Hello, beautiful readers!
I am back with another post for this week! Today’s post is a *little* different from my other posts, I am sure you can guess why, judging from the title. Patrick W. Marsh from the amazing What the Monster Said agreed to collaborate for this segment with me, in which we would be talking about the nitty-gritty of blogging. . He is an author, blogger, screenwriter and consultant who charms his readers with an intriguing writing style. He has achieved milestones in his life and will continue to do so.
Here’s the excerpt from our conversation
Hello Patrick! Thank you for agreeing to do this. Before we begin, I would like to know about blogging journey.
P- Hello! My blogging journey really started in 2012 when I started writing a fictional journal online called the Greenland Diaries. I was going back to college to study creative writing and I wanted to practice the past-tense voice, so I started writing this apocalyptic journal online. Putting the narrative on the internet was a way of holding myself accountable to it, even though nobody read the thing, including my friends and family. Doing this project though taught me the value of a blog and consistently updating it. As an impatient person, this instant publishing format really suited my personality, for better or worse. Since then I created a personal blog to use as a website for my writing. It has evolved multiple times since I started out, sort of like a Pokemon. The latest version is “What the Monster Said” which functions as both my author page and a blogging outlet for my flash fiction.
How would you describe you blog in just three words?
P- Musings, monsters, and me would be the three words to describe my blog. Musings are something I’ve grown to like that I publish every Monday. They’re sort of a snapshot of my thinking for the week, on a creative and personal level. Monsters are what I focus on as a writer. I create them in fiction to understand what it is to be human. I explore this in multiple genres of fiction; Steampunk, science fiction, fantasy, horror and Cyberpunk to name a few. I publish new bits of flash fiction weekly on my blog, so I’m always exploring monsters with new content. Many of the stories are continuous, yet, stand alone. As far as me is considered, the blog is also about me. Who I am, where I came from, and what my books are about. I also publish posts about what events I’ll be attending in the future.
You writing style infuses monsters to portray human emotions. That is a bold and interesting theme. Could you throw light on what inspired you carve upon this theme.
P- My writing style focuses on monsters because growing up when I would watch, read, or interpret any narrative media, the most interesting part of these stories was the monster. I always loved the suspense of finding out what a monster was, or how a villain grew into their identity. Most of the time as the audience I was disappointed at how these abominations were explained, so I became resolved to change this perception, and to write stories where the presence of monsters was a product of the human environment, and not an aberration. I create monsters to understand what it is to be human. They represent the truth in the story.
Do you remember any comment from your readers that made you laugh?
P- That’s a tough one. I don’t get a ton of comments, but I did write a nonfiction post one about compulsively buying video games and then reselling them. I would buy them because I love video games, but sell them because if felt like society was trying to make me grow-up so to speak. A few people commented about how they did this as well, how they felt this societal pressure to “grow-up” and purge their lives of these enjoyments from their younger days. This made me laugh that other people had done this relatively strange and masochistic action as well.
Blogging is a commitment that demands great dedication, diligence and a constant variety and regularity of content. Some bloggers who are unable to meet these demands, quit within the first year. Your take on this. Any tips for the bloggers who experience this?
P- Ugh. Yeah, I’ve come pretty close to quitting many times, but I’ve learned from other professionals in the creative industry that you have to be stubborn to survive. Consistently tricking yourself into writing about things that interest you is key. It took me years before I started to actually make my Monday Musings work for me as writer. That would be my biggest tip as a blogger. Write about what interests you, and explain why it interests you. Both are a post in itself if you think about it. Also, as bloggers you’re not really required to write giant posts or anything. As a modern society our attention span is frighteningly short, especially when on the internet. Don’t stress yourself out with giant pieces of writing, but more so tidbits that can be binged at the audience’s leisure.
Have you ever experienced a bloggers block? If yes, how did you overcome It?
P- I have experienced Blogger’s Block many times in my life. I have no doubt it will return as well. There is never a complete cure for it, but there are treatments. One strategy I’ve sort of begun practicing is changing the style of my blog posts to mention what I’m going to say, or tailor the format to include some thoughts that I find interesting. For example, with my Monday Musings that I publish weekly I’ve got one of the talking points strictly devoted to my weekly Existential Crisis, which to be honest happens to me on a nearly hourly basis. I sort of engineer things on my blog to match my interests, but to keep the structure intact so they audience knows I’m relatively reliable.
You have a huge reader base. Any secrets behind achieving this milestone?
P- Well, I guess my own secret is pretty much the traditional answer, which is producing content. Continuously publishing stuff is the easiest method. However, that material must be of some baseline quality, not just posts to get views if that makes sense. I also follow many other people, so my news feed is jammed. Communicating with your readers when they ask you questions is also a must. People knowing you update and interact frequently is very important. We’re very lucky in this day and age to be able to publish, communicate, and interact at the push of a button, but that doesn’t always mean what you want to say requires a blog post. Walking that fine line is always difficult, but you can do it.
Would you like to share some advice for new bloggers?
Some advice to bloggers is to find out what you want to say before you say it, if that makes any sense. Don’t just start blogging because you want to share your ideas, but figure out why you want to communicate them in the first place. I’m not saying make some ardent plan that can’t be flexible. Being able to adapt is a key trait you’ll need for this process. Just spend some time thinking, meditating, or ruminating about what you really want to say. For me, it is monsters and my fascination with them. For you it’ll be something different, and enjoy the process of finding out what it is.
I hope those are good. Thank you for doing this.
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Until the next time,