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Deciding between a writing book and starting a blog

I remember the exact moment I decided between whether I was going to write a book or create a blog. I was crossing the road from Central Station in Newcastle, this road to be exact.

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As I recall, it wasn’t this sunny that day. It was a much rainier day, the grey skies and lack of activity had my head elsewhere. Despite being committed to writing in some form, I wasn’t sure which path to take and it was playing on my mind a lot. After a bunch of trips to Waterstones (one of the leading book sellers in the UK) and a bit of online research, I made a decision.

I realised that writing a book without an audience would be like buying a car without wheels. And writing a book with hardly any book-writing experience would be like trying to find that car without wheels whilst blindfolded. All in all I didn’t think it was a wise idea.

The beauty of blogging is that it is much more adaptable. I have changed my site considerably three times since 2014, including the name of it and themes. I like that I can change my style when I feel like it and find out what works and what doesn’t. I will eventually become confident with a final product and until then, I can create content that can be put into a book and increase my writing skills in the process, at the same time build a community that would like to read such a book. It is a perfect route for a potential first-time-author-nobody like me. To think that I even put so much time into simply throwing a book out there is silly looking back. It was the perfect decision and it has been fantastic for so many reasons since I started back in 2014.

Another reason why I had decided to blog is that I can add to it as much as I want, when I want. I am not limited to pages or word count, and my posts don’t really have to follow a theme. One post could be about my recent trip somewhere, the next could be how I am feeling. I don’t have to stick to chapters and I enjoy that writing freedom.

My about me section mentions that I am book writing, and I have roughly 100,000 words stored in chapters waiting to be tidied up and finalised. I have a title but I don’t want to put that out there until it is closer to publishing. I am not going to touch this however until I know that publishing would be at the appropriate time. My blog has evolved since I started to write the book, so I may make big changes to chapters as since then, my opinions and feelings have changed on certain topics. Another pro for writing on WordPress is that I can evolve over time too. If I published in 2014, I might now disagree with some of the things in those chapters. Waiting has been the right choice for me.

Looking back I think I may have started book writing first, getting a few thousand words into a word document. I remember copying and pasting those paragraphs into my earliest blog posts, and I also remember the moment I almost accidentally deleted the whole thing. That was probably another reason why I wanted play it safe with a blog, 100,000 words is rather scary to have in a document unseen. Blogging I can share it bit by bit with my audience and I love that.

What do you think, have you also considered writing a book? Have you one or more published? Let me know in the comments and feel free to share if you have already.

Happy writing!

 

 

Featured Photo by Caleb Jones on Unsplash

 


 

Thank you again to all my followers and regular readers, and hello to you if you are new to my blog!

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Happy blogging,

Sam

102 replies »

  1. I agree that blogging gives a voice to whatever we may be feeling or thinking at the time. I love the freedom of blogging. I may entertain the idea of a book in the future. That thought terrifies me right now. 📗✏️😳 I have a lot of work to do brushing up on writing skills first!

    Liked by 4 people

    • At least you can sharpen your writing skills with a blog until you make a decision whether to write a book or not. It isn’t writing skills that frighten me (although mine aren’t the best), it is the time and effort it takes to get a book finished and complete!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi Sam,
    I do agree with blogging as well and as a photographer is the way I had to go. But a while back I found my inside voice to write short stories and started a big project to write a novel and release by acts. I was in the same situation where I didn’t know what to pick between writing in a blog or a book, but blogging gives you limitless opportunities and quite a wide range audience. That does not mean you should not write a book. I am saying that both of them should be weighed equally. And in my case is even harder as English is not my first language but I still wanna do that. Good decision and you will get a lot of support with it!

    Liked by 4 people

    • Wow! I wouldn’t have guessed this wasn’t your first language, your English seems perfect! And I didn’t even think of the fact that blogging allows us to post photos constantly, a huge benefit to the platform! I agree with what you have said here.

      Thanks!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I really hope that your book becones true, and I will love to buy one⭐️
    I’m authoring a book right now, and I hope one day I’m brave enough to get it out, and I can take my hands in the air and say to my self: I did it🦋But it will be a long time befor it happens because I am in the early stages…. but having a dream is fantastic for me🌸
    May your day be filled with joy⭐️

    Liked by 3 people

  4. Never written a book, but I imagine a book would need to flow from beginning to end, whereas with a blog it seems I can jump from one topic to another and back to the first again without it mattering too much. This is especially the case if documenting one’s life (or, in my case, my cat’s life) when events come in any order and don’t necessarily follow a logical sequence.

    I used to want to write a book, before blogging was a thing, but now I am less sure …

    Liked by 3 people

  5. I am doing both, and that can be hard. Sometimes I put chapter excerpts up on the blog, sometimes the blog and book overlap and sometimes they are separate. Sometimes the blog is a little lighter if I’m working really hard on the book, but I keep to my schedule of two posts a week. I’m nearing the end of a year travelling in South East Asia, and getting ready for my next adventure, living on a narrowboat in the UK. (We downsized house to boat to fund the trip). The book is about the travel year experience but on return I’m sure there’ll be plenty to write about there too.

    Liked by 3 people

  6. For me there’s been no difference between a book and a blog. Writing is writing, no matter what the resulting delivery method. And as you’ve already discovered, often times the blog becomes the book. And as soon as I sort through and organize 4 years of content, I’ll be ready to release my best seller. Coming to a news stand near you.

    Just keep writing, and I suspect your book will write itself.

    Cheers!

    Liked by 3 people

    • It was easier to write a book when my blog posts were on more specific topics, now I feel they go off the book topic every now and then! But if anything it has made me reconsider the nature and approach the book takes.

      Good luck with your book!

      Like

  7. Great post.

    I choose to blog before publishing because I can see my writing progression. I’m so much better now than 6 months ago, but still polishing my craft. My plan is to continue posting short stories, but work on one novel with the current knowledge in the background. Most important, my work is on WordPress, In Google documents, In Word documents, In DropBox, and several external Hard drives. You can never have too many backups. never…

    Liked by 3 people

  8. It’s a dream of mine to write a book one day! I always seem to be working on one. But the beauty of blogging is that I can finish work and stay consistent (knock on wood) I’ve been hoping it gives me the work habit in terms of longer writing.
    Your posts are really enjoyable! I hope to read one of your books one day 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

    • Thank you Gemma for the kind words, really appreciated 🙂

      Keep consistent, I am sure you will develop a healthy habit of longer writing. Have a lovely weekend!

      Like

  9. I’ve definitely given book writing some thought but for some of the same reasons as you I’ve held back. There’s plenty of time to do that in the future but blogging is a good and flexible alternative until that time 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

    • I agree, it really is a great alternative and a blog can really help a book, whereas it doesn’t really work the other way round unless a following has already been established. There is plenty of time to write a book, I prefer to fill that time with a blog!

      Liked by 1 person

  10. I’ve been writing on and off for years and only made the decision to seriously commit to writing full time (in late 2018) towards the ultimate goal of having a book published. As a part of that I upped my efforts to blog more frequently, renamed my Facebook ‘Author’ page and personal Instagram, and rejoined Twitter. Sharing blog posts automatically as they’re published to both the Facebook page and Twitter will hopefully grow my audience a little faster than giving a lot of time to all outlets. I do also tweet and post independently of my blog – memes, headlines, etc. This gives me some added time to give to my short story book writing. My biggest fear is that people will hate what I write so I’m building slowly to sharing snippets of my creative writing. It’s great to read all the different replies to this post and see the choices others are making. It’s proof that ‘each to their own’ still holds true.Good kuck with your book project 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks Nat, I think it is a great idea for you to start sharing to other social media platforms. I am just getting comfortable with the idea however I have no doubts it is the best thing to do. I keep repeating this so sorry, however ‘if 99% of people think you’re ugly, 75,000,000 think you’re attractive.’ Now add that reasoning to your writing, and hey presto, you have a huge fanbase of people that love your writing!

      Now go find them!

      Like

  11. I relate to this so much! Though all forms of writing fills my soul with joy, my heart has always been in novel writing. I’m so thankful for platforms like this that give regular no-names a voice. I’ll be sure to look out for your works in Waterstones in the future.

    Liked by 3 people

  12. I’m in a similar situation. Ice shelfed the book idea for now, knowing I’d want to get back to it one day. I hope that one day will be sooner rather than later. Keep going and working on yours!

    Liked by 2 people

  13. I’m currently in the process of transitioning from writing books (I’ve written and self-published several romance novels, with pretty decent success) to writing a blog. For me, a lot of the decision came down to how it fit with the rest of my life and my goals. Writing is a hobby of mine, not my “9-5” job, and I really enjoy being active after work. When I’m trying to crank out 50k+ words and then edit, it takes away a huge amount of time from everything else I do. BUT, if the whole idea is to do things and then write about them, it’s encouragement to do more. Plus, I know I don’t want to write romance forever, and blogging is a good way to work on other genres. Who knows, maybe one day I’ll turn my blog topics into a book!

    Liked by 2 people

    • And blogging is great for that as it allows us to write about anything and if you want to start writing blog chapters, you can! You can kill two birds with one stone in this way. But writing in general is great as we can do it on our own terms. Whenever we want on whatever we want. And now we have more than one way to write 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • It took a couple of years, however once I started to engage with other bloggers I noticed a lot more people paid attention to my blog. It really depends on how much time you spend getting your name out there! Consistency and time spent blogging is key.

      Good luck with the book!

      Liked by 1 person

    • With deep aspirations I am sure you will go far. Just keep blogging consistently with interesting content, and as long as you are engaging with the community and getting your blog out there, it will grow. Engaging with other bloggers is key, and so is the amount of time you spend here.

      I wish you all the best moving forward and good luck with the blog!

      Liked by 1 person

      • I request your support as a specialist in blogging.
        I need tip from someone with a real experiential knowledge of the adventure.
        Love you, Sam.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I wouldn’t say I am specialist, however I do have a passion for it for sure 🙂 my above comment is my best advice really, the only reason I get so much engagement is down to the amount of time I spend here. I have been here for five years now however it is only the last two that has seen considerable growth and that was down to being active here everyday and being willing to talk to new bloggers. Time=success!

        Thank you for the love, I hope you are having a great week.

        Like

  14. Sam

    Your entry is just what I needed to read. The idea of writing a book has been on my mind of late and I toss the idea around regularly. I have this account on WordPress and when I created this I thought it would be an amazing outlet. Your entry has helped me to decide to invest more time on WordPress and sharpen my blogging skills before adventuring into the book arena. Thank you Sam and I look forward to reading more of your entries.

    Eddie

    Liked by 2 people

    • Hello Eddie, I am really pleased it has helped you come to a conclusion! I think that is a good idea, build a blog and audience, improve you writing skills (as they can always be improved no matter who is writing!) and write a book when an audience has been established.

      I wish you all the best with both blogging and book writing!

      Liked by 1 person

  15. I both agree and disagree, I think.

    I understand your point of view. Books are limited to one subject, and that is the story and it’s many elements that people are trying to share with the world. All those words, all those pages. All the proofreading, editing, rereading, editing, an endless cycle. Blogs have that, yes, but not so much of it. They are more convenient and can be tailored to any subject day after day.

    But then, here is the flip side to that coin. Depending on the story you are telling in the book, you can get so engrossed in writing it that the world fades into obscurity. And, yes, I admit that I did try to get a book published, and I am happy that I failed. Odd to be happy about that sort of thing, but true. It really was just blunderous in my opinion. My blogs just seem to be a way to release my stress. I don’t really like it, but it also helps me explore new areas of writing.

    Since I failed to get published, I have stopped worrying so much about getting published and focused more on honing my writing skills.

    The blog post was very deep and inspiring. Thank you for sharing it.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Like I said recently in comment on another post of mine, whatever we don’t win, we learn 🙂 Sometimes these things help us to see what to do better next time, or simply what works and what doesn’t. If you see every one of these things as a learning curve, it will only lead to good things I am sure.

      Thank you for the kind words and insight!

      Liked by 1 person

  16. Yep. I have always wished to write a book one day. I even started writing a few but they fizzled out sooner or later. That is when I took to blogging. As you said, tiny pieces every day is far easier than writing a 1000 pages of an unseen document. I recently started two blogs: one for travel and one for penning down my personal thoughts. They haven’t attracted many visitors but I am happy that all my words are out there, waiting to be read.😊

    Liked by 2 people

  17. I’m so grateful to hear that someone else has gone through the same thinking process as I have. To know that I am not the only one who’s has to make that decision in their live’s. Thank you for sharing this. I definitely needed to read it!

    Liked by 3 people

    • Keep going and you will have plenty of readers. It is all about consistency and delivering regularly. Before you know it you will be into the light with many people engaging with you!!

      Like

  18. Story of my life! Lol, so I did both- but still hard to write a blog, concise, with the recommended bullet points, when you have a story to tell, and the way to get your story out there is through social media.. Hence my predicament 🤔

    Liked by 2 people

    • Yeah it is hard to do that outside of a book, as social media promotes very quick, short messages. But it is certainly possible, even in small segments, but I guess a book would be much better suited. But I am sure social media will be great for getting that story out there! It just has to be used in the right way.

      Thanks for the comments and I wish you all the best!

      Like

  19. I too decided to use blogging as a way to hone my writing skills. Now, several years later, my blog is so much more than that. I love how it immerses me in a wonderful, like-minded community. I love how it challenges me to be creative in ways I didn’t even think about before: for example layouts and colors, general aesthetics and such, and what content readers might like to encounter. It’s a much more active writing process than I had expected and I am loving every minute of it.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Great! I am really pleased you are enjoying blogging so much. You are right, there is much more to it than just writing, I too have also enjoyed the design aspect and building on everything else around the words.

      Thank you so much and all the best with your blog!

      Liked by 1 person

  20. I was advised to start a blog. It evolved into short stories and nostalgia fiction. Those stories have gradually got longer and longer. Now I write stories of around 2,000 words, which I submit to competitions for inclusion in anthologies. I have a novel that I add to from time to time. I wrote 80,000 words on this blog last year, which is the length of a novel. I’ll get there, and when I do, I’ll already have a following that may be interested in reading my novel. My first novel might have my name on it but it won’t be my first book. So, do both! why not?

    Liked by 2 people

    • I agree, doing both is a great idea. If you write a novel at the same time blogging it is a great use of time and like you said, you will have a following that will want to buy the novel. So I agree, why not!

      Like

  21. What an interesting blog post, I also asked myself this question a year ago trying to decide whether to write a book or start a blog. What I like about blogging is the ability to share pictures, I can write my memoirs and anecdotes and post a picture with it so that it gives the reader a better sense of what I’m talking about. I love sharing pictures this is why I chose to do both, start writing my book while blogging about my writing journey.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Pictures are for sure a great advantage that blogs have over most books. Especially for travel blogs and blogs that need such visuals. Good luck with both the blog and book!!

      Liked by 1 person

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