As you know I’ve been sick for just about the past month and since I’ve had more down time I’ve been able to sort through more emails than usual. I always read every email I get but sometimes it takes me longer than others. Anyway, I was going through emails this weekend, pouring over the questions from the best readers in the world (that’s you!). I have quite a long list of reader questions and post suggestions that I’m hoping to tackle this winter. Thank you for those! I happened to notice a few repeated questions dealing with the same subject – blogging. Some readers seem to think that I know how to blog regularly while keeping an impeccable home, homemade meals served daily, and a perfectly groomed family who never has a problem in the world. I would like to say that I do but the truth is that I don’t and I have no idea how one would do that. While I try my best I fail often. I’ll keep my eye out for the answer, but in the meantime, I’ll answer the bigger question, which basically asks “How do I run a blog?” I am certainly no, Darren Rowse or Ann Voskamp but I do what I can. Here is a list of ten things I’ve learned about blogging while still miraculously keeping my household running.
1. Write for yourself.
Write like you’re talking to your best friend.
Keep it honest and lighthearted.
People will like you for you and you’ll most likely stick to blogging longer if it’s something you enjoy.
2. Blog regularly.
Whether you write a lengthy post about the universe and the solar system, a short paragraph describing how your heart overflowed with joy at the sight of an old friend, or maybe you just post a picture and a caption, you need to nurture your blog. All of the these are great as long as you stick with tip #1 and post regularly.
Daily isn’t necessary but weekly is.
Treat your blog like you would a pet or a plant.
Nurture it, care for it, and it will thrive.
3. Marry an amazing man.
Joking! Well, kind of. One of the reasons I started blogging and why I keep it up is because of my husband. He’s my most loyal fan! He believes in me when I don’t believe in myself.
If you’re not married or don’t have a fantastic support group in “real life,” blogging is a great way to meet new friends!
4. Mix it up.
Don’t be afraid of change.
Offer a smorgasbord of topics in an array of different formats.
Unless you’re a niche blogger that blogs about, say, crafting.
In that case, you should probably continue to blog about crafting.
But never blog about the same craft twice!
Yep, this isn’t always a fun thing to do but the truth is, blogging is an insidiously sedentary activity.
Force yourself to get up and move.
And I don’t mean walking to the kitchen for cookies.
In which case it would probably be better to stay seated.
6. Set your own boundaries.
Setting a time schedule to blog isn’t necessary. Blog when it feels right for you.
However, if you find yourself glued to the internet 24/7 and neglecting the things around you, pull back a bit.
Blog about what feels right to you. You don’t need to write a list of what you will and will not blog about.
Allow these boundaries to happen naturally.
I have found, over time, that I write about things that I would call and talk to my best friend to talk about.
7. Don’t be afraid.
Don’t be afraid to be yourself.
Don’t be afraid to embarrass yourself.
Don’t be afraid that someone out there won’t like you.
Over the last few years, on this website, I have misspelled words, posted numerous grammatical errors, and told humiliating stories about myself.
They’re a part of me and who I am.
Not everyone will like me and I’m okay with that. See point 1.
8. Try to spell correctly and use proper grammar.
Proofread but don’t flip out over it.
But do try.
It’s important and it shows your readers that you care.
If one or more of your readers email you to inform you of a typo or an error, don’t be offended. Try hard not to be offended and thank them profusely.
9. Keep your readers in mind.
Write for you but keep your readers in mind too. You’re creating a community and it’s almost like they have part ownership.
Value every one who takes time out of their day to read your blog.
Tell them you value them. Regularly.
I love you guys. I mean it!
10. Push through writer’s block.
Some days it’s hard for me to write my own name but I push through it.
I post anyway.
Those are usually my best posts.
Push yourself even when you don’t feel like it.
You’ll be a better writer for it.
Now it’s your turn. If you run a blog, what blogging tips would you add to this list?