The first was written by Walt Crawford and is called The Renascence of the Writer. Walt makes an interesting calculation to estimate the number of live/active blogs (hint: it's far less than the 70 million+ tracked by Technorati). He also points out that "blogs are a safe way to get started" as an author. Great point! He goes on to say that "people I know have been invited to write articles based on blog content...people have been recruited to write books based on literacy and thought shown on their blogs."
My experience has been similar. And using myself as an example, blogging has enabled me to become active on the speaking circuit. I gave a keynote at ASIDIC last month and am currently scheduled to give another keynote at the ECPA's Publishing University conference later this year. I can honestly say that I probably wouldn't have been asked to speak at either if it weren't for my blog.
One other great tidbit from Walt's article: "I glance at most posts on most blogs -- but when Bloglines shows new posts by certain bloggers, I know I'll read the entries with care, learn from them, and enjoy them." Amen...and the trick is figuring out how your blog becomes one of the chosen few!
The other EContent article I really enjoyed was by Steve Smith and called The Opiate of Content -- Search. Steve talks about the insanity of keyword marketing campaigns and repurchasing the same eyeballs again and again. Brand loyalty is indeed the cure, but not as easy as it sounds.