One Blog or Multiple?

Aywren Sojourner brought the idea of multiple blogs back into my brain with their new blog Spot of Mummery; is it better to have multiple, topic focused blogs or one sprawling somewhat generalist blog?  This seems like a Blaugust aligned post, so let’s at least pretend it is part of that theme.

I must admit, as somebody who gets turned on in the organizer section of office supply stores, the idea of having nice, neat little silos of content segregated out by topic does have some appeal to me.

I have, over the years, experimented with multiple blogs.  This was actually blog number two for me, after I did a test blog elsewhere.  And since the founding of this blog I have spun up a number of others, including:

There were a couple others I have since deleted, including an RP tell all of what really happened with Vanguard and SOE.  That whole “Stuff” topic was a meme about a decade back.  I think “Stuff MMO Gamers Like” could still be a decent group blogging project, or a weekly column at Massively or some such.

Of those, only EVE Online Pictures is still active, and that is largely due to it being just a screen shot blog.

There are certainly benefits to the idea of having a blog with a single focus.  Being a one topic blog helps you cater to your audience because they know what they’re going to get, at least in some general way, with each blog post.  If you have a WoW blog, they can safely assume that your next post and the post after that and so on is going to be in some way tied up with WoW.

And, in some ways, I think having a single focus blog is a bit of an enabler to really go deep on various aspects of your game of choice, from lore to fashion to mechanics to all the various peripheral topics that add up around a title.  You can do that because your audience has self-selected itself to be attuned to all of that.

Meanwhile, not having a single focus has caused me a bit of bother over the years.  I have missed out on being “in the club” on a few fronts. I have been refused links from WoW blogs and was kicked out of the EVE Blog Pack due to my lack of purity.  WoW players come here and tell me this really and EVE Online blog and EVE Online players tell me it is actually a WoW blog. (And occasionally an EVE player will say this is an EVE blog, but then will complain it is a null sec blog and they only like wormhole blogs or whatever.)

They’re not right… but they’re not totally wrong either.

TAGN isn’t WoW or EVE or EQ or LOTRO or whatever MMO title you care to mention blog.  It isn’t even a genre blog anymore, as I have strayed off the MMORPG path more than a few times.  Look at all the posts about Valheim and Minecraft. Think of all the Pokemon posts!

Given the amount of stuff I have written about movies, TV, and other topics I suspect that you could make the case that this isn’t really even a video game blog.  Should I change TAGN to mean “Tales About General News” already?

If you come here you think you might know what I am going to write about, and you’ll probably be right a few days out of the week, but at times if will be a surprise.

And, because I can go off on various games and other topics, I do have to be a little opaque in my writing.  I cannot assume that everybody knows the jargon of whatever game I am writing about.  I often spend a bit of time explaining what I mean rather than just diving into things.  That isn’t a bad thing, and I am sure some of my EVE Online posts could use more explanation at times, it being a title rife with jargon, but I do have to write for a more general audience.

On the flip side, the minor problems that arise from my lack of focus aside, my generalist approach to blogging has a few advantages.

Being a bit more explanatory also makes for easier comprehension on my part when I go back and read old posts.  This I knew or which were current in that moment do not always last.

I am also less constrained on topics.  I write about video games in general and MMORPGs specifically most of the time, but if I get the urge to write about old computer hardware or a typewriter I still have or a road trip to LA, I can take a detour and go down that path.  I used to feel a little self-conscious about that back in the early days.

That and there are times when I don’t have a lot to say about a given game.  If this were and EVE Online or a WoW focused blog I am not sure I could manage more than three or four posts a week.  Maybe.  Or I would have to drop into more detail, get more into the nuts and bolts.  My posts now tend to be general sweeps and tales of my own misadventures.

And, of course, given the number of times I have changed games, having a game focused blog would inevitably lead to long dead periods when I was off playing something else.  Over the last ten years I have only remained subscribed to EVE Online the whole time.  Other titles tend to come and go.

Then there is the number of blogs I would need to keep going.  Look at the category list on the side bar.  If I had the foresight to roll up a fresh blog just for the titles about which I have posted 200 or more times, I would need an easy half dozen blogs.

Being honest, I would have no doubt lacked that level of foresight, so would have ended up with at least a couple dozen blogs, most languishing without updates, focused on titles from Warhammer Online to Neverwinter to Vanguard to EverQuest Next.  Pretty much assume that any game that is a category that has a dozen or more posts would have ended up being a blog.

Not a viable path for me, though that says more about me than about blogging I am sure.

That doesn’t even begin to explore what happens if the company that develops your game of choice turns out to be run by horrible people.  That was the case for Riot previously and Blizzard currently.

Finally, it has been my experience that readers of this blog at least tend to be as much creatures of habit as I am, so jumping around between multiple sites or starting up new ones would break their routine as much as my own.  Better to just let everything land here.

I do admire the focus of single game blogs.  Sometimes I think it would have been nice to have gone deeper on one game or another, to have been able to maintain that level of focus.  What if I had gone all in on EQII at launch or something like that?  But it just isn’t in me.

So I carry on with a single blog for words, where all my posts are collected.  It is a bit chaotic and finding what you’re looking for depends on me correctly and consistently categorizing and tagging my posts.  (I do the former fairly well, but the latter can be a bit of a crap shoot.)

But this is Blaugust, so I wonder what others think about having multiple blogs or blogs that manage to focus on a single game.

And since this is a Blaugust related post, here is the list of those participating in the event.

 

4 thoughts on “One Blog or Multiple?

  1. Spot of Mummery

    I think “Stuff MMO Gamers Like” could still be a thing! :D

    Even though I do have multiple blogs (far more than two to be honest), I did choose to go a more generalist route with my main WordPress. That’s why it’s just “Gaming and Geek Blog” because that can really be an umbrella for just about anything I’m interested in at the time.

    While I do mostly play FFXIV as my main MMO, and have for a long time, I still wouldn’t have wanted to make my main blog only focused on that. I like to write about Sims and Valheim and 7D2D… and… well you know what I’m saying, obviously. :)

    Also, there’s the putting all your eggs in one basket thing. What happens to a blog that’s focused on one game when you stop playing that game? Or worse, looking at what’s going on with WoW and content creators lately, when something about the company or the game makes you choose to stop writing about it?

    While my second blog is based heavily on FFXIV, it’s actually more focused on a long-term fiction story of the characters I play in FFXIV. I just didn’t think would fit in on my Gaming and Geek blog. I might have been wrong, and I have gone back and forth on merging the content from time to time, but for me right now this is what works.

    Great thoughts on the topic!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. bhagpuss

    I debated this when I was first thinking of writing about other things than mmorpgs, which had been my main content for years. I was seeing other erstwhile mmo bloggers diversify and I was still reading them so I didn’t see why I shouldn’t start to vary my content but I was very much in two minds about whether I wanted to dilute the purity of the brand, so to speak. The idea of purpose-designing a new blog from scratch, with a much better idea of how to do it than I’d had when I started was also very appealing.

    I still toy with the idea of starting a new blog from time to time, mostly because it seems like a fun, even an exciting thing to do. On balance, though, I’m happy I decided to open the one, existing blog I have to an ever-expanding range of topics instead. One thing I’ve learned from doing it that way is how hard it is to predict who will respond to what. I don’t think it’s necessarily a good thing to try and second-guess your audience. I’d rather just stick with writing about whatever interests me and hope to make it interesting to others by the enthusiasm I express or the way I express it.

    That said, I still might start another blog. Given how many characters I make in mmorpgs and always have done, it’s pretty strange that I’ve managed to main one blog for this long.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Nogamara

    Same here. I did start a WoW only blog and quickly canned it, I started a SWTOR blog and quickly canned it, and here I am with my nearly 12 year old general gaming (with a high focus on MMOs) and it’s fine, despite the many breaks.

    I do have another blog, but it’s just tech stuff under my real name, and that’s completely separate, but there’s also neither an official connection nor any overlap. Also maybe I’m a little oldschool there, but I’d find it weird to have 10 years of gaming stuff next to posts my employer links to…

    Liked by 1 person

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