|Photo Credit: nImA Destiny|
In celebration of Roses to Rainbows' first year in the blogosphere, I would like to share with you some of the things I have learned and people I've met.
1. Getting comments.
After six months of the occasional visitor and no comments, I decided to look for help. An internet search landed me on Barbara Swafford's Blogging Without a Blog
. She taught me the importance of reading and commenting on fellow bloggers' posts. This is one of the most valuable lessons I learned, and led me to eventually write on the value of comments
2. A new type of pen pal.
In years past, a pen pal was someone with whom you exchanged written letters, but probably had never met. Nowadays, with the popularity of the internet, the pen pal has changed. The computer screen has replaced stationery, and the keyboard has replaced the pen. We frequently exchange thoughts with people we haven't met; does this make us pen pals?
3. People will give you things.
I got a lovely purple pen from my friend Margaret at Nanny Goats in Panties
, that I use to rough out some of my posts. She mentioned it in one of her posts, and I asked if she was selling them. "No, but I'll send you one." Thanks Margaret.
4. Writing can be fun.
I discovered Magpie Tales
, a blog dedicated to creative writing. Willow, from Life at Willow Manor, posts a picture prompt every week, and writers from all around the world participate with original short stories and poetry.
5. Writing can be frustrating.
There are also hours...days even...that you sit and stare at a blank screen or sheet of paper waiting for the right words to come along and bail your bloggy butt out of writing purgatory. Here
are my tips for beating writer's block.
6. Bloggers form support groups. Tribal Blogs
is a network for serious bloggers, started by Jen of Redhead Ranting
. It is filled with friendly, supportive people willing to share information, and give advice (when asked, of course).
7. Blogs can take on a life of their own.
I had different ideas about what my blog would become. I wanted to create a source of local information to help people find good bargains and special events around town. Problem - no local readers. After finding #4, I began to realize that writing was more interesting to me and more appealing to others, thus changing the focus of my blog.
8. "Build it and they will come" does not apply to blogging.
When I first started out, I thought I could just create a blog, publish posts and wait for people to show up. Well, I guess that is true in part...the waiting part. See Item #1.
9. What widgets and gadgets really are
. I thought widgets and gadets were things usually found in one's junk drawer. They are actually those little blocks found on your sidebar, containing code that put text and/or graphics on your blog. Speaking of the Junk Drawer
, "Hi Kathy".
10. I have a lot more to learn.
I guess this is the most important thing I have learned thus far. I am learning every day, by reading, experimenting; what works, and what doesn't. It is all part of the process of blogging, and I am happily looking forward my next year in the blogosphere.
I have met so many helpful and encouraging people that I couldn't begin list them all here, but you know who you are. I do want to send out a special thank you to my friend Sara from A Sharing Connection. She has been right there encouraging me ever since the first comment I left on her one of her photo story posts. This was my initial venture into creative writing.
The Quote of the Week
will return next week.