Your Blog, Your Way: Post 9

Tips on blogging by Seth Apter

My ongoing series, Your Blog Your Way, has been designed to help you define and refine the blog of your dreams, whether you are a seasoned blogger or just deciding to take the leap into blogging. To that end, the 10 Cs of blogging have been introduced in the prior posts as a guide to take along with you on this adventure. So far these posts have covered the concepts of Consistency, Continuity, Community, Content, Comments, Composition, and Censoring. Today the focus shifts to a concept that touches on the very core of an art blog: Creativity.

In the second post of this series, I said that one of the most critical steps in developing a blog that truly reflects you is “creating a vision for your blog.” At first thought, it might seem like “vision” is the most important word in this sentence. However, my sense is that “creating” is actually the key word here. Creating and using our creativity is what we do as artists. And it is exactly what we need to do as bloggers as well.

The idea of creativity is hard to pin down and define. And yet I think we all know what it is, what it means, and when we experience it, even if we have a hard time putting it into words. We all have visited blogs where we marvel at just how creative the blogger is and ask, “How do they keep coming up with such interesting ideas and creative posts?” and “How can I do the same?”

Of the many definitions available for the word, the one that seems most applicable here is “characterized by originality and expressiveness.” Broken down even more, creativity is akin to original expression. In my mind, every time you speak your truth and use your voice you are by definition being creative. In doing so, you express who you are, offer what is unique to you, and create something that is genuine and therefore more compelling.

Simply put, you become more creative with your blog (and with everything else) when you become more yourself, when you are open to being vulnerable and to sharing your ideas, your beliefs, and your creative energy, and when you stop listening to the voices that say you shouldn’t and you can’t. In doing so, you open up a world of creativity. Just watch a child create art without the fear of failure or judgment and you will see what I mean.

So how can you put these ideas into action on your blog? Firstly, make a pact with yourself that you will create a blog that genuinely reflects you. Recognize the fact that not every post will be perfect and that not every reader will like, comment or even read each post. We seem to be living in a world where we are validated by the number of “friends” we have on Facebook, by the number of “followers” we have on Twitter, and the number of “likes” we receive on our posts. Put these measures to the side and focus on the creative freedom that you will experience as a result.

Homework: Designate a time when you can sit undisturbed, remember the pact you made with yourself, and write about your art and your experience as an artist. Don’t think too much. Just write. Let the ideas, topics, questions, theories, doubts, experiences, triumphs, failures, dreams, hopes, goals, stories, and projects flow. If you do this, I guarantee you will end up with a series of creative ideas for blog posts that will help create Your Blog, Your Way.

Next month: Cultivate


Seth Apter is a regular contributor to, the voice behind, The Altered Page and the author of the forthcoming book, The Pulse of Mixed Media. (North Light Books, Spring 2012)

You can listen to a podcast with Seth right here.

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