Things to Consider Before Starting A Second Blog

Are you really ready for this?

Some people find they love blogging so much that they want to do more of it. And sometimes, the urge to start and manage a second blog becomes too tempting to resist. That’s why many blogs fail — because people aren’t prepared for them. You’d think, already having one blog, you’d know better. But we’re writers, we’re not perfect — sometimes we make bad decisions that can hurt one or both of your blogs.

In this post, I’ll mostly be talking about starting a second blog on top of one you plan to continue keeping up with — not starting another blog to replace one you’re leaving behind. Most people assume they can keep up with more than one blog simultaneously, underestimating the amount of work that goes into each — causing both to fall apart. I don’t want that to happen to you. So here’s what you should think about before adding more blogging responsibilities onto your plate.

What’s the real reason you want to do this?

Are you starting a second blog because you’re bored with the first one — or because you’re bored in general? Because you need a place to dump your thoughts? To snag a domain name while it’s available? Because it just sounds like a good idea? Your main priority, in considering any blog, should be how it can serve an audience. Sure, there’s probably something in it for you, too. But if it’s not something that will interest, assist, or inform someone else, you’re not doing a great job of building a solid foundation for a blog you want to grow and develop over a span of years. A blog is a big commitment. If you’re serious about a second, ask yourself why you really want to do it.

Are you willing/able to dedicate enough time to your new blog?

A blog takes more effort in the beginning, though it might seem otherwise. You’re ideally supposed to prepare posts ahead of time to give your archives a boost before an official launch. You typically need to do more promotion and outreach to attract first-time audience members. You’re not quite as free to make mistakes or fail to keep promises. In other words, it’s going to take a lot — a LOT — more time than the blog you likely already have, whether it’s small or a bit larger in size. Are you prepared and willing to put in the time and effort necessary to grow a new blog, on top of the work you’re already putting into the first one? If not — and be honest with yourself here — you might want to hold off, or decide against the idea altogether, at least for now.

Do you have a consistent schedule gap that needs filling?

If you’re anything like me, you start looking to fill scheduling gaps as soon as they appear. This approach won’t work if you don’t have a consistent schedule in place already. I held off on the urge to start a second blog earlier this year because my freelancing schedule became too unpredictable. You don’t want to commit to something one week and then realize three weeks later you no longer have room to fit it in. Scheduling, as a blogger, is everything. One of the easiest ways a second blog can fail is if you’re unsure whether or not you can keep up with it over the coming weeks, months, and years. Just because you can’t do it now, doesn’t mean you can’t in the future.

Could you afford to hire someone to help you?

Sometimes, multiple blogs are more than possible — with help. But do NOT expect to find someone who will help manage one or multiple of your blogs without offering something in return. If you can’t afford to pay someone, at least offer them control over half of your posting schedule (ideally with credit, not ghostwritten) in exchange for helping you moderate comments, source photos, keep up with social media accounts — if you both agree that’s a fair deal. Understand that often, growing a business, even a blog, means dedicating some of your income and/or resources to hiring people who will help you make the best use of your time. If you can’t, or aren’t willing to do that, maybe stick to just one blog until that status changes.

Meg is the creator of Novelty Revisions, dedicated to helping writers put their ideas into words. She is a freelance writer and a nine-time NaNoWriMo winner with work published in Teen Ink, Success Story, Lifehack and USA TODAY College. Follow Meg on Twitter for tweets about writing, food and nerdy things.

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I Found My Voice By Blogging to an Audience of Two

Maybe being invisible isn’t such a bad thing after all.

In high school, I started a blog — as many before me already had. I’m not sure what finally made me decide to do it or what I expected to gain from it (if anything). But one thing I do know is, I had an absolute blast writing about my life.

It’s not that I loved talking about myself. Cringe — I still hate it.

What I loved was finally having a place to put all the thoughts, observations, and ideas I couldn’t fit into the margins of my algebra notes.

My blog became a place where I could start experimenting with words. I’m sure some of my friends knew about what I was posting — those two or three original readers had to come from somewhere. But to me, my blog was a medium for telling the world how I felt about, well, everything.

I’m not completely certain — I don’t have the means of looking further into my data at the moment — but from what I can remember, it took until about my fourth or fifth year of blogging to hit 25 followers.

For the first year, at least, I’m pretty sure I had exactly two.

I spent all that time writing to no more than two or three people. And I just kept writing.

Why did I do that, if people weren’t really reading or following me?

Because I recognized that something was happening.

The more I blogged, the more comfortable I became writing in my own voice.

This is probably one of the most important concepts I do my best to get across to my readers today: in the early stages of writing, your willingness to stay consistent and improve is essential. It’s more important than gaining hundreds of readers. It’s more important than getting thousands of comments.

It’s more important than getting noticed at all.

You will always be writing for an audience. When I didn’t have one, I wrote to who I ideally imagined would read a blog like mine (maybe other teenage introverts who liked to write — I really don’t recall). But I didn’t care that my audience was small. I cared that I was writing in a tone and style that reflected who I was — and the voice I wanted to carry as a writer.

If it weren’t for those early years of blogging, I’m not sure how the rest of my writing “career” would have turned out. Only when I gave myself a place to “go nuts” without a fear of being judged did I begin to find that voice every writer always fears they’ll never find.

If I ever get around to starting another blog, I want to write a dozen or so posts and leave them sitting there until I’m ready to launch. I want to find the exact tone and style and manner of communicating with my audience before I meet them. Because that’s how I ended up starting my first blog, in a way. I was invisible. The reality is, even if I started another blog today, it wouldn’t take long for someone to find it. That’s just what happens when you spend years developing a personal brand. You’re no longer invisible.

This is no longer my personal blog. I’m proud of what Novelty Revisions has become, and I don’t regret changing my blogging approach. But every once in awhile, a post will go up on my Tumblr page or Medium profile — some serious, some absolutely ridiculous. Something I feel I need to publish that doesn’t fit into Novelty’s brand.

I don’t do this because I expect people to read these posts. In fact, most don’t. I do it because sometimes, I still need to practice writing well while keeping things casual. I think everyone needs to refine this skill — even if you’ve already found and continue to strengthen your voice. Sometimes, I write for fun. I expect no payoff, financially or otherwise. I see absolutely nothing wrong with this — and neither should you.

Embrace your invisibility. This is your time to figure out who you are, what you want to say, how you want to say it. Stop worrying so much about how many people are or aren’t watching you. Work your way up to creating an amazing stream of written content so that when people do find you, they’ll be glad they did.

You may only be writing to two people. But that’s how you’ll find your voice. And you’ll have zero regrets.

Meg is the creator of Novelty Revisions, dedicated to helping writers put their ideas into words. She is a freelance writer and a nine-time NaNoWriMo winner with work published in Teen Ink, Success Story, Lifehack and USA TODAY College. Follow Meg on Twitter for tweets about writing, food and nerdy things.

My Biggest Blogging Mistakes (and How You Can Avoid Making Them)

I didn’t know blogging had rules.

This blog technically celebrated its eighth birthday at the beginning of 2017, though it would go through at least three name changes and a major style upgrade before it became the blog you now know and hopefully like a little bit today.

Eight years is a lot of time to make mistakes — many mistakes. But I wouldn’t be where I am today without my baby. Starting a blog today is much different than it was in 2009. It’s a lot harder to discover and commit to reading new blogs because LITERALLY EVERYONE has a blog. But if you do want to stand out, I’ve shared my biggest blogging mistakes below, in hopes you won’t make the same ones as you start to grow your own thought storage units.

Writing bad headlines

When I first started publishing my thoughts on the internet, headlines weren’t my main concern. Sometimes they’re still not, to be completely honest, if I think it’s clever and don’t care about views. I’m not even sure how much they mattered back then in general. Now, your headline is everything. If you have a bad or unspecific headline, people aren’t going to click on it. If you’re not concerned about that, well, keep on keeping on. But SEO won’t pick up on it, people likely won’t take the time to click on it, and for the love of god, if it’s a false or misleading headline, stop blogging now.

Writing badly in general

I’ve never been a “bad” writer. But I remember at least a dozen posts I published for some reason that were just a sentence or two long. I didn’t link to anything or post a picture, it was just those two sentences. As if I expected someone to read what was essentially a Twitter post on a blog page. That’s not interesting and it doesn’t belong on a blog. I read a lot of blogs (I like seeing what you guys are up to!). Every once in awhile I’ll stumble upon a random one (not one of yours) that’s just … bad. It’s written badly, it’s not grammatically sound, it doesn’t really have much to say … that’s not impressive. Don’t just post for the sake of posting. Post well-written content that has a purpose for being on the internet.

Not posting consistently

I’d go weeks at a time without posting in the early days. I was a “post when I have something to say” kind of blogger, and especially now, that doesn’t cut it. If you keep disappearing and reappearing at random intervals, people aren’t going to keep coming back to your blog. They will forget about you. Posting every day is NOT necessary — do not do as I do unless you’re EXTREMELY committed to what you’re doing or you’ll hurt yourself. But stick to some kind of schedule, for your sake more than your readers’. If you can’t keep up with a blog consistently, it’s not going to grow.

Talking about myself too much

When I started blogging, I treated my blog like a public diary. Any commentary I had on my life or anything happening in the world around me, I put it on my blog. Back then, I wasn’t trying to be useful to anyone or say anything significant. I just wanted a place to dump my weird, disoriented brain thoughts. If that’s all you’re blogging for, keep doing what you’re doing. But don’t expect to gain much of a following outside your friend circle (if even that). These days, even blogs focused on one person have a purpose other than “let me spend a few hundred words talking about myself.”

Not bringing myself into the conversation enough

As my blog started transitioning from a personal space to a more professional “hub,” for awhile I stopped talking about myself completely. That really wasn’t good for the blog. Something only written by you, about something you’re (basically) an expert in, needs a little personality. You shouldn’t spend the whole post talking only about you — you always have to relate it back to something a reader will benefit from. But telling stories, sharing personal experiences and memories related to the topic of your post — that’s what makes your blog posts unique.

Not knowing my niche (or that you had to have one)

I wrote about everything. My focus has always been on writing, since the whole reason I started a blog in the first place was because my favorite author had a blog AND I WANTED TO BE AN AUTHOR TOO. But most of my posts were random (I think there’s a SCANNED IMAGE of my high school algebra notes still on the internet somewhere….). People were not interested in that, and I pretty much knew that. But only when I decided I wanted to write about writing did I realize I needed everything I posted to belong specifically in that niche. Do not write about random topics. Always bring it back to your blog’s focus somehow even if you do.

Honestly, I still make plenty of mistakes. You never stop learning, as a writer. I embrace those. I do my best to learn from them. I hope my dedication to continuing to do this whole blogging thing, despite not always doing it well, will inspire you to keep publishing your own thoughts, too.

Meg is the creator of Novelty Revisions, dedicated to helping writers put their ideas into words. She is a freelance writer and a nine-time NaNoWriMo winner with work published in Teen Ink, Success Story, Lifehack and USA TODAY College. Follow Meg on Twitter for tweets about writing, food and nerdy things.

Why a Slow-Growing Blog or Website Is a Good Thing After All

Slow growth is good growth.

I pay very close attention to what newbies are worried about. It’s basically my job. When it comes to publishing content, the most common anxiety I hear about from new writers is not having enough followers.

They’ve been blogging for a month, maybe two, and are surprised to have only a dozen subscribers — most of which are family or close friends.

What I want to say to them is this: what’s so wrong with having less than 15 followers after only two months?

When I re-launched this blog at the beginning of March 2015, I probably had somewhere between 30 to 50 followers. Keep in mind that I first started blogging at this same address in 2009. It took me over six years to gain 50 followers, max.

I’ve increased those numbers a bit since then, thanks to consistent posting and working in an industry that teaches you how to figure out what people like and don’t, but not quickly. If you’re worried about how quickly your blog is growing, I’d like you to keep reading this post. There are benefits to having a small audience, and downsides to focusing solely on numbers. Appreciate a blog or website’s slow growth. It might actually make you a better writer in the long-term.

Here’s why slow growth means you’re doing something right.

You’re not letting an obsession with numbers ruin your content

I am, despite my inability to add and subtract without a calculator, a data junkie. I love graphs and charts and, yes, even numbers. I keep track of the (very gradual) growth of my blog using spreadsheets. But numbers aren’t what drive me to create. They’re useful in figuring out whether or not what you’re doing is working, but if you start obsessing over them, things can get ugly.

It’s very tempting to convince yourself that a certain number of followers/likes/views means you’re doing your best. But numbers don’t tell the whole story. Above all else, you should strive to create content that is relatable, helpful, and intriguing. You could have a large number of subscribers and get a lot of daily traffic, but if your content is trash, it’s all prety much pointless. If you’re growing slowly, it means several things. Your content is probably improving. You’re probably doing a better job of helping strangers find you, though it’s sometimes hard to figure out what you’re doing right all the time. Generally, websites and blogs that update with new content consistently just tend to grow more and more as time goes on — as long as what they’re posting is worth reading.

You’re going organic — and it’s worth it

Once, I paid about $20 to boost a Facebook post. I also shared that post in a Facebook group the same day. I got more traction organically from sharing the post in a Facebook group than I did from the exposure I spent money on. It wasn’t worth the cash — especially because boosting a post doesn’t guarantee people will actually click through to it. Especially when your blog is still new, and you haven’t mastered everything that goes into a good headline, featured image, etc.

Paying for views has always felt like cheating to me. Really, there’s nothing wrong with it. But I’ve found that any organic traffic I get to my blog — all of it — I feel like I’ve earned it. And I can guess you’ll probably feel the same way. As I’m writing this, about half the daily views I get come from those of you who follow me on WordPress. I gained those followers in a number of ways, but I also earned them through publishing quality content. I would much rather grow slowly and organically than quickly through promotions. I don’t care how many people view my writing. I care how many people take something away from that — whether there’s proof through a new blog subscription or not. Slow growth means you’re reaching people who genuinely care about what you have to say. That should feel extremely worthwhile to you.

You’re getting to know your blog (and your audience) while it’s small

One of the most valuable things I’ve gained in the past two years is a loyal audience. I’m not talking about a million people who read my blog daily, either — hah, like that’s ever going to happen. I’ve attracted a small group of people who like to read my words and write some words in response every now and then. To me, that is much more important in the early days of blogging than a large number of followers. Because no matter what happens, I know at least a few people are paying attention. When I’m feeling down about my blog’s performance, that’s enough to keep me grounded.

Even more important than getting to know an audience as it grows is getting to know your blog or website itself. Before this blog became Novelty Revisions, it went through at least three rebrands. And even since the final rebrand, I’ve shifted the focus from fiction writing to a more broad spectrum of writing topics. I’m still figuring out what all that entails, but I’m allowed to do that because there aren’t a million people spying on me (that I know of). I have the time to completely solidify what my blog is all about as it grows. I also have the time to gain confidence in what I do here before things start to pick up. My confidence shakes when there are too many people. The more solid of a foundation I have, the easier it is for me.

The takeaways
  • Use numbers to measure growth over time, but don’t assume they mean you’re doing your best. Numbers grow as content consistently improves.
  • People will find, like, and share your content as long as it’s worth their time. There’s nothing wrong with outreach, but if you’re going to tell people to visit your blog or website, always make sure there’s something good for them to read when they show up.
  • Appreciate your blog/website, and your audience, while they’re small. With growth comes a shocking lack of intimacy when you’re used to a very small audience. Above all, focus on improving your blog’s mission and editorial principles. Always treat your readers with kindness and respect — these are things they notice and pass on to others when making reading recommendations.

If you want to start publishing content on a blog or website, but don’t know what to write about. check out my tips for creating a blog people want to follow.

Meg is the creator of Novelty Revisions, dedicated to helping writers put their ideas into words. She is a freelance writer and a nine-time NaNoWriMo winner with work published in Teen Ink, Success Story, Lifehack and USA TODAY College. Follow Meg on Twitter for tweets about writing, food and nerdy things.

The Unwritten Rules of Blogging

Write about what you care about.

New bloggers and seasoned bloggers alike have similar questions when it comes to doing their best work on their websites. What’s the right way to do this? How do I grow my audience? How do I increase engagement? How do I know I’m not somehow messing all this up?

There are the typical blogging rules all bloggers know to follow: write well, insert as much media as possible, use keywords, etc., etc.

But what about the rules not everyone talks about — the “unwritten rules”?

So I’m going to write down these unwritten rules for you, because I’m a writer and that’s what I do. My approach to blogging comes from over 8 years of typing words and hitting publish and still not always knowing exactly what people want from me — but I love every minute of it, and any wisdom I do have from all my years of doing this, I’m more than willing to share.

Blog consistently, or not at all

Different people have asked me the same question a dozen times in the past few years: “How do you get views, likes, and comments on your blog? I don’t get hardly any.” (First, thanks for leaving comments to ask this question — really.)

Here’s the best answer I have for these queries, since Novelty Revisions only just turned two in March 2017 and I’m bad at promoting myself on social media: post consistently.

I post every day, and have for almost two years straight. I do not recommend new bloggers do this (I had been blogging six years before I started doing this) because you will crash and burn and it will hurt your brain a lot.

Post five days a week, post every Tuesday, post once a month — it does not matter how often you post. Post good content, and post it on the day(s) and time(s) you say you will. Always. It has worked for me, and in time, it could work for you too. There are no guarantees. But this is the best way I have found to draw people in and keep them coming back. Consistency tells people that you’re here, you’re committed, and they can come to you at a designated time and place and you’ll be there waiting.

Only write about what you care about

I like this better than “write what you know,” because that idea is often misinterpreted or misrepresented to mean you shouldn’t ever try to learn something new or write about less familiar topics. Writing what you care about is a completely different way of looking at writing, inspiration, motivation, and getting your work done. Knowing is subjective. Caring — well, you know what you care about. And you’re not going to give that stuff up very easily.

Never blog about something because you think it’s “popular” or “trendy” or “a lot of people will like.” You won’t last a month managing that blog unless you genuinely care about the content. Because in the beginning, you’re responsible for all the research and writing. This is going to be your life now. If you’re not completely invested in the topic of your blog, good luck trying to keep it going.

Treat your readers like good friends

No one that I know in my personal or professional life reads, likes, or comments on my posts. (At least that I know of — mom, are you there?). Everyone who follows and interacts with me on my blog is a stranger. But I don’t treat you all like strangers. I treat you like you’re my friends. I don’t talk with you about my problems (uh, debatable) or share gossip, but when you need me, I try my best to be there for you.

My whole blog revolves around the idea that I am just one of you — a writer trying to figure out how writing fits into the grand scheme of my life. I love giving advice and helping any way I can. I keep my tone conversational yet as professional as my can’t-ever-take-anything-too-seriously brain can manage. I don’t like to convey my authority in a way that makes me unapproachable. I want my readers to feel like they can say/ask anything and they’ll get an honest reply. Always interact with your readers as if you genuinely care about their well-being. Well, it helps if you actually do. I hope you do. Otherwise, what are you in this whole writing thing for?

Only quit if you don’t love it

I’ve seen a lot of bloggers drop out of their writing projects out of frustration. They aren’t getting as many views or comments as they think they should be, so they decide it’s not worth it and give up less than a year into it.

I’ll never tell you that poor performance is a good sign, or that there aren’t times when putting a project on the back burner is in your best interest. But I will tell you this: if you aren’t having fun, drop it. If you love blogging, keep it. Even if you have about a dozen regular readers and that’s it, that’s no reason to stop. Having a big blog isn’t the only way to be successful. What matters is that you’re doing something that excites you — and that you’re bringing value to your audience, no matter how small.

Meg is the creator of Novelty Revisions, dedicated to helping writers put their ideas into words. She is a freelance writer and a nine-time NaNoWriMo winner with work published in Teen Ink, Success Story, Lifehack and USA TODAY College. Follow Meg on Twitter for tweets about writing, food and nerdy things.

Why My Next Project Won’t Be A Second Blog

I’m a one-blog blogger.


There is a reason why I don’t mind when people come to me asking how to build a successful blog. I’m not the best person to ask – in terms of analytics, this blog wouldn’t be considered successful by most standards. But I’m OK with people complaining about not having readers or not getting any comments. I’ve been through that really hard few years when you’re putting in the work and no one cares. I understand how frustrating it can be.

I’ve seen more growth here this year than I expected to, but there have still been points when I’ve considered giving up. There are way too many blogs like mine, who started posting things about writing way before I did. At some point this year I finally accepted the fact that this blog will always be a hobby – a hobby I love dearly, because I care about you and your future as a writer, but still just a hobby. I refuse to clutter my site with ads or irrelevant sponsored content. That’s not what this is about.

But, full disclosure, I’m in debt (most 24-year-olds who’ve been in school since the beginning of time are) and freelance writing, at least in your first year, pays like garbage. I paid my way through grad school with that money specifically so I could find a job writing about health (which is basically what I’ve been studying/training for since I was 19). I love writing about writing. But this blog, being a hobby and all, is not a career. As much as I’m fine with that, I need to step up my game and add something new to my list of projects – something that pays, for good reason, I mean.

I’ve been planning on launching a new project for months – and am hoping to establish an official launch date sometime in early 2017. I’ve known pretty much the entire time that I didn’t want it to be a blog. Health blogs are super popular, and it’s in many ways easier to monetize because it’s a specific niche to target. But as you can probably guess, if you follow this blog, I’m neither in it for the clicks nor the money. I mean, I do need to make money. But not from fad health products that don’t actually solve people’s problems.

If you count the six years I blogged before launching Novelty Revisions, I’ve been blogging since 2009. I know how to run a blog, I know how people read content online and I know how to promote things like this. It would only make sense that if I were to start something new, it would be another blog. I’m a writer. It’s what everyone would expect from me.

Except … I’m not a writer. I create things on the internet. “Things” is an extremely vague term on purpose. I’ve done plenty of other things besides writing. I started a podcast (on hiatus), I sometimes still make videos (on hiatus), I like to connect with people. Writing is easy for me. Writing has always come naturally. To start another blog would be boring. And launching a project you aren’t enthusiastic about is, and always will be, a complete waste of time.

Edit: By the way, I’m not saying writing is easy for me, meaning I never struggle. Creativity-wise, there are more challenging activities for me at this point in addition to writing. That’s what I meant.

So I’m challenging myself, and doing something different. I’m tired of always doing what’s easy. Factor in the reality that people don’t read, that many health headlines are misleading, that I am a truth-teller, and most people want the quick easy fix to all their problems, which you know for a fact I do not offer anyone who comes to me for advice. You’re going to run into that no matter which medium you choose to send your message. But there are way too many “health bloggers” out there already. I love blogging! I would not love being a “health blogger.”

What I’m doing instead is going to take a lot of time, preparation and, honestly, bravery. It’s either going to stick, or it’s going to fall flat. I won’t know until I try. I wish I could tell you more, but it’s too early. I can assure you that I’m still sticking around here, and though down the road I might either need some extra help or to cut back on posts, for now, I’m not going anywhere. I have really been struggling the past few months keeping up with daily posts, but if I didn’t care, I would have stopped. I’m really glad you’re still around to cheer me on and keep me moving forward. You matter to me!

New ideas are scary, especially when you finally give in and decide you’re going to move forward with them. Big ideas somehow find their way to you, and it’s hard to explain, but you just know they’re meant to be. I do, anyway. I have no idea what’s going to happen. I have no idea what the next year is going to look like for me professionally. But there’s one thing I do know for sure: I’m a one-blog blogger, and I’m so, so happy I’m allowed to say that. I don’t want to have 20 blogs. I want to focus on making the one I have as good as it can be.

Thanks for keeping up with me. Now get back to writing.

Meg is the creator of Novelty Revisions, dedicated to helping writers put their ideas into words. She is a freelance writer and an eight-time NaNoWriMo winner with work published in Teen Ink, Success Story, Lifehack and USA TODAY College. Follow Meg on Twitter for tweets about writing, food and nerdy things.

The Problem with Blogging for SEO

At what point does creating well-written, helpful, personalized blog posts for an audience become less important than writing posts that people are more likely to find through a Google search?


This is not a technical writing blog, for many reasons. But everything I do cover here revolves around writing, creativity and writing stuff primarily for the internet. That is what I know best; therefore, these are the kinds of things I am able to help you, my readers, with as a blogger.

The deeper I descend into professional writing, the more I aspire to help writers find a balance between writing good content and having the confidence to create whatever they want.

In my professional life, something I have always struggled with as an online media professional is search engine optimization. I’ve studied it, I’ve practiced it, I’ve attempted to keep an online magazine afloat by succumbing to it. But when it comes to my ‘personal’ blog, I stay away from it, full disclosure, other than some words in a title or tags. I will never, if I have the choice, create a framework for a blog post using SEO. Because the way I construct this blog is meant to reflect how I believe writers should create their own work: as freely as they see fit, with a little structure, following some rules and completely disregarding others.

But I am a freelance writer. Sometimes that means I have clients who want everything to be written strictly for SEO. And sometimes, that really bothers me. Not enough to stomp my feet and fight it – trust me, as a newer, less experienced freelancer, you don’t do that – but in my own head, I’ve struggled to shake the feeling that often, what website owners are asking for just doesn’t make sense.

The purpose of SEO, in a nutshell, is just to create content that gets picked up by search engines. In some ways, it isn’t as complex as it might sound; in other ways, it is. There are thousands upon thousands of websites and blogs out there. Using SEO, websites try to make their posts and pages show up on results pages, preferably on the first or second page.

Great concept. Everyone wants their hard work to be noticed. But recently, I have really felt like some are starting to take it way too far. This is partially the creative writer in me talking, but I’ve been writing on the more technical side long enough to be able to store that away in my brain until I need it. I just don’t think everyone understands the consequences worshipping SEO can have.

If done right, SEO posts and pages aren’t that noticeable (unless you’re trained to spot them, as I am). This is fine, and I think many sites are getting better at this. But here’s the problem I foresee: at what point does creating well-written, helpful, personalized blog posts for an audience become less important than writing posts that people are more likely to find through a Google search?

I pay little to no attention to SEO when writing posts for you because it interrupts my thinking. When I’m writing for you, I don’t think about which search engines these ideas might end up on. I think about what people need to hear, what problems they are having, what’s relevant in my own life and experience as a creator. Sure, this does involve a little thinking about what people might search for, but again, that’s mostly for tagging. This is a small blog that does not get very many views. I don’t care about that. There would be a lot less of you, I’m sure, if all my content was crippled by SEO and I never gave any actual advice or encouraging words for you. That’s not what I want my content to focus on. I want to show you, my readers, that I’m a real person. Not someone who knows how to use keywords.

More and more I have clients asking me to adhere to SEO, and while that’s fine for them, it will never be fine for me. It will always make me uneasy. What would be the point of blogging if all that mattered was whether or not people found EXACTLY what they were looking for every time? That’s fine for websites, but my favorite thing about exploring blogs is stumbling upon things I never expected to find. Maybe to you I just sound like a cranky 80-year-old who doesn’t want to change the way she does things. Maybe I just don’t get it – I’m no expert. But as much as I want this blog to grow, I would never sacrifice the originality and style of my blog just so more people could find it. It bothers me when it seems like all people care about is SEO, and not the actual important things I might have to say.

Do you pay attention to SEO when you blog? How does it influence the way you write? Have you ever deliberately changed a title, heading or phrasing in hopes of better SEO? How did that make you feel?

Meg is the creator of Novelty Revisions, dedicated to helping writers put their ideas into words. She is a freelance writer and an eight-time NaNoWriMo winner with work published in Teen Ink, Success Story, Lifehack and USA TODAY College. Follow Meg on Twitter for tweets about writing, food and nerdy things.

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