The Importance of the Reply

This is a post that I have been meaning to write for quite some time now. As a writer, I understand the importance of being out there. A name people will hear, recognize and learn to bow down to… um… ultimately investigate my writing and perhaps purchase my books.

As an Indie Writer this is even more important. I do not have a publishing house behind me, I don’t have an agent pushing my name around. In short, I am, much like the rest of you, in this alone. Therefore a relationship with any potential readers is pivotal.

Social media aside, I think one of the most important places that you can build this relationship is through your blog.

I think of my Blog as the Amino Acids of my writing. The building blocks that my whole reputation is based upon. I mean social media is ok, but there you are part of a large community. With a blog, each visit – random search engine finds aside – is a much more personal experience.

My blog is the basis of my platform. Ok, I may reach more people via social media such as Twitter and Facebook, but it is here that I show who I am. It is here through their blog that a writer really communicates. Therefore, whenever anybody takes the time to comment on a piece I write, I reply to them.

I think the reply is a writers / bloggers most important tool. I always – ok, I’m not perfect, but 99% of the time – leave a comment for everybody who comments on my blog. Not just some generic text I can copy and paste, but a personalized comment. I reference what they said and prove that I actually read what they had to say.

Oddly enough, I do not do this for my readers, but rather for myself. I want to do everything I can to show people that I read what they say, and that I truly, and I mean truly, appreciate the fact that they take some time out of their lives to not only read what I have to say, but to comment on it.

Each comment I receive touches me, and to some degree humbles me.

I have seen a great many (both) writers and bloggers promote themselves and write long flowing posts every couple of days, they get fifteen twenty comments per post, but I never see a reply. Or if there is one, it is always to the same person. If you look, it is also the main person they interact with on Twitter, Facebook… social media in general. Now, I am not one to stand and throw out character defamation, and it is not my intention now. I will not name names either, because I see no point in it. But, I do feel it reflects poorly on a blogger if they cannot take the time to thank the people who make their site, their books possible.

 

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8 thoughts on “The Importance of the Reply

  1. I agree completely, Alex. When I’ve had circumstances that will delay my replies, I always say so. I’ve also noticed the clique-ish nature of some bloggers, and think it makes them look bad.Certainly there are commenters with whom one clicks, but either respond to all, or if the comments are truly overwhelming, to a different set of people each time.

    Great post!

    1. Thank you Elizatbeth. I was just talking with a friend on Facebook and we took the above post a step back, and away from the writing platform. In my eyes it is just good manners to leave a reply.

      Of course, there will be people you click with more than others, and there will be people who comment on every post with a simple comment and others who comment on a post that grabs their attention but do so with a lot of thought.

  2. I agree completely with this! I know some bloggers who never reply to comments or only reply to comments that they want to reply to. I think it’s better to not reply to anyone than to reply to only a select few because it makes the other commenters feel unimportant. I always reply to comments on my blog. ALWAYS. And I get all stressed sometimes, afraid I’ve missed someone. And I feel really bad when comments go to my spam folder and I don’t notice until later. I think it’s important to let people know you care that they had something to say on your blog.

    1. You are in fact an inspiration to me Lauralynn, I saw that you personally reply to every comment and I found it such a great thing.

      I knwo what you mean, sometimes I find myself thinking about whether I missed a comment or not. It is a slightly easier job for me, because I don’t get anywhere near as many comment as you do. 🙂

  3. Thanks for posting this, Alex. The only thing that bums me out is how Blogger keeps screwing around with the site. I finally figured out how to set up my blog to be able to reply to the folks, so that they could better interact with me, and they’ve changed it again. Now, I’m trying to send my replies to the commentors through FB message or post – or Twitter.
    Have a good one.

    -Jimmy

    1. A reply of facebook or twitter is still a reply in my book Jimmy. The other thing I wanted to mention was that if I read a blog, then I always leave a comment of some sort, just to show the blogger I was there and actually read their post, not just opened the page. The only sites I have trouble with are blogspot sites. It seems to be a never ending string of comment problems.

  4. Alex, I couldn’t agree more. It’s simply common courtesy to reply to comments. It show that there is really a person behind the site, and not some automated-posting software.

    Likely Jimmy, I end up replying on Twitter or finding the person on LinkedIn to respond because Blogger does frustrate me at times – just when I have things figured out, boom, something else goes sideways.

    1. Thanks for commenting Daneille,

      Indeed, it seems that Blogger wait until people get things understood and then change them just because they can. I had a blogger account but got rid of it and moved to WordPress pretty quickly.

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