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Archive for June 22nd, 2017

Organically Grown

I’m an aspiring writer who started up a blog under a pen name, but I’d like to have people actually read what I write and ideally get published and paid later on.  Since I’m neither writing under my own name nor telling anyone I know about my writing, this has made the latter quite difficult.  I figured the best source of wisdom on how to achieve anything with my webpage is by contacting some of my favorite writers today, including you; may I pick your brain about how to get myself attention?

I’m afraid I’m not going to be very much help, because I have absolutely no idea how to go about building a popular blog.  Yes, I know my blog is very popular (approaching six million pageviews) and I’m very glad it is, but it just sort of got there on its own.  I mean, certainly the quality of the writing helped, as did the fact that I’m willing to tackle topics most others aren’t, as did my high public profile and popular Twitter feed, as did the fact that I’m easy on the eyes.  But I didn’t actually do anything technical that was calculated to increase my visibility, and in fact I intentionally ignored a lot of the advice given me by well-meaning people (such as the suggestion I give my essays verbose, boring, overly-descriptive, “keyword”-laden titles of the sort search engines like, instead of catchy, interesting ones that I like).  I don’t know anything about SEO and have no interest in learning; I don’t study guides about how to make my site more visible to Google; and I don’t sully my site with clickbait.  And yet, my readers found me anyhow, though it took two years for me to really hit my stride.  So the only advice I’m really qualified to give you is, try to create the best blog you can, with good writing, attractive layout and eye-catching pictures, and to do it with a level of consistency bordering on the obsessive.  I have no idea whether that will work for you, but it certainly did for me.

(Have a question of your own?  Please consult this page to see if I’ve answered it in a previous column, and if not just click here to ask me via email.)

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