8.19.2009

Sans Niche, and Feeling Fine

disclaimer: I'm breaking a chief blogger rule. I'm about to blog about my blog. My apologies in advance.


Still dealing with a little blog envy, the last couple of days have found me contemplating A Foreign Land. I've been sizing it up and just plain wondering.

Let me ask you something? Do you think it's a problem that this blog is kind of all over the place? Be honest. Because, you know I don't have one specific topic that I write about with any regularity. It's not a trendified fashion blog. It's not a crafty DIY blog. It's not a make your mouth water cooking blog. Are you catching my drift? I mean, there are a lot of things it's not, but not one thing that it is. Rather than being a go-to site for everything (insert topic here), it's waaaaay less cohesive. A Foreign Land is pretty much without a particular niche. Let's be honest, the post topics around here are pretty darn scattered and unpredictable. A nice way to describe it might be a mish-mash of ideas. Or, one might say it's a mere collection of my numerous psychoses forever preserved in cyber space. (Though, I might be a little insulted if you do - so watch it.)

Look, I don't put a lot of planning into what I write about. It isn't like I'm following an outline or even sticking to ONE literary voice. I just kind of write. When stuff crosses my mind, I process here.

And I guess my question has been, is that enough? Is that entertaining enough for readers? Is that challenging enough for me as a writer? Or, would we all be better served if I narrowed my focus...

See these questions resurfaced after watching Julie & Julia. Julie Powell started writing about an experiment she was undertaking - simple and focused, right? In the process she lured a boat load of followers and snagged a book deal. Eventually a screen play written by Nora Ephron materialized from that blog! That is some incredible blog success. So, I wonder what is it that makes some blogs just BLOW UP? Why do droves of readers flock to certain blogs leaving countless comments and creating massive buzz while others are left barely read and completely comment-less? Don't get me wrong, Julie Powell is an engaging writer. If she hadn't been, her readers would not have come back. But, I read enough blogs to know that there are a TON of engaging writers out there. All those bloggers aren't walking the red carpet with Meryl Streep. So does that mean it's the hook? Are blogs that stay on a single topic more appealing and more enticing? Thoughts, dear reader?

Because here's where I am. Currently my posts focus on whatever is going through my mind at any given moment. If my only chance at commercial success is to find a niche, I guess A Foreign Land will never be a serious commercial success. Maybe if I centered in on one TYPE of post I would be more widely read. I'm just not sure I'm willing to sacrifice my ability to express "every thought that I'm having every minute that I'm having it." It's gotten me into trouble plenty of times in my life as well as in this blog, but I've generally had some fun in the process. And that's success, right?

4 comments:

Erin said...

I love your blog. This is how I remember you. Very in the moment and saying what is on your mind. I enjoy reading it.

angelonwheels said...

Your blog has become the first I read, because it is a snapshot into real life, and real isn't an outline, it isn't something that can be fit into a one topic, One topic is fine for some blogs, but I enjoy yours, because it so "Life Like"

Anonymous said...

Don't change you, don't change your blog. They're both delightful!!!!

M said...

Hi Molly, it's Margen! Actually I wish you posted more of your blogs on Facebook so I wouldn't forget to read them! I hope that doesn't sound stalkerish -- you're just a very entertaining and relatable writer. :)