"Required reading" for today's smart writer.

"Required reading" for today's smart writer.
As featured on: Pro Blogger, Men With Pens, Write to Done, Tiny Buddha, LifeHack, Technorati, Date My Pet, South 85 Literary Journal and other award-winning sites.

Friday, January 6, 2017

8 Tips to Maintain Your Blogging Appetite


AND YOUR SANITY!


Are you finding it hard to maintain your "mo-jo"? Has your taste for blogging turned bland? Is it difficult to keep up the pace? Running out of ideas and steam?
Then you'll definitely benefit from the tips provided in today's post.
Truth is, no matter how much we love it, blogging requires a little motivation and inspiration to go the distance. Wouldn't you agree?

With this in mind, I'd like to share my story, to help you continue to share yours.

IN THE BEGINNING....
I remember when I first began blogging many moons ago. Ah… it was magical. The excitement, the novelty, the interaction, was reminiscent of a romantic relationship.
It was a groovy kinda’ thing.
FAST FORWARD….
Seven years later and 700 blog posts down the pipeline, and I’ve got the "7 year itch".

That I'm hoping won't become the 7 year ditch.
There are days when I’m confused, restless, overwhelmed, and barren of useful, new ideas.

Don’t get me wrong; I still dig what we've got going on. I love the bonding experience of connecting with old friends and new readers. But, honestly, on some days when I’m slated to update my site, well...I feel like saying: “Not now, I have a headache.”
Romantic notions aside, it’s hard work, folks.
And I’m betting for many of you, the same situation holds true.



THE PLOT THICKENS…
Adding to the mix  is the fact that life can get in the way.
"Riddle me this."
How are we supposed to remain motivated with work woes? Health challenges? Family obligations? Money issues? Fierce competition? Relationship issues? Bad weather blues, and other obstacles that threaten to sap our energy and sabotage our efforts. Hello?

Here's the good news: we can and we must.


Accordingly, here are a few "tried and true" strategies you'll definitely want to consider to go from frustrated to fearless in 2017, (in no particular order). 





1. "Don't retreat, reload."--  Sarah Palin.

Sometimes when our traffic numbers are low and our bank accounts are at rock bottom, we feel uninspired, frazzled and frustrated. When this happens, it behooves us to remember why we started our journey in the first place. Maybe blogging was a way to share your love of cooking. Or to connect with people of different cultures. Or to entertain others through your unique sense of humor.
Has that changed? Perhaps a little soul searching and re-visiting past successes will rekindle the flames and re-ignite your passion. Try it and see where it takes you.

2. Choose a blog topic that you truly enjoy.

It's a common mistake I see being made by many bloggers. They launch a blog based upon a popular topic, or a trend, or a whim. Though they may have the best of intentions, it won't last.
The thing that keeps me going week after week, month after month, year after year, is the simple fact that writing is what turns me on. I live it. I sleep it. I eat it. I enjoy it.
Fun is a great motivator.

3. Choose a topic that you have a broad knowledge base in.

Aside from passion, wisdom and experience will help you go the distance and make it much easier to generate topics and content. There's great validity to one of the cardinal rules of writing, "Write what you know." Like Santa, you should make a list and check it twice.

4. Have a plan. And work it.

What is your purpose? How often will you post? Who will you target? How will you measure your success?
The clearer you are here, the easier it will be to "work smarter, not harder" and prevent
burn-out.

5. Get help.

Who says you have to do everything alone? Request and accept guest posters. Interview experts.
Seek ideas, inspiration and information from books on writing and blogging. One that I highly suggest is Marcie Hill's "62 Blog Posts to Overcome Blogger's Block." You can find additional ordering information here:   http://www.marciewrites.com/books
Every little bit helps. 




6. Don't be afraid to take a detour.

Okay, so maybe you started your blog based upon your love of birds, but the idea is not "flying." You lack the following you desire, rarely get comments, and you feel defeated. Don't stay stuck there; just re-evaluate and redirect your efforts. Don't let your ego get in the way of excellence.

7. Be realistic about your goals. 

For example, is it wise to post every day of the week if you have a 9 to 5 gig with kids?
Should you aim for 2000 word posts if they are not substantive and quality oriented?
If the longest commitment you have ever had is with your cell phone carrier, do you think that you will be able to remain faithful to followers and consistent in your updates long term?



8. Pause for the cause.

Build in periodic breaks to prevent a "break down." I personally take routine breaks around summer vacation, the Christmas season, or whenever my work schedule or health dictates that I really need one. You should too.


2017 has the potential of being your biggest year ever; but you'll never know if you quit too soon. Keep a positive perspective and keep these eight tips in mind, to go from frazzled to fearless!

Your turn.
Thoughts?  What do you plan to do differently in 2017 to reach new heights and old goals?
To stay on the blogging path? Do tell.
 
 
 
ImageCredit-Noodles


8 comments:

  1. Hi Jennifer - great ideas ... I'm so glad I didn't bog myself down with one topic and just left the door open to what I felt like writing ... yes it's eclectic, but it's fresh everytime I write and everytime someone reads ... but I must do some other things and do things with it ... blogging is a great platform - teaches us so much ... cheers Hilary

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  2. Jennifer: I experimented with the blog break plan the end of December and it helped me. It turned out that I was ill from Thanksgiving until right after Christmas. But I took that break from Christmas to Jan 2. I felt refreshed and got my sleep pattern workable. I was able to order a couple of books. I finished one on New Year's Eve. (I am counting it as a 2017 read.) The other one, I finished two days ago.

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  3. Hi Hilary,
    Great to hear from you on this. Much thanks!

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  4. Hi Celeste
    Experimentation can be a great teacher. Good for you! I appreciate your time and feedback.

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  5. Nodded my head all the way through - you're so right, blogging takes a unique brand of stamina and creativity. Appreciate these wise and encouraging words, Jen!

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  6. Thanks, Karen. Let's hope we both have a bodacious blogging year in 2017!

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  7. I landed here from seeing the title of this post on the sidebar of someone I was visiting.
    I began my blog in 2008 to compliment a newspaper gardening column and I continued as a garden communicator until last year when I decided not to carry on. There were thoughts to pack it all in but then I realized how much I'd put in financially for a professional designer and a dot com address as well as the friendships made, I couldn't do it.
    At the beginning of 2017 I decided to slide over to a less formal approach and chat more about my life and 'girly' things which was a surprise to regular followers but accepted without judgement.
    I have enjoyed reading your suggestions and thanks for the encouragement.

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  8. Judith,

    Welcome! How lovely to hear from you. It helped make my day. I had the chance to briefly visit your site, (as I typically do with new com menters) and I loved it. Particularly the lovely images and tea sets. Thanks so much for taking the time to connect here. :-)

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