Interview with Indie
His Blog: The Synchronicity of Indeterminacy
Thing to note when you visit: the interactivity; the connection between Indie and his readers; the quality of the content; the special features and unique ideas
1.5 Indie’s Advice
We all have bad days we remember, blogging blunders–little or big–mistakes we wished never happened. At the time, they seemed huge and over time they became history. Indie talked about his blogging experiences–his mistakes, what he hopes to do, advice he got, and the advice he would give.
What do you think was the biggest mistake that you made?
The biggest mistake I made was posting a photo which I didn’t think worked well. But I won’t tell which one that was. Maybe someday I’ll go in and quietly replace it.
What change made the greatest improvement? What was the best advice you got?
The greatest improvement I made was based on feedback I received from one of the bloggers who found and supported me in my first months: Robyn Moondancer. She has since stopped blogging and is seldom in the Internet. She was the one who thought it would work if I started the weekend stories in which the visitors write the stories to the photo I post. At first I was skeptical. I thought people wouldn’t want to contribute; they would feel that they were competing with me or I with them. But it went over quite well, and some of my readers say it’s one of the things they like best about the blog.
In general, whenever I want to change something, I write to one of the people who visit my blog regularly. I feel that I am doing the blog in part for them as well as for myself. I value the feedback I receive and usually do what it tells me.
What do you wish you could do for your blog?
I need to spend time organizing my links. Over the last year I’ve come across many blogs and websites that I’ve found were creative and interesting. They deserved to be known about. This resulted over time in a long list of links. In the future I want to organize these in thematic sections so that anyone following a whim of what he/she would like to read next can benefit from what I’ve found.
What advice would you give a beginner?
I started by reading the documentation at Blogspot about how to blog and how to promote one’s blog. At the time I don’t think there was a definitive blog like Successful Blog, devoted to the idea of how to blog successfully. It’s still probably a good idea to read through the documentation at Blogspot, but I would now recommend following successful-blog.com.
I’d also advise beginning bloggers not to be discouraged when they do not receive a lot of visitors right off. It takes a while to build an audience.
Last but not least, be yourself. Don’t try to be something at your blog that you are not. Believe in what you blog about. Do not blog what you think other people want to hear, when it’s not “you.” Blog what you would want to read yourself, if you were the one visiting.
Anything else you think all bloggers should know?
It’s a nice feeling when your blog begins to collect regular readers, ones who take the time to comment on your posts, and to offer encouragement in what your doing. It’s nice to pay them back somehow.
I mentioned Robyn Moondancer who was one of the first to find and read my blog, link to it, and tell other people about it. Once she worked out an animal totem for her favorite bloggers, and she included me. That made my day. I wished there was something nice I could do in return. One day I had an idea. I surprised her by dedicating a story to her, one that incorporated a little bit of the magick and witchcraft that was her forte. She told me it made her day, as I’d hoped it would. Then she posted at her blog about the story, which sent a whole new set of visitors to stop by to see what it was all about. Robin’s stoy was called Felix Would do Anything to Kiss Mia. Since that first time I’ve dedicated numerous stories to my blogging friends, and it’s always been a good feeling to know I helped other people find their way to blogs I know are interesting. Also, when I go on vacation, I make it a point to single out a few blogs from my long list of favorites and mention them as great places to go, for the people who came to my blog expecting to find something new.
I’m not the only blogger to have fun doing this. Dushan at Shtikl.com occasionally draws a caricature of some of his visitors. Mrs. Weirsdo of pansifiles. whose blog I’ve been following almost from day 1, dedicated her final posts before a vacation to reviews of her favorites blogs. Doug of Waking Ambrose turns his blog over to other bloggers on Wednesday, and then includes a review of that blogger’s own blog. Tom & Icy at My Dogs’ Daze has been very helpful to his blogging friends, designing banners and gifs for them, incorporating them into the stories, pictures and themes at his family of blogs which includes My Dogs’ Daze, thealienguy, and askthedevil. And what ME Strauss is doing here is also very nice. In fact, I think I’ve just listed my own who’s who of successful bloggers.
The moral of the story: Don’t just think of yourself when you blog. You have a lot of power to make people happy with your blogging, so don’t hesitate to use it. A little friendliness will come back to you hundredfold.
I couldn’t have said it better. Thanks Indie!
–ME “Liz” Strauss