Blogging Tips for Those Who Have No Time

*ahem ahem ahem* (can we all just ignore the fact that it’s 12:30am on Wednesday morning and I forgot until now that I needed a post to go up TODAY? *facepalm* The irony. I wish I could say I’m just being sarcastic, but… -_- )

 

 

Let’s face it: Bloggging is HARD.

Ever wonder why I miss posts? Disappear without explanation?

The short answer is I have a life.

The short solution is that I should find time in that life for blogging.

Well. I tried that and IT DIDN’T WORK.

So. After much trial and error, I present to you a random conglomeration of blogging tips for busy people.

NOTE: Don’t hold any of this over my head because I’m about to divulge my deepest darkest blogging secrets.

 

ONE

Plan out posts a month in advance. You don’t have to completely write the posts and get them scheduled (though if you can do that, great!). Just write down on a calendar what post is going up on what day. And a week or two (or the night before like I’m doing right now) that, finish up the post and schedule it.

 

TWO

Find a graphics template you can use over and over again. I use Canva to make the graphics for my post. I use the same template every. Is this boring? Probably. Do I care? Not really. It gets the job done and looks mildly professional. (Note mildly.)

 

THREE

Have a few book review post drafts formatted, grammar-checked, and ready to go live. If worst comes to worst, just click GO on a book review post and voila, you’ve got yourself another week.

*clears throat* no I’ve never done this why do you ask?

 

FOUR

Keep a running tab of EVERY SINGLE post idea you ever get. It doesn’t even have to be a complete idea. ANY idea you get should be written down. Who knows…it might be weeks, months, or even years before you use it–or you may never use it–but it’s there. It’s already thought-of. If you’re scrambling for time, pulling an old idea out can be one of the best options.

 

FIVE

Plan out, write up, and completely draft a three or four month long series. If you post just one of those posts each month (be sure to link back to previous posts), you’ve just 1.) created a reason that readers might wish to return to your blog, and 2.) bought yourself some time.

 

~~~

What’s something that has helped you stay on-track with blogging?

(tell me all your secrets because I’m a miserable little human writing a post of blogging tips at 12:45am. *rolls eyes*)

 

The Very Awesome Vlog Challenge #5 / / April-June 2017

It’s that time again! First, make sure to watch everyone’s amazing vlogs from the fourth challenge.

Victoria @ Ruffles and Grace
Hope Ann @ Writing in the Light
Abi @ The Left-Handed Typist

Ivy @ Lakeside Publications

And, as promised, the winner of the $10 Amazon Gift Card drawing is…

Victoria!

Congrats! You should get an email from Amazon shortly. :D

 

 

Questions for VAVC #5, April-June:

  1. If you were going to spend one year away from home in a cabin in the woods and were only allowed to bring ONE suitcase of belongings, what would you pack?
  2. Do you believe in “Writer’s Block”?
  3. What is one fiction book that helped you grow spiritually?

 

You have until June 15th to add your link on the Challenge Page. And remember, entering in the challenge also enters you to win a $10 Amazon Gift Card!

Happy Vlogging!

 

Long Overdue UPDATES!

I know, I know, this post has been too long coming. Many apologies! *bangs head* bad author, bad author.

 

ONE

My contemporary novella, Left to Die, is FINALLY available as a paperback! It might take a day or two for it to show up on Amazon, but it will be there.

 

TWO

I have taken a few weeks off from writing. There are several reasons for this that I won’t go into, but the reason I’m even bringing it up is because I HIGHLY RECOMMEND DOING THIS. My mind has been so much clearer to think and process and prioritize and goal-ize and focus on my relationship with Christ. It’s been wonderful. Highly, highly recommended.

 

THREE

This is sad news. Get your tissues out.

The second Long Lake Legacy book will not be published in 2017.

*cowers*

I’m so, so sorry. Again, there are several reasons why that I won’t bore you with. It makes me sad, too, especially because I know how excited many of you are for the next installment in Clara and William’s story. It is coming, just not as quickly as I had hoped.

The new approximate publication date is Summer, 2018.

 

FOUR

This is more of an FYI than anything, but I’ll smack it here as number four. :)

Instagram is my new favorite media platform. It’s awesome. And I even post semi-regularly. So if I ever let my blog fall into the depths of despair and/or I completely ignore it, feel free to hop onto my Instagram.

A post shared by Ivy Rose (@author_ivyrose) on

FIVE

I’m actually considering writing a book by hand? Like…I think I’m crazy. But I think I might enjoy it. I mean…I used to write primarily by hand. Surely I can do it again?

Still trying to make a decision on this one. I’ll be sure to let you know. :)

 

 

SIX

I survived having my wisdom teeth removed.

Let me say, I’m exceptionally glad that this is a one-time deal. I won’t post pictures of my swollen face to be sensitive to those who may be fainthearted, but I did put a few on Instagram for whomever may enjoy viewing such hysterical contortions of me face.

 

~~~

 

What have you been up to lately?

Are you doing Camp NaNo?

(or are you hiding in the bushes eating smores while all the productive little writers do the thing?) *stuffs face*

Shadow of the Hersweald / / Blog Tour

Welcome to the launch of Shadows of the Hersweald, the third novella in the Legends of Light series! If you enjoy Christian fantasy and fairy tale retellings, you’ll want to check out this Hansel and Gretel novella.

 

 

 

They would have to come that afternoon. Haydn glared at the rutted road twisted away from the gate beneath him, slithering into the shadows of the Hersweald. And what was the flaming idea behind leaving him in charge? Tregaron in the hands of a criminal… that would put them all in the good graces of the province governor, no questions asked.

A battered soldier from a defeated army, Haydn knows there is only one end to the arrival of the Prince’s governor. Except he hasn’t counted on the Prince himself. Or the pardon which his recent foe has declared to acquit all those who fought against him.

A pardon Haydn detests.

A pardon that refuses to punish the rebels now threatening his own village. And his sister.

Guilt-ridden from his own actions during the war, Haydn knows there are others who have no conscience at all. Others who are using the freedom of the pardon to forward their own desperate schemes.

With enemies closing in on all sides, a pardon that refuses punishment, and nightmares of murder and fire haunting his every thought, will Haydn recognize the truth or will his fear condemn everything he loves to destruction?

 

Although the history of Aslaria and the conflict between the Prince and the rebel, Tauscher, flow chronologically through the series, each novella in the Legends of Light series is a stand-alone story. Each novella focuses on one of the nine aspects of the Fruit of the Spirit while twisting fairy tales in a clean, exciting, and inspiring manner.

Buy now on Kindle, iTunes, and Smashwords

Add on Goodreads

 

And now for some quotes from the book!!

 

 

 

About the Author

Hope Ann is a Christian authoress who lives on a small farm in northern Indiana. She was homeschooled and now helps teach several of her eight younger siblings.

She has been writing for over five years and has so many story ideas that she doubts she will ever stop. Her favorite genre to write is high fantasy with a touch of the allegorical. A close second is futuristic suspense. Her goal is to not only entertain with her stories but to provide inspirational fiction for young adults.

Predictably, she loves reading fantasy, fairy tales, mythology, and futuristic suspense. Her favorite authors include J. R. R. Tolkien, Charles Dickens, Frank Peretti, Mark Twain, and Serena Chase.

Her hobbies include photography, movie making, knitting, tree climbing, writing e-mails to friends, listening to Celtic music, and collecting shiny trinkets for story inspiration.

You can visit Hope’s blog at authorhopeann.com, or follow her on Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, or Twitter.

Indie e-Con / / Instagram for Authors

 

(This post is written in correlation with the Indie e-Conference. Jump over to Kendra’s Blog for more awesome posts!)

 

With the numerous social media platforms out there, how on earth are we supposed to keep up with them all? Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Google +, (and I know there are more but those are the ones that come to mind) — how exactly are we supposed to come up with content for all of them on a regular basis?

For myself and many other authors with busy lives, it’s simply unattainable. Even if I wanted to, I couldn’t keep up. Yet at the same time, I knew I needed to expand my platform to reach more readers. So where’s the happy medium?

At the council of a friend, I chose one media platform to start with. One that I thought I would enjoy. One that would just take a few moments to make posts on.

I picked INSTAGRAM.

Three reasons why Instagram is perfect for me:

  1. I’m a visual person. I take a lot of pictures in a day. It wasn’t hard for me to me more intentional and post pictures of what I’m already doing.
  2. It’s fast. Take a picture. Make a caption. Come up with a few hashtags (I keep hashtags to a minimum, but I know there is a lot more that can be done with them).
  3. I enjoy it! Pictures are fun. I’m no photographer, and 99% of my Instagram pics are from my phone.

 

Personally, it’s not difficult to come up with content for Instagram. I try to do 4-ish posts a week. If it’s more than that, great! If it’s less…well, life happens. It’s not a big deal.

But what can writers post on Instagram?

Anything. At. All. Instagram is one of those things that can be personalized or professionalized. Some authors I’ve seen post more professional-type pictures, with the personal bit coming in only every now and again. Other’s I’ve seen are the opposite–mostly personal with professionalism visiting.

The personal route is what works best for me. I include pictures of things I do with my siblings, road trips, school stuff–generally random stuff. Then there are the bookish posts, where I post about what I’m reading, what releases I’m looking forward to, etc. And then, very occasionally, promotional posts for my own books. *cringe*

From a writer standpoint, there are so many options. If your idea tank runs dry, try some of these ideas:

  • Your favorite book
  • Your favorite cover
  • Your writing space
  • A coffee/tea mug you love
  • Your window view as you write
  • Your bookshelf
  • Your favorite writing resources
  • Selfies while writing/editing/plotting
  • Memes
  • Prompts
  • Your furry writing buddy (dogs, cats, hamsters, raccoons… ;-) )
  • Screenshots of your writing music playlist

 

Instagram is a versatile, fun, easy, and fast. It’s ideal for authors with little time who want to actively connect with followers. It’s perfect for scatterbrains (*points to self*) who more often than not sometimes forget what day it is and when they last posted anything on any social platform.

Most of all, Instagram is an awesome method for connecting with followers in a visual, picture oriented way.

 

~~~~

 

What is your favorite social media platform?

Have you tried Instagram?

 

VAVC #4 / / Feb-April

 

I’ll admit, I’m hesitant to post this very scatterbrained, rambly video. It’s LOOONNNNGGGGGG. I’m soooo sorry…. but I’m too lazy to redo it. So here you go, the raw and real Ivy, stumbling and blundering. -_-

 

VAVC #4 from Ivy Rose on Vimeo.

 

If you want to join in the NaNo Make-Up, click here to learn more!

And remember, there will be a drawing for a $10 Amazon gift card for those who participate in the vlog challenge.

NaNo Make-Up #2

It’s time! Our first NaNo Make-Up went so well, we’re gearing up for another!

 

Because I’m such a pathetic human and cannot manage to do NaNo the months it is actually running, I have decided to come up with my own times to NaNo when it works for me. So, I’m hosting a Make-Up that will run from March 15th to April 15th. (Yes, I know it will overlap with the actual CampNaNo. Sorry.)

You can set your own word count, or set a project/outline/editing goal–whatever you want! If you are going to join, send me a message and I’ll add you to our group Google Hangout. Also, you can add your goal to the group Google Doc. Some of us will be using MyWriteClub for goal tracking. It’s not a requirement, but if you want to join that, feel free!!!

I hope you can join me! It will be fun!!!

Top 3 Writing Blogs

 

Who doesn’t like learning about new writing resources? I know I do! But honestly, with all the fantastic writing blogs out there, it can be hard to narrow them down. These three, in no particular order, are the ones I spend most of my time on.

 

~

 

Go Teen Writers is awesome because of the broad spectrum of topics they cover. I love all the articles about getting over writer’s block, what to do when characters are misbehaving, and how to work with a frustrating plotline. Also, GTW is all about getting beginning writers started, providing encouragement, and opening opportunities for young writers to get their work critiqued by experts.

 

I just recently discovered The Writer’s Alley, but what a treasure trove! This is a blog that is a wonderful mash-up of authors in all walks of life and all seasons of stories. There is something for EVERYONE on there! I haven’t had a ton of time to go digging through archives, but the few posts I’ve read about time management have been wonderful.

 

 

This is also a new find for me thanks to my critique partner Abi, and I love it! The posts are a little shorter and more to the point than the first two blogs, which I sincerely appreciate! Lots of good stuff on this blog.

 

~~~

 

What’s your favorite writing blog?