Book Review: Technical Blogging
I think it’s safe to say most developers would like to have a successful blog. After all, a blog is great way to develop a personal brand. Personally, I’ve attempted and failed many times over the years. If you’re anything like me, you’ve always felt a bit paralyzed by how much work maintaining a successful online presences is. Meaning I would have to worry about marketing, SEO, social media, readership, engagement, comments, and oh, of course, actually writing quality content. Luckily for us, this book puts together a series of simple, straight forward, and easy steps that will take you from nothing to a well-built blog (like this one, of course!).
There’s a lot of great content in here. I went in thinking (as I often do) that I already knew everything and it was just a matter of sitting down and actually writing posts. That’s a big part of it, of course, but the author really helps you focus on exactly what you want to achieve. I especially enjoyed reading the chapters on promoting and marketing. I tend to automatically assume that all you need is to write great content and people will find it. The author certainly encourages writing the best content you can, but he explains ethical, honest, and realistic ways for you to promote your blog. In fact, he even points out sleazy things you shouldn’t do.
My biggest complaint is that for a book with a chapter titled Content Is King, I would have expected a larger part devoted to actually writing content. Since the author runs a successful programming blog, I would have loved to see an analysis of which posts were popular and why they were popular. Or alternatively an analysis of current popular technical blogs and what they do well. I could see that the author felt people shouldn’t clone other popular sites and instead “develop your own voice” as he puts it, but I think there could have been a better balance.
Although this book does have “technical” in it, I definitely think it’s broader than that. As I mentioned, it’s more targeted to technical people but not necessarily writing technical content. Most of the recommendations are really just about good blogging.
I would definitely recommend this book to anyone interested in blogging. Above all, I think it will make you excited to start a blog.