I’ve been blogging off-and-on since September of 2005, when I was bored silly at an office job and needed a creative outlet. After a few years, my life took a different turn and I stopped blogging for a while. I became serious about blogging again in 2017.
One of the things that I loved about blogging in those early days was the community that it nurtured. I still treasure many of the relationships that blogging brought into my life.
That’s why I’m so pleased to participate in the Blogger Recognition Awards. Once you have been nominated for the award, you’re asked to:
- Thank the blogger who nominated you with a link to the post.
- Write a post on your own blog about receiving the award.
- Tell the story of why you started your blog.
- Offer two pieces of advice you have for new bloggers.
- Nominate 15 other bloggers for the Award.
- Notify your nominees.
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Two Pieces of Advice for New Bloggers
1. Don’t Stress
When you’ve been blogging as long as I have, you hear from a lot of new bloggers. So many times, they say something like this:
“Help!! I’m so overwhelmed! I can’t figure this out!!!”
It makes me so sad. Yes, there’s a learning curve. But we’re not proving the Theory of Relativity here. We’re just sharing our own unique experiences and perspectives in hopes that they’ll help and inspire other people.
I think a lot of times these new bloggers think they have to have everything perfect right from the get-go. You don’t! You can’t! That’s like waiting to buy a 10-room house until you have exactly all the right furniture, draperies, and art. It doesn’t work that way. You have to let the house be a living thing and grow with you over time. The same is true with your blog. Go at your own pace. Learn your own way. Experiment. Have fun!
2. Polish Your Content First
It’s your content that’s going to bring people to your blog and keep them coming back. This is what you should emphasize first.
Good content is content that benefits your readers in some way: exposing them to new places to travel, showing them how to do something, edifying them with new knowledge, encouraging them to make their lives and the lives of their loved ones a little better in some way.
Good content is also content that is well written–clear, tight, organized, and grammatically correct. And in today’s market, it needs good photography–clear images that support your prose by being interesting, intriguing, inspiring.
You’ll hear a lot of advice about all the things you have to do to get people to read your blog: You have to build your email list! You have to research long-tail key words! You have to create pretty 2:3 pins! You have to post 10 times daily on twitter, three times on facebook, and once on Instagram!
These are helpful suggestions. And I encourage you to adopt and adapt them at your own pace and in your own style. But they won’t do you any good at all if your content doesn’t shine.
Would you like some examples of good blogs?
My nominees are:
I fell in love with travel on a trip to Mexico when I was nine years old. Since then, I’ve travelled the globe from Israel to El Salvador. I’ve skied the Swiss Alps and hiked national parks like Acadia, Zion, Shenandoah, and Virgin Islands. I’ve marvelled at masterpieces in the Prado, the Uffizi, the Huntington, and the National Gallery of Art. I’ve stayed in a cabin on a mountaintop in Norway and on a kibbutz along the Sea of Galilee, and been kicked out of the Ritz at the Place Vendôme. I’ve taken cooking classes from New England to the Caribbean, and watched a chef prepare traditional shakshuka in the kitchen of his restaurant in Tel Aviv. I weave historical research and my personal experiences together in writing this blog. I hope you find it helpful. Read more …