Sunday, 30 June 2013

Advice for New Bloggers

 Ooh my turn to give advice! How exciting! I bet you’re just waiting with bated breath! It’s a tough act to follow after the great advice posts already by Heidi, Janice and Tessa!

newbloggerBH

I’m no great expert on blogging. I blog for fun. I’m not a professional nor do I play one on TV. I’m TERRIBLE at html (just ask Alyce who gets stuck with my weird coding questions!). But I love to quilt, and I love to talk. And I love to talk about quilting. Hence my blog. So here are a few things now-blogger-me would have liked to have told new-blogger-me.

A Quiet Play Sewing Room

Don’t be so serious! Have fun!

Blogging shouldn’t be a chore. If you’re like “oh man, I have to post today and I’d much rather wash the roof and paint the cat”, then don’t bother blogging. Or “Eek,  I need to make a King size quilt out of 1” pieces like TODAY or I have nothing to blog about”, then don’t bother blogging. You’re sucking the fun out of it for yourself. Blog when you want, what you want and have fun! I roughly aim for blogging three times a week, but if I don’t manage it, ah well. Next week maybe. Just have fun blogging. 

34 Patchwork Lane

Include a picture or two! Break up all that text!

Because blog posts are boring without pictures. And large chunks of narrative text make my eyes go weird and I’m likely to skip that and look for the pictures. Unless it’s a super funny story. I’m totally up for weird eyes to read that. I didn’t have any old-blogger-me vs new-blogger-me pics to share, so I decided to chuck in some pics of my favourite projects instead as I think they give an idea of who I am quilty-wise.

Chirpie bird

Comment, email, be social!

If someone took the time to comment on your blog post, take the time to reply. We all have things we probably should be doing instead of drooling over quilt patterns and fabric so be appreciative and write a reply. Preferably something more than just thanks. I totally get sad-face when I see I have an email, open it and all it says is '”Thanks”. Awesome – you were polite and acknowledged my comment on your blog, but where’s the love?! I’ve made some of my best bloggy buddies simply from commenting on their blog (or them on mine) and a conversation starts (albeit via email). So if you’re wondering how to make blog buddies, there’s a tip.

Wombat Stew mini quilt

Party on, dudes!

Absolutely, positively, most definitely join in linky parties! But wait – that doesn’t just mean link up your post, sit back and hope you get a zillion people checking out your awesome hand-sewn, embellished, FMQ’d toilet seat cover. It means check out a few of the other links and go comment on their amazing hand-sewn, embellished, FMQ’d letter-box covers. We all want comments – that’s what makes linky parties fun. Oh and like what you read or saw? Follow that blog!  Not sure where to find parties to join? Start with Beth’s Let’s Get Acquainted linky party on a Monday. Check out other people’s blogs and see where they’re linking up to.


Paper pieced cupcake

Please don’t make me prove I’m not a robot. 

Seriously, turn off word verification. You might not even know it's on - so go check then turn it off! I don’t think there is anything more annoying than going to leave a comment and having to try to get that stupid Captcha (I can’t even spell it it annoys me so much!) phrase right. It usually takes me 3 goes. Or I give up and don’t leave a comment. Sad. So turn it off. Worried about spam? You can moderate posts, or just turn off Anonymous commenters. Check out Lucy’s post on fixing this.

Paper pieced cushion

Be brave! Be Bold! Be adventurous!

Maybe less new-blogger related and more pep-talk related… but… if you’ve got something quilty you’re passionate about it, spread the love. Pass it on. Recruit other fanatics. For me it was paper piecing. This has lead to selling my patterns, starting a BoM and hosting a weekly linky party. If someone had told new-blogger-me that was going to happen, I would have laughed at them. But if you have an idea, don’t let being shy or nervous hold you back. Go forth and conquer the quilty world.

Paper pieced LEGO R2D2

So new-bloggers, that’s what I’ve got. Happy to elaborate on anything or share my vast knowledge (ha!!) if you have any questions. But I hope that gives a starting point at least. Let’s finish this all grandiose style.

In conclusion, my friends, blogging should be fun.
Make it so.

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50 comments:

  1. I agree with all of the above and would add that making a blog font a bit bigger is easier on old eyes, like mine! Sometimes, I just have to quit reading because I'm straining my eyes too much and hate to miss out on someone's post. Thanks for your thoughts and tips today!

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  2. This was such a great post...loved it, made me laugh, great pics, and totally agree with you. Thanks for sharing such great ideas!

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  3. Lol at the FMQ'd toilet seat cover! Now there's a idea! I completely agree - keep it fun, and leave time enough to catch up on what everyone else is doing, that's where I get most of my inspiration after all! :-)

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  4. Totally great post!! I'm new to this 'bloggy' world but so far it's exciting :) thanks for the tips and the giggles haha

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  5. Brilliant comments and I agree with everything that you wrote although I am guilty at times of not responding to comments immediately and sometimes make a general appretiation remark in my latest post to ease the guilt. Naughty, I know but life has a way of getting busy. I absolutely love your cupcake and the little bird.....gorgeous! ps....no-one is a robot on my blog!
    Cath @ Bits 'n Bobs

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    1. Oh totally understandable! Sometimes life gets busy and replying to comments does slip to the bottom of the list. I reckon we all forgive that happening ;)

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  6. Nice advice! I love the community. I've learned so much and picked up more ideas than I could ever act on! It is a great thing to be a part of for nothing more than the joy of it. :)

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  7. great advice. I love linking up and getting New blog guests. NO robots and Captcha is a pet peeve of mine too.

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  8. great advice. I love linking up and getting New blog guests. NO robots and Captcha is a pet peeve of mine too.

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  9. Great advice! I'm a new blogger and still finding my way...and crazy excited every time I get a Bloglovin' email telling me I have a new follower! I love your blog. It is fun and inspiring and wonderfully quilty.

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  10. Love all these ideas. I'm gonna check my blog for sure about the verification because I think I turned it back on when I had a spammer putting like 500 hits in a day on one of my postings. I think if I turn it off this might help get some commentary on the postings I make because here lately I've been getting no comments on postings and that's kinda disappointing.

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  11. thanks so much for the advice, i am seriously thinking of starting a blog, just to record the adventure that quilting is for me. this blogging universe is crazy to someone born in the 60's lol

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  12. Where was all this wonderful advice when I started blogging? Great post!

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  13. Well with my vast 6 months of bloggyland experience I think that's bang on - especially have fun, and don't say anything if you don't want to. I also don't like bloggers who I feel are going through all the motions just for the purpose of getting their readers numbers up. I would rather read a lovely genuine blog with 10 subscribers than a non-personal blog with 10000. Just my preference, of course. And that doesn't mean you can't have a personal blog AND lots of readers. Now I'm ranting. I'll stop :-)

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    1. Liz you said what i would say. I am all for the genuine voice of the blogger

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  14. Awesome post Kristy!! I'm with Liz above. Be yourself. Don't try and be that sewing, crafting, baking, supermom blogger that can make "insert amazing thing here" out of peanut butter, popsicle sticks and dust bunnies. Keep it real.
    And your section there on being social... Bang on!

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  15. Perfect! I must admit, I sometimes do the "thanks" reply - because I don't know how else to respond to "great". I also think it's nice to include a bit more in comments - what you specifically like (colours, fabric, design etc) or if the post made you laugh or think or whatever. That is a bit more constructive and helps get the conversation (and friendships) going.

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    1. With you on that. One line comments are very hard to respond too - nothing much to start a conversation with, so I definitely get the "thanks" reply on that! ;)

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  16. i think you pretty much make me laugh every time i read your posts Such sage advice and i love all your paper piecd creations!! I know you turn me into a pp addict :) . your pp love is infectious!!

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  17. Great blog post! I agree with everything and appreciate the reminder to turn off word verification. I had mine turned off, then I had turned it back on because I started getting spam comments. I just turned it back off :) I always, always send more than "thanks" when someone comments on my blog.

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  18. great advise. *especially* the robot thing, such a pain!

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  19. "awesome hand-sewn, embellished, FMQ’d toilet seat cover" - I accidentally snorted my cup of tea when I read this!

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  20. Great post. Make it so... is it possible...by any chance...you're into Trek (not just Wars), too? :D

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  21. What a great post I enjoyed all your advice thank you :-))))

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  22. How did you know about the toilet seat cover that I am FMQ'ing at the moment???? I thought it was a secret!
    Hmphf... Might have to go and think of something else to post about instead ;-)

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  23. Your blog always makes me laugh - you give great advice, although I suspect you might have just outed a group of secret FMQ toilet seat cover makers tee hee!

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  24. You are one of my fav bloggers but you already know that ;-) I'm having fun just like you and agree with all you said. I would only add: no need to make blog post saying not much going on. When you link up to linky party make your post worthy.

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  25. Thanks for the great advice. I am new to blogging and there is so much to learn. sigh.

    By the way I really love your star wars blocks. I will have to show them to my sons they will think they are awesome!

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  26. All great advice ~ I gave up blogging. Sometimes I just didn't have anything to share in photos or words and now it's been over 2 years since I last blogged.
    I agree with Captcha and the other thing I that annoys me is when a blogger has you jump through hoops to leave a comment for a giveaway. It's nice to 'like' something on Facebook or prove you're a follower but geez, sometimes it's just too much.

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  27. OMG! girl that is some elaborate piecing!! I like squares and just became comfortable with triangles. : ) Your advice is great and so true! I'll have to make a cheat sheet of your tips and make sure I do MORE of all of that! Thanks.

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  28. Well said! I'd love to post twice per week but real life is more important. In terms of comments, I struggle sometimes to know what to say other than a thank you, so I will just go visit the commenter's blog to comment in return.

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  29. What great advice for new and newish bloggers, Kristy! I love that You
    always shine through your blog.... with your creativity and sincerity , in a fun way!!
    And you gather together awesome quilters around you, to make friendships with and learn from ! You always inspire me with your taste and style! (Even if you think it is a "slow" day! )

    Susie

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  30. Love the post. Great way to look at blogging.

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  31. Sage advice from someone who definitely has gone forth and conquered the paper-piecing quilty world :) Looking forward to keeping up with your quest for world domination!

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  32. Thanks for reminding us all this should be fun! Because goodness knows I don't need another job!

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  33. Great post, Kristy! You are so funny and I agree with everything you said. I'm trying to be better about answering comments. I get so behind and feel so guilty about it. I try to answer with a personal note, but when they only say, "great project", or "beautiful", I can only reply with "Thanks" (Of course, I am totally guilty of commenting on blogs with a simple, "beautiful").

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  34. Thanks for the great advice! Your And Sew On block of the month is what got me started with my blog, and I am learning so much as I go. I don't think I even have any followers, but that's not why I got started blogging. It's just fun to be part of the community!

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  35. Loved this post and couldn't have come at a better time. I needed to remind myself of that just recently too.

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  36. Great advice Kristy! I think keeping it fun is really key. Sometimes I am bursting with energy and enthusiasm for blogging, and at those times I try to write a few blog posts ahead so that I have some saved up for a rainy day (i.e., those days when you just don't feel like blogging). Your love for quilting really shines through in your blog!

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  37. Very funny post and great tips too:) you have awesome paper piecing skills, love it!

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  38. Great advice Kristy. It is so easy to forget to just have fun!
    Your paper piecing patterns are fantastic!

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  39. Such great tips and I can see you that you're an awesome paper piecer- will check you out for further tips in that department!

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  40. Great advice, Kristy! I loved the, "I’m not a professional nor do I play one on TV." I love posts with humour! Glad to have met you through the New Blogger Hop!

    Lorna:)
    http://sewfreshquilts.blogspot.com

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  41. Thanks for the great advice!! will try and incorporate into my new blogging!!

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  42. Great post Kristy! You definitely have a gift with words! I laughed all the way through and nodded my head to all the advice! Sometimes I forget about the fun part :-)

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  43. Awesome bloggy advice. Now-blogger-you is pretty smart :-) Now to stalk through your previous posts and get up to date on all your sewing goodness.
    E xx

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  44. I don't even blog, and think this was a great post! I agree with it all! Blog on, Kristy, blog on! :)

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  45. Awesome post, Kristy!! You made me laugh, smile, and nod in agreement. Sounds like success to me! :)

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  46. Wonderful work. Your blog is fantastic. I`m your new follower.
    Grit from Germany.

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Thank you so much for taking the time to leave a comment! I read each and every word! Forgive me but of late I'm struggling to keep on top of everything and that includes replying to comments - though I love hearing from you. I hope you'll understand!