Friend and fellow Wisconsin writer Christi Craig has a terrific guest post today on Write It Sideways about purposeful writing and avoiding fiction filler. Also, this week the authors of Two Girls on a Bench are guest blogging at Writing Up an Appetite. Both pieces are well worth your time.

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Why bother with guest blog posts, either asking for them or pitching them? The reasons are many, but one comes immediately to mind: community.

One difference between blogs and other forms of writing is that blogging is by its very nature a communal activity. Many blogs list rolls of favorite or recommended blogs. Readers are encouraged to leave comments, to be active participants rather than passive receivers. Bloggers link to each other, forming a kind of reading treasure hunt, where each discovery leads to another clue and another treasure.

Guest posts add to this sense of community by introducing one blogger’s readership to another’s–not only through the blogs themselves but also through social media cross-promotion–and by sharing viewpoints and styles and information. Often bloggers will do “blog swaps,” where each writes on the other’s blog on a particular day or for a week.

Not to mention that it can be a lot of fun.

Here are some more resources about guest blogging for anyone interested: