Once we’ve had done with our writing, and ensured that we’ve kept with our purpose, we need to make sure we’re also keeping a schedule. While posting daily can be the bane of bloggers everywhere, that’s not what we need.
Blogging success is the descendant of consistency, not overload.
One of the big mistakes neophyte bloggers make is diving in full bore and establishing a five-to-ten posts per week schedule, expounding on everything they know without holding back. While this is certainly a good way to get noticed fast – some people just love having more and more in their readers – unless you’re ready to keep pace, it’s a trap. Falling into the daily post oubliette means, in many cases, that as soon as you lose one day, you lose stride entirely.
Missing your schedule can be catastrophic – once you’ve created an expectation, it’s hard to step down from it.
Aside from combating this simple problem by posting less (which is also a dangerous road to walk), one of the best tools to add to your kit is an editorial calendar. I don’t mean “Post about blue widgets every third Monday.” As much as strict scheduling can be helpful for some, it’s possible to take a more organic approach to the EdCal than this process.
I use a process called the Touchstone Calendar. Basically, since i know I’ll be posting between 3 and 5 articles per week for the entire month, I plan for the lower number (which would be roughly 12 posts per four week period). Knowing I need 12 topics, I’ve broken down my writing plan into between 10 and 15 broad categories. On my whiteboard, I have this list – and as I post, I erase each topic and call it addressed for the month. When I run out of pillar topics – up goes a new, fresh list.
The Touchstone Calendar allows me to keep up with my topics, without the danger of feeling constrained to a schedule. For me, at least, this is hugely beneficial to my stress level and maintaining my interest in my own projects.
Ensuring you not only keep up your relevance by posting to your blog, but also keep your topics tight and following your purpose means your direction, tone, voice and have a far better chance of remaining sustainable.
Image by taberandrew.