I have, in the past, written a few posts that talk about how Blogging can help you improve your skills as a writer. I am not going to backtrack on anything that I have said in those posts, but in this post I will play the devil’s advocate and try to build up a case to prove that blogging can actually be detrimental to you as a writer.
Not possible, you say. Read on then is what I say!
The blogging – social networking connection. If you are a blogger, and a serious one, you can’t escape being on the social networks. Don’t all the blogging experts tell you that sites like Twitter, Facebook, etc. play an important role in getting visitors to your site? So, you simply have to join them, and, to be honest, this approach works in as far as getting visitors to your blog is concerned.
But social networking, as I am sure many of you must have found by now, can be addictive. You join the sites to promote your blog, and then you make friends, and then telling these friends what you have been doing all day is topmost on your To-do list. Sounds Familiar?
Once that has happened, you find that every time you open your computer to write something, a little voice begs you to check your Twitter or Facebook account. Sooner, rather than later, you give in to that little voice, and before you know it, you have lost some valuable time that could have been better spent in writing.
The blogging-Internet connection. So, maybe, social networking is not your thing, but to post a blog you have to get online, and there are many distractions on the Internet than just the social networking sites. You start out with visiting a few sites – for research, you tell yourself – but before you know it you are hopping sites reading one article after another, watching a youtube video, or chatting with an online friend. Time flies, and you realise that only once it has flown out of your reach.
The blogging schedule. Deadlines have different effects on different writers. Some thrive on deadlines, and some find deadlines quite limiting. Whichever category you may belong to, having the pressure of a blogging schedule can severely hamper your creativity and writing. In fact, I believe, that it is one of the main reasons why we see so many “I have a writer’s block” posts on a lot of blogs.
The making money fallacy. If you have a blog, I am sure, the thought of making money from your blog has crossed your mind – and more than once. It has mine.
Whatever some of the bigger blogs might say on the issue, I have a strong feeling that there are easier ways to make money than blogging. But once you have a blog, and people start telling you how good you are as a writer, you can’t escape the feeling that maybe you could just chuck away your regular job and earn your livelihood by blogging.
While that is not impossible, it is quite difficult. And it requires skills other than just good writing. If you try to make your blog a money churner, there is a very good chance that you are going to lose your focus as a writer.
For a writer, therefore, there are a few downsides to creating a blog, and you have to be fully aware of these pitfalls, or your will have a difficult time as a writer.
Note: As I said before, I strongly believe that blogging is an excellent medium for someone who wants to be a better writer. However, like all things, there is a downside to blogging too. What is your take on the points I have mentioned in the post above?