Guest Post- My Experience Starting a Blog

By Beverly Harvey

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“Fear Not!” said the Blogger Angel

Little did I know when I first read one of Wendy’s posts she would become a “blogger angel” to me.

Wendy is proactive in making new friends in the blogosphere and generous with sharing her knowledge. She is a person to emulate if you want success in your blog writing. Wendy puts my favorite axiom into practice every day: there’s enough room for all of us out here and we must not fear competition. Helping people succeed helps us become successful.

I happened upon Wendy’s blog site because she posted on a LinkedIn discussion group. I couldn’t figure out how to do it, so I sent her an email. She responded quickly with the answer. The change produced a large jump in traffic on my site, and I was grateful for her help.

I always felt tech savvy when it came to using different software programs. I’m not afraid to open up every window on the screen and see what’s available for me to use. Just because I want to do something I haven’t been taught, doesn’t mean I won’t try to do it. With this background I set off to start a blog, not having a clue how to set it up.

My initial reason for blogging was that I wrote a book (still in draft form) and wanted to build a writer’s platform online. I never would have thought about blogging if it wasn’t for the publishing “experts” who said writers must have one. I did research for months and read what people said about various blogging platforms before choosing WordPress. I was nervous to start the project; afraid the technology would defeat me, despite not usually being intimidated by it.

Starting a blog was a HUGE learning curve for me. Building a web site wasn’t like anything I had done online in the past. One day I tired of reading about it and just jumped in. I didn’t know that WordPress would walk me through the set up process. It was almost easy. I decided to master creating a post and publishing it first; then how to get the post to show up on social media; and then on the next post I would figure out how to add a photo, and then a video, etc. I took one hard thing at a time and figured it out in each successive post. This allowed me to not feel overwhelmed right at the start. I gave myself permission to take it slow. I continue to read about blogging from the “experts” because there are always new things to learn, but I am now less afraid to try something new. It was all fear of the unknown.

Today, I am happy to tell people I blog about “cat society.” I share anecdotes and advice about cats. I write about cat issues that pop up in the news. I never know what I’ll come up with for a post. It is always different, but I hope interesting or fun for my readers. Blogging for me is now bigger than creating a platform to promote a future book. I enjoy blogging just because I’m able to write all the time, and about a subject I’m nuts about (have I mentioned I love cats?), and I meet some great people online. I’ll keep doing it even if I never get the book published!

Realize that you don’t have to know how to do everything on the first day your site goes live. Don’t be afraid to read the help files, or visit support sites, or ask questions on discussion sites about blogging. People are very helpful. Before long, you’ll be giving other people advice and telling them how you got started.

Stop by and see what I’ve created at: http://moggiepurrs.wordpress.com and, if you wish, please leave a comment.

Wendy McCance

Wendy McCance is a Michigan based freelance writer and social media consultant. Wendy has gained attention as the founder of the popular blog Searching for the Happiness which can be viewed in 9 local papers online, including the Oakland Press. The combination of writing skills and social media knowledge is what makes Wendy such a powerhouse to work with. Stay tuned for opportunities to advertise, guest post and as always, have your questions answered.

To contact Wendy McCance about a writing or social media assignment, interview or speaking engagement, please email her at: mccance.wendy@gmail.com

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10 thoughts on “Guest Post- My Experience Starting a Blog

  1. I am an oft overwhelmed newbie in the blog world. Never really planned on a blog til it seemed too obvious to ignore on my book website. I am unsure how often to post and what to cover. My book is on “having a good life, with multiple sclerosis (MS) in it.” Open to suggestions.

    • Hi Mary Ellen,
      Thanks so much for stopping by. Your book sounds terrific. As far as posting goes, I would suggest at least 4 times a week. Your posts can be small, but you lose traction and followers when there are too many spaces between when you post. As far as what to post, post what you are passionate about. Maybe you can relate everything back to the theme of your book. Examples: Healthy meals, activities you enjoy, how you feel about personal subjects, relationships with others and how MS might affect those relationships. Maybe you are crafty and would just like to talk about crafts. The main goal is for your readers to be able to get to know you. Think of it like opening up to a pen pal. I hope this helps. Wishing you lots of success and a fun journey ahead. 🙂

    • Hi Mary Ellen,
      I agree with Wendy Mccance. One thing I would like to add is that the opposite helps too. You can write about what frustrates you in today’s society or in your relative niche. It brings emotion out to the content which will help in making it rich content. In addition, most business start by focusing on a problem in society and fixing that problem.
      Scratch your own itch . 🙂

  2. Thanks Beverly for your post. I am usually not timid about the simple computer programs…excel, word, etc. But when it came to a blog, I left that to my son the computer guru. And like the plumber whose own home has a leaky faucet, I have been put on the back burner more than once. He has built me a great website (judywatters.com); however, I need to learn all the whistles and bells on it to move forward when he’s not around. I guess there’s nothing like taking the plunge. Thanks for the encouragement.

  3. Starting out in blogland can be unnerving but once we take the first step and write and then hit publish and before you know it you are a blogger………….this was a bloody awesome post

  4. Great post Beverly, great advice and many congratulations! You have certainly been most encouraging to me and my new blog by finding me in the first place and very kindly making mention of my blog on your site which I really appreciated 🙂 I was just like you at the beginning, just decided to jump right in even though I didn’t have a clue at first how to go about it but so glad to have chosen WordPress and its inbuilt step-by-step support. Taking things slowly is so right! Your advice about getting involved in discussion sites about blogging is particularly good advice, many thanks for that and I don’t feel quite so nervous about doing so now!

  5. Beverly- You are so encouraging! It can be so scary to take on anything new and challenging. But you did such a great job in encouraging us to do it one step at a time. We hear that all the time but when we are faced with something challenging or exciting we just want to jump all in right away! For me, that means I am usually overwhelmed in the end. I love your simple one step at at time. No rush. No pressure. No fear. Thanks so much!! Congrats on your success!
    Vicky

  6. Boy isn’t that the truth. Just when you think you’ve done everything just right something happens that gives the willies. Taking it slow is always a good thing. I have a tendency to push a little to hard and then panic when it breaks (not really, but it feels that way sometimes). Loved the post, it something any blogger can relate to on SOOO many levels… LOL. 🙂

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