5 Blogging Tips To Help You To Love Your Blog

5 Blogging Tips To Help You To Love Your Blog

A few days ago, one of my students said that she was giving up her blog — it was taking too much time, for too little return. Many more people give up their blogs than commit to them for the long term, so maybe you feel the same way. If you do, here are some blogging tips to help you to fall in love with your blog, perhaps for the first time.

Before we get started, think about your reasons for blogging. WHY are you blogging? Maybe you want to become a full-time blogger, or you’re marketing your business, or a book.

Grab a notebook, or open a new computer file, and write three paragraphs about why you’re blogging. Start with: “I’m blogging because…”

Here’s a secret. When I started blogging some 16 years ago, I had no clue why I was doing it. It seem stupid… but my intuition kept nudging me to blog. I tried to ignore the impulse. I couldn’t. It kept coming back.

Finally I was exasperated. I wrote a list of “why blogging?” thoughts in my journal. It boiled down to: “Because I love writing and it’ll be fun.” Silly ideas, since writing is the way I make a living, and I should have spent the time wooing magazine editors, or writing a book proposal. (That was long before Amazon launched the Kindle, so you sold books by writing proposals and sent them to editors and agents.)

My point: you may not be able to articulate your ideas about blogging any better than I could. Maybe you just feel that blogging is for you. Go with your feelings. Blogging’s done more for me than I could ever have imagined, so trust yourself.

These tips will help you to love your blog.

1. Spend time on your blog…. read your posts

Remember what it felt like to be in love? You wanted to spend all your time with the person you love. Perhaps you once felt like that about your blog.

Whether you did or not, commit to spending ten minutes a day with your blog. You don’t have to write anything, or do anything. Just read over the material you have. Imagine yourself a year from now. You have many more blog posts, and loyal readers who visit your blog.

When you spend time with your blog, and think about your dreams, you’re giving yourself a chance to fall in love.

2. Talk positively about your blog: share your hopes and dreams for it

Abraham Lincoln supposedly said: “folks are usually about as happy as they make up their minds to be.”

Whoever said it, it’s true. You decide how you’ll feel. If you talk lovingly about something, you’ll feel positive towards it. Similarly, if you denigrate something, you will start to dislike it.

This has nothing to do with positive thinking. It has everything to do with how your mind and body work.

Talk positively about your blog. Find bloggers who love blogging, and talk to them. Their ideas and positive emotions will inspire you.

3. Make a list of blogging adventures you can try

There are no rules for blogging. No one forces you to blog their way. You can blog any way you choose. Think about things which sound like fun. Maybe you can snap an image a day, and post that.

Tumblr blogging

If you’re blogging on Tumblr, you can choose the kind of post you want to create from your dashboard. It’s a handy reminder that you don’t need to write 1,000 words — you can just post a link, a quote, or an image.

Neil Patel, in How to Generate $100,000 a Month from a Brand New Blog, is on an adventure:

“… you told me you wanted me to create a new company in a space that I had no ties to. So I’m now starting a nutrition blog.

“The official start date will be April 1, 2015. And within 12 months, I have to get the blog to generate $100,000 in monthly revenue.”

Brave, right? Yes, but also clever. Neil will become inspired, because he’s trying something new, and inspiring himself, as well as his readers.

Make your list, then choose your own blogging adventure.

4. Dress up your blog: change your blog’s look and feel

No matter which platform you’re blogging on, you can change the look of your blog with a few clicks. Over the years, I’ve tried all the popular blogging platforms, and I found that when a blog started to bore me, I could get inspired when I changed the blog’s look.

Try it. Choose a new theme for your blog. Create some images, or pay someone to create them for you.

5. Interview people who love blogging to get new ideas

Make a list of bloggers who blog in your area. Interview them, either live, or via email. Post the interviews on your blog.

Their enthusiasm will be catching. Too often, when we lose heart in blogging, we spend time thinking about how disheartening blogging is. We talk to others who validate our feelings.

Change that. Talk to people who LOVE blogging, and it will rekindle your own passion for your blog.

So, there you have it. Five tips to help you to love your blog. Put them into action, starting today.

Free blogging report: “Quit Your Day Job And Follow Your Dreams — 28 Hot Blogging Tips To Make It Happen”

Want to fall in love with blogging? Download your free report now.

, on Twitter: @angee, and find Angela on Pinterest, too.

How to profit from your writing: online store.

Freeform Bullet Journal Tips

Freeform Bullet Journal Tips

Several readers have asked me for bullet journal tips. I said: “Do it the way that makes the most sense for you.” That’s the beauty of bullet journaling, you can do what you like. You’re not constrained to dinky little boxes, or even to a day per page. And you can use as many pages as you like per day, and can be as messy, or as structured, as you please.

If you’re new to bullet journaling, check out the website; it will get you started.

Here’s why I love bullet journaling: it’s totally freeform. Some people paste monthly calendars into their journals, others develop their own signifiers, and others have a home journal, and a work journal.

You’ll decide whether you like the system within a day or two. You should be more productive, and less stressed, and you’ll soon develop little strategies that work for you.

So here are some tips which work for me, after a few months of bullet journaling.

1. Be Messy, if It Works for You

This morning, I glued a page of notes into my bullet journal, and for just a moment, I thought: “Oh no — I shouldn’t be doing this…” I got over it very quickly. You can do anything you choose. It’s your journal. Paste on sticky notes, paste in pages, use tabs prolifically, as I do, or not.

Your bullet journal can be all business, or you may doodle across the pages… it’s up to you.

2. Keep Your Index Up to Date, if You Journal a Lot

Although I don’t journal in my bullet journal, I do make lots of notes. This means that often I’ll use three or four pages for a single day. That’s OK.

I also have lots of collections. (A collection is a two-page spread devoted to a single topic.)

Currently my BuJo is a Leuchtturm1917 Whitelines A5 notebook. Originally, my intention was to snap BuJo pages into Evernote, for a digital record. As it turned out, I’ve only snapped two pages into Evernote, and those didn’t turn out well, because I used coffee-colored ink on the pages. (If you use Whitelines Link, the pages reproduce more effectively if you use dark blue or black ink.)

Leuchtturm1917 notebooks usually have numbered pages; this A5 hasn’t, so I’ve had to write them in. It’s not a big thing, but if the pages weren’t numbered, I wouldn’t be able to find things easily. Each week, I add relevant material to the index, and review my collections.

Which brings us to the most important tip…

3. Review Your Bullet Journal Regularly

I review at the end of each week. I draw a diagonal pencil line across collection pages if the notes have been copied elsewhere, and if the tasks have all been done. I also cross out a completed collection’s entry in the index.

Each Sunday, I created a new “This Week” collection, with appointments, tasks and notes for the coming week.

Make more ebook sales of all your fiction, when you write a serial

Serial Fiction Bonanza: Get Readers, Get Fans — Make A Solid Income From Your Fiction FAST

Fiction serials are platform-builders… consider writing at least one. Not only does a serial build your confidence, it also builds readers’ confidence in you. They’ll join your mailing list, and this has huge benefits for ebooks you’ve already published, and ebooks you’ll publish in future.

Write a serial with our new four-week class, Serial Fiction Bonanza: Get Readers, Get Fans — Make A Solid Income From Your Fiction FAST.

, on Twitter: @angee, and find Angela on Pinterest, too.

Earn while you learn, with Angela’s Writing Classes..

5 Pain-Free Tips to Write Your Book

5 Pain-Free Tips to Write Your Book

You’ve started to write your book. Relax. Writing is fun, if you just focus on the words. You do it day by day, and word by word. You’ll be amazed at how soon all those words turn into a book.

These tips will help.

1. Stop Thinking, Start Writing — and Keep Going

You have doubts. Do you have the time to write? What if... you think. Stop thinking! A book is just a book, a collection of words. It’s no big deal. In my ghostwriting life, I write books for clients, and the writing is pain-free, because I’ve learned to ignore my doubts. You can too.

Your doubts arise from your inner editor. He usually sounds like someone in your life who told you you couldn’t do something or other. He’s not only an idiot, most of his kvetches are recordings. They play over and over, until you give up the mad idea of writing a book.

Some writers picture the inner editor, then imagine locking him inside a box, or a bottle. Don’t worry, you can’t kill him, and once you’ve got a book, he comes in handy during editing.

2. Schedule Your Writing: It’s an Appointment

Here’s the solution if you have “no time.” Schedule the time, even if it’s only 20 minutes. If you write 250 words in 20 minutes, your book will be done in eight months. A timer’s useful too.

Try this. Write your book on your phone. Writers do it for various reasons, the primary one being that your phone is non-threatening. Try Drafts.

3. Write to Yourself: You’re Just Thinking on the Screen

“Writing a book”is scary. Don’t think about it. Instead, write to yourself. Just write down whatever you’re thinking — even if you’re whining: “I’ve got no time. I need to finish the presentation and rehearse it, and if we don’t get the contract I’ll get fired. This is a stupid idea…”

I’m serious. Write your whining — the exact words. Why? Because you’ll get sick of it. Whining isn’t pretty, and when it’s in your head, it tends to play on an endless loop of worries. One of the big benefits of journaling is that it gets all that junk out of your head: it’s healthy. So is writing what you’re thinking. You’ll delete it later of course, but writing it down externalizes it, and as we’ve said, you’ll get sick of it. Which means you can write your book.

I teach this trick in my book coaching practice; it works.

4. Map It: Create Lots of Circles

Early in your writing process, you’re exploring possibilities. Try grabbing a large sheet of paper, A2 size. I like Levenger Oasis pads. Brown paper’s fine, if that’a all you can find. Now grab some marker pens, and make a largish circle in the middle. Write “my book” in the circle. Make smaller circles and ovals all over the paper. Your creative self thinks in images; this is why you’re creating all the circles.

Write words in the circles and ovals — any words which occur to you. Write first thoughts, don’t think about it. Pin the paper onto a board or to a wall.

5. Outline It as Soon as You Can

Outlining a book too early has pitfalls, the big one being that you can choke off your creativity. Your paper-with-circles helps to avoid that.

With both fiction and nonfiction, I like to write a few thousand words just to get into the book. Then I create my “circles” diagram. Shortly after that I draft a preliminary outline.

You don’t have to outline, but it helps you to see where you’re headed at a glance. If an outline makes you uncomfortable, don’t bother with it. All that counts is that you keep writing.

Ebook Dominance: sell more copies of your ebooks, every day

Ebook Dominance: Market and SELL Your Ebooks In Just 15 Minutes A Day

Discover the marketing secrets of bestselling authors — you can market in minutes, from the comfort of your sofa…

How would you feel if your sales doubled, then tripled — and then YOU hit the Kindle hot sellers’ lists?

Ebook Dominance helps you to turbocharge your marketing, and sell more ebooks today.

, on Twitter: @angee, and find Angela on Pinterest, too.

Earn while you learn, with Angela’s Writing Classes..

Writing Tips: Specialize With Niches

Writing Tips: Specialize With Niches

I’m working with my personal coaching students on finding their niches as specialist writers. They asked for some writing tips which would help. I  thought they might help other writers too. So here we go. :-)

A huge amount of content is being published today. On one marketing blog, I saw research to suggest that 90 per cent of businesses were investing a third of their marketing budgets into social media in 2014. It’s no surprise then, that around 3.5 MILLION blog posts are published each day.

With so much content pouring onto the Web in a never-ending flood, you need to be able to stand out.

Here’s the solution: specialization. Choosing to specialize puts you into a smaller niche, so that you can quickly become known in that niche.

I should tell you that for many years I avoided specializing. I deliberately tried to be a generalist, covering many topics. I say “tried” because specialization crept up on me. So if you find developing a specialty hard — you’re not sure what you should choose — don’t worry about it too much. Clients will hire you, and when you do more work for them, you’ll turn into a specialist without being aware of it.

An example. A client in heavy industry hired me to create the company’s monthly newsletter. The first few months were a real challenge, because I didn’t know or understand the industry. Over time, I read a lot, and talked to lots of people. Gradually, I got up to speed. Before I knew it, I was writing for a mining company, and a manufacturer of oil rig machinery. I’d developed a specialty despite myself.

Let’s look at some ways in which you can find areas in which you want to specialize.

1. What do you LOVE?

Love trumps everything else. I love writing, and I enjoy teaching. However, neither of these areas pays particularly well. My enjoyment more than makes up for it however. Sometimes a specialty will choose you. You specialize in an area because you spend a lot of time thinking, reading and writing about the area.

What do you spend all your time talking, thinking and reading about? It may turn out to be a specialty, once you start writing about the area.

You can specialize in odd things: things most people wouldn’t dream of. One of my students was a real fan of gossip and celebrity websites. She joined forums to catch up on the latest gossip. A forum owner asked her to become a moderator, and she did. This led to her writing a regular column for a website. Then she was asked to assess manuscripts for a literary agent. When I last contacted her, she was still moderating, and writing regularly for a large website. She managed to turn gossip into a career. Who knew?

2. What do you do in your day job?

One of my students was in human resources. Careers, jobs, and job hunting is a huge area, and it’s a great specialty. However, even though she worked in the area, my student had never considered that she already had a specialty.

What about you? What do you do in your day job? A great specialty may have found you. :-)

3. What are your hobbies?

My favorite hobby is reading. However, if your hobby is sports-related — you’re a tennis player, or golfer, or you’re up to speed on any popular sport — you may have found a great specialty.

Make a list of your hobbies. A writer colleague wrote for technology magazines, and wanted to develop a new career as a travel writer. She loves to travel, and she and her family take trips several times each year. Within six months, she’d established her new career. Now she goes on junkets all over the world, and she’s writing a book on how to travel with small children.

4. What are your dreams?

In our 20s, we have dreams. Our 30s arrive, and real life — a mortgage, and a family — tends to knock our dreams aside.

Think about the dreams you had when you were a child, and a teenager.

A friend wanted to go to art school. However, her family convinced her that she needed to follow the family “trade”. So she became a lawyer. However, she never forgot her dreams, and eventually gave up law, because she found it too stressful. She’s now in her 40s, and she’s about to have her first show of her art work.

What did you dream of, when you were young? If you dreamed of becoming a full-time writer, you can achieve that dream. It’s never too late.

One writer dreamed of living sustainably: having a small farm. The dream was always in the back of her mind. In her 30s, she married a man who came from a farming family. They now own a small farm. They grow their own vegetables, and sell some of them at farmer’s markets. She now writes for many different websites, and is making an excellent career out of her dream.

5. What personal challenges confront you?

Many writers turn their challenges into specialties. You may have a challenge with your health, or with relationships. As you learn more, and discover ways to manage your challenge, you can write about what you discover.

One writer’s mother and aunt both died of breast cancer. She had many tests, and she and her sisters were concerned not only that they might develop the illness, but also that their own daughters might one day be at risk. This writer now works full-time as a marketer for a non-profit group helping women to manage breast cancer.

6. What do you want to learn?

You can write about anything you’re interested in. If you take a course in something, why not write about it?

A teacher who spent a year in France to learn the language and teach it took a course in French cooking. She loved it. When she came home, she took more courses. She also loved to write, so became one of my writing students. When we talked about a specialty, she hadn’t considered food and cooking. Within a year, she was working full-time for an independent TV producer, scripting cooking shows.

7. What pays well?

Some specialties pay more than others. If you enjoy learning and writing about health topics, or business and finance, learn more. Start writing articles for magazines and websites. As you publish more, people will approach you to write about your specialty.

Want more? Check out our online store

Want more help with your writing? Check out our online store. Any programs with “closing” in the title are about to be withdrawn, because we have other programs in the pipeline. You’ll fiction programs on both nonfiction and fiction.

, and on Twitter: @angee.

You can find Angela on Pinterest, and on YouTube, too.