Looking back over my posts for 2015, one thing was obvious. I was very up and down with my post frequency. It was either a feast or a famine and I often felt guilty if I hadn’t posted in a while. Finding the time to post regularly has been increasingly hard to achieve as I have juggled writing, working, family and volunteering.

So, for 2016 I’ve decided to take a different approach with the aim of achieving a better balance. Many other authors/writers fill their blogs with writing tips and marketing advice, but I have always been reluctant to offer such posts on here. In a world that is overflowing with an abundance of information and opinion, I feel there are plenty of better qualified people around who can (and do) offer more insightful information on publishing than I could. There is no point in me adding to the noise, so I will continue to steer clear of this subject area.

BooksI’ve noticed that a great deal of my posts are book reviews, which is fine, as it has been my way of helping to independently promote the work of other authors in a crowded market, and encourage reading. My review policy has always been that I choose the books I read, as I don’t believe in review swapping (My policy is here).

The truth is, I’m just like a majority of readers. I was never really one to write reviews of every book I read (shame, shame, shame) until I started the blog, and it’s something that I never intended to become such a large component. Over time I’ve noticed my reviews have become longer and more detailed, so I’ve decided it’s time to simplify and condense.

twitter-logoAlso, I’ve concluded that my original opinion of Twitter was correct. It really is just a mash of useless information that clogs up the web. Some of you may have noticed over recent months that my tweets have reduced (and will continue to do so). To be honest, I can’t really remember the last time I actually looked at my Twitter feed to see if there was something useful. Can you?

When I think about it, the original essence of my blog was to share information about my books, and to keep my readers up to date on what I have been up to. It certainly wasn’t intended to become another book review site in a sea of thousands. I want readers who visit to learn about my books, and be privy to exclusive details about the settings, the characters and the inspiration behind them. We’re all learning everyday, and there’s no better way to learn than to try new things.

So, I’ve decided to limit my posts to a monthly event, a newsletter of sorts, which will provide a summary of what I’ve been up to and what I plan next. It will include brief mini reviews of books I’ve read, updates on what I’ve written, any highlights about my current books (reviews, awards, feedback, giveaways, discounts). And if there is something exciting that happens, I’ll be sure to slip another post in when needed.

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In a nutshell, swlothian.com will be living its original purpose… my books. As I mentioned earlier, I’m still learning. This marvelous new approach will need to grow and mature, so I’ll be flexible along the way. The bottom line is that I hope to find the perfect balance between life online and offline.

I would love to hear how you manage the balance between online and offline. Please feel free to share your thoughts by leaving a comment below.

Start-the-New-Year

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6 thoughts on “Changing into 2016

  1. A great way to wipe the slate clean, Steve. Blogging is a tough gig for many writers, and yes I do offer writing tips, but also share my experiences with readers and writers too. I blog every Monday, and also help with book blog tours for authors I know. I, too, am learning create great content to share with followers, and what you’re proposing seems logical and fits with your lifestyle! Wishing you all the best with your new goals, Steve! Cheers!

  2. This is so appropriate at this time in my life. For the last several months I have been behind in reviews. The reason is simple, I’ve over-stretched myself. When life changes, several medical issues, a new position at school which means added responsibilities, we have to find a way to adapt. I have not adapted. My writing has taken a new turn. No longer will it be the thing I do “when I can fit it in”. I’ve been turning down book review requests and I’m working on those I am behind on. That will take months. Reading the book is not the issue. I can, when I have extended periods of down time, read up to five books a day. But, then comes the need to write the review. Like you it has been hit or miss. It is time I set some serious goals about my writing and blogging. You’ve given me the inspiration I needed to take a good long look and make my own changes. Thank you so very much.

    1. It’s great that I’ve given a little inspiration. I found that the time between read and review was stretching, so by just doing mini reviews as I go it will give enough info to readers, without over-analysing things. I’ll be keen to see what goals you set for yourself. Thanks for all your visits and comments too, it really is appreciated.

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