Today I ran across the blog of an aspiring novelist. This writer doesn't have a lot of "followers" and mentioned some worry about how a lack of internet presence might hurt chances of getting attention from agents or publishers. I have some thoughts about this. Now, I don't have a publisher but I do have an agent and I know some published authors and the thing is, if you write fiction, having a blog or not has no influence on your chances of getting an agent or getting published. As my agent says, your blogging will only impress people if you have like 25,000 readers (that's not a typo; I mean twenty-five thousand), otherwise you're just another person with a blog, and we all have blogs and it's nothing special. What is special is writing a good book. So focus on that, because the average reader doesn't read blogs by writers and real agents and editors aren't cruising the internets looking at writing blogs hoping to find something dazzling (they have day jobs and that's what they do all day).
Just write a good book and don't worry about the blogging. Unless, of course, you are an ass on the internets. Because if an agent or editor is interested in the dazzling book you've written, they'll likely Google you and if you look like a difficult person with whom to work, the odds are that they'll pass on your book because, you know, there are 100 people right behind you with books just as dazzling (in their eyes) as yours is, so why wouldn't they rather work with those nice folks than you?
So write a good, dazzling book and be nice on the internets but otherwise remember that blogging--at least according to my best-selling author friends--doesn't sell books and you shouldn't expect it to and it's not, you know, a big deal. Blogging is not the Real World. Look away from your computer screen. See all of that stuff? That's the Real World. Keep blogging and have fun with it and meet lots of cool people on the internets and play nicely together, but remember that it's just the internets and if you want to be a writer, concentrate on writing a cool book, not on writing a cool blog. Because the cool book is what matters.
Also: Apologies to Lady Glamis, because this is her day to post and I've totally hijacked the Lab even though I am still officially on blogcation and I wasn't here and you didn't see me.