How exciting and lovely! I woke this morning – no, that’s not particularly exciting, though always a relief! – to find that Suze (http://suziland.net/) had nominated me for the above award. Thanks, Suze: I am delighted.
Odd, the way my blog started. Or maybe not! I left my thirty-year career as an English teacher in 2012 in order to write full time. At that point, I had three novels already finished and ready to roll, as well as a journal habit going back to my early teens.
In June 2012, I happened upon a Guardian Masterclass all about self-publishing – and one of the things recommended was keeping a blog. I will confess that, until then, I had never heard of blogging!
But, keen to try out this mysterious pastime, and two days after the Masterclass, I read the instructions (complicated for a technophobe like me!) and set up my very first blog, on Blogspot. Oh, the excitement of pressing ‘publish’ for the first time! Oh, the joy when I received my first like, first comment! Addictive or what?!
Since then, I have moved to WordPress; published five books on Amazon/CreateSpace (http://www.amazon.co.uk/Alienora-Taylor/e/B00QGUIHFI/ref=ntt_dp_epwbk_0); written, at a conservative estimate, well over two thousand blog posts; met some lovely people – and, I hope, paved the way for my novels to reach as wide an audience as possible, even if it takes a while!
Advice to other, newer, denizens of the Blogosphere? Easy!
Be yourself. Do not listen to those who try and control how you write and what you write about. If your posts are not authentic, you are not expressing your true inner author.
Do NOT follow millions of others – especially those who are known, Top-Dog bloggers – in order to please, get Brownie Points, get followed back. I have found it is far better to have a few genuine and lovely people reading my words than the hordes of unknowns (which can, and will, include trolls, goblins, ghoulies and things that go bump in the night!) who will be highly experienced in the Following Game and will add you as another notch on the bedpost of literary one-night-standism! If you do follow hundreds, your precious writing energy will be dissipated in an anxious cycle of trying to catch up with other people’s posts, worrying that you will offend and be dropped – and all that pointless malarky!
Do not delete posts just because you are afraid of others’ disapproval or anger. I have done this all too often, with the result that 1,900 (or thereabouts) 0f my total 2000 pieces are now gone for good.
And finally: Trust your OWN instincts, both as a writer and a person. You do not have to agree with my advice, or any other bugger’s. It is, ultimately, just an opinion. Write because you love it and not because you want to collect followers or be popular.
Now? I’ll nip off and reciprocate!
The rules for this award are:
- Thank the blogger who nominated you and provide a link to their blog.
- Write a post to show your award.
- Attach the award to the post.
- Give a brief story on how your blog started.
- Give a piece of advice or two to new bloggers.
- Select 15 other blogs you want to give the award to.
- Comment on each blog and let them know you nominated them and provide a link to the award post you created.