Friday, March 1, 2013

Blogging for Education - WABC Day One

Happy Friday, good people of the blogosphere! Today begins my journey through the Winter Author Blog Challenge. For the next fifteen days, we'll be discussing social media. The topic for today is: Your Blog. So sit back, relax, and let me take you on a little journey!


First off, here's the prompt for today:
Tell us about your blog. How long have you been blogging? Do you write on a regular schedule? Do you plan your topics in advance or write as the spirit moves you? What was your favorite post? At which post do you look back and wonder what you were thinking when you wrote it? What has been the best feedback you’ve ever received? Have you ever written anything that was perceived as controversial, though you didn’t intend it that way? What tips would you offer other author bloggers?

I've been blogging here at my Jo Michaels ~ Author blog for a little over a year. Before this one, I had a couple of others. They were much more personal and discussed things like design, collectables, and life. One of them I can't access anymore but you can poke around it here: The Collectible Guru  The others were all removed/shut down by me. So, I've been blogging for a long time but never with any direction or focus.

Now, I blog about writing, editing, and books. I update M-F at around 9a.m. My topics are rarely planned, but I do take requests from readers now and again to fill holes on my convenient link page. How did that come about? Well, I was on another blog, which shall remain anonymous, searching for a post I'd read there before, for another look, and used the search function. I never found the post I was looking for. I starting thinking how great it would be to have a nifty list for my visitors so they can bookmark it and find what they're looking for quickly. I categorized it to make hunting just a little bit simpler.

My favorite post of all time was a series I did on looking at your social media and your marketing materials. I did some funky stuff with the titles of the posts and bound them all into a handy PDF my visitors could download and keep for reference later on. It was called lOOk at YoUr xXx. I enjoyed it because I love helping people discover their brand, using my design know-how to educate, and make marketing run more smoothly. If you're a blogger, and you likely are if you're in the WABC challenge, please take a look at this post: lOOk at YoUr bLog. You won't regret taking the five minutes to read it.

A post I can't believe I wrote, for many reasons I intend to keep to myself, is this one: Loss. It's a good post and an interesting short story, but it leaves a bad taste in my mouth when I read it now.

I got great feedback on my blog back in December when I invited a number of indie authors to pitch their books to me for a review. It was a ton of fun and I may do it again this year.

People probably thought this post was controversial: Fact or Crap I meant it to make people stop and think. To discard what they've been told and open their minds to new possibilities. My books are far more controversial than my blog and are the reason I use a nom de plume.

Tips for other bloggers: Get out there and meet people! Follow their blogs, interact with them, and keep your own blog focused on one thing. Don't talk about how awful your day was or how hard life is. We know; we're alive, too! Everyone struggles sometimes, but not everyone throws it out there for the world to see. If you do, you'll find people don't really care. They're dealing with their own crap. You'll lose your readership if you don't provide some kind of useful content.

I'm happy to be back with some familiar faces, and delighted to have the opportunity to meet new ones! Welcome, all, to the first post of the Winter Author Blog Challenge! If you're an author and haven't signed up with us yet, get to it! Go here: http://authorblogchallenge.wordpress.com/register/ and just fill out the form already!

Well, that's all for today, folks! Until next time, WRITE ON!

Jo

16 comments:

  1. Through various blog challenges I have met some wonderful people. Building your community is so important and being able to connect with others who feel the same is wonderful experience.

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    1. Hiya, Toni! Welcome to the blog. I've only ever done the Author Blog Challenge. I just don't have a lot of time in my day to do very many. Probably because I insist on commenting on every single post :) I like to get to know my fellow bloggers. Thanks for popping by and taking the time to comment!

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  2. Have fun with the challenge! Last year's challenge was a ton of fun =)

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    1. Thanks, Heather! I'm grateful for the challenge because I met great people, like you :)

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  3. Jo

    The one thing that stood out in this blog post is "keep your own blog focused on one thing". Staying focused is key and happy that I am a part of the Winter Author Blog Challenge. Thank you for the tips.

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    1. Anytime, Jane! Welcome to the blog and thanks for the lovely comment :)

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  4. Great tips Jo. Looking forward to reconnecting during the challenge this time around :)

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  5. I look forward to reconnecting with you and other ABC'ers in the coming days (travel and Internet/cell phone permitting). Your blog is a treasure trove of writing How-To's. If I could figure out how to get a link list on Blogspot, I would - I hope I'm not the blog that shall remain nameless. And you are a collector, too? What don't you do? I look forward to reading The Bird tomorrow while I am in transit, by the way.

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    1. Alana, dearest, it wasn't your blog. :) I used the pages function and just made lists of everything I figured folks might want to read. Then I linked to the page on my sidebar. It's super easy and, if you'd like, I'll be happy to walk you through it. Thanks for popping by and leaving me a comment. I hope you love the book :)

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  6. Wise words as always Jo - thank you

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    1. Thanks, Merlene! Good to see you around again! :)

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  7. Great post as always, look forward to reading more

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  8. Love your colour theme here and on your website Jo. Great post, I think you're right about interacting, it's something I need to do more of, getting involved in this challenge is a great way of getting started.

    Having read your 'about me' page, I'm impressed with what you've achieved - really well done!

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    1. Thanks so much, Juzza; on both counts! I work really hard at following my own advice :) Welcome to the blog, and thanks so much for the comment!

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Play nice and have fun. If you're a jerk, I won't publish your comment. My blog. My rules. Thanks for taking the time to chat at me!