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Monday, December 4, 2017

How to Make Your Blog More Professional with Three Easy Concepts

By On December 04, 2017
I haven't even started my introduction yet, and I can already feel you questioning me. DO NOT QUESTION ME OK. If you honestly CANNOT believe that I know something about this topic then.... well, I don't blame you.

BUT. Even if you're questioning my knowledge on this subject, HUMOR ME. Maybe I'll surprise you? (But in all honesty, maybe I won't. You'll have to keep reading to find out. MWAHAHA.)  

How your blog looks is SUPER IMPORTANT, because the appearance of your blog is what's going to attract readers. If I stumble across a blog and it's not visually appealing, I'm not inclined to stick around. 

So with that in mind, there's a few easy ways to use graphics to give your blog a more professional feel. 



PLAN YOUR GRAPHICS 

Basically the idea here is that you're not just throwing pictures up on your blog because they look good; instead, you're taking the time to figure out which pictures will look good together.

If my last post graphic was black-and-white, then I probably wouldn't want to use another black-and-white picture for my next post. Likewise, if my last post graphic was darker, I'll probably try and choose a lighter picture for my next post. 

So that being said, let's take a look at my last six post graphics: 



They're not necessarily PERFECT together, but none of them are clashing with each other. I try to make sure that my graphics fit together and that they're varied. By planning your graphics out, you can give your blog a fantastic visual touch that it wouldn't have otherwise. 

But just remember NOT TO STRESS ABOUT IT. Don't spend two hours trying to find the PERFECT picture; that's not a wise use of your time. Just make sure you're not posting two similar pictures or two pictures that clash in a row. And try to keep things varied! (unless your blog has a specific color scheme, in which case I applaud you) It's as easy as that. 


UNIFY YOUR FONTS 

THIS IS LITERALLY THE EASIEST THING EVER. You know how you make a main graphic for each post you write? Stop switching fonts between post graphics!! It's that simple. Consistency of font makes your blog unified, whereas using all sorts of different fonts can make your blog look disjointed. 

But does your blog have to be ALL THE SAME FONT? Nope! I have two fonts that I use. My main font is Amatic Small Caps, but I occasionally throw in Julius Sans One. By using Julius Sans One VERY sparingly, I can use it to achieve emphasis on certain words or to mix things up every so often. Or, on a graphic that contains only Amatic Small Caps font, I can vary the colors (NOT the font) to achieve emphasis or mix things up. 

Plus, you get bonus points if your blog header, blog button, and blog graphics are in the same font. (see how all of that is Amatic Small Caps for mine?)

Also, one last thought: See how I use Amatic small caps for my main points in each of my posts? That's also a SUPER good idea. Graphically designed headers for your main points = professional. Especially if your font is unified.


If you're a blogger, you've probably heard this phrase before. IT GETS TOSSED AROUND A LOT. But what does it actually mean

Basically, "reader friendly" means that your blog is easy for your readers to navigate, read, and interact on. It doesn't take new readers five minutes to find your latest post. It doesn't take them five minutes to find your about page. It doesn't take them five minutes to figure out how to follow you. (<< COMMON PROBLEM) It doesn't take them five minutes to find ANYTHING TBH.


NAVIGATION 

Making your blog easier to navigate (hence making it more reader friendly, hence making it MORE PROFESSIONAL) isn't as hard as it might sound. Off the top of my head, I can think of three SUPER easy ways to do this. 


Most importantly, readers should be able to find out about you VERY EASILY. The easiest and most common way to do this is with a picture of you on the top of your sidebar; this gives your blog a personal touch. Beneath your picture, you give a short summary of who you are and what you believe in; this gives readers a chance to instantly connect with you. Then, you link the picture to your about page. Ta-da! Now, your readers can figure out who you are in a glance by reading your short summary, or, they can read your in-depth bio on your about page.


Next up is figuring out where to put your "follow me on x!!" gadgets. Guess what? EASY SOLUTION = put them near the top of your sidebar. Period. It makes them easier to find. If I go onto a blog and I can't find where to follow said blog, the changes of me following are VERY SLIM INDEED. 


Lastly, a search box and floating navigation bar are nice touches. They're definitely "extra" elements, but they make navigating a blog SO MUCH EASIER. If you have a search box, your readers can find specific posts of yours by searching for them. (instead of having to wade through your archives) If you have a floating navigation bar, all your pages are one click away.



EASY-TO-READ

Making your blog easy-to-read might sound like it's based ENTIRELY on your style, but that's NOT THE CASE. Although having an easy-to-read blogging style is definitely a key idea here, there are a few other solid tricks that can make your blog easier to read. (hence making it more professional) 


For one, FONT IS IMPORTANT. (if you get nothing else from this post, you need to get this point ok) Your blog post font should be plain and clear and BIG. If it's fancy, it's hard to read. If it's tiny, it's hard to read. And how long do you think I'm going to stick around on a blog that has font this size or even this size? NOT LONG. MY EYES CAN'T HANDLE IT. Same goes for a font that's too fancy. 


Also related to font: DO. NOT. CENTER. IT. I see this a lot, and I'm a little confused as to why...? Why would we center the font on our blogs when LITERALLY ANYTHING ELSE WE READ (minus poetry) is aligned to the left?Centered font is just hard to read because we're not used to it. End of story. Align your font to the left. 


One last tip on how font can make your blog easier to read: Special formatting is underrated. Using bold and italics is a fantastic way to make your posts easier-to read. (Bold is probably more common, but italics are useful also.) It makes long posts seem less daunting. Plus, if someone doesn't have time to read your WHOLE POST, they can scan over it and read the bold parts. 



READER INTERACTION 

The biggest part of reader interaction is comments. Really the only thing I have to say about comments is that you should definitely reply to them. Even if you don't know what to say, a simple "Thanks for commenting!" can suffice. 

Most of us probably already know that. BUT. A less well-known tip is this: A really cool way to add some more reader interaction to your blog is by creating a "contact me" page. Readers can shoot you an email through the contact page if they have questions, longer feedback, or anything they'd like to say to you. LOOK AT YOU, SO PROFESSIONAL.


YOU KNEW I'D GET HERE EVENTUALLY. XD Content is also an important part of blogging (who knew, right?); and just like the last two points, your blog content plays a part in how professional your blog is. 

However, this might be a little harder than the last two points. Professional content is more of a "gray area" and it looks different for different people. The goods news is that there ARE a few basic principles that I think should apply across the board. Let's take a look at those. 



SO WHAT'S YOUR BLOG ABOUT?

An understanding of what your primary blog topics are is critical. Part of professional blogging is having clear-cut, defined content. Anyone who's been reading your blog for any decent amount of time should know what to expect from you.

SO. Let's use my blog as an example. First, what's my tagline? "Reading, writing, faith, ninjas." That's a great start! Anyone who stumbles across my blog is going to see that right away, and instantly they have an idea of what I blog about. But... TAGLINES ARE REALLY GENERAL. How else can you develop defined content other than just stating it in your tagline?

WELL. It's actually super easy! Blog about what you say you're going to blog about. If I have a cooking blog and I post something about how I'm training my pet chinchilla (both hypothetical situations, JUST SO YOU'RE AWARE), then that's not very professional. If I have a fashion blog and I post something about my favorite brand of vacuum cleaner, then that's not very professional. (AGAIN: HYPOTHETICAL.)

The point of having defined content is letting your readers know what to expect from you. This doesn't mean you can NEVER EVER stray from your normal blog topics. It just means that your readers have a general idea of what your posts are going to be like and what you're going to discuss on your blog. 



AUTHENTICITY

We're going to assume that your blog readers are SMART. They can tell when you're actually serious about what you're posting, and they can tell when you're just posting something because you have nothing better to say. 

Blogging is less about how well-written your posts are and more about how much your subject matters to you. I've seen people that have blogs FILLED TO THE BRIM with sketchy grammar, and yet they're still doing great. Why is that? 

It's because those blog authors know what matters to them, and they blog about it. They don't blog about what everyone else is talking about, or what they think is popular or "relevant." 

I'm by no means advocating that you forget grammar when you blog. Personally, I believe grammar and spelling are critical to becoming a good writer. But are they critical to becoming a good blogger? Not necessarily. 

The obvious question here is: how do I make my posts more authentic? For me, I write about what I've learned, what God's put on my heart, or what I've been going through. Posts about what I've been reading or writing can also work! So ask yourself: What matters to me? NOW GO WRITE ABOUT IT. 




SO THERE YOU HAVE IT. Maybe you don't think blogging professionalism is as "easy" as the post title made it sound, but I definitely don't think it's as complicated as most make it sound. It's really not that mind-boggling, but at the same time, it's a process. It won't happen overnight. I don't even have a lot of this stuff down, and I'm the one who wrote the post. SO. I REST MY CASE. XD 


Anything you agree with? Disagree with? How's your blog going? Any blogging goals you still need to meet by the end of the year? (LESS THAN A MONTH TO GO WOW *MINDBLOWN*)



Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Three Lies We Believe about Gratitude and the Truth about Them

By On November 21, 2017
I guess I should begin this post by screaming "HAPPY EARLY THANKSGIVING" and then proceeding to throw candy corn your way. But unfortunately, since I can't see you and you can't see me, you're just going to have to imagine me doing that. (And I'll have to do the same thing since I don't have any candy corn at the moment. D: D:)

NATURALLY I've decided to be a good blogger and blog about thankfulness for Thanksgiving--as opposed to following my whims and blogging about something completely unrelated. You're welcome. 

(Although let's be honest, we all know this post is more for me than for you, but shhh. Humor me just this once.) 



I think this one is the most common lies, and one that many of us live out ALL THE TIME, even if we know it's not the truth. Because it's easy to KNOW this in our minds. 

It's like understanding some sort of fact in Algebra 2 class--sure, I can understand that the cosine of a triangle is equal to the adjacent side over the hypotenuse of said triangle. But graphing said cosine? LOL HOW ABOUT NOT. I understand the fact in isolation, but as soon as I have to apply it to other concepts, it's not so easy anymore. 


In the same way, it's easy to understand this FACT about gratitude, but still live contrary to it. What's hard is to live out this idea of steadfast gratitude in our day-to-day lives. Because what if I've had a bad day? What if I'm just SO TIRED and I feel like I'm going to collapse? These are both fairly mild scenarios, but they're universal. Just about anyone can relate to them. So think back to your last bad day; how did you respond to it? 


All of us THINK we're grateful people until we're faced with circumstances that stretch us. Then we find ourselves asking--what is there to be thankful for here? what is there to be thankful for in this? 


The truth is that gratitude doesn't depend on our circumstances; it depends on our attitudes. Instead of using bad days as excuses to complain, why don't we use them as opportunities to count our blessings? Jesus is my Savior. I'm still breathing. I live in a house. I can drive with the windows rolled all the way down. Learning Spanish is fun. Water tastes great, honestly, and I get to drink it clean and clear.  I'm wearing a Converse t-shirt. I can read God's promises whenever I want to. 


Maybe then we can transform our outlooks and realize that our day isn't nearly as bad as we think it is. 


Philippians 4:11 Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.

Is it possible to possess gratitude and not actually feel all that grateful? Yup! Gratitude is based off of facts, not off of emotions. It's based off a knowledge of just how truly blessed we are, whether or not we FEEL blessed. 

Sometimes choosing to change our attitude is what causes our feelings to follow. Philippians 4:6-7 shows this well. It says this: 


Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayers and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. 


In the verses, we change our attitude; then God changes our heart. While the passage doesn't directly relate to gratitude, the point is still valid. When you choose to be grateful, even when you don't FEEL like it, soon the feeling will follow. Soon you'll realize that you really are blessed--even though at one point, you didn't feel that way. 

This one's particularly sneaky. It's the one that lets us wallow in our discontentment because our lack of gratitude is only hurting ourselves... right? 

WRONG. 


When God tells us not to do something (don't be ungrateful) or to do something (be grateful!!! :D), it's normally for our own benefit. It's to protect us. It's to keep us from doing things we'll regret.


But, oftentimes it's not just for our own benefit. It's for the benefit of those around us. Even if we're not complaining verbally, an ungrateful spirit still effects anyone we come into contact with. It can manifest itself in a variety of different ways: a lack of interest in others, a lack of joy, a lack of contentment, a lack of a servant's attitude. 


An ungrateful spirit oftentimes comes from an "entitled" mentality; the belief that we DESERVE what we have. But gratitude is the opposite--it's the realization that we deserve NOTHING from God, and yet He's given us so, so much. 




ALRIGHT IT'S TIME. You knew this question was coming so here we go: What are you thankful for this Thanksgiving? What has God blessed you with? :D Any fun plans to celebrate? 


Also just a quick fyi: I'm thankful for comments. JUST SAYING.
 


Monday, November 6, 2017

Stress Just Isn't Worth It

By On November 06, 2017
Oh yes. We're here to tackle THIS topic. S T R E S S. I've been meaning to write a blog post about this for a while now but I've been super busy (and stressed #irony) so I haven't had much time.

BUT I'M HERE NOW. Hopefully I have something to say about this? I'm not really sure because I'm basically just jumping in and hoping for the best. You guys will have to make sense of whatever happens. FAIR DEAL, RIGHT?



I'm an overachiever and a perfectionist and a clean freak. Just about anything has the potential to stress me out. If my room isn't clean? I'm stressed. If I'm not done with school by dinner? I'm stressed. In fact, half the time I get stressed if I have sit down for more than ten minutes to eat lunch. LIKE. I HAVE THINGS TO DO, PEOPLE. 


But lately, I've noticed that even when I DON'T have things to do, I'm still stressed. Even when it's the end of the day and I don't have any school to do- I'm stressed about tomorrow. 


If anything gets added onto my normal to-do list, I get stressed. I try and reschedule everything to fit that new thing into my day. (even if it's something that's only going to take me ten minutes) I can't just sit still and do nothing without feeling like I HAVE to be working on something RIGHT THAT SECOND. 


So. There's where I'm at right now. Now you see why I'm writing this post at myself and not at you. Currently I'm sitting here realizing that my life isn't going to get any slower or easier. It's going to get crazier and more hectic. Meaning that I'm the one that needs to change, not my circumstances or the people around me. 


Stress is stealing my joy and my excitement and turning me into a flustered, panicky type of teenager who barely stops to breathe. I can't enjoy anything anymore, not even praying or reading or writing. Stress just isn't worth that. 


Stress is taking my ordinary, normal, every-day life and turning it into a war: me vs. my to-do list. It's blinding me to the value of hard work and causing me to lose my cool when anything goes wrong. Stress isn't worth that, either. 


Stress is turning my focus inward. It's giving me a selfish attitude instead of a servant's attitude. No longer can I help anyone with anything, or step up to take care of something around the house unless I have to. Stress tells me I don't have time. Stress tells me if I stop to breathe, even if it's just for a second, my plans will collapse. Holding onto my stress isn't worth any of that. 


I'm worn out. God never intended this for me, or for you, or for anyone. God wants me to lean on HIM. That's where the problem lies. 



In the end, stress is an issue of trust. God doesn't want us running around anxious about everything, wondering how we're going to get done everything we need to get done and worrying about what on earth other people are going to think about us if we fail somehow or post something that's maybe a little too personal.

Hey, Christian! Guess what? The things that send us into fits of panic don't make God bat an eyelash. He's not phased. He's not concerned. And he's definitely not stressed out. 



I'm a perfectionist. I'm an overachiever. I like to get things done RIGHT and I like to get done LOTS OF THINGS. I don't want to settle for second best or good enough. 

But sometimes I have to.

The irony is that even though I'm a perfectionist and an overachiever, when stress gets thrown into the mix, I rush through things. Which then stresses me out further because I want everything to be PERFECT. I want everything to be clean and nice and calm and controlled and I want to see check marks next to every single item on my to-do list NO MATTER WHAT.

Timeout. That's not fair to myself or to my family. By putting this pressure on myself, I'm losing time to do things I enjoy and I'm losing time to spend with my family. 

Stress isn't worth that. My to-do list isn't worth that.


I like to do everything. I expect myself to be able to do... a lot. Too much, probably. I expect myself to be able to go to the gym a decent amount, and do two days of school in one day, and finish editing the first part of my novel before the end of November, and manage a blog, and guest post on other people's blogs, and not get behind on my reading challenge but somehow still read 500+ page books that are basically weapons, and maybe learn Spanish before I graduate, and ACTUALLY GRADUATE (probably should do that at some point lol), and practice piano and guitar so I don't feel like I'm failing musically, and somehow also mange to be a DECENT HUMAN BEING. 

Sometimes I have to say "NO" to myself and to others. I have to be careful that I don't over-commit and burn myself out. That means I have to realize what I can handle, and what I can't handle, and I have to have the maturity to know when to say no. (obviously still working away at that part) 

Saying no can be easy. The hard part is prioritizing so that you're not committing to things you really don't need, and you are committing to things that would do you a lot of good. BALANCE IS CRITICAL. 


Remember that one verse? The one where God says: My grace is sufficient. What if we applied that? 

"But Lord! It's already eight o' clock and I haven't finished school and I still  have to..." 

My grace is sufficient. 

"But Lord! I don't know if I can all of this done in time..." 

MY. GRACE. IS. SUFFICIENT.

Stress tells me I have to try, try, try, never stopping to breathe or pray; grace tells me that I can rest in who I am in Christ. Stress tells me that I can never do or be enough; grace tells me Christ has already made me enough. Stress tells me that I can't handle anything; grace tells me that I don't have to, because God's got this one. Stress calls me failure; grace calls me child of God

Grace means that we can be weak, because in our weakness God is strong. It means that our identity lies in Christ, not how many items we get checked off our to-do list. 

But the important thing about this post is that it's a process. Learning to trust God is a process. Letting go of perfect is a process. Prioritizing your life is a process. Embracing identity in Christ is a process. This post doesn't mean that I'll never get stressed again because "OBVIOUSLY I HAVE EVERYTHING FIGURED OUT NOW." It means that I'm working through it with God's help, and that I'm learning. I'm growing. I'm maturing. Slowly, slowly, slowly, God's taking me, molding me, and making me into a vessel that can better serve him. 

Monday, October 23, 2017

A Night Divided By Jennifer A. Nielsen [book review]

By On October 23, 2017
HELLO YES WE HAVE A BOOK REVIEW TODAY. There's actually two reasons for this. One, I haven't done a book review since April. April. I think we can all agree: THAT'S TOO LONG.

Two, I'm stalling you guys. CONFESSION TIME. I still haven't finished any of the most voted for of my post ideas. (see my last post if you want to add your votes :D) So instead I'm throwing up a book review to appease you while you wait for something that you actually voted for. You're welcome. xD












From New York Times bestselling author Jennifer A. Nielsen comes a stunning thriller about a girl who must escape to freedom after the Berlin Wall divides her family between east and west.

With the rise of the Berlin Wall, twelve-year-old Gerta finds her family divided overnight. She, her mother, and her brother Fritz live on the eastern side, controlled by the Soviets. Her father and middle brother, who had gone west in search of work, cannot return home. Gerta knows it is dangerous to watch the wall, to think forbidden thoughts of freedom, yet she can't help herself. She sees the East German soldiers with their guns trained on their own citizens; she, her family, her neighbors and friends are prisoners in their own city.

But one day, while on her way to school, Gerta spots her father on a viewing platform on the western side, pantomiming a peculiar dance. Then, when she receives a mysterious drawing, Gerta puts two and two together and concludes that her father wants Gerta and Fritz to tunnel beneath the wall, out of East Berlin. However, if they are caught, the consequences will be deadly. No one can be trusted. Will Gerta and her family find their way to freedom?




So APPARENTLY I've had this book on my tbr shelf for a year?? CLEARLY THIS IS A CRIME. Once I finally picked it up, I easily devoured it in about a day. It's one of those books that just happens. You start reading it, and suddenly it's four hours later and you have 57 things to do and you've done NONE OF THEM. So approach this book at your own risk. xD 

I'm thinking a list review would work well here because list reviews are easier to write and I still have those 57 things to get done. So. LET'S DO THIS. 


POSITIVE ELEMENTS

+ It's REALLY well-plotted. I figured out some of what was going to happen, but there was pleeentyyyy that caught me off guard. Plus, the events of the plot gradually raise the stakes and consistently force the main characters into action, which makes for a super exciting story. 

+ The way the characters related to each other is complex, and character relationships don't exist outside of the plot-instead, they enhance the plot. Gerta and Anna's complicated relationship fuels conflict when Gerta realizes she has to get into Anna's room. Fritz's and Anna's relationship with their mother creates a lot of conflict as their solutions to their problems clash. Fritz's relationship with Claudia, while never actually shown, helps to push Fritz over the edge of wanting to escape. 

+ It's about FAMILY RELATIONSHIPS HALLELUJAH. I especially liked how it focused on siblings. (Gerta/Fritz) It's not about romance AT ALL. It's about the relationships between a family as they face danger together. 

+ All the side characters were handled really well. There quite a few, and the author did a great job of using them to add to the conflict and drive the story forward. Even characters that never actually appeared in the story (they were only mentioned) helped create more conflict for the main characters. (like Claudia and Oma Gertrude) 

+ The character development and themes were really, really good. Somehow this author wrote fairly generic themes (like bravery, sacrifice, etc) into a novel WITHOUT making it cliche AT ALL. 

+ It's unique. I've never read a book quite like this one before. Historical fiction set in this era seems to be fairly unusual, so this book has a lot to bring to the table. Plus, it's completely clean, which can also be unusual for historical fiction. (unfortunately D:) 

+ LOTS AND LOTS OF HISTORICAL INFO. I didn't know a whole lot about this era before I read this book, and I DEFINITELY didn't know what it was like to live in East Berlin during this time. 


NEGATIVE ELEMENTS 

+ The book seemed to bring up Gerta's age too often. It wasn't INCREDIBLY frequent, but it did keep coming up. Plus, she's only supposed to be twelve, and she acts and thinks like someone who's closer to 15. Which DOES make sense, since her circumstances definitely do force her to grow up sooner than most, but the fact that the book brought up her age multiple times sorta threw me for a loop. 

+ Fritz felt a little bland to me. There wasn't very much about him that would distinguish him from any other almost-18-year-old living in this time period. 

+ The setting was a little skeletal. When I say "setting", I don't mean WHEN the story took place, I mean WHERE it took place. I had a hard time visualizing most of the settings except for the Welcome Building. 

+ IT WENT BY TOO FAST. XD



All in all, I'd 100% recommend this one! It was well-written, suspenseful, and had a great cast of characters. If you like historical than you should DEFINITELY try this. (and even if you don't like historical, you should still try it. XP)




Monday, October 9, 2017

The Lost Posts // A Behind the Scenes Look at how I Blog + 10 Post Ideas that Haven't Seen the Light of Day

By On October 09, 2017
WOW LOOK AT THAT TITLE. You're probably wondering: What on earth is this post going to be about and why on earth does it have such a long title??? 

LET ME EXPLAIN. Basically today you guys are getting an inside look at my blogging brain (don't worry if it doesn't make sense to you, it really doesn't make sense to me either so we're all good there) AND you're getting a peek at a handful of post ideas I have up my sleeve. Then you get to pick what you want me to post about next!

CHOOSE WISELY BECAUSE THIS IS ONLY HAPPENING ONCE.




PHASE 1: THE IDEA

This is when a metaphorical light bulb appears above my head. Typically this happens while I'm in the shower, or mowing the lawn, or lying in bed at midnight thinking deep thoughts, or any time when I can't immediately access my computer. Because that's how inspiration works. 

PHASE 2: THE DRAFT FILE

By this I just mean that in my blogger dashboard I hit "new post", type my blog post idea into the title box, and click "save". So it's not actually writing the draft. It's just filing the idea away with my other drafts for when I feel inspired to write it. 

Which... isn't usually for at least a month. Surprise! XD This means at any given time I probably have at least five post ideas in my dashboard. (don't ask because idk how my brain works either) After about a month of having the idea filed peacefully away in my dashboard, I'll see it sometime and go "OHEY I FORGOT ABOUT THAT AND IT'S SUCH A GOOD IDEA." 

Currently I have 17 drafts in this phase and I have no idea how that happened. Actually, this post was in my draft file for at least a few months before I dusted it off. 

PHASE 3: THE INTRO

This is when I actually sit down in front of my computer and spend a substantial amount of time working on a post idea. And by "substantial amount of time" I mostly mean that I write the intro. *nods* (which TOTALLY takes up a substantial amount of time- just ask any blogger) 

PHASE 4: THE GRAPHICS

MY FAVORITE PART. I always design my graphics BEFORE I start the main body of the post. For some reason I can't write the post until I have at least the main graphic done? It's strange. Very strange. 

This phase mainly involves Canva and Unsplash and lots and lots of tweaking. I reaaallly like graphics so if I have time I try to make mine PERFECT. Normally I have to limit myself or I'll just play with the graphic for way too long and never get around to writing the actual post. Whoops. 

PHASE 5: THE WRITING OF THE POST

FINALLY, RIGHT? Now that I have most of my graphics in place and I've written my intro, I'm ready to sit down and tackle the actual post. 

Now: I never do this in one sitting. Never. All of my posts take me at least a couple of days to write. I'll sit down, work on the post for a while, then stop. Randomly. Whenever I feel like it. (don't ask why I do this because I have no clue) The next day, I'll work on some more of the post. And some more the next day. And the next day. Until FINALLY  the post is done. 

A lot of the time I have more than one post in this phase at the same time. Like right now I have... seven? I haven't worked on most of them in more than a month though so those ones are on the back burner for now.

PHASE 6: THE READ OVER

AKA: EDITING. It's just a very, very, VERY light edit though. Basically I read it over once or twice to make sure the spacing is right (sometimes it gets all funky??) and that there's no incredibly obvious typos. I don't go over it with a fine tooth comb because I don't have time for that and my style is pretty informal anyways. Besides, you guys will forgive me for typos... right? 

PHASE 7: THE PUBLISHED POST

Although it can definitely take a while before I hit "publish." I have to get up the nerve to finally hit the button, then I have to make sure the formatting is still right (sometimes it goes funky after I hit publish??? IDK GUYS MY BLOG HAS WEIRD SPACING SOMETIMES). 

Then the post appears in you guys's feeds if you follow me through blogger. The next day, it appears in your emails if you follow me by email. (the email always goes out late but I have no clue why so) 

PHASE 8: THE COMMENTS 

MY FAVORITE PART. This is where you guys come in! You leave a bunch of fantastic, awesome comments and I get to read them and reply to them. Fun times. 



Then after all of that, I start over. Or I grab a post from my draft file and start working on it. :D




1. Something about how to make your blog more professional. (because I like to think that I sorta kinda know about this. hahaha. humor me.) 

2. Something about dealing with stress.

3. Something about my favorite writing resources. 

4. A post about myths people have about writers. 

5. A post about how to write a good book review. 

6. Something about why National Novel Editing Month should be a thing.

7. Something about what you'll need in order to survive NaNo. (I mean everyone does this but if you want me to do it also I can because I AIM TO PLEASE.) 

8. Something about why I'm not a fan of Myers-Briggs. (oohhhh. controversy. yikes.)

9. Something about all my favorite GIANT books because I love giant books. (or at least I do when I'm not behind on my reading challenge... *awkward cough*)

10. Something about God and Millennials. 


Yes I made them all fairly vague ON PURPOSE. I actually have official titles for most of them but nooooo of course I'm not posting those here. You'll have to wait, mwahaha. 

So I'll probably be posting MOST of these even if none of them get any votes. But: REMEMBER MY DRAFT FILE. It could be anywhere from two months to six months before some of these get posted. 


Also disclaimer time: You guys do have the power to influence me here but I'm making NO PROMISES. XD Just because a certain post idea gets the most votes doesn't mean it will 100% show up next on the blog. If I can make it work, I will do so, but no promises. 


SO WHICH ONE(S) DO YOU WANT TO SEE FIRST? Which one(s) are you most interested in? How do you write your blog posts? :D 


FAITH

FAITH
Click here for all faith-related posts.

READING

READING
Click here for all reading-related posts.

WRITING

WRITING
Click here for all writing-related posts.