A Message to Any and All of My #WordPress Followers / Readers

I follow back anyone who follows my blog. However, I noticed lately that many blogs that used to appear regularly on my WordPress Reader or others that send an email notification of a new post have been silent.

Out of curiosity, I checked the insights tab on my stats page. To my surprise, many blogs that I follow were now unchecked.

I don’t know how or why, because I certainly didn’t do that.

I’ve gone through the list and visited the blogs in question and checked the “Follow Tab” or re-subscribed. Granted about five blogs were defunct, but there were about 6 pages of active blogs off my radar.

Hopefully we’ll be hearing and seeing each other soon.

My Favorite Author Blogs

I do a lot of cruising around the Blogosphere, dropping “likes” and comments in many places. However, I find myself repeatedly returning to certain blogs over and over again.

Although they are all Independent author blogs, you’ll find distinct voices and points of view. Yes, occasionally they will blog about the same particular subject, just not at the same time. After all, they’re all authors and discuss the Indie-Author World. It’s a sure bet that when you dig through the archives you’ll find posts on editing, “pantsing” or planning, and others.

I Blog About These Subjects As Well

I have never referred to myself or have tried to portray myself as some type of self-publishing guru. I’m not one. Therefore, I don’t do it. I basically discuss my journey and blog about the things I’m discovering and learning along the way, as evidenced by such categories as Diary of a Fantasy Novel, Short Story Journal, and The Writing Journey. I also like to drift away from craft posts and write about an array of subjects in Idaho Scrawl, or simply present personal anecdotes and my favorite Recipes.

The folks listed below are not braggarts. However, they have achieved a particular level of notoriety for offering quality advice or “how to” procedures for authors. Most of them have a smooth and friendly style that makes one feel welcomed to read and comment.

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Photo Credit and CC License

Here Are My Favorites

Kristen Lamb

If Independent authors have a Torch-Bearing –Warrior-Queen it would have to be Kristen Lamb. She writes passionately about the world according to the indie author. Granted, the posts are quite extensive, but they are well worth your attention. Kristen has a few self-help books out there for indie authors. Rise of the Machines is probably the most well-known and important book on the topic of indie-authoring.

K.M. Weiland

K.M. Weiland’s Blog is called “Helping Writers Become Authors.” That blog title is no lie; it is completely packed with quality information. I truly suggest opening the category button to discover the smorgasbord of pertinent subjects. The choice is yours. You can comb through this blog, or spend hundreds of dollars on craft books.

Bryn Donovan

Here’s another blog where the archives should be the first place to examine. Her “Blank Page to Final Draft” series of posts are worth reading. Also, there are lists for plots, facial and physical descriptions. She has written a craft book as well called “Master Lists for Writers,” you can find links to Amazon on her blog. I have only recently discovered this blog. However, it pulled me right in.

Nick Rossis

Nick writes about a variety of subjects, including some personal anecdotes. His blog category on marketing is a must read for any would be indie. Look no further than the list of awards for his fantasy novels to understand that this guy knows what he’s talking about.

Diane Tibert

First, in order to appreciate her blog, you’ll have to get past the colour and flavour of her exotic Canadian English :-). Diane’s “Publishing 101” series takes you from editing to cover design. I would say that it’s a good first place to start your research. Yes, she has many other tips for authors.

Honorable Mentions

Chris: The Story Reading Ape

Chris has turned re-blogging into an art form. He’ll save you tons of search and reading time by finding quality posts from authors around the world. I found Bryn Donovan only about a week and a half ago. How? Because Chris re-blogged and highlighted one of her posts. Do yourself a big favor and “Follow” this one.

Ben Garrido

Ben is an indie author, but his posts mostly offer questions and examinations of nationalism, culture, government, and religion. Perhaps I’m drawn to his postings on account of my degree in History and my Catholic faith. Many of the stories in my forthcoming collection have themes of conflicting beliefs, or what happens when the relationship between government and the individual goes awry. Ben’s scholarly posts are thought provoking and very well written.

What About You?

Do you already follow some or all of these blogs? Did I miss a great blog somewhere? Tell me about it.

***Ernesto San Giacomo is the author of Ragged Souls***

The Blog, the Tweet, and the Facebook Page

Building an author platform can be a difficult and painstaking undertaking. Chances are your writing time will be greatly sacrificed. However, blogging, tweeting, and updating your Facebook page does constitute writing, and does generate readers. Therefore, it is time well spent. I’ve noticed certain patterns emerging as I’ve began building my own platform.

Blog reciprocation has the highest ranking. When I hit the Like and Subscribe buttons or drop a comment on someone else’s blog, they generally reciprocate by doing the same on mine. Of course that only happens when the initial contact is done through blogging. If the initial contact happens through Twitter, full reciprocation doesn’t usually occur.

When someone follows me on Twitter, I make it my business to follow back, drop a tweet, visit their Facebook page and their blog. But the Twitter reciprocation rate is pretty low. I’d say about 1 out of every 35 who I make contact with visit my blog or Facebook page.

Twitter returns don’t seem that bad when compared to Facebook. I must say that my Facebook page is pretty much dead space most of the time. Although I really haven’t been “pushing” over there either.

In the same order up to now, The Blog, The Tweet, and The Facebook Page have become my own version of The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly.

How are you doing with your platform experience?  Any tips you’d like to share?