8 Blog Tips To Revive a Dying Blog
Sometimes sickness, holidays, or writer’s block can put our blog on hiatus, and even an experienced blogger like myself can get off his game plan.
I just went through this after my illness and it’s taken me all this time to get back into the swing of things. So I thought I would make a list of some of the struggles that I’m going through and how I’m managing to overcome them.
(Coincidentally, whilst writing this post [I started it last month] Darren Rowse has also begun a series called rediscovering your blogging groove where he recommends bloggers to use others for their inspiration. Funny, but I always suspected that Darren has been “bouncing off” me ;-).
So without further adieu here are some of the struggles that I’ve had to overcome, and some that I’m still struggling with:
1. I’ve struggled with low energy levels and mood swings, so my work volume and passion for blogging has not been up to its usual level. This is where discipline and work ethic are supposed to kick in, but when you have health struggles like I have I soon realized that it was time I started to take better care of myself.
Last year I was diagnosed a Type 2 Diabetic and have to admit that I have been haphazard in following my treatment. For my own sake I’m going to have to face reality and accept the fact that I can no longer get away with blogging all-nighters and lack of rest, eating poorly and only just exercising my fingers on the keyboard.
So this is what I’m doing to fix it. If you spend long hours at your computer like I do, set up alarms to remind you to take regular breaks, stretch and exercise, take your medication, eat properly and get to sleep at a decent hour (admittedly I’m still working on that one :). 2. While I was sick this year my last working computer had also died on me, so I had to salvage bits and pieces from three non-working computers just to make one that worked.That was the easy part, because then I had to reinstall Windows and all of my software again. Having been a computer nut for over 20 years now I’m admittedly a little fussy when it comes to my setup, and it takes a long time to tweak it just the way I like. What a pain.
3. I’m still mulling over my next computer system, so in the mean time I’ve had to adjust to working with a computer that is slower than what I’m used to. Consequently I can’t use the same blogging setup that I prefer because my current computer is considerably underpowered.
4. For example, I’ve had to chuck using Windows Live Writer as my blog editor of choice because it is a resource hog and slows down my computer to a crawl. I’ve gone back to using good ole w.Bloggar again.
I’ve also been experimenting with alternatives like Blogger’s built-in editor which admittedly isn’t half bad (except for minor annoyances such as bullets and blockquotes which need a lot of finessing).
5. Coming up with original and compelling content has also been a struggle. You see, unlike some colleagues who like to use information from the internet, I try to write original content (and provide even more fodder for my colleagues ;-).
Subsequently, I’ve had to resort to using tricks to get my creative juices flowing, like what I discussed in my post “Overcome Writer’s Block and Increase Your Blog Traffic by Leaps and Bounds“.
6. I’ve also been reviewing my archives. I’m always reading my older stuff and making the occasional re-write to make it better. But more importantly I’m rediscovering older posts like “10 Reasons Why I Don’t Like Your blog” that are chock full of goodies I glossed over, and can be easily fleshed out into a post of its own. I’m also working on version 2 (the sequel) because it has by far been my most popular post.
7. Think of your archive comments as your personal Rolodex: I’m renewing old acquaintances again. After my illness and withdrawal from blogging I lost some regular readers, so I’ve been spending a lot of time visiting other blogs and leaving comments to let them know that I’m back again. All I have to do is click on the links that they left behind and follow up from where we last left off.
8. I’m also going through my MyBlogLog and Twitter friends and visitors (or other social networking sites) and visiting their blogs. Heck, if they were thoughtful enough to visit the Bloke or add me as a contact then it’s the least I can do, and besides… it also does wonders for the return traffic.
So what’s the moral of this story? The bottom line is blogging isn’t all that different from the real world and relationships are the lifeblood of blogs.
That’s just the tip of the iceberg for me, so I thought it would be interesting to ask you a question or two:
1. Have you ever gotten off your game plan and what did you do to get back on track?
2. What struggles are you going through as a blogger and how you are coping?
3. What blog tip can you give to the rest of us?