Emerging from the Offline Shadows

This blog has had several lives and a couple of locations. I’m beginning a new phase now and the landscape seems to be so much more different than the other times I came back from blogging breaks. Back in 2004 when I first started blogging, I was one of the middle early bloggers. There were of course the people who had been around since the late 90s, but I was on the early edge of mass blogging. Now, everybody has a blog and I feel a bit out of place and jealous of the attention they receive. At it’s peak, this blog was getting between 100-200 hits a day. A mere drop in the bucket in the larger scheme of the blogosphere, but enough to make me proud and warrant myself some attention.

Now that I’m back to blogging regularly I’m getting 30-40 hits on days when I post and 0-10 on the days I don’t. And no longer is merely posting enough to bring traffic to my site, I need to link in Twitter and Facebook as well. I’m hoping eventually I’ll build back enough of a base where people will check out my blog regularly and I won’t have to pimp every friggin’ post.

But for now, I’m thinking of other ways to make my renewed online presence known. I’m starting to comment more on the blogs I used to frequent and I’m finding my way to a couple new ones to see if I have anything useful to say. I’m going to participate in one of Patti Abbott and Gerald So’s flash fiction challenges, which is something I haven’t done in years. Even those challenges, I’m proud to say, are part of my early history as a blogger through creating the Blog Short Story Project with Dave White. I’m also writing some new short fiction that I want to get out to places like Thuglit and Plots with guns, and maybe even into some of the newer places like A Twist of Noir and PulpPusher. I’m also thinking about hitting up some old and new friends to let me guest blog to help expand my audience.

And the reason for all of this? Well that’s two fold. There’s the narcissistic, self-entertainment purpose of it all. I love looking back through my old blog posts at important times in my life to see what I was thinking and how I was reacting. But there’s also the professional end of it. Much of my success so far has come from the relationships I made early on through blogs and online zines then solidified at Bouchercon and other conferences. I’ve got a new book out in the marketplace that is different than any of the others I’ve written and more in line with the kind of stuff I’ve published on line. I’m also looking to get back the excitement and vibe that comes from being part of the online crime community. It fed me for so long through some tough times and now that I’ve been able to work through some things I needed to away from the blogs, it’s time to rejoin the party if anyone will have me.