Wednesday, June 12, 2013

blogging tips

A lovely reader gave me the idea to do a post on blogging tips, and though I'm not a "pro" blogger, I've been doing this for almost two years now so I figured I had a few bits of good advice to give. If you have any other tips for new bloggers, please do share!

1. I think the most important thing to remember when blogging is to do it for yourself, and stay true to who you are. Blog because you enjoy it, not because you're trying to gain readers or make money (that will come later, if you choose). Blog what you like, not what you think other people will like. I began my blog as a way to share my crafting endeavors (and various other adventures), and I love it because it's like I get to curate my own magazine everyday. It's another way for me to be creative.

2. Photography! Good photos automatically draw me to someone's blog, it just makes it so much more interesting to read. I've never done a post without photos, and sometimes my posts have more pictures than they do words! I invested in Photoshop Elements when I began blogging, because it allowed me to edit photos as well as create graphics for my blog. I would reccomend it if you are a beginner at editing programs and don't need all of the capabilities that the full Photoshop has (although I'm looking to purchase that soon because I feel as if I've out grown PS Elements). But there are so many free, online photo-editing sites that you can use as well, so don't feel like you need to go out and spend a lot of money just to have nice pictures.

3. Don't steal other people's photos and words. It's so disheartening to find out that someone has been using your content with no credit to you whatsoever (even copying entire posts!), devaluing the hours of work you put into your blog. I've had it happen to me, and you will probably have it happen to you. If you want to post something someone else created, make sure you have their permission and you give them full credit. Follow the golden rule; treat others how you want to be treated.

4. If you're troubled by *how* to write posts, try writing conversationally. That is, write how you talk. Not only will it make it easier for *you* to write, but it will also be easier and more interesting for others to read. And I feel like this is how you get to show your personality. A blog is a faceless, nameless, thing until you give it an identity. I believe people like knowing a bit about the person behind the blog, so you begin to feel like you're friends and I think that's really lovely. This is way off subject from what I started this paragraph out as, but I've made some really great friends through my blog. After all, it's a platform that allows you to project yourself and the things you are interested in, so other people with the same interests will find it.

5. Don't worry about posting regularly. Trying to force yourself into a schedule can diminish your creativity and your blog will begin to feel more like a job than a hobby. But on the same note, update your blog. If you start a blog, you need to commit to it. Don't go months without posting. During the school year I try to post once a week, but sometimes I'm just consumed with school work and that's not possible. But during the summer when I have lots more free time, I like to post multiple times per week.

I hope these tips have helped you! If you have any questions, please feel free to ask!

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