Blogger of the Week:
You won't be able to read Ben Esch's debut book Sophomore Undercover (Hyperion) until February (unless, like me, you got an advance copy). But in the meantime you can enjoy his voice (and keep up with his facial hair) on his blog--and below in this Q&A with the freshman blogger.
How long have you been blogging?
I started blogging about a month ago, after I set up my website www.dixienguyen.com to promote the upcoming release of my book Sophomore Undercover. Originally the blog was supposed to be about my book, but it seems all I post about is random stuff that catches my interest. Come to think of it, I should probably mention that I’m trying to sell a book more often. Man, my editor is going to be pissed.
What will readers find on your blog?
Well, so far I’ve been focusing on video games, critical analysis of really bad cartoons from my childhood, reviews of straight to DVD movies, quite a bit of fanboy love for Adam Rex and Dave Yoo, a picture of my brother dressed up as a LOL cat, and charting the progress of my facial hair. Sometimes I give out some writerly advice if anyone is interested in that, but I really don't want that kinda stuff to distract from my posts about Dinosaucers. God that looked like an awesome show.
Are you still on the fence about visiting my blog? Here are some things that might change your mind:
- There’s a video of me doing pushups. For those of you who might be interested in that sort of thing.
- Do you remember that Michael Jackson music video “Black or White?” Great. Now, how about reading a two thousand-word review of it? Is that doing anything for you?
- I’m starting to vlog. Yes, just like John Green. Sure, he’s a bit more famous and handsome than me and he’s won awards and stuff, but still…we both talk directly into the camera. The similarities are astounding.
- I’m giving away free copies of my book to blog readers. Yes, totally free and you don’t have to answer any trivia questions or give me your social security number or anything. Why? Because I love you, that’s why. (Note: supplies are going fast, so put in your order now).
Any advice for writers on blogging?
Here are my tips for blogging:
- Put a lot of content on your blog and post consistently. Nothing bums me out more than finding a really cool blog and then seeing that the author only posts every five months. There’s just too much competition out there to not have fresh content on your blog at least a few times a week. Your readers will appreciate the extra effort.
- Have fun. If you don’t enjoy writing the posts, there’s really no way to sustain the amount of energy it takes to run a blog for the long term. Try to find a way to make blogging something that you look forward to. Personally, I just like having a professional excuse to watch old cartoons on YouTube. That’s pretty sweet.
- Save some cash. You don’t need to drop tons of cash on a website or a blog. There’s free stuff at blogspot and weebly.com. Remember, you’re trying to sell a book, not dazzle people with a bunch of crazy graphic design stuff…so, maybe you shouldn’t splurge on that $10,000 flash intro. I’m just saying.
- Post what you like. If you think something is interesting, chances are that your readers will, too.