Wednesday, August 11, 2010

The Ten Commandments of Blogging (Rerun)

Work abounds, mes auteurs, so another blast from the past (this one from last September). Enjoy! — E

Episode: "The Ten Commandments of Blogging"
Originally aired: Thursday, September 3rd, 2009

1. I am thy blog. If you're an author, you should already have a blog. If you're not yet published, now is the time to start.

2. Thou shalt have no other blogs before me. We all love reading blogs—we wouldn't be here if we didn't—but yours comes first. Write your own posts before you spend all afternoon reading someone else's.

3. Thou shalt not make of thyself an idol. Keep your ego in check; you always want to portray yourself positively in your blog. Your reputation is all you've got in this business, and if you earn yourself one as a likable person as well as a great writer, you're a golden calf.

4. Remember thy Schedule and keep it, wholly. You don't have to write a post every day, but keeping a regular schedule is a courtesy and a sort of unwritten contract between you and your readers; they'll know when to expect new content and will come to appreciate and respect you for that.

5. Thou shalt honor thy agent and thy publisher. You couldn't have done this without them. Give props where props are due.

6. Thou shalt not commit character assassination. Everyone has authors or critics they don't like, sometimes personally. Don't pull an Alice Hoffman. And, I guess, don't try to kill anyone in real life, either.

7. Thou shalt not commit adultery, but thou shalt pimp thyself. No one sells you like you do. Facebook, Twitter, &c. The more pervasive your presence, the more likely it is that people will buy your book.

8. Thou shalt not plagiarize. Always quote. Always cite your sources. Always link back to them if they're on-line.

9. Thou shalt not deceive thy audience. Never post anything you don't believe is true, and be sure to provide links to any research you've done. Always be sure to clarify whether a point you're making is an opinion or a fact.

10. Thou shalt monetize. I don't do it because I don't consider blogging a part of my livelihood, but you, as authors, should consider self-promotion as part of the job. Let Google or whomever run a few relevant ads on your blog and make a little cash on the side. (Unless you've got a large readership, though, it probably won't be much.)


  1. Can't get into the moneytizing thing. I don't like to see ads on blogs. Blogs are supposed to be 'fun' places. But I'll think about it.

    I'd add #11 - Thou shalt be considerate of thy readers. Have an easy-to-read blog. Spare the eyes (and ears) of your readers. White font on black background is evil. Music is a disruption.

    Terry's Place
    Romance with a Twist--of Mystery

  2. Thanks for that.
    I like #10- I had mixed feelings about monetizing- it felt rude, almost. But most blogs I go to have some ads, and they don't offend me.
    I have a hard time with pimping myself out, though. I'm a painfully modest person, as in "I have a blog, but no one really reads it." I will try to stop with that.

  3. These are useful rules. May I add a further, at the risk of being rude?

    #11 Be sexy.

  4. That looks awesome, those 10 commandments of blogging. Really. Here's one you should add: Honor Thy Audience. If your audience comments on your blog, comment on theirs. It's only honorable and fair.

  5. Oooh, I like these. Thanks for reposting this.


  6. That is very helpful to a brand new blogger like me!