As you know, blogging is a wonderful way to meet people, sharpen writing skills, make connections, and market services and books. There's no getting around it, though, blogs require attention and care. Writing content, posting, general site upkeep, responding to comments, visiting others' blogs, etc., it can get overwhelming at times. How can we keep stress to a minimum? Here are 6 tips that have helped and inspired me.
1) Keep posts short.
Long posts are great, but short ones can offer good info and interaction too. It doesn't hurt to take the pressure off sometimes, sharing brief thoughts, a quote, or simply asking your readers one question. A high word count doesn't guarantee quality content or reader engagement.
2) Schedule posts in advance.
This is probably the best thing since the invention of the blog. Whether you're going away, looking ahead to a super busy month, or have an idea for a July post strike you in February, scheduling ahead can be a lifesaver.
3) Offer regular features.
Author Susan J. Reinhardt's Friday blog posts share interesting links and info. Ask the Expert, a staple at veteran freelance writer Jennifer Brown Banks' site, offers great interviews. Regular features here include Meet the Blogger and Miscellaneous Monday. These types of posts provide good content and can be scheduled in advance.
4) Post less often.
There are no blogging laws dictating post frequency. Sure, you want to be consistent so that readers know when to expect good content, but that doesn't mean you must post every day. When I began blogging, I posted twice a week. I'm down to once a week now with an occasional extra post as necessary. This better suits my schedule, as I suspect you prefer a sane Karen over an overworked, scattered one.
5) Find a good time management balance.
This is an ongoing challenge, with family, work, social media, and other demands. But we need to find and maintain our right balance. It's tricky, but it can and must be done to be healthy and productive. Allow yourself space and grace, too, when things don't go as planned. In ten years, it won't matter if you miss a post or forget to tweet.
6) Take a break.
A little time to regroup, refresh, and catch up on other things is therapeutic. Plus it gives you time to stock up on chocolate or other necessities. I hate to say it, but the blogging world will manage in our absence. And that's okay. They'll miss us, of course, but they'll soldier on until we get back.
Basic tips? Yes. But ones worth revisiting when feeling uninspired or overwhelmed. At least for me, anyway. :)
How do you manage blogging's demands?
Photo credit: F. Turco