Build On What You Already Have

Refe-build on what you've got

Photo: Refe

Last week I published a post with links to 15 Awesome Posts For The Uninspired and I realized that sometimes it’s easier to build on what you already have instead of starting entirely from scratch. If you go through your archives, you will probably find posts that you can expand and build on. If you’ve been blogging for a year or two, you’re even luckier because you’ve got archives brimming with posts that you can repurpose.

Here’s how you can build on what you already have:

Make a series. It can be as short as “Part 1” and “Part 2” or consist of several posts. Series posts can be risky because you might run out of things to say too soon. But they can also help drive traffic to multiple posts because visitors to your site will probably want to read all the posts in the series so that they don’t miss anything.

Make an update. Some of your posts may be outdated and no longer relevant but updating and re-publishing them with fresh content will solve that. In this case, you’ll be saving time on drafting a new post entirely because you already have one.

Take a new angle. If you discussed an issue or topic on your blog before and you’re opinions have changed now, you can totally make a new post discussing how/why they changed. You could also provide some new information about the issue/topic. By taking a new angle on a previously discussed topic, you’ll be re-establishing yourself as an expert in your niche.

Do a roundup. You probably have a bunch of posts centered around a certain topic and people have probably missed quite a few of those posts (unless they diligently stalk, sorry check, your blog). By putting together a quick roundup post, you’ll get more views on old posts and fulfill your blogging obligations.

Do you have any plans or tips for building on what you already have? 

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My Blogging Essentials

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Photo: StockSnap

I’ve been blogging for about 1-2 months now so I thought it was time I shared my blogging essentials with you. So here goes nothing…

iPhone 4s: I use it to keep track of post ideas, snap quick photos on-the-go and even for editing said photos. But ever since I updated the software, it’s been glitching a lot so I like to play it safe by typing up all posts on my laptop.

MacBook Air: I’ve had this laptop for about a year now and I love how efficient it is. I do a lot of brainstorming on it but I also use it to store images for my blog posts. I have multiple files for keeping track of post ideas, stock photo sites, blogging inspiration, and my editorial calendar.

Hard-Drive: I’m a bit paranoid about losing my files so I backup my laptop at-least every other night. (I don’t, however, backup any of my blog posts.)

Twitter: This is my favorite social media app and I use it the most for self-promotion. I usually use Hootsuite to help me schedule tweets so I don’t spam my followers. I don’t actually follow that many bloggers on Twitter because I prefer to see updates about blog posts in my bloglovin feed but I enjoy interacting with those I do follow.

Bloglovin: Like I said, I use it to stalk, sorry follow, the blogs I love and now that I’ve started using it, I can’t imagine what I’d do without it. When I’m uninspired, one of my favorite things to do is scroll through my blog feed and brainstorm post ideas based on what other bloggers have written. Usually there is something in there that will spark an idea.

Evernote: This isn’t exactly an essential yet but I’m planning on uploading my blog “stuff” to it when I start traveling. Right now everything is on my laptop but Evernote is accessible on my iPhone too. I’m still debating the pros and cons of moving so much information onto Evernote (mainly because I’m not sure how much to move and whether it’s worth the effort).

PicMonkey: I use it primarily for editing blog photos to add text (and occasionally filters).

Blogging Notebook: I often use it to brainstorm blog post ideas when I feel like I need a break from my laptop and phone.

Stock photo sites: I use quite a few stock photo sites but here are some of my favorites: Unsplash, Death To The Stock Photo, Little Visuals, Snapwire, and Stocksnap. Most of these sites are updated weekly with new photos and all of them are free so I definitely recommend checking them out.

What are your blogging essentials?

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monthly wishes [1]

monthly wishes

Last month was my first “real” month of blogging…For once, I had all my blog content planned out in advance. But thanks to my intense posting schedule, I hit a few slumps and realized that I don’t really feel up to doing certain features more than once a month (including weekly wishes). So I’ve decided I’m going to set goals for every month instead of for every week. (By the way, weekly/monthly wishes is a weekly/monthly feature hosted by The Nectar Collective and if you want to participate, just check out the blog and link up!)

last week’s goals:

1. Write in my journal every day. Done.

2. Revamp my editorial calendar. Done.

this month’s goals:

1. Increase my twitter following! At the moment I have about 280 followers and I haven’t been very serious about increasing that following. That’s why this month I’m going to focus on increasing that following. At the moment I don’t have much of a plan to accomplish this but I know I’m going to be more intentional about what I tweet. I’m not setting my sights too high so increasing my follower count by 100 or 200 followers is going to count as “success” for me. (If you have any “tried and tested” tips for increasing my twitter following, please don’t hesitate to share in the comments!)

2. Write up 6-10 chapters. In the past I’ve started and ditched many books (after posting edited and unedited chapters online) but this time I’ve decided to write up 10 chapters before I put anything online. Most of the time, projects won’t hold my attention for long enough so I ditch them (despite telling myself this is the manuscript I will finish). Hopefully this new “rule” will make me feel pressured to write more and not ditch the project.

Feel free to comment below and share your goals for this week or month!

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latest obsessions (2)

latest obsessions

This post series is all about spreading the blog love. There are so many amazing blogs and bloggers out there that continue to inspire me and I want to share them with you. I also love discovering blogs so if you want to recommend me a blog, please don’t hesitate! 

Blog #1: Nose Graze by Ashley || Follow: Twitter, Bloglovin

This blog has amazing tips and posts that will really help you improve your blog. Here are some posts you might find useful: How To Choose A Blogging Platform That’s Right For You, Where To Find Images To Use In Web Design, and How To Override Old CSS With New CSS.

Blog #2: A Girl, Obsessed by Mandy || Follow: Twitter, Bloglovin, Instagram

To be honest, I don’t read a lot of the exclusively beauty posts because I’m not interested in that type of blogging. However, like most bloggers, she also writes posts that are about blogging and life. Some posts I found interesting are: 5 Ways To Motivate Yourself Quickly, 25 Tweet Ideas To Grow Your Twitter Following, and Thoughts on transparency in the blogging world.  

Blog #3: The Wonder Forest by Dana Fox || Follow: Twitter, Bloglovin, Instagram

She has a great variety of posts that are everything from updates on creative projects to tutorials and blog design tips. Two posts I love: Love Your Blog: You Don’t Have To Create Content Every Day and Tips For A Successful Blog.

Blog #4: Cocorrina by Corina || Follow: Twitter, Bloglovin, Instagram

Her posts have great aesthetics and I especially love the downloadables. Here are a few of my favorites: Downloadable: Breathe Deep and Spring Is Here | Downloadables .

Blog #5: Forever Amber by Amber || Follow: Twitter, Bloglovin, Instagram

Forever Amber is a fashion/beauty blog that also delves into lots of personal topics. I love Amber’s personal posts because they are often very relatable. Two of my favorites are: 3 Quotes To Help You Deal With Online Negativity and How To Make Me Uncomfortable.

***This list is not based on my preference for a certain blog over another.

What blogs have you been obsessing over? Let me know in the comments below!

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loving life lately [3]

loving life lately

I think it’s really easy to focus on the negative and just forget about the positive, loving life lately is all about me listing the things which have made me love life lately (which essentially helps me “re-discover” the stuff that has made me happy recently).

1. Looking through old photos. This morning a friend of mine was reminiscing over our obsession with photo shoots and I couldn’t resist digging through some old photos. Before long everyone was gathered around my laptop, examining the photos and sharing memories. We laughed so loud I’m sure the entire cafeteria heard us…

2. Going to watch AvengersI’m going with a friend to watch Age of Ultron tomorrow and I’m so excited! I loved The Avengers and I hope this movie won’t disappoint me.

3. Bookish updates on Twitter. I am loving the constant bookish updates I’ve been getting on Twitter. It makes discovering cool new books so much easier.

What has made you love life lately? Share in the comments below!

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weekly wishes [4]

weekly wishes

My life has been pretty uneventful lately but I did end up borrowing five library books the other day and made plans with a friend to watch Age of Ultron (so excited!!!). Anyway, time to set some goals! (By the way, weekly wishes is a weekly feature hosted by The Nectar Collective and if you want to participate, just check out the blog and link up!)

last week’s goals:

1. EditingDone!..Sort-of…Moving on!

2. Writing in my journal once everyday. I am such a slacker..I think I did this for two days and then..”forgot” BUT I’ve got a good feeling about this week (let’s pretend I didn’t tell myself that last week) and I think I can pull this off.

this week’s goals:

1. Write in my journal every day. If I keep telling myself that “I can do this,” I might just end up doing this..Right? Let’s hope!

2. Revamp my editorial calendar. My second month of blogging will pass in about a week or so and I’ve realized that I really need to revamp my editorial calendar! There are a few things I’ve decided to change – such as posting 4 times a week instead of 5 and doing less feature posts. Churning out posts five times a week has made me realize that I enjoy writing more random and slightly personal posts which is why I’ve been thinking of cutting down on the amount of feature posts I write. I’ve also decided that I’m going to do a monthly wishes post instead of weekly wishes because I’ve been feeling a bit pressured to come up with goals four times a month.

Feel free to comment below and share your goals for this week!

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15 Awesome Posts For The Uninspired

15 awesome posts for the uninspired

Photo: Picjumbo

Lately I’ve been bookmarking all these posts about blog ideas so that I won’t have to stress when I’m feeling uninspired. But then I realized that only half of those posts are actually useful or relevant to me. So I systematically went through and ended up creating this list of links I found useful. Most of these posts offer up a series of potential post topics that you can use or manipulate.

  1. 50 Ideas for Great Blog Posts
  2. 150 Blog Post Ideas For When You’ve Hit Writers Block
  3. 108 Blog Post Ideas | For When Writers Block Strikes
  4. 51 Types of Blog Posts To Help Grow Your Audience
  5. 30 Spring Blog Post Ideas + $175 To Victoria’s Secret
  6. 20 Blogging Prompts For The Uninspired
  7. The Ultimate Guide To Blog Post Ideas
  8. Idea Bank: Your Source For Writing Prompts
  9. 50 No-Fluff, Content-Rich Blog Post Ideas
  10. Natural Social Media Marketing + 50 Content Ideas
  11. 15 Blogging Prompts for 2015
  12. 50 Ideas for Blog Posts
  13. 50 Blog Post Ideas
  14. 50 Creative Blog Post Ideas
  15. 25 Lifestyle Blog Post Ideas

Most if not all of these posts have some great fun and creative ideas that I’m hoping to incorporate them into future posts. Anyway, I hope you walked away from this post feeling inspired!

What blog posts have inspired you lately? 

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