#Blogging: Why I blog

*This is Day 10 of the 30-Day Blogging Challenge*

I started blogging in 2008 when blogging was gaining in popularity. Early in my blogging journey, I blogged about music. Specifically R&B and a little Hip Hop. From the time I was little my parents would play R&B music on Sundays. Even after their split when I was five, they still kept to the tradition of playing R&B all day after church. My parents were ultra-old school. It was the classics and only the classics. This is why I knew the words to way too many Marvin Gaye and Chaka Khan songs than the average kindergartner.

samantha_g_writes_4So it made sense to blog about music and all things related to it. Through music blogging, I discovered the joys of writing lifestyle topics, which evolved into me creating my personal blog.

Before personal blogging, I found personal blogs to be blah. The ones I’d read would offer little information besides what the writer ate that day. Nothing wrong with that, I’m sure there are people interested in that kind of stuff but for me, I like to read things for edutainment. So when I thought of creating a personal blog, I was against it at first. I thought to myself who will care about my personal life and the lessons I’ve learned along the way? But personal blogging has proven to be very therapeutic.

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The best of Samantha G. Writes week one

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It’s day 9 of the 30-day blogging challenge I’ve been taking part in and today I’m taking a look back by posting a roundup of the posts I’ve published since day 1 of the challenge.

What I’ve learned from this challenge is that you can blog every day. It doesn’t get boring, and it takes some creativity to create content that you enjoy writing, but it’s possible. It also doesn’t take that much time out of your day to complete. Most of the posts have been unplanned and written and edited in less than two hours. I’m sure if my posts required some research, I’d have to add on additional time. But for the most part, it doesn’t take very long to keep my blog updated daily.

Below are the posts I’ve published since day 1 of the challenge. The posts are a mix of tips I’ve learned in life and writing. There’s also a couple of recipes I use a lot at home for my mini-fam. They make great brain food too. Feel free to share the ones you love!

Day 1:  Almond Milk RecipeMaking almond milk is a lot easier than you think and it tastes amazing!

Day 2: 5 tips for surviving in Brooklyn your first year as a writerNew York is a great big city of dreams and the price tag can be, well, pricey. Here are tips to keep your sanity and a little extra cash in your pocket.

Day 3: How to deal with the negative people in your life We all know at least one negative person in our lives. Here are some ways to deal with them and not lose yourself in the process.

Day 4: Creamy Vegan Mac & Cheese RecipeNow I’m hungry again. I’m a huge cheese lover and I’m still a fan of this vegan macaroni and cheese recipe.

Day 5: 7 things new writers should do to make money writing onlineTips that have helped me make money writing online that I know will work for others too.

Day 6: The 5 phases of pregnancy new moms experienceOne of my favorite posts because it brought back so many memories. New expecting moms, this is a must-read!

Day 7: Reading “The Power of Habit” will change your lifeMy review of the Charles Duhigg book that has changed my view on habits and how it shapes my life.

Day 8: How to embrace failure and rejection as a writer If you’re a writer, you’ll face rejection sooner or later. Here are some ways I embrace the dreaded rejection response.

 

#DearMe: A letter to my new blogger self

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I wanted to put a twist on the “write a letter to your younger self” idea. So I wrote a letter to my new blogger self instead.

I made a TON of mistakes as a new blogger and sometimes lost focus of what I wanted to accomplish when I originally decided to blog.

But all of the moments both good and bad has helped me and made me a master learner…you should always keep learning! Hopefully this letter will resonate with someone, anyone looking to get into blogging either as a hobby or as a career.

Here’s the advice I gave to my new blogger self:

Dear Samantha:

Blogging is a lot harder than you may think and will get a bit overwhelming at times but you’ll enjoy yourself and will learn new things that will help in shaping who you are.

The design of your blog is important but what you say and how you say it matters even more.

Learn and be inspired by others but never feel like you need to be or sound like them.

You’ll read helpful advice from experienced bloggers but the real lesson will come from actually doing it yourself.

Focus more on connecting with readers and less about attracting traffic. Although having high traffic is great, It isn’t enough. Generating high traffic and knowing that readers have learned something from you and will want to return and continue to learn from you is even better!

You’re not being fancy by using big words when you blog. Most of the time your readers have no idea what they mean and will lose focus of what you have to say, because they’ll probably be distracted trying to figure out just what the heck you are trying to say.

Lastly, love to blog and be in love with what you are blogging about. The moment it isn’t a fun activity it will become a daunting task and your readers will notice and your writing will become uninteresting.

Write then edit, don’t do both at the same time.
Sincerely,

Samantha.