Hello, world! Welcome to another installment of Become a Blogger Mondays! I’ve noticed that some of the main blogs I follow seem to never stop. It’s as if the person’s site is operating 24 hours and no beats are skipped. Naturally, that makes me go “YIKES!” because, as you all know, I don’t blog 24 hours a day. I’m still learning the ropes, therefore I notice major details like this and I wonder what makes the popular sites so popular! I’ve come to a couple of conclusions and one of them being that you can never tell when “life” takes over. I’ve got to be better at posting even when I have SO much going on (I’m slapping my own hand right now). The other conclusion that I came to is that they must be so successful that they have a staff of writers to help them out. They must be on a “life” schedule so that when “it” happens, someone else is there to pick up the slack. So, in ultimate conclusion, I don’t feel that bad anymore lol. When LIFE happens, just go with the flow and hope that a ghost writer shows up to help you soon (hee hee)! Happy Monday folks!
become a blogger mondays
Is it a Dream or is it Jockin’? – B.B.M.
Well helloooooooooo, world! No, I haven’t totally gotten rid of my Become a Blogger Mondays series, but you all know that I won’t write if I’m not feeling it. With that said, we can all assume that there must be SOMEthing that I’m feeling! I’ve sat back and watched and observed and pondered and…OK you get the point! I’ve just been taking note of all the brains going a million miles a minute. I’ve paid attention to those around me who are pursuing their dreams and it’s so great to see the creative wheels turning…it’s a source of inspiration for everyone when this happens.
However, I think for some it’s just a fad. Like, do you get the impression that everyone has a blog? Or a clothing line? Or they make jewelry? Or they rap? Or they sing? That kind of annoys me. It makes me wonder, are you doing this for you? Or are you doing this just because you want to be like everybody else? Or because you THINK this is how you can get rich? If it’s coming from the heart and it’s something that you genuinely love to do or you take seriously, I 100% support it, but if I get the feeling that you’re just doing it “just because” then I may give you that “look”. Follow your dreams and passions, but make them your own…add your own spin to it…be original and even when it gets hard, KEEP going…that’s how I can tell if you’re really about business or just herding with the masses.
Let others inspire you, but don’t become them! BE YOU!
Blog Even When You Don’t Want To: Become a Blogger Mondays!
Do you think that it’s all just peaches and cream around here? As if every week I want to write and write and write? I hate to burst your cyber bubble, but that’s just not the case (lol). I do have days, maybe even weeks, when I just don’t feel like blogging…there…I admitted it…go call the blogging police and have me arrested! Sometimes I get angry phone calls from my BFF and friends and it basically goes something like this:
Friend: Dani, WHAT THE HELL is wrong with you?!
Me: What are you talking about?
Friend: Why haven’t you been blogging? GET IT TOGETHER!
Me: Geez! Fine! Can I take a week off sometimes?
Friend: Don’t make me cuss you out!
That’s my life! Getting threats on the regular (lol)! So, with that said, here is my weekend recap! Even though I don’t feel like doing it because I’m still recovering and oh-so-tired, I’m “getting it together” for my Become a Blogger Mondays series:
1. I had a GREAT time this weekend! It started with a retro themed party for my second mom who is 50 and FABULOUS! It took me forever to get my outfit together, but I finally chose to dress like a back-in-the-day girl with the victory curls, the scarf around the neck, the tapered black pants and a cute sweater. My hair was the highlight of my night since it took me forever to get it just right. Here you go! A peek at the finished product:
2. My Saturday day/night was somewhat crazier! My homie, Joy, came over to help me pack (yes, I’m moving!) and in between celebration shots (yes, I drink!) we ate and danced and just goofed out all the way! As I mentioned on Friday, we went to see Kevin Hart perform (he was hella funny) and then we club hopped until about 4am! It was definitely a night to remember and here we are, about to head out (excuse the mess on the floor, I am moving/packing after all)!
3. I wish I could say that I did something just as fun on Sunday, but I spent most of the day sleeping and nursing myself back to normalcy (lol)!
What did you do this weekend? Was it fun? Was it crazy?
Become a Blogger Mondays: Spread Your Wings!!!
Hello, Dreamworld! Welcome back for another segment of Become a Blogger Mondays! As you know, I like to share my experiences and advice about what I’ve learned within the blogging realm, thus far. By now, the new bloggers who began on this journey with me are not so new anymore! They have a little bit of experience under their belt and are trying to boost their brand, their reach and their content. I can’t stress enough how important expansion is for your site. A couple of weeks ago I discussed consistency in posting, but once you’ve developed your consistency, it’s time to take it to the next level. Here are some tips on how to SPREAD YOUR WINGS:
1. You don’t just want to tap into your regular following.
It’s extremely imperative that you are dipping into unique pools of visitors, followers, readers, etc. Gaining momentum is all about expanding past that group and making “new” people aware of what you have going on.
2. So how in the heck do you do this? Well, social media will be your new BFF!
Writers, journalists, artists, etc. all have a distinct advantage in 2012. We have the world at our finger tips. Use what resources you can…that’s what I call the “low hanging fruit!”. Don’t be afraid to post your links/articles on Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, etc. As you know, word of mouth is POWERFUL!!! So a friend can pass along your site link to their friends and it creates a domino effect and before you know it, there are people you don’t even know reading your stuff.
3. It’s not just a virtual world…get back to the basics.
There’s something to be said about people who still have the ability to speak in-person and network. Sure, social sites are amazing, but be sure that you are still MEETING people and giving that good ol’ firm hand shake. What do I do? I go to events, I volunteer, I work with other bloggers, I sign up for media coverage at events…there’s so many things that you can do to physically be in someone’s presence. I must say, sometimes that can leave more of a lasting impression than just forwarding a link along.
4. Don’t be afraid!
It’s hard to just put yourself out there and share your mind with the world, but don’t let that stop you. Fight past the nerves and be open! What’s the worse that can happen? Someone doesn’t like what you write? So what! You write for you and followers are just a bonus. Be confident and don’t psyche yourself out.
I hope this has helped you on your blogging journey! Feel free to ask any questions and/or add your own tips! Thanks for visiting Danithedreamgirl!
Become a Blogger Mondays: Be Consistent!
Hello Everyone! Thank you for visiting my world for another edition of “Become a Blogger Mondays!” As you know, there are many benefits of having a blog site, but in order to keep reaping those benefits, you must be diligent in posting regularly. Everything is pretty much tied to how often you post, when you post, the things you post about etc., so it is important to remain consistent in staying true to your readers and build a rapport with the virtual world. Here are some tips and examples of what has helped me remain consistent with posting:
1. Create set days for posting.
It took some time for me to realize that this was key, but with some guidance and following successful blogs, it was clear that setting a schedule for myself would really help with creating posts on a weekly basis. For example, I block out Mondays, Tuesdays and Fridays for definite posts, so anything that I may feel the need to post in between those days, is strictly at my leisure (i.e. no pressure).
2. Keep a personal “life schedule”.
No matter what I have going on or no matter how busy I am throughout the day, I always set at least a half an hour aside to work on my site (sometimes more). This time can be used for anything (writing, maintenance, design, etc.).
3. I stick to my blog’s overall theme, but throw a curveball every once in a while.
I think it’s important to give the readers what you say you are going to give them. My whole blog is based around chasing your dreams, living outside of the box, inspiring others to follow their dreams by interviewing people who have made it or are on their way, etc. But every once in while, I like to have fun with my posts and tap into a unique visitor pool. I manage to remain consistently inconsistent (lol).
4. I put it in perspective.
When all else fails, I force myself to maintain my site. In order for me to achieve the goals I’ve set forth for, danithedreamgirl.com, I need to stay on top of what I do.
As always, I hope this helps and feel free to add your tips in the “Comments” section. Happy blogging and I will see you next week!
Become a Blogger Mondays: How Will They Recognize Me?
There was a slight intermission last week so that I could bring you details about my Trillectro experience. Now, I’m back for another segment of Become a Blogger Mondays and will be diving into how to begin branding your site! Of course, some may opt out of this, but if you are serious about your blog and about gaining some visibility, branding is inevitable. I, for one, was excited about taking my first step towards being recognizable. Here are some tips and for those that also blog, feel free to add to my list in the “Comments” section.
1. I narrowed down the colors I wanted to use!
First and foremost, I knew the colors I wanted to use. I couldn’t figure out the “one” so I just used all three (purple, pink and blue).
2. I had to figure out what image would portray me and something that was dream-like.
I needed to blend a few things. The feeling of confidence, following dreams, femininity and determination. All of this in one image? Yup! I also had a pretty decent idea that I wanted to be looking upward in my logo, as a way to show me moving towards my dreams. This was the picture that my bestie took of me that inspired the direction I wanted to go in:
3. Someone had to design all of these thoughts in my head.
I’m lucky and blessed enough to have some great designers in my circle who do amazing work. Pick someone who is good and don’t rush the process.
4. Start placing your logo where you need to!
If you take pics for an event…place your logo on the images before releasing them. If you’re sending an official document on behalf of your blog…place your logo on the document (i.e. letterhead). Don’t over-saturate your site with it, but the more people see it, the more people will recognize it and you! Let’s call it “tasteful placement”…
Branding is so important. However, remember that building it is a full-time job. Take ownership of it and be sure that it represents exactly what you want. I hope this helps and again, please add any additional tips in the “Comments” section. Be sure to check back next Monday folks!
B.B.M.: Grammar is YOUR Friend!
Welcome back for another installment of, Become a Blogger Mondays! It’s amazing that you’ve found your site and are starting to pick which topics to blog about. This is a very exciting time; trust me, I know! However it’s always important to stick with the basics when it comes to writing. A little grammar can go a long way *wink*…again, trust me…I know!
There are certain pet peeves I secretly contain within my mind and it is NOT easy turning the other way when I see poorly written posts (remember my interview with blogger, Jasmine the Brand?). Ever go to a site that has the BEST design, great topics of discussion, great interviews, etc., but when you get into the “meat” of the post, you can barely comprehend it? You feel my pain (I know you do!). It’s like looking at a pretty car that’s all scratched up; you have to ask yourself, “why even bother buying that piece of crap?” Well, that’s how I feel about improper grammar on blogs! In this day and age, there is no reason for poorly written sentences, lack of punctuation, horrible spelling…you get the picture. Look, we ALL make mistakes, but eventually you need to be proud of the work you put out to the world and bad grammar should NOT be a consistent mishap when writing. So, rather than slap your hand with a ruler and take recess away from you offenders, I’m going to give you some pointers that have helped me in doing a pretty good job with proper grammar!
1. Always, always, always PROOF your work before publishing it.
It only takes a few minutes to go back and re-read your post; it’s really not that bad. I’m actually obsessed with going over my work before you lovely people get a chance to read it (maybe that’s the English major in me).
2. Have a friend read your post for you.
I have the luxury of being able to send my work to a close friend (who is also a grammar Nazi…worse than me!) before I publish a post. Another set of eyes can never hurt and they may also be able to catch things that you missed as a result of staring at the same screen for a long period of time.
3. Always use spell check as a FINAL step.
I say “FINAL” because proofing is still the most effective way to catch major grammatical errors. Spell check is just the easy way out!
4. Make sure your computer is set up to highlight incorrect words, punctuation, fragments, etc.
This is self explanatory…just do it!
5. Read more!
Most people might not think to do this, but reading more can actually help you in a lot of ways. It will not only increase your vocabulary, but it will also provide repetition in reading proper sentence formations. Of course, this all depends on what you choose to read, but you get what I’m trying to say.
I hope you’ve learned something useful today! Remember, it’s very important to pay attention to GRAMMAR! Take pride in your work because there’s no quicker way to lose credibility than to sound like a 3rd grader through your writing. If I see nothing but typos on a site, I won’t even finish reading the post. I will automatically stop taking the blogger/writer seriously.
Come back next week for, Become a Blogger Mondays…not sure what I’m going to discuss yet, but that’s the beauty of having my own site! I get to do what I want, BIATCH! Did you catch me spell that cuss word wrong? Good! You’re learning already! But, there are effective ways to use improper grammar after all…did I just confuse you? GOOD! Adios, Dreamers!
B.B.M…What the HECK Should I Blog About?!
Welcome back for another week of, “BECOME A BLOGGER MONDAYS”!!!
By now you’ve decided that blogging is for you and you have chosen which site is best for you as well. Ok, so now comes the FUN part! You get to write about ANYthing! When I first started writing I didn’t know exactly what I’d be sharing with the world, but I knew the message I wanted to get across. Here are some helpful tips on HOW to decide what to write about:
1. Know the reason WHY you want to blog.
For me, the reason was simple…I wanted to inspire others. Just tap into what motivates you and that’s the first step to your success.
2. Figure out what you want your end result to be.
Some people blog for their business, others want to make money on the side and some just do it for the fun of it all. So, whether you want to use your “stage” as a means to an end or to simply document an online journal, you must decipher what you ultimately want to see happen with your blog. Knowing this will allow you to further hone in on what you want to focus on.
3. Make it FUN!
When I say this, it’s more for you, rather than your readers. Of course, you want to captivate your audience, but if you don’t enjoy what you’re writing about then no one will.
4. Be diverse in your topics.
Starting out, you’re going to want to be consistent in your topics; this will help form your target audience. BUT! BUT! BUT! Every once in a while, it will be nice for your readers to see a different side of you, i.e. if you’re serious then make it funny, if you’re funny then maybe write about a more serious/personal topic. Diversity will help expand past your target audience! One thing that I do often is reach out to my readers. I ask them what they want to read about, I ask them their thoughts on my topics of discussion and most importantly, I open myself up for constructive criticism.
Whatever you choose to share with the world, is all up to you! Remain true to what you know and the rest will fall into place. Happy BLOGGING everyone! Make sure to come back next Monday when I discuss, “Grammar is YOUR Friend!!!”
B.B.M. (Become a Blogger Mondays) Which Site is Right for You?!
Welcome back to B.B.M.! Last week I discussed how to decide if blogging was right for you and seeing as though you’ve come back for a second week, that means you’re ready to begin your blogging journey (which makes me so happy). So, let’s jump right in and get down to business!
Of course the next big step is to find a site to call home. Now, if you are anything like I was, you will have no clue how to make this decision. Here are the steps that I took in finding a site that was just right for me:
1. I opened my mouth to ask questions.
Sometimes it can be intimidating to ask the most basic questions, but you will find that it is often the best option. Ask around and see what other bloggers are doing. You may even find it helpful to ask people with a tech background (which is what I did) to see which sites are user-friendly and offer the best features.
2. Google became my friend!
Pretty much anything that you need to research can be found online…information is right at your fingertips. Any and everything that I could think of, I researched, i.e. types of blogs, did I like blogs with or without a lot of pictures?, did I skip over sites with a lot of writing?, colors, etc. By looking at what others are doing, you can really begin to shape ideas for your site, which means you can target one that is right for you.
3. I was honest about my likes and dislikes.
While you continue your research, pay attention to what catches your eye (and not just the obvious details). It may make sense to ask a friend if you can take a “tour” of their site to see how it works “behind the scenes”. There are certain features that I like about my site, that I didn’t find elsewhere. For example, I love that WordPress is really “professional” and up-to-date. They take the time to help new users and they constantly update layout themes, add-ons, widgets, etc. for the regulars who want something new. If I have any questions, I can always ask a WordPress staff member and I can also search through forums for answers to ALL of my questions. Of course, other sites offer things that I don’t get with WordPress, but when I weigh the pros and cons, I know I’ve chosen wisely. So, before you go signing up, make sure you are critical of your options!
4. Just make a choice…I did!
If after all of this, you still aren’t sure which site is best for you, then just pick ONE! What’s the worse that can happen? You don’t like it? TIP: When I first signed up with WordPress, I didn’t make my site live right away. I played around with different layout themes and I practiced writing new posts. I learned how to do the simple things like loading an image or creating tags (something you’ll learn more about). Have fun with the decision-making process!