Not quite sure yet whether I’m going to start a blog, be interested in continuing a blog, or whether this website is the best forum for all my random scholarly thoughts. Until I figure this out, I will keep this picture posted from my trip to Berlin’s Reichstag last year, and see if that solidifies my feelings about a blog. If anyone has any suggestions or comments about blogging, I’d love to hear them!
Blog from the heart about issues you feel passionate about! The more connected you are to what you’re writing, the better! It becomes relatable to your audience. Have fun with it! It’s like a public diary entry to some degree. You’d be great with all your knowledge, humour and travel experiences.
Thanks Kels! Yes, you’re absolutely right. I will focus on my passions and ensure it’s always interesting (at least to me!). Watch this space! And thanks for the input xo
Given the thrust of this website–which is well laid out, professional, and wonderfully informative–it might be interesting to blog about your “behind the scenes” experiences. This could give you some nice scope to play with, writing about topics ranging from how you’re tackling things right now to your experiences getting things published or applying to conferences, to what working in the archives is like to your thoughts on current events from the point of view of your work. It’d be a great read for other historians (particularly other young scholars) as well as start dialogues with colleagues who experience similar situations!
Thanks, Jane! Yes, the junior scholar “behind the scenes” approach would likely be an excellent way to get my feet wet in the world of blogging. I’ve been thinking of strategies to make sure blogging doesn’t become a time-consuming monster (which, I suspect it does become if one doesn’t have some limitations or focus). So, while I might keep the theme fairly open to include such awesome ideas as “behind the scenes” (good tip, babe), I’m also thinking of having a word limit, along with a fortnightly deadline! Ha! Good way to keep myself on track and concise, right? I’ll keep you updated as I begin this process. Maybe you could be my first guest blog? Chat soon xox
I have been blogging since 2010. It requires consistent work to maintain a personal blog, but I regard it as my online portfolio. It demonstrates that I can write well for a non-academic audience. It showcases what I am interested in professionally and which topics and themes I have researched. However, I never share stuff that I regard as my intellectual property – people need to pay for that. My blog paid for itself last year when someone looking for a historian in my field of expertise found me and hired me after reading my blog as a result of a Google search.
Blogging is also a way of supporting your community. I do book reviews and run an occasional series where authors who live in Australasia can write a guest post about their debut history. Blogging also allows you to develop an audience for your research project. I have found that my posts about the book that I am writing get a good response. People love hearing about the writing life!
Posting regularly and building an audience through good social media work requires time and some skill. Group blogs are a good alternative to individual blogging. They publish new posts much more frequently than is possible for most people who run their own blog and you benefit from the oversight of an editor. This frequency of posting (and the high quality of the posts) attracts regular readers so you can benefit from the work a group of bloggers have put in to build an audience. A good example of group blogging is the Australian Women’s History Network.
And photos are very helpful for attracting an audience. I like your photo!
Yvonne! Thank you VERY much for such a detailed and insightful comment on potential future blogging. Super helpful. I did not even realise that “guest posts” or “group blogs” even existed, so you’ve opened my eyes considerably. Before I launched my website, I never really considered blogging – most of the blogs I’ve seen in the past are either strong political commentaries or something to do with makeup products! – but I’m becoming increasingly inclined to accept that it’s a fruitful and innovative way to network and refine some ideas. As you can imagine, I do not wish this blog to take over every spare minute of my time, but I think you’re right to point out guest or group blogs as other ways to participate in efficient ways. So, I just wanted to say thank you for the time you took to offer some much-needed wisdom. I’ve checked out your website as well and once I’ve got ideas on my end more firmly settled, I look forward to chatting with you about everything historical in due course. Thanks for reaching out!
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I’d be really interested in hearing about your research! I run the @histchild Twitter feed. Many of our followers can’t access academic articles. So they really appreciate a chance to get an idea of the overall drift of a piece you published, or why you decided to research something, or how your research can give a better context to understand particular news stories, or any discoveries in the archives that didn’t fit into the article but are intriguing! Best of luck – and let me know if you blog anything on the history of childhood / youth as our followers will be definitely interested in reading it.
Hi Catherine! Thanks for the encouragement, and I’m delighted to report that because of your comment, and other constructive advice from peers and friends, I will begin a fortnightly blog about my historical interests (much of which involves topics relevant to @histchild). So I will make sure to let you know when I post my first blog post. Watch this space! And thanks again for reaching out!