Friday Guest Spot – How I… Stopped The Novice Blogger Fear!


Right. For 74 weeks we brought you 10 fab blog posts from the Mum and Dad bloggers of the Tots100. The Ten at Ten. But no more… *cries*. Fear not! Your Friday mornings will not remain empty wastelands, barren of all reading matter. Now we have the Share a Post feature we don’t need our Guest Editors to find us the best posts of the week. So instead we’re making them work, and bringing you their own thought of the week. They can choose between three types of posts:

“How I…” will be a Bloggers own how-to guide to something Bloggery (is so a word).
“Did You See…” will be an opinion on soemthing the Blogger has seen that week, on TV or at the cinema. We all love a good X Factor moan, yes?
“Family Rant or Rave” is exactly what it says on the tin – feel free, go right ahead, say it like it is. Family Life, eh? *shudders*

So over to this week’s Guest Editor – the really very very lovely JollyJilly. You can go have a chat with her on twitter, where she’s @jollyjilly52, but mostly she lives over at Jolly Jilly’s.

Jilly Says:

Ok this blog post is very important so I am hoping you are paying attention!
I was very pleased to be asked to write a blog post for the Tots 100 site.
Then the panic set in!!
Was I good enough?
Could I write something interesting and helpful?
After a sleepless night thinking about a subject I decided on,

“How I stopped the novice blogger fear”.

I’ve been blogging for nearly two years. My niece is a very experienced blogger, and when she first mentioned I should try I thought she was mad!
Why on earth would I do that, I really did not understand the concept at all.
So we sat and she very kindly explained as much as she could to this older brain how to start. I decided on a name, a good start point and I was off!
I am no expert but over the last two years I think I have learnt a great deal from trial and error. I am not sure if what I have picked up is helpful, but here goes.

Get an identity!

The first thing I did was find an identity. I wanted my blog to open and people identify the page with me. I asked my son if he could help and he found a great image which was so me. I love craft and sewing so my little lady at the sewing machine fitted so well. He helped to put things in and take things out, and I really like it so much. I think it is so important to build your identity  so people can straight away know who you are. If you don’t have a kind niece or talented son, there are lots of excellent sites and people who you could ask to design for you.

What will I say?

“What will I say”? How many bloggers say that? I’ve no magic answer as I have to admit I still suffer myself. I think we as bloggers, novice or not, face this problem often.
I always want to say something smart or clever or funny. I want to set the world alight with my wonderful writing !!
Some blogs are about a set subject, and at first I thought that was where I was heading. However I found myself chatting about my life in general rather than sticking to one area.
So you may know from the start or decide later what you will be writing about.
I enjoy treating my blog as a fun way to write my memories and feelings. Some will have a strong idea where you want to go with your blog. Others like myself learn (and are still learning) as you go along.

Never be scared to ask for help!

In general I have found the blogging world kind and helpful. There is always someone out there who can offer advice. As I said I am no expert, and I have the for the last year been blogging alone. I have had times when I was stuck but I have always managed to put it out there, and get an answer back.
There are so many excellent sites that can help such as tots100. There are also many more experienced bloggers who will be delighted to share their knowledge.

Stay Calm and jump in!

I know it is scary! If you are new to blogging it can be a huge world. I know at first I was so nervous of making a mistake. I was afraid to attempt things for fear of making a real blooper. I know I did made one mistake at first but once it was explained from a far more experienced blogger, I learnt and went on from there. I think you have to just jump in! You need to relax and not be afraid to try. It is your blog and you can write whatever you want really. Yes I expect you will make mistakes, but you will learn!
I think being scared of making a mistake is the biggest fear a newbie blogger has. You just have to get out there and get going. The more you blog, the more you read other blogs the more you learn.
I don’t think you ever stop learning but if you don’t jump in you never will.

Building traffic

I’m not sure that  even I have  learnt this myself! I wish I had the magic answers to encouraging people to visit you.
I have written posts that I thought  wonderful and it’s not got one comment. Then I have written ones that I thought was not so good and it got loads!! There are always sites that say they can give you ideas to promote traffic. For me I think it is just plain hard work. You have to work at getting traffic it’s not going to just fall in your lap.
I love to blog hop! There are loads and loads and if you just put the subject into your search engine you will find some to take part in.
It’s easy and once you have done one you will be fine. Each blog hop normally has some rules, so take time to read through. It is then fairly simple to follow the prompts and join in. It is polite to comment on a few of the other blogs already there. When I do that I always ask if they would like to visit me so that equals traffic.
Using twitter and face book or any other social media is another way to gain readers. Its fun and you can make lots of new friends which has got to be good.
Visit other sites  as there is so much information out there. And if you have any great ideas pass them onto me!

So I hope there is something in this post that will be helpful to you. I am no expert I am just a 50+ lady. I think that if I can learn then anyone can. You have to just get on and do it. Learn as you go and I think the biggest advice to the novice, is have fun! I have had a wonderful time meeting new e friends and as I spend a fair amount of time alone, it has really opened the world up to me.
Relax and enjoy your blog because you can only get better by trying. Just know that the blogging world is huge, and in the most, very helpful and kind.
So stop the novice blogger fear and have fun
Happy blogging

Sally Whittle is founder of the Tots100, Foodies100, BlogSummit and the MAD Blog Awards. When she's not working, she can be found blogging at Who's the Mummy, or having fun with her 8 year old daughter, Flea.

Discussion5 Comments

  1. As a fairly new blogger its good to read this post! I have struggled with finding my blogging identity, so at the moment am feeling quite “random”, but nevertheless I enjoy writing posts, and of course its a fabulous excuse not to do the housework.

    • I also had that for awhile karen but once I got my little lady logo I felt grounded to my blog. Good luck

  2. LOVE !!!!! this write up. I have offten thought of writing a blog many times but worried I wouldn’t no where to start . But reading this makes me feel as if I should give it ago :-) thanks so much keep writing.