So how much time does everyone REALLY spend on blogging compared to writing?
The tug of war was won by writing. Many of you mentioned spending about 2 hours writing and 1 hour blogging. Some (like me!) do more. Nearly everyone alluded to the struggle to keep blogging from taking over their writing time.
I think I can summarize your comments from yesterday by saying: the battle is ongoing; blogging still pulls us one way and writing the other.
When I started getting serious about looking for agents and pursuing publication of my novel, I quickly realized that many agents have blogs and also highly encourage writers to have one. Here are a few recent quotes from some agents I follow:
Rachelle Gardner: Publishers and agents are still looking for great stories. If you've written a wonderful novel, everything else is icing. However, I think fiction platform is going to become more of an issue simply because of your competition. More and more, we're going to see first-time novelists who already have a high-traffic blog or other means of attracting readers.
Wendy Lawton: I noticed when our agency began blogging that there were several writers who left regular comments. Brilliant. Don’t you think we take note of those writers who are doing the hard work to find out who we are and what we’re thinking? Also, I’m following several very interesting writers on Twitter. I’m getting to know them long before they send me work.
Chip MacGregor: Right now the way to create buzz is through the internet; we're seeing authors build an entire readership through their blogs, and clearly the social networking tools of Twitter, Facebook, and MySpace are reshaping the way authors build a platform.
Obviously agents are looking at how well new writers use the internet to network. Thus, most of us are trying hard to make new connections and build a readership long before we have a book on the shelf.
In some ways blogging seems like it has become a popularity contest. Has it ever felt that way to you at times? We're being pushed to try to get noticed and to make a name for ourselves before we're published. Supposedly the more popular we become, the more sales our book will generate.
Yet, how does this push toward popularity line up with the idea of living humbly? Seems like I need to make a big push for ME, and I'm not sure how to reconcile that yet with my desire to push God's fame.
So, what do you think of all the hype? Do you think blogging and other social networking will really help your career in the long run? After spending hours and hours at blogging, how big of a difference do you think it will make once your book is published?