February 3, 2012

Online Writing Too Competitive

It’s a dog eat dog world out here in the land of blogging and some take it so seriously they stand alone.

Some writers have had bad experiences giving tips and now they are hesitant to do it again. They have helped someone who sold their secrets or moved ahead in the ranks, so they have decided they will go it on their own not lending a hand to another soul. That is a shame.

Writing is constantly changing

I’ve learned a lot over the years about SEO: search engine optimization, keywords and working social networking groups. I try to share my knowledge when I can.

Information and techniques change all the time. What works today may not work tomorrow and the ideas we implemented yesterday may work better next week. It’s an ongoing learning experience and you must be good at research in order to succeed in this business.

There is a lot of competition out there and the better you get the more you have to watch your back mostly for copycats stealing our work but there are also some who fear being left behind in the pack. You also can’t trust everyone who gives advice, some will steer you in the wrong direction to better help their lead⎯terrible, but true.

The race is on

Think of it as a marathon, there’s always a guy or group of people in the lead and the rest are following behind. We try to watch and see what he does differently; maybe it’s his stride, brand of shoes or the way he stretches before and after each run. Other runners emulate his every move, hang on each word and study his technique.

It’s not easy being at the top, not that I know what it’s like but you can just imagine the stress and long hours they put in trying to keep that level of greatness. While I wouldn’t mind having a fraction of the money they make the worry and health issues that goes along with it would be terrible.

Helping out

Maybe it’s the mother in me or the fact I’m not terribly ambitious, but if I am able, I will do it. When I get jobs in my inbox that don’t suit me but I know another writer that might be interested I pass it along. Websites that I find useful, I pass along to others.

There are blogger websites set up for writers to help each other advertise their work. You can do the same thing with a Facebook group, Google+ circle or other sites you frequent. Help your friends by posting a link on your Twitter feed, Facebook page or Google+ stream.

The Internet is a huge place with billions of readers. If we are writing well-written articles and blogs we shouldn’t have a problem with a little competition.

The competition

I read stories that are very similar to mine on a regular basis but most of the time I don’t worry because they aren’t written very well. I’m not trying to say my work is perfect by any stretch of the imagination but I constantly read my competition and analyze their style, structure and content. Reading helps keep us abreast of what is out there as well as helping us improve our own work.

Don’t copy

It may be due to the years of writing classes I’ve taken but to this day I have to write in my own words.

There are websites with free blogs and articles you can post but I never use them. Partly because of SEO ranking (copied stories have poor pagerank) and also because I want my own work on my websites. It's my home, I don't want another person's handwork on my walls.


I don’t want y’all to inundate my email with requests for assistance but if you follow my blogs or comments on social networking sites and I know you well, I’ll help if I can. I often post links to articles and stories on my Twitter feed of writer friends but they have to be good. It is a waste of time as well as making my credibility look bad if I recommend inferior work.

In closing

Good things come back to those who send out good karma. Not everyone believes that but it has worked for me all these years and I will continue to do so.

Don’t step on the little guy on your way to the top, he may bypass you later and remember your actions.