Category: Prompts

Where My Blog Will Be In The Future

where my blog will be in the future

I wasn’t sure what to blog about today. I decided not to do a “Things I’m Thankful For” post because, well, I’m thankful for a lot and being the non-traditionalist I am at times I didn’t want to do what many others were doing. Besides, it’s not a traditional type of day in my home. Instead of turkey and mom’s party potatoes (potatoes are the only thing I care about, forget the rest), I bought a Papa Murphy’s pizza. It was a nice change in food (but I do want potatoes).

The NaBloPoMo daily blog prompt from BlogHer arrived in my inbox this morning, and I thought it was a good choice for a topic. It has me contemplating where my blog will be in the future.

Where do I see my blog in one year? Five years?

Who can see the future? If I dare to dream though, I will have at least over 125 more posts published on this blog by this time next year. The number right now is a bit scary to my eyes. I know I can do 30 days in a row of posting, so 125 spread out over the course of a year shouldn’t be too bad. Right?

At any rate, I’d like to take this blog and make it grow into an eventual part-time job. It might be putting the cart before the horse, but I have had a strong spurt of motivation and creativity through the NaBloPoMo challenge. This blog has been sitting here getting dusty for some time. I believe I first set up WordPress and found a theme in 2011 or 2012. I had also started a Second Life fashion blog around then. However, I wanted a personal one too.

When you first set up a blog, you want it to be perfect right from the start. You want the site to feel comfortable and familiar, like your personal space at home. I learned that yes, you do need to find a look that represents you, but making it feel totally like home takes time. It won’t feel that way if it stays empty.

Once I had found a theme, I needed the name. I was a little stuck there. So my site just sat…again.

I thought about it from time to time, fiddled with plugins, researched tips on what other bloggers deemed essential when beginning to blog. I learned more about SEO, social networking, and how people turn their skills into fun hobbies and careers they enjoy. It was such an appealing idea to get writing. I had blogged on Myspace for awhile in years past, I wanted to do it again; but I kept feeling held back by one reason or another.

Ugh, the excuses our inner selves make for us!

I think however, the time just has to be right for everything to come together. At times it just comes together slower than others. An online friend helped me in finally choosing my domain and site name, he helped me design my logo after I settled on a different theme, then I let the site sit for a little while once again.

I blogged a few times in 2013 and earlier in 2014. I asked a couple people to read my writing and give me feedback. I wasn’t sounding like myself. I was too stiff. They told me it was like I was trying too hard to write correctly, as if I was writing for college assignments. I tended to agree with that. What I was writing sounded exactly like that!

Anyway, now that I have a handle on it and have remedied that particular issue, I feel much better in this space of mine. I am confident enough in my writer’s voice to think blogging could potentially lead to exciting opportunities for personal and perhaps professional growth. I know I still have work to do in many areas. Learning and experimenting are the fun parts of the whole process!

So, in the future I see my blog growing as I do. Getting better and publishing more high quality content in time. Maybe I will share other creative projects here as well. I have some high hopes. When the challenge of NaBloPoMo is over and I get into a regular routine, I will have a better idea of where the blog will go. Five years is a bit far out for me to assess where this all might lead.

I am excited to continue on the journey and to see where this road takes me!

Where do you see your blog in the future? Or if you have been blogging for awhile, how far has your blog come since your first few months? Comment below!

The One Blogger Skill

One Blogger Skill BlogHer Prompt

I am taking the BlogHer NaBloPoMo prompt that landed in my email today and I’m going to roll with it! As bloggers, we are always trying to improve our skills. One week we are learning and tweaking our SEO, the next we are researching how to take better photos. There are a lot of things we are trying to do in rapid succession. But we all have the one blogger skill we hope to get a better grasp of so that we master it. Until then, we see this skill in our favorite bloggers, and admire what they are doing with that skill.

I love reading about the personal experiences of other bloggers and how they are helping themselves and their sites grow. When they write posts about what they learn, it helps the rest of us too. We get to read about what that person tried and discovered, as well as what worked best for them–or didn’t work at all. While every blog is different, in reading what others have done we can make more informed choices on how to progress with our own blogs.

The one blogger skill I wish I had that I often see in others is the ability to plan an editorial calendar. Granted, I think I needed the NaBloPoMo challenge to give me the extra push I needed to focus and become more determined to get myself into my writing groove. Deciding to do this gave me some confidence in my ability to write regularly and share. But as I touched on a bit in yesterday’s post, I wish I would have planned some content in advance.

Some of the bloggers I follow regularly have written about editorial calendars and how much they help in the content creation process. This is something I will be trying once this challenge is done and I determine what days of the week I will be posting. The daily thing is not a routine I can continue after November, so I will knock it down to 2-3 posts per week. I think that is still a pretty good goal, and hopefully with an editorial calendar I can plan things out a few weeks in advance.

Do you utilize an editorial calendar? How is it working for you?

 

10 Questions: Game of Thrones Meme

Game of Thrones Meme

I am obsessed with Game of Thrones. I love it. It’s the best thing since sliced bread and then some. I’m not just talking about the show either, the books are just as addicting to me if not more.

The fantasy genre has never really been something I was crazy about. Don’t get me wrong, there are some great fantasy movies and books out there, but I have never felt strongly compelled to give them attention. I tried watching Lord of the Rings and it really bored me. I have seen a few of the Harry Potter movies, but didn’t get into them much either. I didn’t even try with that book series.

Usually when there is a book or movie that is given a massive load of hype, I run the other way. I ran screaming from Twilight like no other (not literally)!

Game of Thrones has me though. Perhaps it’s because it’s very medieval, and I enjoy historical settings and costume. GoT isn’t history, it’s in a fictional land with a certain amount of magic and fantasy woven into a good mix of drama, action, wit, and intrigue. George R. R. Martin just had a great formula when he began the book series. It keeps the reader wanting more.

I started watching the show in order to see and understand why it was all the rage. I hadn’t read the books, and I had just watched the Tudor series on Netflix and was looking for a new show to watch. When I saw the first episode, I had been a bit leery. There was a beheading in the first half (ewww…), and I think I remember the whitewalkers (aka zombies) being in the first episode too. If you know me, you understand my hatred of zombies! Regardless, I decided to continue on.

Once I got caught up with the show, I asked myself if I wanted to delve into the books. I waited until the last season was done airing, and this August decided to crack open A Song of Ice and Fire. Now it is November and I am one fourth into A Dance With Dragons which is the fifth book. I think I might be a little lost when I am done reading it! I will have to wait until the next installment comes out before I can continue.

I thought today I would answer some GoT questions as a blog prompt or meme. If you are a follower of the show or book series, feel free to answer these questions yourself as a blog post, and put a link to your answers in the comments below!

Game of Thrones Questions

Who is your favorite GoT character?

Tyrion. His wit makes the show! Sometimes you want him to shut up so he might save his own ass from getting into yet another predicament, but he figures everyone is out to get him anyway, so why not be a smartass?

Which GoT character would you choose to be and why?

Daenerys Targaryen. I am sure that is a common choice! Although her life hasn’t been without struggle, she’s coming out on top as she gets older. She is smart, gol oriented, kind, but not one to be messed with. She is also a pretty fair ruler. This bites her in the ass sometimes, but she learns from her mistakes and proceeds with caution.

Who is your least favotite GoT character?

It’s really a tie between Joffrey, Cersei, and Tywin. The more I read of Cersei in the books however, she is the worst. I have a feeling she will get her punishment in the end.

If you had to travel across Westeros with a companion or two, who would it be? Keep in mind, there may be danger along the Kingsroad!

Jon Snow and Samwell Tarly. Weird choice, I know. I think when on a trip across Westeros, it would be good to have a strong swordsman, and someone who is really intelligent to help keep the group on track and know other useful information. Plus, between the two I am sure they have plenty of stories to pass the time!

What weapon would you choose to wield in GoT?

Either a sword like Needle if it had to be an actual piece of weaponry, or knowledge and cunning. Physical weapons are important, but if you are a fool in GoT, you won’t last long for sure.

If you were going to live in Westeros, where would you choose to make a home?

Dorne. It’s warm there, they have stayed out of a lot of political stuff, and women can rule. Also, if you were born a bastard, they don’t ostracize you as the other parts of Westeros do. The make it such a huge deal in the rest of Westeros!

If you were to live in the Eastern lands, where would you choose to make a home?

Braavos. I wouldn’t choose to live there for the climate, but it seems like such a diverse place. There appears to be something for everyone in Braavos in the books.

Where would you definitely not want to live? Name two.

I would never live in the North. I already live in the North…Minnesota should change its motto to “Winter is coming.” It’s too cold and knowing there are zombified creatures north of the Wall creeps me out. I also would never live on the Iron Islands. It sounds like such a rough place to be.

Who would you pick out of anyone from the show or the books to rule the seven kingdoms if you had the choice?

As of now, I am torn between Jon Snow and Daenerys Targaryen. They seem like the most level headed rulers to me, but as I continue to read the books my opinion may change!

If you were the ruler of the realm, what would your top three priorities be?

  1. Making sure the Wall was well armed and equipped.
  2. Assigning a team to plan and execute a strategy to rehabilitate the war torn areas and get food production going.
  3. Destroy Harrenhaul. That place really needs to be put to the torch. Maybe I’d do the same to the Dreadfort.

Have fun answering these questions, and don’t forget to post a link in the comments so I can read your answers!

5 Things About Me Blog Prompt

5 things about me blog prompt

Today is lazy Sunday and I…am feeling kind of lazy! Even though I am extremely tired today, I know I must post. There is no option in this NaBloPoMo project for me! While I have a few post topics stashed away in the topic pook I am creating, I thought now might be a good time to use a prompt to introduce myself a bit.

Yes, you could always read my About section for that, but writing prompts can be fun. I’d love to see other bloggers do this one and read their answers too!

The prompt I found today is from Mama Kat of Mama’s Losin’ It. I found her site today while I was perusing Twitter. She has some great ideas of things to write about and it looks like she publishes a post with prompts monthly.

The prompt that caught my eye was:

“Five Things. List 5 things we don’t know about you, 5 things you’re knowledgeable about, 5 things you know nothing about, and 5 things you believe.”

So, here goes nothing!

5 Things You Don’t Know About Me

  1. I was a self-taught Photoshop user as a teen (this was way before YouTube and I hated reading software manuals, so I just played around and figured things out). It was a similar thing with website design. I did have to read to learn that though. Then I bought FrontPage software and learned to use it. Since then, web design has come light years and I didn’t learn as time went on so the best I can do are some rough tweaks. At least I have somewhat of an idea of what I need to look for if I need to edit code. Yes, I was a geek and proud! I still am!
  2. I have an eight year old Pembroke Welsh Corgi named India. She is like my child. She barks at people when I need something. She doesn’t like most men or young kids, but she loves little babies.
  3. I love traveling. I find it invigorating to see new places, and I feel more energetic. Road trips are my method of choice only because I have a lot of medical equipment and I haven’t attempted to fly with it since I have had it.
  4. I am a total food snob. I can’t eat much in one sitting, but I have a deep appreciation of good food. I often feel really frustrated when I go to a restaurant and it seems the food wasn’t cooked with care. Food should be satisfying and flavorful, not bland and lackluster (it should also be organic, but that isn’t likely to happen).
  5. I hate carnations. I have harbored a hatred of them for years. They should be banned from public places. I know they’re a filler flower, but they stink and whenever I smell them I am reminded of funerals and hospitals. They’re not cute either.

5 Things I’m Knowledgeable About

  1. Disabilities. Not only because I have one and understand what it is like, but also because I have known a lot of individuals with various kinds. It’s good to have general knowledge of the different types because abilities from person to person vary so widely.
  2. The Internet. I can find just about anything, even if it’s pretty obscure. Thank goodness the internet exists because how else would I have learned most of the things I have learned?
  3. The virtual world of Second Life. If you don’t know what SL is, it’s similar to a game, but without a point system. It has a monetary currency so you can open your own business or be employed and really earn a little something. There are places where you can socialize, stores where you can shop for clothing or furniture to customize your avatar or virtual home. You can also do things there maybe you are unable to do in your own life. I have “played” there since 2008 and to be honest, it taught me a lot that stretched beyond learning how to simply navigate in there. At first I thought it was only clubbing and shopping. But then I realized charities also could benefit from inworld events. Designers often create exclusive items for events to benefit Relay for Life, Wigs for Kids, etc. I think I might need to do a separate post on it to fully describe my experience!
  4. Photoshop and image editing. I have been using it since I was about 16. Back then I really had no idea how powerful a tool it was. I think that version was 3.0. I liked to make random art with it. In college I gained a better understanding of its features. I am still learning new things about it as time goes on. It’s one of those programs where there is no end to the learning process and I like that.
  5. Creating WordPress sites. I won’t claim to be an expert, but I have installed and worked on quite a few of these. Each WordPress site seems to have its own life, and working on each one was a learning experience. There are always new things to learn about this subject as well.

5 Things I know Nothing About

  1. The Stock Market. I have always been curious about how investors successfully invest and get good returns. I know it’s sort of based on trends and forecasting, but I am not sure how it all works and can be understood.
  2. Organic Crop Farming. I can’t say I know absolutely nothing here, my dad is a farmer and I read articles about organic food and GMO crops and related subjects. I guess crop growing is something I am curious about, particularly organics. I wonder things like: How does a farmer know when to plant? Or how much? How is the soil tested? How can a farmer figure out how much yield he needs to earn his profits? I guess what I am saying is I don’t know exactly the detailed step by step process. It goes way beyond plant, water, grow, harvest, sell, and then profit (or not profit in some cases). I always felt like my dad just knew inherently what needed to be done…like a sixth sense.
  3. How hot dogs are really made. Though, I have a pretty good idea. I imagine it’s similar to how chicken McNuggets are made.
  4. What it’s like to be on TV.
  5. Making iOS apps.

5 Things I Believe

  1. I think if you really listen to your body, it will tell you what foods and beverages makes you feel better. It might be hard to notice, some may say it’s psychological, but I think it’s true. When I eat certain things like wild caught salmon or other healthy things, I feel slightly better. The sense is minute, but the same thing happens when I don’t drink caffeinated sodas and stick to natural sodas.
  2. I believe everyone is here for a reason. We may not understand what our reason is for being here or being who we are, but every person has a purpose.
  3. There are those who want to teach, and those who are born teachers. Those who want to teach are those who earn a degree. Those who are born may not teach professionally, but they simply educate by being who they are.
  4. I believe our government is made up of way too many leaders blinded by greed and they have lost their humanity. This doesn’t make for an effective governing body.
  5. Not to bring religion to the table, but I believe most religions are based on the same overall concepts and only communicate the concepts in different ways.

I hope you enjoyed reading my 5 Things! This became way longer than I anticipated, and it was more challenging than I though it would be too. It was a great writing prompt!

If you decide to do the prompt, please comment below or tweet me @Rangeelichick!