Monday, July 28, 2014

Dear New Blogger Me

I've been meaning to write this post ever since my blog broke 100 followers, but I hadn't gotten around to it until today.  Here's a letter from current blogger Sarah to the Sarah of January 25, 2012.



Dear Past Sarah,
Guess what!  Two things. First, this blog reaches 100 followers within 30 months of being launched. So many bloggers don't make it that far, so way to go!
Second, you do finish that first draft of that first novel. And then you finish two other novels and almost finish the fourth.  You're writing has gotten a lot better, but it still has a lot of room for improvement.
Here are somethings I've learned in the last few years I feel it important to share with you.

1) Inklined gets a major make-over.  I've pretty happy with my blog right now, but looking back on what it used to be makes me toes curls. (If you'd like to see Inklined's old look, click here.)  Brighten up Inklined as soon as you can. Make it look less like something an 11 put together using Paint.

2) Pinterest is not just a website for DIY fanatics. Join it and join it as soon as you hear about it.

3) You follow a lot of blogs, but that doesn't mean you read a lot of them. If you find yourself skipping a blogs posts, unfollow it. You'll thank me later when you start to make real connections with cool teen bloggers you wouldn't have found otherwise.

4) Twitter is not just for celebrities and their fans. It's a fantastic website with lots of wonderful opportunities. If you can join and understand it now, you'll be so much better at it when you want to start using it for important things like breaking ice with awesome writers, bloggers, and agents.

5) If someone takes the time to comment, comment back. And don't just comment back, but also take the time to read a blog post or two of theirs.

6) Find 5-10 bloggers that you really love. At least skim every post they write, and comment on at least half of them. Give them shout outs on your blog. E-mail them and tell them you appreciate their blog. Connect with them on Twitter if possible. Be consistent and polite.

7) Start a blog as soon as possible.  The sooner you can claim the domain name you want, the better.  Plus, you can't improve a blank web page.

Also, keep blogging, keep writing, and keep following God. Be diligent in these things.

Sincerely,
Sarah Faulkner
July 2014

If you do write your own post,
I'd love for you to be this
picture somewhere in it.
What would you say to yourself as a beginning blogger?  I'd love to see what you have to say in the comments, or better yet write up you own post. I'd love to read it if you leave the link in the comments!  Or, if you're a beginning blogger, what do you think of this advice? Have you heard it before?  Are you doing any of it already? Let me know what you think in the comments!


18 comments:

  1. Great post! Well, I'm still a beginning blogger because I've only been blogging for three months. However, I would probably tell myself not to try to box myself into a schedule with specific posts on specific days. Blogging is a hobby and it's supposed to be fun. I should be able to blog about whatever I want and whenever I want. I shouldn't have to stick to a schedule if it's going to make blogging not fun anymore. Also, it's okay to use gifs. Once again, blogging is a hobby and it's supposed to be fun. Gifs are fun.

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    1. Interesting perspective. For me, a certain amount of schedule works well and helps me become a better blogger. If I didn't have a post schedule, I doubt anything would ever get written.
      Thanks for commenting!
      ~Sarah

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  2. Great post! I would say pretty much the same things to myself, especially the blog design bit! Last year when I realised I was serious about blogging, I moved from my first blog and got the one I have now, and got a whole new look.

    Wild Horse

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    1. I'm pretty sure that when I first started blogging, I thought my design was superb. Yeah. Not so much. Which blog is your main blog now? Your profile is linked to several.
      Thanks for reading!
      ~Sarah

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    2. My main blog is Opal Swirls, but I contribute to the other two blogs :)

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  3. Excellent post! Some of those are things I'm already doing (like commenting back), others seem to be good advice which I'll more than likely be acting on (like #3, which is something I've been trying to accomplish, but feel guilty whenever I unfollow someone. Somehow it's helped to read that you've done the same thing and are glad of it).

    I'm not following you? I thought I had! *runs to fix that* Ah, that's better.

    the writeress || barefoot in the snow

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    1. When it comes to unfollowing people, here's what I did. I would scroll through the list of the blogs I followed. If I couldn't remember the blogger's name, I unfollowed them. If I couldn't remember a single post of theirs I'd read, I unfollowed. If they hadn't posted in the last 4 months, I unfollowed. And it's not like I still don't follow a lot of blogs! I used to follow about 95 blogs, and now I follow 60.
      Best of luck and thank you for commenting!
      ~Sarah

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    2. My pleasure. And BTW, I love your profile pic!

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    3. Thanks! I should be posting a fanfic sometime in the next few days, if you're interested ;)

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  4. I've actually had the same blog design/color since I started blogging almost 4 years ago (!), but if I could go back in time and tell my beginning-blogger self something it would be: "Change your writing style. Don't use so many exclamation points and smiley faces. Seriously."

    Congratulations on reaching 100 followers!

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    1. Exclamation points have always been my nemesis. I did my best to keep them from creeping onto this blog, but didn't succeed very well! (:D )
      Thanks for commenting!
      ~Sarah

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  5. This is awesome! I keep meaning to write a letter to Past Writerly Me...which this as kind of inspired me to just stop procrastinating and do that. x) It's really tough starting off blogging and this is seriously awesome advice for ANY newbie blogger! I've been on twitter for about a year and, eeep, it's awesome. I don't know why I was so scared of it. ;) And the whole reply-to-comments-and-visit-more-blogs took me like 3 years to figure out. -_- It makes the world of difference, it truly does.

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    1. I am quiet looking forward to a Dear Past Me post on Notebook Sisters sometime in the near future!
      Thanks for commenting, Cait.
      ~Sarah

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  6. That's how to do it. Write multiple novels. Don't get stuck on one particular manuscript, trying to make it all shiny.

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    1. I think that sometimes you need the experience of writing a different novel, to then go back to your first novel and know what needs to be changed.
      Thanks for commenting!
      ~Sarah

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  7. Replies
    1. Glad you like them. Thanks for commenting!
      ~Sarah

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Comments are awesome, rudeness is not. 'Nough said.