Where are you going with your blog? What’s it going to become?
(If it becomes something that’s at least 10 times better than the competition out there, you’re going to get all the attention and traffic you’ve ever dreamed of. So go do that, ok?)
Here are some people who built – or are building – something remarkable.
- Pulitzer-winning journalist Paul Salopek is blogging his epic walk round the world in a series of devastatingly well-written stories.
- Frankie Thompson is writing a series of weekly letters to her first child (who is currently too young to read them) – and publishing her short stories as a series of beautifully-covered Kindle books.
- In 2009, blog post by blog post, author Andy Weir told the story of an astronaut stranded on Mars. At the urging of his 3,000+ daily readers, he put the book onto Amazon for 99 cents – and it sold 35,000 copies. Then the book deal came along – and in 2015, the Ridley Scott film, starring Matt Damon.
- Jodi Ettenberg is building gluten-free guides to eating around the world – and a series of hand-drawn maps inspired by food.
- Jonny Miller came up with 100 fascinating, life-enriching things he has learn in the first 10,000 days of his life. (He says it only took a couple of hours to write, but I reckon it actually took 27.3 years.)
- Help desk software company Groove decided to blog everything they did (including mistakes) to build their business up to $100k of recurring revenue every month – and they hugely increased traffic to their site. (They’re now at $400k a month.)
- In 2010, artist Lisa Congdon set herself a challenge: “On each of [the next] 365 days, I would post a photograph of one of my own collections or a drawing or painting of an imagined collection on a blog called A Collection a Day.” The project found a huge audience, turned into a book, and helped launch her career as an author.
- Pat Flynn is building an impossibly huge guide to building a business online that doesn’t require your presence to make money.
- Benny Lewis is trying to learn pretty much every language in the world – and then turn what he’s learned into a language-hacking course.
- In 2013, friends Timothy Goodman and Jessica Walsh emerged from failed relationships and decided to date each other instead, just to see what would happen – and blogged about it, candidly and split-screen. It grabbed a lot of attention, got turned into a book, and attracted praise and scorn in equal measure.
Need further inspiration?
- Try a 100 Day Project (no, you don’t have to wait until April next year – just get on with it).
- Steal any of these blogging projects from Chris Brogan – that’s what they’re for.
- Choose a topic and take your readers on a 31-day training programme through it, and then return again and again and again, adding new links each time, until you’ve got something and mindbogglingly definitive as Darren Rowse’s 31 Days To Building A Better Blog page.
- Create something and sell it every week, every single week, and repeat and repeat and repeat until business is booming – just like children’s author Enid Blyton was doing half a century ago. Don’t stop. Don’t stop.
- Write a blog where every entry looks like a page from a book by Keri Smith – ie. playful, profound, anarchic and fun. Because, f*** the rules.