Personally, I say THANK YOU to Sandee M. at Forty-Something First Time Bride for nominating me! I’m honored.
The terms of the Blogger Recognition Award are: to reflect on why I started my blog, offer a few blogging tips, and nominate bloggers who inspire me.
Let me put my pondering cap on…
I started Running Sunflower in April of 2011. There were a lot of ingredients in the stew that bubbled up to become my first post. Here are a handful:
- Restlessness. I was in the middle of an “I’m tired of Albuquerque and want to move but don’t know how” phase, and I needed an outlet.
- My age. I was two months shy of turning 30 and felt like I hadn’t done much to make a contribution to the world. A blog may not be much, but it’s a start.
- My pesky love of writing. I had written for my high school and college newspapers and at one point had an online newspaper column, but hadn’t written on a regular basis in years. I missed it.
- Peer pressure. A lot of my friends were doing it, so hey, why not?
- Running. This blog started with running at its heart, and running still is at its heart. I wanted to write a blog that was more than just “here’s today’s workout,” more than just the occasional race report, and more than post after post about running’s benefits for the soul. I also, from the get-go, gave myself permission to stray from the running theme. It was a tall order back then, and it still is, and I continue to work on it. That’s frankly part of the fun 🙂
Now for my advice on blogging…yikes! Here’s what I’ve got:
- Have a schedule. However often you want to write, pick a schedule and stick to it. I recommend having one day of the week (or month, or whatever) that is Blogging Day. Repetition begets routine, and that begets loyal readers. That said…
- Don’t be a slave to it. Mae West said “Keep a diary and one day it’ll keep you,” and the same applies to blogging. Live your life. If you miss a post occasionally, the world will keep turning and you’ll probably be a better, healthier person for it.
- Use SEO tactics. My day job involves editing press releases, and that means being aware of SEO (Search Engine Optimization…basically formatting content in such a way that people will want to read it and share it). What are SEO tactics that I can use in my blog, you ask?
- Good headlines/titles that are informative but succinct.
- Bullet points and short paragraphs. Break up text into digestible pieces. That said…
- It’s okay to throw those tactics out sometimes. Because my biggest tip is this:
- It’s YOUR BLOG, so make it what you want. Do what feels right.
Finally, blogs that deserve recognition:
Emily’s House of Thomsen. Emily is one of my favorite people in the world, and if you are at all into DIY projects / home improvement, this blog’s for you.
Charity’s Blowin’ Around. She’s a hot air balloon pilot and a fabulous writer! What more do you need?
Whitney’s It is pretty. I forget how I found this blog, but I love it. She’s from my home state of Virginia and she writes beautifully about all sorts of things. Definitely worth checking out.
Thank you again to Forty-Something First Time Bride for the nomination!