The Ultimate Beginner’s Guide To Blogging

Sensible stuff-I’m taking this one on board!

The Art of Blogging

Let’s be honest for a moment. There’s no substitute for hard work, dedication, time, energy, and passion, and those of you who want a shortcut will be disappointed by this guide.

Of course, there are some things that you must do in order to be successful as a blogger.

So, yeah, let’s get down to business.

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Emotions

Food for thought.

The Art of Blogging

It is said that it’s not the strongest fighter who wins the fight. Nor is it the one who trained the most or has the most experience.

It’s always the one who believes he can win more than the other guy. That’s it.

We like to believe in the opposite. We can measure a lot about a person, but we can never measure heart. Want. Desire. Passion.

How much soul you put into your words.

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Time To Say Goodbye

I have been off grid for a couple of weeks.

Part of my trip involved a long hard look at the book and the painful process of editing. Some smart person said “It’s All In The Edit” and it is!

What nobody tells you is it’s so bloody hard!

Saying goodbye to what feels like chunks of your soul is tough-but it has to be done! This is what I have been doing in between drinking wine and sunning myself.

Hopefully I will learn from the process. You can’t polish a turd as they say, but you can neaten it up a bit and give your poor old reader a break from your over indulgence.

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Admitting that you may have to hack lumps off your baby and your precious pages is part of learning how a professional writer approaches things-for us newbies it’s a definite step in the right direction.

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                                 Today’s Longish Snippet-from the end of the book.

‘Welcome humans he sighed, I believe Mr Pixie here is taking us on a tour to see my Grail.’

‘That’s the Holy one you might have heard about, or maybe you haven’t. I know how ignorant you humans can be.’

‘Play nice Gala’ Jon said quietly, ‘or you and I will be having words’

He smiled, ‘of course darling, anything for you Green Eyes’ he purred

Marc made the fingers down the throat gesture behind Gala’s back and Jon tried not to laugh.

‘I can see we’re not the only ones who enjoy a bit of camping around here’, he said to Molly, giving Gala a look.

Molly sighed; ‘just ignore him if you can. Jonny thinks it’s hilarious, look at him smirking’ she said quietly.

‘Tony’s not laughing’, ‘I wouldn’t give much for Gala’s perfect profile if he tries that one again’ Marc said. ‘You know as well as I do, if a Pixie nuts you, you tend to stay nutted!’

The Dash — Cristian Mihai

“Not everyone will understand your journey. That’s okay. You’re here to live your life, not to make everyone understand.” – Banksy You know what’s easy? Spending your life wishing for “enough.” Enough money, enough food, enough sleep, enough leisure time. You wish your life away dreaming of future comfort and safety. Life is neither comfortable […]

via The Dash — Cristian Mihai

Biting The Bullet-Being Honest!

Yesterday I learned something fundamental about my writing. It came to me as I was reading yet more feedback from someone who has kindly read the 77,000 word beastie from cover to cover.

I do not write good literature, it is probably not even very good fantasy!

The biggest lesson I have learned as a new writer is to be honest with yourself from the beginning. We all start off wanting to be up there with the literary big hitters, but most of us are just not destined to do that.

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Hey-I’m not beating myself up, this is supposed to be  encouraging and positive!

What I have discovered from the feedback is that I can do other stuff, so all is not lost.

What I can do is write an imaginative story in a really easy style that people like to read. I have found that readers warm to my characters and care about what happens to them. Readers also seem to like my rather dry sense of humour!

So all that can’t be too bad!

I write in a very ordinary readable style because that’s what I am very ordinary-no matter how much I would like it to be otherwise! Sophisticated narrative and hidden themes are probably way beyond me.

If I do finally get the thing published it will probably sell a few copies (well I have a big family). Anyone with a sophisticated literary taste is probably not going to be looking at my stuff. But I guess if someone just wants to suspend belief for an hour or two on a plane or curled up on the sofa and not work too hard then that is I where I am at.

Hooray I have found my Literary Niche at last!

This blog is supposed to encourage other novice writers to have a go.

I was so pumped up by book 1 that I started book 2 while the muse was on me.

It’s really early days but flatteringly the people who have read draft book 1 for me are nagging me to get on with book 2 because they want to know what happens-no pressure then guys!

This is a longish snip from A Crows Last Calling

They both knew that there wasn’t a chance in hell of escaping that blast, but he went anyway.

Jon sat down on a convenient rock. He wasn’t quite sure what had hit him. Emotionally it was big and he knew it was going to hurt, but somehow he couldn’t quite get his head around it. He remembered a similar pain from years before, but somehow the memory kept escaping.

Robbie Wilkins took out a cigarette for him and one for himself. His hands were shaking so badly that he couldn’t light it.

Valentine took it from him, here let me do it he said, I think you had better make that three smokes.

They all sat on the rock, no one speaking.

Finally the Professor said quietly, excuse me I really need to pee. He got up and walked off around a jag in the rocks.

They looked at each other, after a minute Maggie Valentine got up, I’ll do it, I’ve known the Professor a long time, Jonny’s much more fragile than you would imagine, and liable to do himself a mischief unless we keep an eye on him. Marc would never forgive me if I let that happen, I couldn’t ever forgive myself.

But it was too late, they both heard the noise, a sickening crunch of splintering bone.

Shit, Valentine muttered under his breath as he sprinted around the boulder.

Jon stood holding his own hand, it was a mess of dislocated fingers and gore.

After a mental sigh of relief that it was something that could be fixed, Valentine said looking at the cliff, Did punching it help?

Jon shook his head, not really, I thought it might, but weirdly I don’t seem to be able to feel a thing today. I’m saving the other hand for when I meet the dragon.

Well that’s good then he said kindly, now why don’t you come back with me and Robbie can take a look at it. There is a medical kit in the car.

He followed quietly

Wilkins gave Maggie a look,

Do what you can he said, I’m going to find Marc. If I’m not back in half an hour get him to a hospital then call out the big lads. We are going to blow that scaly fucker out of the sky.

Robbie nodded, the idea of hunting dragons had lost its appeal. He looked at Jon who seemed oddly calm. He couldn’t quite get his own head around the fact that Tony was gone. He smiled sadly as Valentine’s words came floating back to him.

‘They make an odd looking couple but you never met a happier one’

He knew the form, one day soon, today or maybe tomorrow some small thing would make the bomb go off for the Professor. It might be a half eaten biscuit on a plate in the kitchen, or a tiny pair of slippers on the floor next to the bed, who knew what would do it. One thing he did know for sure, Human, Elf or Pixie when that penny dropped it would hurt just the same.

Jon looked at his fingers, Maggie can you do me a favour he said, take my bracelet out of my pocket. I can’t do it, there is something wrong with my hand he said looking at it absently. I want to see Tony’s acorn for myself perhaps that will help. It’s odd but it feels like he is still with us.

Doesn’t seem to have arrived yet, it goes here he said. I know them all. Sometimes it takes a while especially if the person wasn’t expecting to die. With Sally it took two days, but it turned up in the end, they always do.

Marc’s is the biggest, Tone’s is the smallest. It only grew about a hundred years ago. Funny really, it never quite caught up with the others. It’s an odd little thing, I used to call it stumpy when it was still attached, I was rather fond of it. He drifted off again, staring into space, the bracelet clutched in his hand.

Maggie nodded, so that was the famous Elvish bracelet that Jon’s grandfather Gethenaar had given to him so very long ago. Marc had told him all about the acorns and how they only came loose for someone you loved.

He looked at his boots, Dammit he thought, the Pixie had become a good friend over the last 6 years, and he was going to miss him terribly.

He looked at Jon who really wasn’t firing on all cylinders at the moment thank God- he shook his head.

I don’t know how on Earth we are going to get you through this he thought, but it starts with the Dragon. He knew one thing, if he had his way that scaly son of a bitch was never going to see another dawn!

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Why No One Reads Your Blog (and What to Do about It)

Worth a bit of time for a read!

The Art of Blogging

So, you’re not getting much traffic, right?

I’ve been there, and well… it sucks. No other way to put it.

And worst of all, it’s not always clear why it’s happening.

It’s not like you’re a spammer. You genuinely care about your audience, and you try to publish content that’ll help them.

But nobody gives a damn.

And you’re beginning to wonder…

What are you doing wrong?

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How to Set out a Writing Schedule

Profusion Books

I know that a lot of writers really do not like having their writing organised. Some days they will write from 1000-5000 words and other days maybe 0-30 words. This can work for some writers, and that’s good, but if I try to write like that I often stop writing for a week, or several weeks, before I pick it back up again.

To combat this, I made a schedule.

It’s simple. I make a table on a spreadsheet with the column titles; Day, Story(Name), Word Count Aim(For the Day), Actual Word Count(For the Day), and Total Word Count(So Far). 

  • I will attach a template for the schedule to this post if you need it.

Because I do this, I might not always get to 1000 words (which is always my aim for the day) but some days I might go over 1000 words so that’s ok – so long…

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Help Is Out There- Just Ask!

 

Advice from a New Writer to New Writers:

Take all the advice you can get- you don’t have to use it all but at least give it a try.

Over the past few weeks I have found so many helpful blogs full of really useful info and advice.

Created by John Tringham / Zappa blamma
Created by John Tringham / Zappa blamma

It’s an online world we have stepped into and it can be pretty daunting. You not only have to write the thing, you have to learn a whole load of new skills, you have to market it and learn a new way of working and a new language.

There are people out there who can help so don’t be afraid to ask. I have found that these guys are usually really happy to share their knowledge with you.

Learning from people who have been through the same experience and come out smiling just has to be a good thing.

The info and experience you seek is out there you just have to scoot around and look for it.IMG_1251

Us newbies we are all on a steep learning curve, it’s scary but it’s also fun. We are probably among the first generation of writers to have access to self publishing. We have huge resources to call on and we don’t have to paper our walls with rejection letters if we don’t want to. Sure it’s an up and down ride sometimes but let’s enjoy it and hang on screaming right to the end.

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Tonight’s Jonny Greeneyes-snips

Well pull me up then you idiot I heard him say.

Marc a bit unsteady heaved my father upright, he made a face

Ooh I think you fell in badger shit Jonny

Dad sniffed, oh yeah it is a bit rank or is it just one of your giant mega farts, they both collapsed into giggles again like a couple of kids.

In 36 years I had never seen them this gone, they were both steaming!

 

He squeezed the Pixies hand, don’t worry he said, Gala is only doing it to wind you up, anyway credit me with having better taste than that over-inflated puffball.

His own father said he was like whipped cream, pretty and tempting to look at, but full of air, with no real substance and liable to collapse under the slightest pressure!

Tony grunted, yeah well I will be a much happier Pixie when that one is off, and on his way to wherever it is he comes from. I don’t trust him an inch!

 

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