Monday, October 31, 2016

Simple Blogging: 29.

Don't overdo memes/linkups.
Well, you shouldn't unless that's what you're blog is about, anyway. This depends on how often you blog, if you blog 3-4 times weekly, doing a linkup once a week is OK. If you blog every day, doing one 2-3 times is probably fine. I've seen some people do linkups, and then write personal posts on the same day, and I think that would work as well. You could also pick one day of the week to do linkups.

Simple Blogging: 28.

Paid VS. free blog hosting services.
Services like Blogger, and Tumblr are obviously free, but some people might wonder, are paid services like Posthaven and Blot any better? The benefit of free services is that well... they're free, if your budget it tight, you won't have to pay a thing, (unless you want to use a domain.) The disadvantage ofa free host for any site is that well... they can take you down at any time. The benefit of a paid host is that they'll most likely be around longer, (there isn't a guarantee that they'll stay around forever, though.) Not only that but it's less likely, unless you violate their terms of service, that they'll want to

Simple Blogging : 27.

OK so yeah I got extremely behind! Now, I'm just shooting for 29 because 29 out of 31 is OK, not perfect, but OK with me.
Feature some of your favorite posts.
I used to do yearly highlights when I was doing blog365, and it was a fun way to feature some of the posts that I thought were just fun to write, or that I thought were good. You can also feature posts from other blogs that you like. You can do this both ways, either in a post, or in a blog list style widget, (although you wouldn't be able to use the bloglist from Blogger itself because it only uses the blogs you're following.) If you're favorite posts are from the blogs you're following, that's fine. If like me you're unable to clean them out and you have several inactive ones in there, then obviously that won't work

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Simple Blogging: day 26.

I'm going to get right to the topic:
Consider starting a forum and/or community.
Disqus, can take care of this for you, but you can also use Reddit, for this, or even a free form host. This is something I've thought of doing if I ever decide to start a niche blog. There used to be a service called MyBlogLog that let anyone start a community for their blog. Yahoo bought it and shut it down a while later. Even though I'd like to do this, I'm not sure I'd have enough content. However, someone that writes a blog for more than just pleasure might. There used to be this thing called "a tiny thread," and it was this thing where you could just start a conversation and the topic and all of it's comments would show up on the site publicly.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Simple Blogging: day 25.

OK, this next one is going to be one of those things where I list reasons for something.
Email newsletters verses email digests. Reasons for both.
OK I could probably list the reasons against both as well, but really you should only have a newsletter if certain things apply, otherwise you can get away with just sending out Feedburner-like emails of "this is what I posted to my blog today," type thing. Reasons for having an email newsletter:
  • You have multiple blogs, (say, 3-5, and you want to send out a weekly digest of all the updates in one-fell-swoop.
  • You want to have a discussion list.
  • You have a blog and an online store, and maybe you want to put the newsletter sign up form in both places to do some cross-promotion. Maybe once in a while, (very sparingly!) you send out a deal to your subscribers.
Those are the only reasons I can think of for having a newsletter. As for reasons against it well, you have to keep up with it. As someone who had one for a while with only 1 subscriber, it became a chore to keep writing. The reason why you'd want to have an email digest of your blog post is to notify readers who don't use RSS of what your posting. Digests are very low maintanence once you get them set up, you ccan just give them your feed URL, put the code on your site and pretty much leave them.

Simple Blogging: day 24.

I had my first appointment with my new primary doctor today! This is interesting because since I was a teenager, I've seen the same primary doctor. He left this year to do hospital and urgent care work, and of course that put me needing a new GP. They told me I was going to have to wait until September, but when I had my extremely bad headache last April I really needed to see someone! That's the person who I saw today, because I liked him back then, even though I was pretty delirious and out of it when I had a headache for 12 days.. Lol anyway, enough about me rambling on about my doctor, let's get to the topic!
always provide full text feeds.
This was a big debate for a while in the blogosphere, as to whether you should provide full text feeds. this post from 2011, explains the dilemma and says that you should offer full feeds to get as many readers as possible. I agree with that way of thinking. Not only that, but sometimes, the RSS reader is just an easy way to read content. I actually do scan through the posts and click through to the site, when I come across a post I'm interested in in the feed, (if I'm subscribed to your feed, there's definitely something I'm interested in reading in there!) So even though you're providing full text feeds for me, I'm giving you the extra page views. The RSS reader is just an easier way to keep it all in one place, instead of having to visit each site. this post from 2007 explains why full text feeds actually increase page views. I'd have to agree with that explanation, because I'm the one clicking on all the links.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Simple Blogging: day 23.

Reasons for and against using paid themes.
So, let's talk about paid themes, and when you should and shouldn't use them. Let me put it this way, you don't always have to use a paid theme if you're using Wordpress. People say that that's another thing you need to be taken seriously, but I think they're wrong. I've seen plenty of blogs on free themes, and I take them just as seriously. You should probably use a paid theme if you're looking to start a blog network, or become an authority in a niche, and/or somehow become widely known from your blog. Also, if you're looking to build a static site on WP, there are paid themes/plugins that will accomplish this, (there may be some free ones, but as of now I'm not aware of any.) You should use a free theme if you're starting and/or maintaining a personal blog, just starting out with blogging in general, and/or are just doing it for fun. You can also start out with a free theme if that isn't in your budget right away, and redesign 6 months later. Some blog hosts also have Paid themes, Tumblr is the one that comes to mind. ThemeForest has themes for Blogger as well.

Simple Blogging: day 22.

Share your own post sparingly, let others do the sharing for you.
This one might be obvious, or it might not. It depends on how much blogging advice you've read. I suppose the moral of this topic is, don't Tweet your posts all the time. Don't put them on Facebook every time either. If someone likes your post, hopefully they'll come around and share it. When you think you've written a post you want to draw attention to, though, you can Tweet it and/or post it on Facebook. I did this with the beginning of this series. I did this to promote the series at first, but I didn't want to spam people's Twitter feeds each day. I only did it for about the first week, then I stopped. If you do this every time you post though, people will probably think you're just using Twitter to get them to click on your links. I've never written a viral post that people share automatically. However, I'm hoping it will happen someday! Have I written posts that got Retweeted after I Tweeted them? Yeah I've done that! I've definitely seen it happen though, so many people like a post that it gets lots of tweets and FB likes!

Monday, October 24, 2016

Simple Blogging: day 21.

Backup and archive all media.
We can talk about backing up/exporting your blog posts, (like we already have.) However, you should keep all the image/audio/video files you upload to your blog as well. This is because when you migrate your blog to a different service, references to these files will be broken. If you have the files, you should be able to reupload them. If you don't, well then you'll never be able to fix the broken references. It doesn't matter how you backup these files, for me, I have them on my computer, I also have them on an external hard drive. Not only that, I use Backblaze, an online backup service. I've learned the lesson of bad backup stratigies, it's a long story, and I don't particularly want to tell it here. If you read my posts on Viddler, then you'll probably understand.

Simple Blogging: day 20.

I voted today! I voted third party all the way down the ballot, (at least where I could.) This is a first for me, I've never done this before! Now, let's get to the topic.
Use related posts.
This is another thing I need to get to doing. The thing is, there aren't many related posts widgets for Blogger, in fact there's only one. Related posts is one of those things that work better on a linkblog, because you can see what links are related to the post you just posted. Not only that, but it gives the reader related links as well. I also like the "this time last year," widgets. It's fun to look back in the archives! It's also fun to look back in other people's archives, so having those widgets there is useful.

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Simple Blogging: day 19.

Make an about me page."
This is something I need to catch up on! I used to keep a list of 100 things about me, after so many bblog migrations, I've forgotten to make the page again, (I still have the file, of course.) Whether you keep a list of things about you, answer questions, (as in take a survey,) or write a bit about yourself. An about me page is the best way for readers to start to get to know you. A lot of blog platforms offer profiles, and using that is fine. However, I think it's best to supplement with something else. Another page that might be useful to consider making is a list of your social media presences. This allows readers to follow and get in touch with you if they need to.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Simple Blogging: day 18.

OK I'm just going to get right to the topic.
Don't rely on the stats your host gives you.
Well, you shouldn't completely rely on them anyway. Especially if there isn't a way to ignore your own views, and Blogger doesn't have this. I'm sure half the views it's giving me are my own. Since I can't use Google analytics, I could use something like Statcounter, or Sitemeter to track my stats. I think wordpress.com stats might be a bit better than Blogger's, but I'd still use an outside service. That's of course if you're going to track stats at all, you don't have to.

Simple Blogging: day 17

Blah, I'm 4 days behind. How did I let myself get 4 days behind? Usually I don't do this to myself, as I have a certain theory about challenges. Oh hey, maybe I'll use that to take on the topic of challenges in general!
Blog challenges are lots of fun!
It's especially fun getting to follow blogs you normally wouldn't get the chance to follow through a blog challenge. If you've ever participated in NaBloPoMo, which I consider to be a freeform challenge, it's also fun trying to come up with things to write about. I also have a topic in my list to take on my theory of challenges so here it goes. My theory of challenges is that if you skip more than 3-4 days worth of content, it's extremely hard to make up and therefore, you should probably just give up. This is especially true when it's a challenge that relies on use of a Twitter hashtag. You see people who've skipped a week of posts trying to make them up all at once spamming the Twitter search results. of course this is less true if it's a blogging challenge, but the more you get behind, the more posts you'll have to write to try and make up.

Monday, October 17, 2016

Simple Blogging: day 16.

Todays's topic is a bit out of the realm of blogging, but it's still somewhat related.
Consider starting a podcast or doing live video.
As someone who tried live streaming for a while last year, and who launched a podcast last summer, (which is onl hold until I find better hosting, somehow cheaply,) I really enjoyed both things. However, they both take time, so you should consider setting a schedule that's right for you. When I did my live streams, I didn't necessarily have a topic. However, when I did my podcast I always tried to either demonstrate something, or talk about something in the news. My streams were usually a half hour to an hour, but my podcast were about 10-15 minutes twice a week, (a bit longer for the demonstrations.) I was using Meerkat to stream, but eventually that stopped working for me, so I wasn't able to continue doing it.

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Simple Blogging: day 15

Ok, so something short and fun, because I'm in charge of getting myself to church in the morning, laptop in hand, so I can demonstrate for the Sunday school kids tomorrow!
Make lots of lists!
Lol OK, I'm not talking about list posts this time, (unless you want to post these ones.) I have a list of things to write about, (if I absolutely can't think of anything.) I also have a list of services I'd like to get around to using someday. I keep my big list of RSS feeds in a text file, because if I'm trying different readers, I don't usually want my folder structure preserved. You could even keep track of your posting schedule this way, (although I've never found the need to do this.) Listing things is just a fun way of remembering a whole bunch of them at once. Since I can't really use paper, I just open a text file and start typing. On a completely unrelated note, I think I'll finally be able to get caught up tomorrow! Not sure if I'll actually stay that way though.

Simple Blogging: day 13.

OK so since I'm kind of in a hurry to get things caught up , I need to get right to the topic!
Use tags, but not too many.
Or catigories, or as Blogger calls them, "labels." I have this problem with my linkblog in particular, I think I have like 500 of those things floating around. 500? How'd I get so many! I probably really only need about 100 at the most. I really need to get rid of a lot of them, and yeah I definitely should've made more of an effort to do this before the Blot migration! I do have some tags still here from when I didn't have a linkblog and so I was doing what I called "weekly links." The thing is, you probably only need about 2-4 tags in each post, (maybe 5 at the most.) This is not only for archival purposes, but for search as well. When you're going back to look for a post, if you know it's tagged under one thing you can search for it. However, if you have 800 posts under that you may not want to look through them all, so you might want to try searching for a tag with fewer posts in it. It's also for reference purposes, here are all my posts tagged "31days."

Things have happened here the past week.

I got sick last weekend. Melissa was sick, (she still is,) and I just happened to get a cold, (which isn't what she had.) I had my home care assessment on the 6th. I really hate having these things! While my caseworker was here she said I was over the $2000 limit according to the state resource policy. Last year, I was told that policy didn't affect me, because well... I'm on DAC. I asked her to send the policy when she left here, and she sent it the next day. I wasn't sure what program I was under so I had to look that up. It didn't mention DAC anywhere and only mentioned SSI so that didn't make any sense to me, (DAC is the benefit I qualified for after my dad started collecting retirement, and it's what allowed me to receive the increase.) My caseworker contacted another caseworker who was working with me last year, and she said she could subtract my income from my resources, (which makes no sense because I didn't see that anywhere, but I guess it's policy for their office... um OK...) Basically I've had to dig around in this state policy network of documents, (and it's a huge network one document has like 30 links to other documents!) and deal with this while sick. I did get my computer today, (woohoo!) This has been a very interesting day though! OK, so first the cable I had for my monitor wouldn't fit in the place for it in my tower so I needed to go get an adaptor for it. Lol yay Since Melissa and I weren't sure which cable I needed, and her husband knows all about those things, she sent him pictures. That was one unexpected trip to the store, and $40 later. Now I need to solve fading sound, and curious incidents of latenight overrotating, which I'm attributing to the torture chamber. Oh yeah, and disappearing backblaze, which is strange because I did install it! All that and uninstalling MCAfee which I unfortunately subscribed myself to on accident when Melissa did the warranty registration thingy. Besides that, everythings going fine. I'm trying to remind myself that right now, we're in the "it's all foreign" state.

Friday, October 14, 2016

Simple Blogging: day 12.

Yeah, I promise I'll get semi-caught up with this thing in the next 2-3 days. I've been sick over the past week, and the last thing you want to do when you're sick is write posts! I'm going to write this one, then another one about the events over the past couple days, (because things have happened here,) and I should be able to write days 13 and 14 tomorrow. OK so let's get to the topic.
Consider starting a second blog.
For me, that's my badly neglected linkblog, (I'm going to try to fix that when I'm not busy with a whole bunch of other things!) For you, it could be a photoblog, or whatever else you feel like you're going to update on a semi-regular basis. I usually update my linkblog more than this here blog, when I'm not participating in challenges, that is. I update the linkblog 2-3 times a day, (excluding Sundays,) and I usually try to blog here 3-4 times a week. I really enjoy keeping the linkblog, because it allows me to take time to gather links. In other words, it lets me look at things I probably wouldn't normally look at just to see if I think it's in the least bit interesting. Of course if the article I'm reading is extremely long, I may or may not post it. I also get to use Reddit, Siftlinks, and of course Twitter extensively to gather the links. I place them in a SaveForLater folder and decide which ones to post as I go. In the end, I think a linkblog is a good way to keep up on things, but I think having more than one blog is fun. Of course I wouldn't recommend starting 5 at the same time, (lol!)

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Simple Blogging: day 11.

I'm actually going to cheat and talk about 2 topics in one post this time, because they both go together. I might do this one other time in the series, (maybe I'll even do it again tomorrow!)
Don't use slideshows for list posts.
I don't know anyone who doesn't hate those things! Not only that, but the reason people do that is parasitic, because it artificially inflates the number of page views and/or clicks they're getting. Every time you have to advance to the next slide, that's another click, which constitutes another page view. For them, it looks like they're getting lots and lots of page hits when in reality, they aren't. It's also an accessibility issue, if you put slides inside of a post with no description, it becomes a problem. Not only that, but if I have to keep clicking "next" I'm likely not going to read the post. That gets to my second topic, pagination. Pagination also inflates view count, because it causes someone to click "next" every few minutes. This is just flat out annoying! Often times, if I'm posting a link, and the article is one of those really long articles that has like 5-7 pages, I'll only read the first couple, and I'll probably only summarize the first one. I'm sure it makes the hit counter look nice, but slide shows and pagination annoy readers to no end!

Monday, October 10, 2016

Simple Blogging: Day 10.

OK, I'm going to get right to the topic:
Keep the dates in your blog posts.
Some people say take the dates out, but I think you should keep them in! First of all, if I'm going to link to your post, and it isn't a "how to" post or something evergreen like that, I always look at the date to see if it's more than 10 days old. If it is, I won't post a link to it, (especially if it's a news article.) Not only that, but it just looks weird to me to see posts without them. Maybe I'm old-fashion or something, but I think blog posts need to have dates in them so you can tell if the person is updating on a regular basis or not! I suppose I'm weird about dates like that. Anyway, that's just my opinion, I think you should leave them in.

Simple Blogging: Day 9.

So I just sat down here to check my email and do my writing, and I just got the email that HP shipped my computer 4 days before it was supposed to ship! I'm going to be having system setup funtimes very soon! Anyway, let's get to the topic for day 9.
Use a service like Feedpress.
I love Feedpress because it makes blog migrations very easy! Most services support RSs redirects, so all you have to do is change the URL of the feedpress feed you're using, and redirect it over. You don't have to set up a new feed each time you migrate, because you're feed is kept from the last platform. Feedpress is an alternative to Feedburner, and it isn't free, but it's definitely worth it! They also offer podcast hosting, and newsletters. Of course, you could also just use Feedburner, if you trusted Google to not kill it sometime soon. There's also FeedBlitz, if you're really serious about this stuff.

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Simple blogging: day 8.

so I'm back again for day 8. I'm just going to get right to the topic since I'm in a hurry to go to bed, (extremely early!)
try to keep a posting schedule.
Why is that? Well because if you post 4 times one week and twice the next week it's inconsistent, and people don't know when to check your feed, or come back to your blog. Not only that, but if you post say 5 or 6 times one week, you could get into a situation where you're like, "I all of a sudden have nothing more to post about." Unless of course you have a big list of post ideas on standby, which I'll talk about later. I usually try to post 3-4 times a week here, (which constitutes every other day.) Of course that doesn't count challenges when I should be posting everyday, or periods where not much is going on so I have nothing to write about. Those do happen, and in some cases, I go 3-5 days without blogging. I do try to stick to the schedule, but if something happens, I don't get all upset at myself for not sticking to it. I also don't prewrite my posts.

Simple Blogging: day 7.

OK, so I'm really behind. I'm also sick, which doesn't help matters! I'm going to write days 7 and 8 tonight, and days 9 and 10 tomorrow. Then I should be caught up again, (hopefully!) Since I need to write 2 of these and I'd like to go to bed sometime tonight, (it's only 9:25 here right now.) Let's get to today's topic.
List posts are fun!
Lol I could make a list of reasons why list posts are fun, but if you love lists, you know what I'm talking about! I've made a whole bunch of them on this here blog. Usually, they're lists of random events that are going on all at the same time. I think lists are a good way of putting things together. Lists are not oonly fun to write, but I love reading other people's posts! Because writing lists is fun is the whole reason I'm planning to make a challenge out of it next month! This normally happens in September and April, but I do it on my own so I can do 30 Days of Lists whenever. Therefore, I'm going to do it next month right after I've finished 31 days! I'ts probably not the best time to do a challenge, I failed NaBloPoMo last year, but I was having a lot of headaches at the time.

Thursday, October 6, 2016

Simple Blogging day 6.

Tonight I'm just going to get right to the topic, because I'm otherwise distracted, and have other things to attend to.
Backup your blog regularly.
Well, that is if you want to keep your content around and survive blog migrations, you should probably backup your blog. This doesn't just mean the text of your posts, it means your comments, (hint: disqus again,) your media such as audio, video, and images, and your pages. When I left BlueHost last summer, I ended up losing some of my WP pages because they weren't in text files, and I didn't particularly want to sift through SQL and perform queries to get them out, (I didn't know the proper queries.) So, you might be asking, "how exactly do I back up my blog? Well, in Blogger, it's under settings, other settings, import and backup. Wordpress.com had an export section that lets you export xml files, and self-hosted wordpress does the same thing. I know there are several backup plugins for WP, but I haven't used any of them. I'm going to have to start making a habit of backing up regularly! It will make future blog migrations easier, and I'll be able to avoid a Bluehost-like situation. I'm sure Google wouldn't like it if I did this every couple weeks, though.

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Simple Blogging day 5.

Oh look, I can actually write in sequence, and not skip the post! Lol maybe I should keep this up for the rest of the challenge. Sometimes, I wonder what's going on in the apartment across the way, people go in and out this late at night, it's around 10:15 pacific time here as I write this, and they're loud when they do it. Anyway, enough of me rambling on about random things! Today's topic is:
You shouldn't just care about what Google thinks.
I had that originally written as "you shouldn't care about what Google thinks," but I rephrased that. There are other search engines on the internet besides Google, you know. Not only that, but Google can give random penalties to random people. Back in 2014, it was revealed that Metafilter got hit with one in 2012, and no one knew exactly what it was. this post from SearchEngineLand explains it in some detail. Back in 2013, I got sent a takedown notice from candy.com about a link that I posted back in 2009. I wrote about it in this post. Basically, they were saying that since I don't use "dofollow" Google thinks I'm a spammer and they were penalizing them for me having the link up. I never took it down, it's still there. I think Google is parasitic. It gets people to rely on them for search and ad revenues, and then hits them with penalties when things aren't just perfect! I understand they have to account for spammers and malware, but don't penalize sites unless they're actually doing something wrong. This is why I don't use Google for search, and I don't use Google ads. This is also why I don't pay attention to my pagerank at all. I really don't care about what Google thinks about me, (as far as pagerank is concerned.) Don't get me wrong, I do use Google services, (Blogger is owned by them and I understand they could take me down at any second!) Yeah, I should really back up my content.

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Simple Blogging day 4.

Now we can talk about commenting systems!
Use disqus.
OK yeah, that should probably be rephrased, when I was writing the topics for the series throughout the year though, that's what I came up with. I'm not imploring you to use Disqus as it sounds. What I'm saying is, I think it's best that you use Disqus. It isn't just that I use it on my sites, it's that I can use it, I can interact with it very well. Unlike several comment systems, most notably wordpress.com and even Blogger as of late, I don't have any problems with disqus whatsoever! So, I suppose it's more of a usability tip than a blogging one this time. If you want me to leave comments, you might want to use Disqus. If you don't want to use that, please don't use wordpress.com comments! If you're using self-hosted WP, please use regular, built-in commenting. I recommend WPSpamShield as a spam plugin, (disclosure: this is not an affiliate link, and I made no money for the recommendation!)

31 Days of Simple Blogging: day 3.

Yeah, this was me falling asleep again last night and waking up at 12:51 in the morning, when it was already too late to write, go me! I was going to talk about commenting systems in todays post, but I thought that would jump things way to much out of order, so I decided I'd address the big, huge elephant in the series first, and that's Wordpress!
You don't absolutely have to use Wordpress!
OK you're probably thinking, "look at her stating the obvious again"! However, Wordpress is the CMS used by 26.7% of the internet, according to this survey. I'm not a WP fan, so let me see if I can think of any reasons why you'd want to use it.
  • You pay for your own server space, so it isn't possible to violate the terms of service of something like Google that owns Blogger. Although it's possible for you to not read your hosts terms of service very carefully after a change, and what you think is actually backup well... apparently isn't. That's what happened with CoolBlindTech, about a month after I left Bluehost, which they were also using.
  • WP is flexible. There are a whole bunch of themes and plugins that you can experiment with.
  • There are lots of theme designers out there, if you're going to blog professionally, you may want to consider a custom paid theme.
  • It's fun if you like tweaking things!
  • There's extensive documentation and support at wordpress.org
I have to admit I do like tweaking things, (mostly adding plugins and widgets. OK, now for my reasons against.
  • You're host can still take you down for a TOS violation, like I mentioned above. It could be that, a DMCA request, or something else entirely. When it comes to those things, it really doesn't matter where you go.
  • Site tweaking is fun, until something breaks! What do you do when something breaks? Go back and undo the change, of course. That doesn't always fix it though, trust me, I've had things break WP to beyond repair.
  • This plugin has not been tested with your version of Wordpress, and was last updated something like a year ago, and we're now on our third update for this year. I've had installed plugins fail completely because of this, leaving me to find a different and more powerful one that did exactly the same thing, but had way more features, which I simply didn't need.
  • The pressThis upgrade! Apparently they upgraded PressThis to be more mobile-friendly. Well, what they didn't realize when they made everyone change to the new version was that I, (as a person using a screen reader,) had to click around to all the hidden things that used to be inline. This meant I couldn't do anything with PressThis very fast, because I'd often forget to click one thing or another so I'd have to go back and edit the post.
  • If something like an RSS feed stops working, but doesn't completely break the site, it can sometimes take hours to track down the problem. There are times you have to go through several different fixes because tutorials are outdated etc.
So, what services should you use if you just want to blog, want to do a bit of tweaking, but don't care about WP?
  • Tumblr
  • Blogger I actually use and recommend Blogger over Tumblr, but you should use what works for you!,/li>
There are also services that are here to promote simple, minimal blogging, and don't let you tweak too much. Blot is one of those services, which I use for my linkblog. You could also try Posthaven, if you don't care about your content. So basically, the lesson of this whole thing is, use what works for you, and don't just use what everyone else uses because you think it's absolutely necessary.

Sunday, October 2, 2016

31 Days of Simple blogging: day 2.

Ok, I'm going to try and be fast! I have exactly 19 minutes to get this done and if this falls a few minutes short, I'll be cheating on this one and back-dating it... OK? Lol I only do that if they fall short by a few minutes.
You don't have to have a niche/topic.
OK, we just skipped straight to 26 in the list, (obviously I'm doing these out of order)! Now I know this is contrary to well... practically all the blogging advice you read out there. If you just look at this search on ProBlogger, there are so many posts dedicated to the idea of niches. Whether it's helping you pick one, helping you use the right keywords, etc. Whatever it is, I didn't have time to go through all the posts there. this post from 2015 gives reasons why you should keep a personal blog along with a niche blog, (note: this was found while searching, I don't recognize the blog, never been there before.) This ProBlogger post from 2010 explains why you should start a personal blog, but apparently only keep one until you find a niche. As someone who was about to get into the extremely saturated blogs about blogging niche, (I was going to kick off my new blog with this challenge,) then had second thoughts because well... obviously the niche is saturated! oh yeah, and as someone who runs a linkblog that isn't topic-oriented, I definitely disagree with the advice that you absolutely need to find a niche! Here's where I insert a bit of a disclaimer: of course, you might just absolutely love your niche, that's great! I'm not saying niche blogging is bad, just that you don't absolutely have to do it. Oh and if you're aiming to make a decent living from your blog, (something that's getting extremely hard these days,) then you might want to blog in a niche or 2 or 3 or 4 or however many blogs you think you can possibly run without stressing yourself out. End long disclaimer here! So I'm pretty much as well-rounded in my reading as I am with writing, I'll tell ya what, I have all my RSS feeds in a text file since adding them by hand is actually easier than importing them sometimes, as it doesn't preserve any folder structure that I have to deal with anyway... I'll just put them in this Dropbox public folder I have sitting right here, and give everyone a link so you can see everything I read. here's a really long list of feeds!

31 days of simple blogging: day 1

So I'm actually starting on day 2 because I totally procrastinated yesterday. We went out to dinner at OliveGarden for mom's birthday and when the nearest Olive Garden is an hour and a half away, and you don't get home until 9:00, and you're tired from the car trip, blogging goes on the back burner. Anyway, I probably should've written a bit more about this topic when I introduced it, but I... didn't. I've been blogging for 13 years in July of this year, and I think I've picked up a lot of things along the way. Most of them are contrary to the regular advice you read out there and some, like this first one, are extremely basic, (and I thought about using it as a the tagline for a new blog.)
Blogging should be fun.
OK OK so that's really simple! Oh and don't get me wrong, there are stressful parts of blogging! I've done a lot of blog migrations this year, some were just to test services to see how they work for me, (they didn't,) and others were real ones. Blog migrations and having to get off my server to avoid paying $191 isn't easy! Oh and I suppose if you own a big blogging network, wait... do any of those still exist? I'm pretty sure it's 100% stressfull. If you just run a couple blogs, though, it should still be mostly fun, (in my opinion, of course). So what's fun about it? Well, if you answer the door in your underwear and someone who turns out to be the FedEx guy says, "uh... I think we have the wrong place," and you think, "that would definitely make a good blog post!" Later that night you actually sit down to write said post, that's the fun part of blogging! If you have a few things that go together well and you get all excited because you're like, "yay! I can write a list post!" that's also the fun part of blogging. Oh yeah, and if you enjoy looking back in your archives from 3-4 years ago to see what the posts look like around the same time of year, that's also a lot of fun! in the post This blog is not having an identity crisis I detail some of my reasons for blogging in this post. Answering mom's questions I attempt to provide a shorter version of the reasons in this one. I'm the kind of person that attempts to enjoy life in everything I do, so if you don't enjoy blogging/writing you just might want to try something new. OK, that was long, and now I have to write another one!