Monday, May 21, 2012

Is Blogging Dead?

Most of you know I'd been away from the blogosphere for a while before I started up again a few weeks ago.  It's been at least a year since I've done a decent job of it.

Over the past three weeks as I've read blogs and tried to do a bit of blogging myself I've noticed some interesting things.

1. 75% of my old blogging friends are no longer blogging.

2. When I visit the blog pages that I used to frequent, I notice that blogs that got 10-20 comments per post a year ago now get only a handful, and blogs that used to see 50-100 comments per post now receive only 10-20.

3. Even BIG POSTS, like agent and book deal announcements, seem to be getting way less attention than they did a year ago.

4. Last Thursday, I posted a little book giveaway.  I promised to send three commenters ANY DEBUT NOVEL THEY WANT if they spread the word about a charity auction that will start in 2 weeks.  I got almost no response--even when my rock star agent, Sara Megibow, retweeted the post.  A year ago I'm pretty sure a post like that would have had at least a little interest.  I've noticed that giveaway posts on other blogs seem to be light on readers and commenters too.

I'm not going to lie.  I kind of get it.  Blogging takes an incredible amount of time if you're going to do it right (thus the year long blogging vacation).  There are many easier ways to keep in touch with other writers. But at the same time it's sad to see blogs I used to love close up shop.  I felt like I actually got to know people through their blogs in a way that really isn't possible through other social networks.  If blogging writers really are becoming a thing of the past, I'm going to be sad.

Am I missing something here, or did blogging become a dying art during my year away?  What has replaced it?  Twitter?  Tumblr?  Facebook?  Pinterest?  I do a decent job on Twitter, but I don't have clue about how to use any of the others.  I guess I'd better figure them out.

And feel free to comment on my book giveaway post if you'd like a free book!  Right now you have a 100% chance of getting one, as there are only 2 comments and I've promised to send books to 3 winners! :)


Em-Musing said...

This is a great observation. For me, my blog is merely an outlet for my writing...stories that have no other place to go, and honing my craft. I admire other's blogs that are more involved with contests, author interviews, blogfests (I've done one),etc...but sometimes I can't keep up, even with commenting. I think there might be a burnout factor going on.

Ted Cross said...

I'm certainly getting fewer viewers and comments. I made the mistake the other day of posting an excerpt from my WIP and got the lowest number of hits ever, as well as zero comments. It's hard to keep going when no one is really bothering anymore.

Laura Pauling said...

Most of my blogging friends haven't closed up shop but are posting less often. I think writers reached a point in all stages of the journey where they started focusing more on writing. They realized that blogging was a form of a popularity contest and didn't always relate to more sales or signing a deal.

Yes. And contests and giveaways are like pings in the water unless it's huge and blogs are getting less comments...

Wendy Paine Miller said...

Like Laura said I've also noticed that writers travel through different stages that impact how often they blog. Also, I've noticed there are seasons where it seems more responses come.

I certainly think self-pub. options are changing things on all counts.
~ Wendy

Renee Collins said...

Yep, I've noticed the same thing. And I know I've been one of the blogs to dramatically taper off. I average a post a month, haha.

Honestly, for me, I prefer the other mediums. Twitter feels like so much more of a conversation than blogging. Plus, it's so much easier to keep track of large groups of people.

I figure blogging is going the way of the dinosaur, but I will keep mine around for the occasional post. Probably . . . Sometimes I wonder which looks worse to potential editors (or agents): Not having a blog at all or having one that is only rarely update.

Stephanie Thornton said...

I've noticed the same thing, yet I still have a circle of writer friends who blog. So I'm going to keep blogging, even if it means fewer people are commenting. My hit counter tells me people are still reading, even if the majority aren't commenting.

Thomas Taylor said...

yes, blogging has definitely peaked. from about a year or so ago, people have been asking why and speculating about it, but I'm not sure there's any one answer. Except perhaps that the novelty has worn off.

I'm glad you're back though. And now I'm off to try and win a book!

DL Hammons said...

I have a couple of theories, would you like to hear them? Great! First, I don't believe blogging is dying, actually the contrary, its booming so much that attention that used to spread across X many of blogs is now directed towards twice that amount. There's just not enough time to get around to everyone. The focus has been blurred.

Second, the amount of comments on my blog is directly proportional to the amount of time I spend reading and commenting on other blogs.

And third, blogs die off because its very hard to keep things fresh without repeating the topics that have been covered over and over.

Aren't you glad you asked? :)

Jade said...

I've been thinking about this lately, too. When I first started, I blogged almost every day and now I only do a few posts a month. I regularly read about a dozen blogs that belong to good writing friends, but I don't always comment.

I think the other mediums do have something to do with it, especially Twitter. I spend WAAY too much time there, and for me, it feels more like a conversation. I'm on Tumblr too, but that's more for me. I don't use Facebook at all any more.

Wen Baragrey said...

I think it's a product of our ever diminishing attention-spans. Now we have pinterest, twitter, etc where we can catch up with our online friends in a few words and not have to work very hard to do it.

It's difficult to imagine now how much quicker things can go. What could be faster than twitter?

I feel like now, I'm just blogging to my friends, if them. I know those are the only blogs I really read anymore. I just don't have time to read long posts. It's kinda sad but it does feel outdated these days.

MC Howe said...

I think everyone's right. I hardly blog.more than twice a month. I guess I'm too busy living anymore. And DL is right. The more you comment elsewhere the more will come back to you. And I almost didn't comment.

So there.

Karen Amanda Hooper said...

Yup, I've been saying the same thing. I'm probably gonna spend less time blogging and more time writing and reading books. Blogging just isn't what it used to be. :(

Sydnee said...

I haven't been blogging consistently because of school, but I've noticed the same thing in the last few weeks. I announced a giveaway of a signed ARC of Prodigy, and I only got 13 entries. Last year, I had maybe 50 people enter my giveaways.

Blogging is just so darn hard to maintain, and life bites you in the butt a lot. Plus I feel like I'm procrastinating when I blog because I could be writing my novel instead.