Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Don't Get Blogged Down

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Nowadays a great deal of authors, in any genre, especially those who are still trying to make it big and are not yet a household name, are bloggers as well. I know I blog a lot. A whole lot. There are many advantages to having a well read popular blog. It is a great way to build up a readership and following. It provides a discipline, if you take it seriously, of writing on a regular basis. If you have more than one blog or one that covers more than one topic it broadens your writing abilities. It also is an effective medium for getting immediate feedback on how well your writing is received. More so than the book, a blog is a quick, lively, and continuous interaction with your readers. It also, when done well, helps you sell more books, and that is after all what we as authors are trying to do - sell books!

But like anything else, blogging can become too much of a ... hmm, do I dare say - addiction? Yes, addiction. I was going to say passion, but addiction is more on the point I'm so tediously slow in getting to. As a passion, which it is to me now, it can be a healthy, and as I explained above, valuable for many reasons and lucrative part of the writer's work schedule. But taken too far and not kept in balance, it can hinder the progress of those most important WIP's, and, taken to the extreme, it can consume one like a deadly narcotic. I'm a full time writer, so I have more liberty to devote hours and hours every week to blogging than the writer who holds down a full time job, but even so I've had to come to grips with my passion for it and put it in its place.

I came to this conclusion, about needing to get a grip on my running out of control blogging habit, at the end of a month-long blogging binge, the consummation of a desolate period of my life. My rampant run amok blogging had ruined me. I had lost my wife, my family's respect, my WIP's had mildew on them, the house and car had been repossessed, I was drinking myself to death with cheap bourbon during the day and Pepsi at night, and so broke I was having to dance at a strip bar to make the money I needed to keep my cable internet going so I could write one more blog. Didn't need food. Just my blogs.

My publisher, in a fit of outrage, hunted me down, pissed with me for having missed my last deadline again, and saved my life by having me committed to a BA (Blogaholics Anonymous) Rehab clinic. It was there, when I finally got sober and realized how far I had fallen, that in a fit enlightened inspiration I penned this poem that I wish to share with you all today. Enjoy, take serious note, and then please share your thoughts in the comments afterward.

Ode to the Blogaholic
(You Know Who You Are)

I thought it best to start out my day-
Working on manuscripts when,
In a fit of addictive behavior I must say,
All did I was just blog instead.

By noon, I resolved, I would certainly have-
A thousand words WIP penned,
But I swear I didn't know the time had all passed ...
By the time I finished blogging again.

Mid afternoon certainly productive must be-
Occupied with writing, swore I then,
But great god almighty and good golly gee ...
By four I had only blogged again!

At dinner I ate quickly and did firmly resolve-
Early eve not one email to send.
In this I can say I was able - but not proud,
For though no emails, I did blog ... shan't pretend.

As midnight approached my manuscripts did so vie-
For attention from me before bed.
But try as I might, and Lord knows I did try,
Before sleep I had blogged once again.

I now lay me down to sleep with a prayer-
For all my good bloggers and friends.
That their days be not lost as mine in thin err-
Whilst blogging o'er and o'er with no end.



Mark Troy said...


Morgan Mandel said...

Funny, but many parts of what you wrote are a bit too true.

Morgan Mandel

L. Diane Wolfe said...

Funny indeed!

What happens when the opposite occurs - the mind goes blank and you just don't feel like making an effort anymore? Un-bloggers Anonymous?

L. Diane Wolfe

Marilyn Meredith a.k.a. F. M. Meredith said...

Since I see the same people making comments, I always wonder if anyone else reads these blogs.

Marilyn a.k.a.F. M. Meredith