Posts Tagged ‘blogging’
In the first year, I published 55 blogs. In the second year, 59 blogs. And in the third year. I published 30 blog posts. And yet, the third year was one of the best years in my blog’s history because of two separate, but connected events – speaking at WordCamp Seattle and WordCamp Portland.
I started this blog to find my voice and have a place to write. But it quickly turned into a hub around connecting with people. From random conversations with people I meet on Twitter to coffee shop dates with bloggers I admire, or three-degrees of separation that turn into job offers, most of the people I have met over the past three years have been connected to this blog and the doors that it has opened to me. And for all of the specific and vague connections I have made over the past three years, I am grateful.
My blog’s third year started off with more momentum, posts, and excitement than I could imagine. But after the second speaking event at the end of summer, everything went into a quiet hiatus. I still wrote and published blogs, but things slowed way down over here as I focused my creative energy into a new fulltime job I started in September. But when I look at the past year as a whole and ignore my goal of publishing more posts than I had in the previous year, my blog’s third year was a momentous one.
And to commemorate its birthday, here’s a little roundup of lessons learned, best posts, and the random ways that people find my blog.
The Three Most Important Lessons I’ve learned in Three Years of Blogging
1. You never have enough time to blog as you want to. I laughed when putting together my slides about blogging every day because I knew someone would ask, “How do you find the time to blog?” and the answer I prepared the following answer: you just do. For whatever reason, this fall I really understood what it meant to not have enough time to do anything other than go to work, eat, and barely get enough sleep to be energized to tackle the next day. I’ve had fulltime jobs before, but the one I started was different and I could not (still cannot) explain why. And while, for the first time in my life, I’m happy going through the motions and just being that person who goes to work and comes home, the writer inside of me is aching to write more. And the only way to satisfy her is to steal that time from somewhere else and, sit down, shut up, and pound the keyboard until words appear.
2. The post you pour your heart and soul into writing will never resonate with readers as much as the one you write and publish in the moment. There is a time and a place for epic blog posts that you spend hours researching, writing, editing, and perfecting. And while it feels good to write those essays, when it comes to blogs and writing content that people (you) care about, are posts that are written in an hour’s notice based on the ideas that you’ve been chewing on over the past few days. Stop thinking. Start writing.
3. Numbers alone don’t measure success. I’ve been struggling to write this recap and feel good about my third year of blogging because I haven’t been blogging lately. I didn’t blog every day in November. And I didn’t post at all in December. But when I think about all the people I have met and the opportunities I have had because of the work I have put into my blog since the beginning, it has been a damn successful year. (more…)
I received this email from SlideShare* last month, congratulating my slides for reaching 10,000 views!
Woah, that’s amazing! I’d say that the presentations I gave at WordCamp Seattle and WordCamp Portland have been two of the most rewarding things that I’ve done in the past few months. For one thing, I was able to talk about two things that I’m super passionate about —marketing and blogging — to an audience of people who are passionate about creating content or enabling content creators. Plus, I was able to meet new people and have an amazing weekend with a close friend in Portland.
Okay, all that gushing aside, yesterday I released the video of How to Blog Every Day.
Now that your blogging chops are primed, here’s the video on How to Promote Your Blog Without Losing Your Soul from WordCamp Seattle back in May.
*The SlideShare content team does an amazing job communicating with their content creators. For example, they emailed me to let me know my deck was featured on their homepage. Another bonus point for them: emoticons in the subject line; how can I not be excited about that?!
Video of my talk, How to Promote Your Blog, at WordCamp Seattle
This presentation is packed with information and tactics that you can use today to promote your blog posts today. I outline how to build a community for your blog online, which social networks to use to amplify and promote your posts, and which social media networks you should concentrate on including where to post, when, how, and why.
This will either make your life easier, or increase your to-do list infinitely. And you thought writing blog posts was the hardest part.
The presentation lasts 24 minutes and the next 17 minutes is mic’ed Q&A (which means you can actually hear the questions!).
Sorry about the dim lighting and if it’s hard to hear me, while I was incredibly nervous to be giving my first solo presentation, I was also recovering from a cold and my throat really wanted to close up on me (super annoying when you want to talk, for like, 45 minutes!). Slides are embedded below and you’re welcome to download and share them!
Related links and resources:
Did this presentation help you promote your blog?
My goal when giving a talk is to give you one thing that you can take away and apply to your own work. If this presentation helped you come up with one way to promote your blog, I’d love to hear about it, either in the comments or via email.
If you missed the video on How to Blog Every Day, head on over there and check it out!
UPDATE: This talk was chosen by WordPress.tv as one of the most popular videos from 2012!
We all need a little push to get the creative juices going and, you know, write.
Two years ago a friend of mine came up with a crazy idea to blog every single day. It was a way to get both of us writing on a consistent basis. And it worked so well that every November I commit to writing and publishing a blog post every single day.
That experiment worked so well for me that I talked about it at WordCamp Portland last month. And guess what? The video from my talk, How to Blog Every Day, is now available!
Video of my talk, How to Blog Every Day, at WordCamp Portland
The talk lasts about 36 minutes, and is packed with ideas to help get you writing—either every day or simply every week. I’m embedding the video and the slides for you below (feel free to download and share). Once you’re finished watching the video, be sure to check out the extensive list of resources that were published with the original slides.
There was some great un-mic-ed discussion at the end of my talk during the Q&A, so and I tried to repeat anything that was said off-screen, but I apologize if there’s something you miss!
Thank you to Blaze Streaming Media for recording the video!
Want to blog every day and need ideas?
Here are two ideas that will help get you writing:
The Daily Post – A project from WordPress.com filled with ideas, prompts, and even writing challenges with the soul purpose to keep bloggers blogging.
Join a daily blogging challenge – Every once in a while an organization will start a month-long writing series where they will release prompts daily and invite bloggers to write about it. It’s a great way to give you ideas of what to write. You can either search out a new writing series or check out prompts from the archives of past writing events. For example, check out the prompts from Trust30 and Reverb11 to get started (links go to the archives).
If you’re interested in blogging every day this November (or any month), leave a comment with a link to your blog! I’m collecting a small team of daily bloggers and want to follow you, too!
Next up, the video from my presentation at WordCamp Seattle, How to Promote Your Blog Without Losing Your Soul.
Today I had the pleasure of “hanging out” on Google+ as part of StrengthsTalk, which is show for StrengthsFactors.
Our host was Will Deyamport, III of StrengthsFactors and peoplegogy and participants included Krystle Rory of Kriss Did It, Leah Olson of LeahROlson.com (who I got to meet this past weekend down at WordCamp!), and yours truly.
Bloggers Talking about Blogging
Our topic was about all things blogging — why we started blogging, what platform we blog on, do we self-identify as a blogger, how we find time to blog, and tips for people who want to blog.
The hang out is 32 minutes long, and if you’re interested in blogging, I highly recommend that you watch it (and, of course, I am a tad bias).
What tips do we have for people who are considering blogging?
Blog about what you’re passionate about. Don’t blog for money, that hardly ever works out. When you blog about what you’re passionate about, blogging is not easy, but it does take a lot of time and dedication. – Krystle
Don’t blog because everyone else is blogging. If this is something that you want to do, do it. If you want to start blogging because everyone else is doing it, don’t. – Laura
Don’t feel intimidated by blogging. It is putting your writing and your thoughts out there, but it doesn’t have the same formality as putting your writing into a newspaper or a magazine. – Leah
Best takeaway from Krystle about when she blogs: “When life happens, I blog.”
I want that on a t-shirt.
Many thanks to Will for inviting me to be part of this hangout and thank you to Leah for giving a shout-out to my WordCamp talk on How to Blog Every Day.
Why do you blog?
Today I’m giving a talk at WordCamp Portland on how to blog every day. I wrote this talk based on what I learned from blogging every day for a month in November 2010 and November 2011 and I’m excited to share it with the Portland-area WordPress community.
Once I get a recording of the video, I’ll post it here. For now, here’s a copy of my slides and additional resources that I reference in the talk. Feel free to download and share this presentation as you’d like!
How to Blog Every Day
The secret to blogging every day is easy—just write. But the process of coming up with an idea is hard. Then it comes the excruciating part of putting words to the page, editing it, finding the perfect photo to accompany your post, and formatting it on your site all before you can press that beloved “Publish” button.
Oh, and if you’re writing every single day, you do it all again tomorrow.
Resources to help you Blog Every Day
Here are blog posts and resources I reference during my talk.
Where to buy my t-shirt
- I’m not a player, I just blog a lot from Raygun (unisex and ladies)
What I learned from blogging every day for 30 days
- 2010 recap: When Creativity Flows, Don’t Turn off the Faucet
- 2011 recap: NaBloPoMo Goals and Milestones
Examples of how to create a content or editorial calendar
- How to Put Together an Editorial Calendar for Content Marketing on Content Marketing Institute
- How to Create a Successful Editorial Calendar on Unbounce
- How to Create an Editorial Calendar on Spin Sucks
Tools to help you capture your ideas
- Favorite note-taking app that syncs with your phone, computer, tablet: Evernote
- Favorite tool that helps you start writing: 750 Words
- Favorite non-battery-powered option: a journal
Examples of different blog formats
- Standard: Today is Sunday
- Epic: Book Publishers are Not Tech Companies
- Response: How to be a Hipster and 500 Words or Less
- Single Paragraph: How to Impress your Customers and Create Lifelong Fans
- Photo: Nobody Tells this to Beginners and Picturing My True Identity
- Link Roundup: Musings on Adulthood and Ambition
Ways to beat writer’s block
- Choose a different topic on your content calendar
- Get inspired by going for a walk, watch a video, hop on Twitter, read something, talk with a friend
- Take a day off (it’s okay, but tell us what you’re doing instead of blogging)
- Help Me Be Fing Creative
Examples of posts I wrote when I had writer’s block
What to after you publish your blog post
After you have that out of your system, sit back down, and promote your blog post like crazy. If you need help, check out the presentation I did for WordCamp Seattle on just that: How to Promote Your Blog without Losing Your Soul.
Why I wrote this talk
I’m not expecting you to start blogging every single day. But if you only blog once every other month and really want to blog more, this presentation and ideas should help you get started. If you blog once or twice a week and want to start blogging three times a week, this will help you even more.
Blogging every single day is not for the faint of heart; it takes time, lots of time. Plus you have to strike a careful balance between planning what you’re going to post and letting your muse run away with you. However blogging every single day for thirty days straight will teach you more about your writing style and how you blog than you could from anything else. I highly recommend it.
If you do decide to blog every day for thirty days, please let me know, I’d love to help cheer you along!