Monday, June 1, 2015

Meet the Blogger with Carol J. Alexander








      



      
This month's Meet the Blogger features author Carol J. Alexander. You might remember her visit last year for the debut of her latest book, Homestead Cooking with Carol. I met Carol soon after I started blogging. She's a treasure - a great inspiration and encouragement. This talented friend is also a freelance writer, editor, proofreader, and contributor to the anthology for writers, Start Here: 40 Freelance Writers Share....
            

Hi Carol! Thanks for stopping by. Why did you start blogging? How long have you had your 

current blog?

I started blogging in 2007 because I read in Writer’s Digest that that is what writers are supposed to do. I

took a course in platform development, fashioned my blog topic, and everything has been going along

since.

What is your blog about?

I am on my third blog. :/ I am easing out of the homesteading/homeschooling niche and into the writing

niche. My newest blog is Carol’s Blog: Tips, Rants, and Raves. My plan is that every week I will post one

of those three things. My tips are things like how I keep my files, websites I find helpful, ways I cultivate

ideas. Rants are my pet peeves. You know, like when you find the word Internet and it’s not capitalized.

And then Raves are the things about writing that excite me—quotes from books, when a reader emails a

thank you, or a shout out for a friend’s publication success.




What benefits have you gained through blogging? 

Definitely writing when I don’t feel like it. Reaching out to readers and forming friendships is a great

benefit. Also, if you rank in search engines, have folks sharing your content, and generally make your

blog popular, it gets your name in front of those who will be the buyers of your work.

What project/s are you working on right now?

I have created a course called Break into Magazine Writing: A Step-by-Step Guide to Getting Published.

The pilot class is wrapping up as I type this. After getting the feedback from those first students, I plan to

tweak the content and then offer it again in the fall. The course lasts four weeks and walks the students

through developing niche topics, choosing markets to submit to, creating a list of 30 story ideas, and

finally crafting a killer query letter. The course also includes bonus material that folks would want to pay

for, but I keep it a secret until the final week of class.

What might people be surprised to learn about you?

The fact I like to throw out to shock people is that I was a DJ for a Contemporary Christian radio station

for a short period of time.

Wow, now that is surprising! :) What advice would you share with a newbie blogger?

Don’t let it distract you. If you want to be a writer, write what you want to write. Don’t let the blogging

world suck you in with the “get rich from blogging” hype. Just focus on your writing.

Good advice, Carol. Thank you for stopping by! 

Thanks for having me!   


Carol J. Alexander writes magazine feature articles on alternative farming practices, natural

health, money-saving, parenting, and homeschooling topics. Her work has appeared in Grit,

BackHome, Urban Farm, Hobby Farm, Home Education, and more. Carol is also the

Assistant Editor of Shenandoah Living Magazine. You will find her blog, featured work, and

Break into Magazine Writing course at www.CarolJAlexander.com.


Do you have any questions for Carol? What is your writing focused on this month?

Happy writing,

Karen


Photo credit: Free Images

26 comments :

  1. Hi Karen, nice to meet Carol J Alexander and get to know her better. I like the idea of just concentrating on writing.

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    Replies
    1. That's right, Rachna. If you want to be a published writer, that's the place the focus.

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  2. Howdy, Carol. Your class sounds interesting. I wish you great success with it and your writing. I like what you said about not letting the blogging world suck you in with the “get rich from blogging” hype. I'll add one more. Some writers I know are sucked in with the "I have more followers than you" which is why I took my follower button down. I'm changing to WP, and there will be no follower button there either.

    Thanks for having Carol over again, amigo. <3 Hugs and loves.

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    Replies
    1. Hi Robyn! Yes, I've found that numbers don't mean anything if they aren't reading you.

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  3. That sounds like a great course. I'd have no idea how to write for magazines.

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  4. Hi Karen...Nice interview with Carol. I enjoyed it. Regarding making money on a blog, I had to chuckle a bit. That has never been (and never will be) a reason for me to blog. I just wanted to write and writing posts is a good discipline. Hoping to get a few freelance articles submitted this month. Hope you have a good week and thanks for the interview. Susan

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    Replies
    1. And I think, Susan, that is the reason for a writer to blog.

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  5. Rachna,
    So glad you got to meet Carol! Yes, I agree, focusing on writing is a good thing. :)

    Robyn,
    You make an excellent point, amigo. When I first started the numbers were more important to me. Now, not so much like you said. :) Glad you met Carol!

    Alex,
    I think Carol's course sounds great too. She knows her stuff! :)

    Susan,
    Thank you! Glad you and Carol got to meet. :) I agree, the money making thing wasn't why I headed into it either. Although if I had accidentally gotten rich, I wouldn't have been upset. lol

    Happy writing,
    Karen

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  6. I need to meet Carol! Thanks for a great interview. Will check out her blog!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Terri. Thanks for checking me out. Come back, though. Not many posts up yet.

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  7. Hi Karen - great interview. I agree with Carol on the benefits of blogging. My own blog has changed "topics" several times since I started blogging many moons ago. That's good, though, right? We grow and change, and our blogs change with us. :)

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    Replies
    1. Thanks for that, Lisa. Sometimes I wonder if I'm doing the right thing to change niches. But this time, no.

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  8. Hi Carol and Karen! I enjoyed your interview a lot! It's interesting that Carol goes with her creative flow, now going on her third blog. I think we all change and find new places of interest. It's good not to get too rooted in one spot.
    Oh course, I love that she was a radio DJ for a Christian radio station. That would be fun! I'll check out her blog today :)
    Ceil

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  9. Great meeting Carol. She sounds an interesting person...her work would be so interesting!

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    Replies
    1. I absolutely love my work, Kelly. Writing for magazines, I get to change my topics all the time and I meet the most interesting people.

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  10. Terri,
    I think you will like what Carol has to say! :) So glad you got to meet her.

    Lisa,
    Yes, I think that is a good thing. We grow and change, and it all seems to come together in the end! :) Glad you stopped by!

    Ceil,
    I am happy you got to meet Carol. That's a good point - too rooted in one spot isn't always good. I would have loved to have heard Carol as DJ. :)

    Kelly,
    She is an interesting person, always has something creative going. Glad you got to meet her! :)

    Happy writing,
    Karen

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  11. Hi Karen and Carol -

    You know what my favorite part of the interview was (besides all the neat facts and news)? I finally got to see your picture! You've been camera shy over the years, and I can't imagine why!

    Blessings,
    Susan :)

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    Replies
    1. Ha! Thanks, Susan. Thought it was about time.

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  12. I'm also on my third blog and have seen those same benefits. It is important not to get bogged down with the blog and work on one's manuscripts.

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  13. Susan,
    Carol is beautiful, isn't she? It's always nice to connect the person with an image. :)

    Medeia,
    You are right! My downfall is getting too sidetracked with social media and other distractions. Taking cues from you and Carol!:)

    Happy writing,
    Karen

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  14. I remember Carol's last visit. Is it a year ago already! Love your photo. You look like a writer, attentive, nurturing, and lovely. So nice to see you again.

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    Replies
    1. Thank you, Joylene. A good photographer can do wonders. ;)

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  15. Thanks for the introduction to Carol. Great meeting her.

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  16. Joylene,
    I know, it's been a year already! :) Time flies, right? Carol is all that, inside and out!

    Nas,
    You are very welcome! Glad you had a chance to meet her.:)

    Happy writing,
    Karen

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  17. Thank you for having me, Karen. It's been a pleasure meeting so many new folks. Anyone have any questions about writing for magazines, I'm always happy to answer questions.

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    Replies
    1. Carol, you are more than welcome. It's always a pleasure, my friend! :)

      Happy weekend,
      Karen

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Thanks for stopping by! I appreciate your input. Have a blessed day!