Skip to content

Newbie Advice: Maintaining a Blog

January 23, 2008

Everyday, usually around 6 am EST, I post something here. Most times, it has to do with whatever my current design interest is. Sometimes, it’s in answer to questions I’ve received either by email or in posts on this site (I still need to answer the GDC follow up one). There are a couple great reasons to have a blog, but for students, the main one is to lure or impress a potential employer.

In order to do this, your blog should feature the following five elements:

  • Professional focus. If your girlfriend dumps you, call your friends, but don’t expound about it on your blog.
  • Study. Show that the gaming industry is something that interests you. Post your thoughts on particular subjects or, better yet, your experience.
  • Get a focus. I could post on the wonders of Zbrush, but it just ain’t my thing. I’m a game designer, and that’s what I focus on.
  • Be consistent. Set a schedule for yourself, and stick to it no matter what. My schedule is every weekday. Sometimes, I post on weekends, but I reserve that as optional.
  • Show your work (if it’s good). Don’t spread misery.

Sticking to a schedule is the single most important thing you can do. From personal experience, I know that the first excuse leads to the second… and tenth, and eventually, your blog suffers from neglect. Regular blogs build up regular visitors. It’s also a great way to show you have discipline.

Remember that blogs are a very social thing. If you want people to visit your blog, visit theirs. Leave posts, and you’ll more than likely get a) a return post or b) traffic from those who read your post on a developer’s site. I was talking with a student the other day who received 70 hits from a post he left on a developer’s site.

Advertisements
7 Comments leave one →
  1. January 23, 2008 5:56 pm

    Neat advice – but I didn’t realise I was allowed a girlfriend to not complain about on my blog, boom boom!

    Anyway, more seriously, the schedule thing is a good idea. I left my journal (I dislike “blog” but there we go) over Christmas, which was not exactly planned – I just for some reason didn’t write anything, or finish the projects I had going to post about.

    But I digress, I am trying to get a regular post up, even with my exams on (it’s a good break), and posting comments like this one on some blogs since I finally got Google reader working 😉

  2. January 23, 2008 10:20 pm

    Lack of these five elements are exact reasons why I failed to become an active blogger. Though I realize that now, I still find it difficult to be consistent. In my case, writing in English takes time, and I always have other things to do with my time.

  3. January 24, 2008 12:08 am

    Here’s an excellent example of a student blog:

    http://www.davidmcdonough.net/

  4. January 24, 2008 7:19 am

    David’s blog is on my daily visit schedule. Just as yours. 🙂

    And I do think that the element that’s more difficult to follow is the posting schedule. I would say that it’s the most important of them, because if one posts on his blog, say, twice a day, even if one fails on following the other elements sometimes it would still attract visitors, which would keep interested on the blog’s content.

    My schedule really doesn’t exist. But since I read a lot of articles, specially at home where I don’t have internet connection, I tend to do some posts on the articles but in a batched basis. Take yesterday for instance, I had four entries posted, after a two or three-day hiatus.

    But I’ll try to set an schedule for myself. Thanks for the tips. 🙂

  5. January 29, 2008 9:49 pm

    I write things whenever the idea strikes. I might go a few days or a week without posting or I might post 3 things in one day. Who knows? My blog isn’t well developed at this point but most people can’t even find my blog unless they personally know me or take an educated guess on the web address. Which is done on purpose, I’ll make it available when it is ready.

    Why should things be as convenient as a click of a button? I go out of my way to be difficult. Why? Because everything is a game and I do stupid/weird things to keep myself entertained.

    I generally agree with the incredibly personal issues being left off but I wouldn’t want to read my blog and it not sound like me. I’m all about trying to be honest and strait forward so putting a little bit of myself and personal opinions on certain aspects of life seems like a good idea so I don’t seem like a robot or as if I am attempting to represent myself in an artificial light.

Trackbacks

  1. RazuBlog » Blog Archive » Maintaining a blog
  2. Jeff On Games » Blog Archive » On Schedules, Focus and Professionalism

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: