completed? How far into the future do they stretch?

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Now Available at Kindle, Chapters Indigo (Kobo) and Smashwords.

Reviews for Shadows in the Stone can be found at Goodreads.

 

 

 

Also available as a free-read until August 30, 2012: Mutated Blood Lines, a short story. Barnes & Noble, Chapters Indigo (Kobo) and

Smashwords.

Reviews of Mutated Blood Lines can be found at Goodreads. (NOTE: This version still uses my old pen name, Meyrick).

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2 thoughts on “Use Other Blogs to Improve Your Blog

  1. Diane, I’m afraid I’m not brave enough to commit in that way.Perhaps it is because I’ve left too many unfinished stories in the past. Then again, I’ve been known to pick them up several years later and complete them. I might possibly be the most unorganized writer around. 🙂

    • Laura, we all have to set our own pace. I like to list things, so listing the books I next want to write comes naturally for me. I need to be remined What’s Next. I don’t have to follow the list exactly, but I’ll see what I can do.

      Picking stories up and dropping them and picking them up again is something all writers do. I know I do.

      Thanks for visiting.

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