IWSG

http://www.insecurewriterssupportgroup.com


Today is my first post after joining the Insecure Writers Support Group. IWSG was founded by Alex J. Cavanaugh to help support writers worldwide. I have met the most wonderful fellow writers through this group and would highly recommend it to any writer who ever suffers from writing insecurities or would like to offer support to those who do.

This month has been very positive and productive in terms of my writing. I have thoroughly enjoyed waking up each morning and putting words on paper. It did falter slightly after receiving another rejection but with the support of family, friends and bloggers, I quickly recovered and didn’t ponder on it too much.

My main insecurity this month has to be my blog. I love my writing blog and am immensely grateful to my regular visitors. Reading and answering thoughtful comments from fellow writers and supporters makes my day and quite often I am laughing out loud (a few glances are cast my way from my husband who thinks I’m nuts anyway). It gives me great pleasure to share my writing journey with others and to share others’ successes. I also enjoy visiting other blogs and encouraging fellow writers. So, how do I attract more followers?

I know time is short so I make my posts concise. I try to ensure my posts are authentic and interesting and even though I am not naturally blessed with technological know-how, I try to make my blog pleasing to the eye. Nevertheless, I would value advice on how to improve and increase my readership.

Wishing you all a happy and productive October and look forward to receiving your comments.

PS: Next week, I will be interviewing the lovely Karen Helene Walker. Her new novel, The Wishing Steps is out at the end of this month. It will be very exciting, so please join us for fresh coffee and my infamous chocolate cake.

Comments

  1. I love all your posts, Nicola, and think your blog is consistently entertaining, honest, thoughtful and inspiring. (Sorry about all the adjectives, but we writers should indulge in them sometimes.) You come across as especially warm and friendly, so I'm always very glad to see a new post from you.
    I'm glad October is turning out to be a great month for your writing and I'm sure autumn is a particularly productive time. It must be a hangover from all those Keats poems we studied at school, but I keep thinking about mellow fruitfulness and maturing suns.
    On the subject of rejection, after allowing myself a few minutes to wallow in the horrible disappointment, I try to see it as a sign that I can do better and therefore as something positive for my writing. My husband is currently reading my novel-in-progress chapter by chapter and he is a really stern critic. First thing yesterday morning, chapter four was sent straight back to me and I was told it was nowhere near an acceptable standard. Too much waffle and padding. I spent the whole day focused on improving it and now it has passed muster. Phew! Rejection can be useful - even vital - if it comes with constructive feedback, even if it is only a brief summary of where the piece of work has gone awry. I try to see the improvements as a challenge, as well as a way of making progress by learning from mistakes. Rejections without feedback are so much harder to swallow, but I find I can sometimes see what might be wrong after putting it away for a while and looking at it again with the soothing distance that time brings.
    Finally, thank you so much, Nicola, for your fabulous, much appreciated comments about TDTL on Around the World in Books. That really made my day yesterday and I'm utterly thrilled that you enjoyed it. xxx

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  2. Thank you so much for your lovely, inspirational comment, Joanna.

    I call on my daughter for an honest critique. She pulls no punches, which is great and I trust her judgement. She has the skill to read something for what it is and then is able to analyse the language to make sure it fits with the character. She has always been an incredible writer and reader. The fact that she decided to follow her own path as a scientist is also of great benefit to my writing as she is a brilliant source when I need to know the ins and outs of chemistry (bombs, fingerprints, DNA etc). I consider myself very lucky to have such a wonderful, supportive and talented family encouraging me to write, write, write. There will be one huge celebration in our family when I finally receive that positive email telling me, 'Yes, we want to buy it.'

    I wish you lots of joy in writing your second novel, Joanna and hope that Tying Down the Lion will continue to flourish and reach readers worldwide.

    Thanks again for taking the time to share your thoughts.

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  3. Well done on joining a positive group, Nicola. We all need encouragement at times and I'm lucky enough to have a good local writing group and lots of writing friends I can meet up with. And one of my non-writing friends couldn't be more supportive. As for rejection - we all suffer from that but it can make us stronger in the end. I love reading your blog but I think blogs in general are not as popular as they once were so it's good to visit those still interesting to read like yours.

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    1. Thank you, Rosemary. I know that other social platforms are more popular than blogs but I'm holding out on those. I'm a bit sceptical :) I'm so pleased that you visit my blog, Rosemary. It's always lovely to see you and I very much enjoy visiting you too :)

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  4. Welcome to the IWSG! You are in the right place.
    Cool you are hosting Karen next week.
    Best way to encourage more readers - visit and comment on more blogs. Images also help. (Although you don't have to go into overload like I do.)

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    1. Thanks, Alex. It's great to be a part of IWSG! I'll look into improving my images. Have a great day.

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  5. Welcome to IWSG, Nicola!

    It's hard building up a following on blogs. For one thing there are a lot of good ones 'out there'. As you say, people are short of time and it's just not possible to read them all, so it takes a while for people to discover new (to them) blogs of interest.

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    1. Thanks for commenting, Patsy! I am doing the right thing. I suppose it just needs time and yet again, I need to learn some patience :) It seems that is the key skill in the writing world - apart from writing of course :)

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  6. Over the years I've tried many method of gaining followers to my blog. The best way to get more commenting followers, I've found, is to regularly comment on other blogs. It does take a lot of time, but with blogging it's about forming relationships.

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    1. Thank you, Lynda. Lovely to 'see' you. I will continue to do that.

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  7. Sadly, blogging is on the decline. So many people I used to love to follow just aren't doing it anymore. I still prefer it as a platform to connect with people. Facebook's not bad but they want us to promote our posts (pay they), so they've extremely limited who see them unless we have a lot of comments. Twitter is just nuts. Blogging is still where you can connect with people. But it's time consuming.

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    1. I really enjoy the blogging world too, Donna. Thank you for stopping by to comment. Have a lovely week.

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  8. Welcome to IWSG, Nicola. I agree with what Donna (above) says. Yes, blogging is very time-consuming, but I find it worthwhile. Making connections--esp. with readers--can't hurt. I didn't realize it was on the decline. Oh, well. I'll just keep blogging away. Good luck!

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    1. Thank you for commenting Diane. I'm glad you will continue to blog away and I will continue to visit :) Take care.

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    2. I've just noticed you've followed me!! Thanks for that - made my day!

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  9. Welcome to the #IWSG! Being genuine and allowing readers to see who you are as a writer and person gives a blog a more at ease feel. I think you're doing a great job with that here. Thank you so much for dropping by my site. Meeting other writers is a favorite highlight of any day for me.

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    1. Thank you! It's great to be part of IWSG. I have met some wonderful writers since becoming one of Alex' Ninjas :)

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  10. Welcome to IWSG! It can be hard to find new blog followers, especially since not as many people are blogging like they used to. Visiting other blogs is a great way to attract new followers as well as signing up for bloghops, like IWSG. You might want to try the A-Z blogging challenge in April too. It's a great way to find new-to-you bloggers.

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    1. Thank you, Cherie. I'll definitely pen in April on my calendar. Great tip!

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  11. Welcome to the group, Nicola! :D

    I'm glad that you had a productive writing month. Way to go!

    How to improve and increase blog readership? Oh boy. I don't think there is any one thing that can do that. Visiting and commenting is always good. But like Donna said, some people just aren't doing it anymore. I love it though, because as Diane also said, the connection is great and the best that you can get out of all the social media platforms. A great step was joining the IWSG. Now go around and start visiting new blogs from the top and work your way down. Comment, follow, and your readership will build.

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    1. Thank you for popping over and giving me a few tips, Chrys. I love your blog and admire how you share and inspire your readership. Have a lovely weekend.

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  12. I like finding new bloggers, especially the ones that allow the readers to get to know them. I seem to pick up one or two new ones a month, even though I'm only able to visit once a week. Welcome to the IWSG family!

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    1. Thank you for coming by, Loni. Wishing you a great weekend and lots of fun with your latest WIP.

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  13. I have rejection scabs. Yes. They're not pretty, but they serve a purpose. Healing. So just wanted you to know that there's another one out here feeling your pain and waiting for that scab to fall off. Being a kid with bloody knees has helped me as a writer. Who knew?

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    1. Thank you, Lee. I will most definitely look at the scars on my knees in a different light :) Have a great weekend.

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    2. Thanks, Nicola! I'm looking forward to more "conversations" between the two of us. Happy October.

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  14. Finding new followers is the easy part. I just visit as many blogs as is humanly possible. 99% of them will reciprocate. Just like I'm doing now. Pleased to meet you, Nicola. Happy blogging.

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    1. Thank you Joylene. I really enjoyed reading your post with Phyllis Zimbler Miller. Pleased to meet you too. Have a lovely weekend.

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  15. Hi, Nicola. I enjoy my blog more than facebook and twitter, but I'm on those as I think it's neccessary. Your blog is fab and did you mention chocolate cake and fresh coffee... I'm there, look forward to it. xx

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    1. Look forward to 'seeing' you for coffee and cake, Susan. Thank you for your kind comment. Have a lovely weekend.

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  16. Good evening! My blog is my number one tool. I visit lots of blogs and always return comments. :) Hope you're having a lovely weekend.

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    1. I love to visit your blog, Christine. Hope the WIP is progressing nicely. Have a great week.

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  17. I started my blog in 2012 and wondered whether anyone would read it. I never gave up on it though and it increases in popularity every month. From what I can see, you are doing everything right: you write interesting posts, answer everyone's comments and visit a lot of other blogs (where you also leave comments). It's true that blogging is becoming less popular but don't give up if you enjoy writing it. I've made lots of friends through mine and value it.

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    1. Thank you for all your support, Wendy. Wishing you a lovely and productive week.

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  18. You run a great blog. With time, as you join blog hops and memes and visit and comment on other blogs, you'll get plenty of visitors.

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    1. Thanks for popping over Medeia. It's always lovely to 'see' you. Also, thanks for the words of support.

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  19. I enjoy reading your posts, so I'd say you're doing something right! I used to focus on followers; now I'm more interested in readers.

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    1. Thank you, Milo. I hope the teaching is proving fun this semester. Have a great week.

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  20. Here's one more follower. I definitely think it's about quality rather than quantity, I have a core group of commenters whose input I really value but they're only a fraction of my total amount of followers. Just keep posting! Glad the writing's going well - that's the main thing.

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    1. Thank you for the words of encouragement, Nick. Wishing you a great week.

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  21. Your blog is supposed to be a place where you post what you want to post. If it makes you happy, do it!

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    1. That is so true, Stephanie. Thank you for your words of wisdom. Have a lovely week.

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