I admit it. I want my blog to reach a bigger audience. No shame. It’s not that I’m looking for validation as a person, but I’m looking for validation as a writer. It may look desperate, but I don’t want to fall in the typical artist’s delusion of saying “I do this for myself and not for anybody”. If that were true, why do it publicly?
I have searched for blogging tips and advice. I admit that too. One high ranked site that appears in search results is Problogger. It is a really great site with many tips and advice on blogging. From Blogging Tips for Beginners to How to Write your “About Me” Page. Definitely very helpful and a good resource to bookmark.
One advice that pops up on a lot blogging tips sites, is the ever holy advice of finding a niche. The reasons for this makes sense. If you find that thing out there that nobody is doing, which I seriously doubt that you ever will, you’ll rank high on search results. Another reason for this is that if your not about a specific topic or theme, readers will get confused. This comes from the premise that people like better to receive what they expect. But I don’t think that’s a good advice.
Sites like Boing Boing, Kottke.org and Daring Fireball are not actually sites that you can call niches. I don’t know their numbers, but you can bet they’re pretty popular. There are core themes on the sites, i.e. Kottke deals a lot with photography, Daring Fireball talks about Apple and Boing Boing’s Cory Doctorow hates DRM, but there are many other topics and themes and I don’t think their readers have run away. They mostly link though. Maybe their niche is “web curating”.
Right now, the theory of The Long Tail is being contested and has stirred up the blogosphere. I don’t know much about the Long Tail and all I know is that it’s about the rise of niche markets, but I get the basic idea. I think we gotten to analytical, trusting graphs and data and forgotten to use our guts and instincts.