Wednesday, May 19, 2010

The Best Decision I Ever Made

Yesterday I talked about why I used to be a big old chicken when it came to blogging--and from reading everyone's awesome comments it seems I'm not the only one who was afraid to jump into the blogosphere. But what stood out to me even more was how many of you used some variation of the following phrase: "Blogging was the best decision I ever made."

I couldn't agree more. I mean, okay, I'm pretty happy with my choice in husband and stuff, but still, I <3 blogging. It really is one of the best decisions I've ever made. I could go on and on and ON about why I love it so much, but in the interest of post length I'll limit it to ten. (And we're going to do this Letterman-style)

Top Ten Reasons Why Blogging is Made of Win

#10: Humility! No matter how much I accomplish, there's always plenty of Shannon Shame to be shared. Like, for instance, the deal with the Universe I have to fulfill when my book sells. Or perhaps this evil dare

#9: Practice! Blogging forces me to write every. single. day. (Well, except weekends). And the more I do it, the better I get (in theory anyway). 

#8: Wisdom! I don't know if you guys know this, but, you're smart. Like, you know stuff. About writing. About publishing. About querying. I have learned so much from your posts, and you have seriously saved me from epic failure or humiliation a hundred times over.

#7: Humor! You guys are also hilarious. Anytime I need a good laugh I can find it by doing a little blog hopping. 

#6: Statcounter! I try to be good, and only check it once a day. But there are few things more thrilling (what? I'm in revision Hell, I don't get out much!) than seeing my number of hits at the end of the day. 

#5: Legitimacy! Sure, landing an agent and selling your book are mostly about having an awesome draft. But agents and editors do check blogs, and now--more than ever--it's important to have a polished online presence. Laura definitely visited my blog before she signed me, and I have no doubt that when I go to subs there will be editors reading my posts (*stomach twists nervously*). Every little bit helps. 

#4 Contests! And no, I don't mean my own--though I am running one. (Shameless contest plug) I mean the ones you guys hold. I've won a signed Lightning Thief and a signed Catching Fire, not to mention several other books. a purse, and four pounds of Twizzlers! There are always awesome contests to enter--like the one Sara is hosting right now. Dude, she's giving away a signed Twilight! Have you entered yet? What are you waiting for?

#3 Community! Writing is a very isolated, lonely thing. Blogging is very social. So for me it balances the two, gets me out of my head and my lonely writing hole--but still keeps me thinking about writing and learning about publishing. 

#2 The Sara(h)s! I had hoped to find CPs when I jumped into the blogosphere, and I found two absolutely awesome ones. The fabulous (and slightly evil) Sara McClung and the hilarious Sarah Wylie. They make me such a better writer--and constantly talk me out of deleting my draft and fleeing to Mexico. I don't know what I'd do without them.

#1: YOU GUYS! *waves to the tiny squares of smiling people* When you read my posts, and especially when you leave me comments it makes. my. day. For realz. You have cheered me up on low days and cheered me on during the highs and I can honestly say I would not have come this far on my writing journey without you. So thank you! You guys are the best!

So what about you guys. Why do you blog? And what do you love most about it?

28 comments:

  1. The connections. The friendships that can develop. And meeting lovely people like you :)

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  2. I definitely started blogging to meet other writers and connect with the publishing world. Don't know where I'd be with it...and all of you.

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  3. Excellent wins!!! I started blogging to learn more about myself and my writing. To put pieces out into the world and have them judged because I couldn't handle the face to face rejection. One step at a time I told myself and it has since paid off. Everything I posted is appreciated by everyone.

    I love visiting other blogs and learning about others journeys because we all learn. I never thought I would get so many people following me in 5 months but I did and I'm glad because they've taught me more about myself then I ever thought possible!

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  4. Connecting is a big one. I'm very isolated in general, so to meet such wonderful, creative people who "get it"...well, that's icing.

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  5. I love blogging because my inbox fills up with awesome comments. No longer am I checking to see if an agent has sent a request or rejection (okay, I'm not querying right now, but still). I keep checking it for comments.

    I've been winning lots of great books. :D

    I've learned tons about writing.


    And I've made lots of writer friends.

    What more could I want? :D

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  6. I was scared to blog too, but it does make me write every day.
    It has also taught me loads about writing erc., and I've made some great writer friends and found crit buddies.:)

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  7. I love that my blogger gives me a place to post my writing and my photographs. Society is probably as safer place since I am able to get my creative ya-ya's out this way.

    Great post!

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  8. I love that I'm totally normal in the writing blogosphere . . . not that weird, writing-obsessed chic. ;)

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  9. *tear* aw, even if you do call me fabulous AND evil in the same sentence, I heart you =)

    I *think* I said this in comments recently, but my favorite thing about my blog was finding my CPs through it and the blogging community.

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  10. I agree with you on so many counts. I've learned a huge amount from people I've met around the blogosphere too. Oh, and it's always great to connect with other writers who 'get' me, because you know not many of those outside of writing do.

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  11. Your list is excellent! You've hit all the best points about blogging. Meeting other writers is definitely my favorite thing about blogging! :)

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  12. That is the absolute PERFECT top 10 list - seriously! My number one favorite thing about blogging is the relationships. I never imagined (and would never have believed) the friendships that would come from this adventure. It never ceases to amaze how much I have come to care about and depend upon the people of our blogging circle - like you, #1.

    Next would be the amount of stuff I learn - every. single. day. Wow! :-)

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  13. Knowing there are other people out there going through the same thing as me and all the great advice.

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  14. I like to connect with others who are on the same journey as I am, the journey to publication. The best way I've found is by sharing my experiences with others, and asking them to share theirs with me.

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  15. I can second the humility part for you! And I love the community it builds. I didn't know there were as many crazy people like me out there, but it's a wonderful thing.

    And man, you can make a girl feel special. How do you manage to do that so easily? :)

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  16. I guess my favorite part comes in 2--the first is when I'm being majorly dorky/silly/insane and people comment to tell me I made them laugh.

    Like the whole Nonsocial/Social writing/blogging -- my fiction writing is very not-funny except for the snarky one-liners. So blogging while under the influence of Dorkness helps me balance the two out. :)

    The second part is when I write a serious post (which have been happening more and more lately), everyone's comments make so much sense and it makes me think, "I'm not the only smart one in the world!! YAAAAAY!!!"

    *grin*

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  17. I blog to know I'm not alone on this crazy writing quest (oh, and also to talk about books). :)

    Love your top 10!

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  18. Your list is about the same as mine. I always loved David Letterman's Top 10.

    I started blogging to vent about subbing and when writing doesn't go well, but I keep coming back for the friends I've made along the way.

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  19. I love the people - the online writing community is fun of fabulous, fascinating people who, as you say, are willing to help everyone!

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  20. Great list! I agree the statcounter is a little addicting...but the best part is finding my community of writing friends!

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  21. All your reasons are great. Makes me want to start a blog. I think they are also reasons to read and comment on blogs.

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  22. LOVE this list! It's funny because when we decided to begin writing together, Lisa IMMEDIATELY created a blog. I didn't even know what a blog was! Wow have my eyes been opened. I'm pretty shy and blogging really pulls me out of my shell a little bit.

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  23. Love the top ten list (and the pic!). What I love most is the connections and knowing there are others who are interested in talking about this crazy writing process.

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  24. Love all your reasons.
    I've met some amazing people from the blogosphere.
    I really is a small world after all.

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  25. I started blogging to learn more about publishing, but these days I love the community I've found online. It's great to be able to talk to people who understand this journey, share their wisdom and cheer you on. I heart bloggers :)

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  26. I agree with all your points! I've been running behind in my rounds lately and it bugs me. I want to know what everyone is saying! There's just not enough time in the day, unfortunately.

    I <3 blogging. (Can one of our creative geniuses put that on a shirt? I'd buy it.)

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  27. I've loved blogging since my first post. Sure, my blog and I have evolved over the years, but I still look forward to it and plan to keep it up. Great list, Shannon!

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  28. Well, crap. You were in my google reader but you were hiding. Be prepared for many comments....

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Yay-I love comments! Thank you so much! (But please remember to keep your comments spoiler-free. Also, I try to keep this a happy, positive place. Friendly debate is fine, but always be kind to each other). <3