E-PUBLISHING The web is fast growing into an eager publishing platform for aspiring writers and avid bloggers. PAROMITA PAIN
For avid writers and those who want to be the next Booker winner, there’s nothing more frustrating than rejection slips. Will you let the lack of publishing opportunities shelve your dream? “Oh no,” says Satya Prabhakar, CEO of Sulekha.com, whose web content is entirely member-generated, “the publishing capacity of the web is amazing.” Check out the options.
Does publishing on the web count? Is it taken seriously?
Most often, no. Sometimes it counts for much more than publishing in a magazine or a newspaper. Given how easy, free and unchecked publishing on the web is, we have witnessed hundreds of millions of blogs, most of them unread. However, there is remarkable power to publishing on the web given its global, unfettered reach. If a blogger, photographer or a videographer creates ‘good’ work, it will gain instant, global audience, guaranteeing fame, and sometimes fortune, to the author.
What are the portals one can get published on?
There are many. ‘Sulekha.com’ is one of the more popular Indian blogging sites; most media sites like rediff, indiatimes, sify and global sites like blogger.com also allow free blogging.
How easy or difficult is it to get published on the Net?
Very easy. Just create an account, start a blog by posting a piece of writing…voila! The difficulty is not creation of a blog, but in cultivating an audience, more so loyal, large audience.
How does one make sure that the articles actually make it to the editor’s table?
On most blogging sites, there is no editor. A blogger can put anything he or she wants up on the site and it will appear instantly and be accessible to a global audience. Of course, if a blog is very good, the publisher will choose to spotlight it and get it a wide audience by promoting it actively. Sulekha gains wider audience for good blogs by publishing them in their partner print media under a programme called BlogPrint.
Advantages of publishing on the Net…
In most walks of life, influence and success depend a lot on communication skills, written and spoken, which is acquired through practice and perseverance. Blogging helps here. Secondly, a good blog over time gains its own audience and helps the blogger in networking with a global audience, enhancing professional and personal prospects.
Tips on good writing
- Treat writing on the web the same way you would writing for a magazine or newspaper.
- Create something worth reading. The first draft usually needs work, so edit, edit and edit.
- Don’t feel compelled to post everyday. But post regularly, so that it becomes a habit.
- Create a theme for your blog and stick to it to garner a loyal audience over time.
- Create something that excites, enriches, informs, enlightens, ideates and illuminates.
- Work to create an audience through social networks, e-mail signature lines, forum discussions to channel traffic to your blog.
- Write to site managers and request for your blog to be actively promoted to their audience.
- Proactively discuss and communicate with your readers by interacting with them through comments.
- Be prepared to invest a year or two before you are considered a successful writer.
- Like everything else, don’t give up easy.
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