Thanks so much to Makayla @ Random Reads for nominating me! Definitely check out her blog, it’s wonderfully done!
I’ll admit I’ve put this off for a while because I wasn’t quite sure I could really give any helpful advice, and my blog story is a bit of a doozy, but finally! I’ve written it all down and it’s here to be shared.
- Write a post to show your award
- Give a brief story of how your blog started
- Give two pieces of advice to new bloggers
- Thank whoever nominated you and provide a link to their blog
- Select 15 other blogs you want to give the award to.
The Blog Story:
Blah. This is kind of tmi, but whatever, you asked for a story? You get a story.
In mid-March of this year I became quite sick, though not for the first time (I initially began dealing with chronic fatigue and pain in February 2015) and it became bad enough that I had to drop out of many of my courses, and get extensions on the ones I couldn’t afford to drop. I was basically bed-ridden for much of March and into April, and couldn’t do much. Fast forward to late May, and many alterations to my medications later (and still no official diagnosis) I was feeling pretty useless. By nature, I’m an ambitious and active person, and I was being forced to trade in those essential parts of my life with Netflix binging and sleeping, because that was mostly what I could do.
Although I wasn’t out there working or traveling or doing any of the things most of my friends were doing at the time, I did have internet access, and by end of May/beginning of June, I was feeling well enough to read again, which I’m so thankful I haven’t had to give up. I’m an English major, so constantly having a book on the go is the norm for me. Initially, I created a booklr, because I’ve always admired that side of tumblr, even though I don’t usually stray from my artsy / sarcastic / indie music / booklover / low-key history nerd personal tumblr. Reading booklr blogs led to book blogs. I decided to level up.
And it’s not like it came out of nowhere – I’ve always wanted a blog. Sometimes I thought I wanted to vlog, to be honest, but I’m just not cut out for sitting in front of a camera and talking about myself. I’m a writer, and have always been a writer, so blogging really made more sense. But back to my point: I’ve always wanted a blog.
I love the design that goes into it, the original ideas, the community, the satisfaction at having a space where you can talk about things you’re passionate about whenever and however you want to. So I decided one day that I was going to.
And honestly, it’s given me such a sense of purpose, especially given how hard the past six months have been for me. My family will see me writing something on my laptop, and they’ll say, “For the blog?” and I’ll say “YES” with such pride it’s kind of ridiculous.
*exhales* So yeah. Thank you to everyone who read all that. And to everyone who has made this such an enriching experience. I truly appreciate it, and I’m thankful for each and every one of you!
My Advice to New + Old Bloggers:
Just like Makayla, I got kind of carried away, and opted to do more than two pieces of advice. The more the merrier, I guess.
1. Blog about something you’re passionate about
Your passion shines through in your writing, so don’t force it. Write about something you think you could talk about forever. For me, that’s books. For you, it might be something completely different. That’s okay! Do what makes you happy!
2. Picking a theme is important
Makayla nailed it with this one – us bookworms know that despite the popular saying, we all judge books by their covers, at least in part. Your theme is like your cover; visually it’s the first thing that your readers will see, and it organizes how they’ll read your content, so make sure that the one you choose is working with you, not against you!
3. Make your own graphics
Now I’m not saying I’m a photoshop wizard or anything, but I did do my research and I’m pretty tech-savvy, so making my own graphics quickly became one of my favourite parts of blogging. And it’s important! A post’s graphic, like your theme, is going to hook your reader visually, and then your writing can take the wheel. It’s definitely worth it to invest some time in working on graphics, because it’ll make your blog look that much more professional. And don’t forget that consistency and clarity are your friends when it comes to graphics, just as much as they are in writing!
4. Separate your text so you don’t end up with big paragraphs
Let’s be honest, no one wants to read a full fledged essay, no matter how promising your topic sounds, so just space it out! It can really make all the difference. I also try to bold the important bits, so that your reader’s eye will fly right to them.
Just to show you how much this really makes a difference, I’ve taken two screenshots of this post drafted with different spacing on my phone. Which would you prefer to read?
And that’s it! Again, thanks so much to Makayla for tagging me, I genuinely appreciate it. I hope my advice is helpful in some way at least, I, of course, am still learning myself! Then again, we’re always learning!
I’ll tag some recent followers! Hello!
- Mari @ Story and Somnomancy
- Aria @ Snow White Hates Apples
- Harlee @ Harlee Reads
- Amberley @ Amberley’s Book Blog
- Marianne @ Storyscope
- Amanda @ My Opinion Site
- Asiya and Marcela @ Georgiana Darcy’s Reading Lists
- Lucy @ Lucy’s Literature
- Shruti @ This is Lit
- Lottie @ Novellique
- Natalia @ Reading with Natalia
- Jess @ Paper Utopia
- Jasmine @ How Useful It Is
- Evelyn @ Electrums
- Ciarra @ Literary Heroines & Cups of Tea
As always, if you don’t want to do this, feel no need to!