Friday, February 3, 2012

Tell me what to do!

Well, I'm standing at a bit of a crossroads... And I need some advice. I have gotten to the place where I would like to make this blog something. I want it to be a place where my followers can come, gain perspective, and leave just truly... thinking.

Image Crossroads (C) by www.martin-liebermann.de

I have seen a lot of my friends use their blogs for good; For self-promotion, advice on writing ideas, contests for other writers, and cool interviews. I, however, have nothing much to promote, I have no real "advice" that I can spare, I have nothing to give away in a contest (unless you enjoy a virtual *high five* as the grand prize!), and I'm pretty sure my interview QUESTION would get old after a while (besides, "What's your favorite color?" doesn't make for a thrilling blog post).

I would love to know what you guys would like to see. What's missing out of all the blogs you follow? And, since a lot of you (my amazing, wondrous, fantabulous followers!) are writers, should I maybe be the one who doesn't blab about writing?

Hmmm... Discuss!



Bueller... Bueller?

28 comments:

  1. Bethany -- Your blog really has to be something YOU are passionate about. I am passionate about reading to my kids and doing activities. When I taught school I was passionate about celebrating author birthdays. I put the two ideas together and found an idea for a blog.

    If it is something that you are not passionate about then you will grow tired of the idea of blogging. It will become a chore.

    I wouldn't discount yourself by saying "I have no real "advice". Everyone has some unique perspective. For example, I would love to hear how you have scored all the media backing you in the MeeGenius Contest. I was very unsuccessful and would find your thoughts beneficial. Your experiences in this contest -- your thoughts, your ideas -- would be very interesting (well, at least to me!)

    I am sure you will find something. Just be YOU!

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    1. Thank you, Eric. I actually was thinking about exploring the MeeGenius media issue, anyway. I've gotten a lot of questions, so that might be a good post. Thanks for your ideas, I have a lot of thinking to do!!

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    2. I'm in the middle of Kristen Lamb's blogging course, it's really good. She definitely encourages you to relax and come away from blogging about writing if you want to. Have fun and experiment.

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    3. Kristen Lamb, eh? She sounds like my kind of gal! Thanks, Catherine!!!

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  2. I say go with your gut. I think once you decide what you want to write about it will all click into place. Last year, I blogged daily for six weeks straight. I wrote about three or four specific topics. Then, I decided to focus on the writing journey. I participate in blog contests, but I haven't hosted one and doubt I will any time soon. I hear repeatedly you need to fill a niche in blogging. There are a handful of blogs that I follow that do this well. One person recommended I write down a list of blog ideas. Do this and study your list. You might see a pattern or direction. Good luck with whatever direction you take.

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    1. Thanks, Stacy! I have so many thoughts, but I've never written them down. That'll help!

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  3. On my writing blog, I just share my journey - random thoughts on writing, writing snippets from online writing groups, my journey to getting published, and so on. This is because it's what I have to offer and I hope people find it useful.

    Maybe this will help you - just share your journey and your observations on life and writing :)

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  4. Bethany I feel the same way about my blog. I would LOVE to make it more me and more fun to visit. Right now, I'm studing other writer's blogs and taking lots of notes. I like what Eric had to say. Sharing your MeeGenius process would be interesting. Hmmm...just thought of some quality questions for your up coming interview. ;)

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    1. Well, it's good to know I'm not alone!!

      And, I cannot WAIT for the interview!!!! :)

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  5. Hi Bethany!
    What a great question. I know the feeling! I started my blog about 5 months ago and hemmed and hawed over it for months before I even posted one single thing! I knew I wanted to add *something* to the kid lit community. I had been looking long and hard for someone writing about graphic design principles using picture books as examples. I couldn't find one...probably because that is an interest SO specific to me..so I started it. So that would be my advice...write the blog you want to read. Like Eric said, just be YOU!
    Can't wait to read it, whichever direction you go!

    --Carter
    www.designofthepicturebook.com

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    1. Well hello there, Carter!
      You have very reassuring advice there... I might just follow it!
      Thank you, and I'm off to check out your blog!!

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  6. Just a thought...you are really motivating and supportive. What if your focus were to highlight the blogs that are the most motivating and supportive for aspiring writers...Editors who offer specific advice, critquing authors, agents, other writers' bloggiing services ehemm...Rate Your Story. You can interview the founder, post a summary, start a running list. You can be our go-to gal for resources. I really like what Eric said. Stick with what your passion is! =)

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    1. How in the world do you know me so well? Get out of my head!! :) haha

      Thanks, friend. I'm getting close to figuring this out. Ps, this is all YOUR fault!!! hahaha

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  7. I really like what everyone else has said, and agree it your blog really has to be about your passion. I came up with a few questions that helped me sort out my own blogging interests. If you could do anything with your day today, what would it be? What kinds of things keep you up at night? Good or bad. Is there anything you get so excited about that sometimes you forget to eat? What blogs are your favorite to visit?

    Good luck sorting all out. I think you do great.

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    1. Wow... Those are fantastic questions. They stopped me right in my tracks! Thanks, Hannah. I like where those questions could lead!

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  8. Just go with what YOU want to do. If you don't, your blog will become a chore, instead of something you enjoy doing. Write what makes you happy!

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    1. I don't need another chore... You're absolutely right. I'm starting to get the idea that being ME is perfectly acceptable. Hmmm...
      Thanks, Jennifer!

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  10. I always want to know why others write for children. What interests you? Why is writing your outlet? are you around kids a lot, are you a playful person, why write and why picture books? My blog is called On My Mind because it began as just that and started with an interview with Piers Anthony. In 2011, I realized during PiBoIdMo, that I am full of story ideas and began sharing them with fellow kidlit authors. Now my blog features Story Starters each week. Think about what interests you. what would you enjoy posting about and I am sure we will all want to follow your blog.

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    1. Very true... And your story starters are WONDERFUL! Good job, and thanks for the advice! :)

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  11. Hi Bethany,
    You are not alone! I bought my domain in March 2011 because I liked the name and had an inkling of an idea (which came to me in the shower), but I didn't launch until one month ago. It took that long to figure out the thing I'm good at...and it wasn't being a font of advice, which is what I thought I was "supposed" to be as a blogger. Instead, I paired my two loves - performance/public speaking and children's verse - then added a twist with video, and voila'. Although right now it's more of an "entertainment" site, I do have plans for making it more "useful" to others...or not. Don't feel you have to be anything you aren't. Once you focus on an idea and start in that direction, the blog will probably tell YOU what it wants to be, and will grow and change from that point.

    I loved Elizabeth's suggestion because you do have an enthusiastic, nurturing spirit, but it has to be natural for YOU. It will come. I think many of us are still finding our way, too.

    Sorry to be long-winded, but I think about this a LOT. If you ever want to chat more about it or need a brainstorm partner, feel free to email me! :)

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    1. Long-winded is my favorite!! Thanks, Renee. Elizabeth always has my back, and between the two of you, I am incredibly humbled. Thank you!

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  12. I don't think I'm an expert on writing, so I do very little writing advice posts. I post some book reviews and an occasional interview. A lot of my posts include photographs I've taken and a little blurb about them. Sometimes I share some of my writing or write a post in my dog's voice for fun. I think people come back to my blog because I'm just being me. If I get stuck on what to post, I scan through some photographs and come up with an idea. Occasionally I have good news to share, either my own or other bloggy friends' with good news. (I don't know if that helps you at all, but it's my two cents.)

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    1. I love your blog! So, your two cents are VERY valuable to me! Thank you so much!

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  13. So much good advice! It will be fun to see how your blog evolves. I don't have anything to add other than good luck!

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  14. Just popped by from Jennifer's blog and now following.

    It took me a while to find my niche, what I could offer that would be of help to other writers (15 years of writing mistakes and highlighting tropes at the moment), but maybe you can provide domain knowledge? Maybe you're a mini expert about something that could be a valuable resource to other writers? Someone does a "Medical Mondays" bit. Another about horse behaviors.

    Best of luck to formatting your blog. Will be watching. :)

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  15. Write about something you love or find interesting. When I first started my blog I was going to blog about writing my novel and I pretty much ignored it. Honestly, I didn’t want to write about my process. But now I share my poetry, stories, and photos. To make my blog different I started doing photo stories, which combines my love for storytelling with my love of taking photos. For me my blog is partly a portfolio and partly a place to communicate with other writers. So think about the purpose of your blog. What do you want to achieve?

    Most of the blogs I follow are writing blogs because I want to learn from other people's experiences. I also like blogs that ask questions and get their followers involved. So think about what makes you unique? What do your friends and family love about you? What are you passionate about? Perhaps there is something happening in your community that others would want to know about.

    My blog is still evolving. The more I blog and the more blogs I check out the more things I find to write about. Perhaps take a look around and make a note of what you like and what you don’t like on other people’s blogs. Use this info to inspire your own blog.

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