Look around the web, and you’ll find dozens of posts saying variations of the above, all referencing this post by Google’s Matt Cutts titled “The decay and fall of guest blogging.” They contradict each other, split hairs, and generally try to be as confusing as possible.
After reading them all, you probably feel like looking at the computer and shouting, “WHAT THE HELL IS GOING ON?!”
Note from Jon: I talk to a lot of bloggers who’d love to spend more time painting, storytelling, photographing, or some other creative pursuit, but don’t, because they feel it’s not pragmatic. And that’s sad, because it can be. Just as a blog can build buzz around a book or business, it can also be used to promote your art.
Regardless of your passion, you’ll find someone in Leanne’s list you can use to inspire your own success. I also urge you to download The Rebel Artist’s Manifesto. It’s free, and it’ll give you one extra kick in the butt to get you started.
You’ve watched artists, performers and writers like Hugh McLeod, Amanda Palmer, Chase Jarvis, and Jeff Goins sell boatloads of creative work thanks to the platforms they have built from their blogs.
You tinker with your own creative projects and wonder if you could use a blog to promote them too.
But despite all the blogging advice out there, you sense that blogging for art is different.
You know you don’t want to be spammy, but have no idea how to use a blog to sell those musical compositions, show tickets, short horror stories, family paintings with Fido, or handmade grandfather clocks.
The one thing artists need to be successful today
The Internet has turned selling creative work on its head.
No longer can you simply get good at your craft and then find someone to champion you, manage you, or sponsor you.
Want a publishing deal? You better have built a solid fan base for your work first.
Want a chance at a record deal or even just a decent side income from your work? You’ll need an engaged audience and good-sized list.
Note from Jon: The fear of not being able to stand out in a crowded space can be paralyzing when you’re a beginner, but it doesn’t have to be. Today, one of our favorite guest contributors, Henneke Duistermaat, will walk you through how to create a blog no one forgets, even if you’re just one small voice amongst thousands. For more training on how to enchant your audience, also be sure to check out Enchanting Marketing.
Let’s not pussyfoot around it.
Hundreds – maybe thousands – of bloggers write about the same topic as you.
You’re not sure what, but something is pulling you to change. Not in a confess-your-sins-oh-ye-sinners way, but to shift directions, to embrace your calling, to finally do what you were put here to do:
You feel the ideas inside you. You sense them straining to escape. You know your job is to set them free, firing them like a cannon into a world in desperate need of them.
But you’re afraid.
You’re afraid of quitting your job and living without a safety net. You’re afraid of the concerned, disapproving looks your friends will give you when you tell them you’re giving it all up to write for a living. You’re afraid of not having enough money for food, of the power being cut off, of watching your family shivering and hungry, all because of your “selfishness”.
And most of all?
You’re afraid you’re wrong about yourself.
Maybe that tugging sensation you feel is just an illusion. Maybe your ideas are crap. Maybe you’re just a fool with delusions of grandeur, and this whole fantasy of becoming a writer is just that: a fantasy.
So, you do nothing.
You cower in your safe little job. You tinker with a blog or a novel or a screenplay. You drown your dreams with junk food or booze or shopping sprees, all the while telling yourself you’re doing the right thing.
But are you?
“No,” a little voice whispers inside of you. “No, this is all very, very wrong.”