I’m having a bit of a blog tag week. Earlier this week, I interviewed my husband for #TheDaddyTag challenge. Now I’m trying out ‘Behind the Blogging Scenes’. This one gives bloggers a chance to give their readers a glimpse at how they work behind the scenes.
Claire at The Pramshed did a great post answering the questions below, and she very kindly tagged me when I asked her to. I love answering questions about myself, lol. So here goes…
Where do you blog?
Usually sat on my sofa with my laptop while my husband watches some sport on the television, after the kids are in bed. Actually, since I’ve started blogging, I watch very little TV anymore as I’d always rather be doing something blog related! I’m trying to get some posts queued up ahead of time so I have more time when Strictly Come Dancing is on.
Where do you find inspiration for your blog posts?
Everywhere I can! I started the blog because I like writing my opinions of days out and holidays, along with tips for other people who want to do the same thing. Usually, I think of ways I might have organised a day out differently in order to make it more fun, and try to share those tips with my readers. I also get inspiration from other blogs, and I like sharing stories about my own life. My blog has ended up being more personal than I thought it would be before I started!
How long does it take you to write your blog posts?
Anywhere from 30 minutes to a couple hours. If it’s just me writing about my feelings or my past, it usually spills out pretty quickly. But if I’m trying to write something more factual, like this post on maternity rights, it takes me a lot longer to do the research. It also takes me longer if there are a lot of photos to sort out.
Do you plan your blog posts? How?
I’m still experimenting with how to schedule my posts across the week. I’m finding I like to post around 4 times a week. On Tuesday, I always post in my #blogtoast series, where I highlight a few other blogs that I really like. On Friday, my blogging partner “The Mum Recipes” always posts an easy family recipe. For the other two posts, I like one to be useful like a review or advice about something, and the other to be personal. But, if I fancy doing something different one week, I will – I don’t want to get too weighed down by routine.
What kind of camera do you use? What editing programme?
I’m not much of a photographer. I use my mobile phone to take photos. For editing, if it’s just cropping, I use Preview on my Mac. If the colours are wonky/it needs brightening up a bit, I use the auto touch-up on Google Photos. If some serious work needs to be done or an image created from scratch, I use Photoshop. I’m not great at Photoshop but I’m learning new bits of it all the time. I also like using the Prisma app for filters.
Do you use a notebook to track your ideas?
Nope. I usually write down my ideas and save them on draft status on WordPress. I started using the WordPress app to do this when I’m out and about – but I got burned doing that the other day. I was in the pub and had some (obviously incredibly brilliant) post ideas after a couple of pints. I accidentally published just the ideas with no content, which immediately went out to all my subscribers. From now on, I’ll use a simple notes app to track my ideas so I don’t accidentally publish too soon!
How do you take your pictures?
I just shoot from the hip, to be honest. I know that I should have brilliant photos to get the best engagement, but they’re just not the most important thing to me. I’m a words person. And I feel like if I take too many photos, it ruins my enjoyment of whatever I’m doing. I want to look through my eyes instead of the lens.
What’s your favourite type of blog post to write?
Ones that have the perfect intersection of something I’m passionate about with something I think other people will find useful.
Who knows about your blog?
I haven’t kept it a secret. I’m not good at keeping my own secrets. I probably bore most of my friends talking about it. But I haven’t shouted about it to some members of my extended family whom I think will disapprove. One of my posts got chosen for blog of the day on Mumsnet this week. I haven’t told my dad that more than a thousand people have read that story now!
Are you an organised or messy blogger?
I’m usually a super organised person, but I do tend to just do whatever I want with blogging. Whatever topic strikes my fancy, different linkys every week, different social media outlets. I just bounce around. I’ve read some great stuff about how to blog more productively, but I don’t want it to feel too much like a job.
Biggest blogging pet peeve?
Well obviously a big part of blogging is sharing stuff on social media. I dislike people (usually companies) that follow you only to get a follow back, and then unfollow soon after. You should follow people only if you’re interested in what they’re saying! I usually follow people back unless they are obvious spammers or have no profile info so I don’t know who they are. I also don’t understand why so many porn ladies follow me! They’re all like “hey come see my naked pics on Snapchat”. Does my twitter profile make me look like I like porn?
Please let me know in the comments if you want me to tag you to tell your own blogging behind the scenes story – I’ll invite you on Twitter and retweet you if you mention me in your post.