blogging tips

Blogging Tip: Don’t Feel Like Writing? Visit Your Reader

Do you ever open WordPress, look at that blank screen and think, “This is it. This is the moment when I run out of topics to blog about.”

And in that moment, you begin to panic. Will you ever blog again? Will you be reduced to merely someone who used to blog instead of someone who blogs? What will your followers think? Will they even notice? Should you just shut down your blog?

Image result for woah calm down gif

Seriously, calm down and stop freaking out.

Yes, you have run out of topics to write about and things to blog about (for now). Just because you are currently stumped does not mean that you will continue to be. However, you cannot stare at a blank screen and force yourself to write (most likely nothing will happen and if you do produce anything, it probably won’t be any good.) So calm down, and allow yourself to accept that you won’t be writing today.

However, do NOT sign off!

Do you want to grow a successful blog? Writing blog posts is only a part of blogging. Another large part of blogging is building your community and engaging with fellow bloggers. Go visit those other blog sites (that you should be following) and maybe even find new blog sites to follow. Click on your “Reader” and type in something that you are interested in. When you can’t write or blog, you should be reading! Reading other blogs:

  • Encourages community.
  • Helps you get to know other bloggers
  • Helps other bloggers get to know you
  • Creates a society of reciprocation

So, get out there and start reading!

Happy Blogging Everyone!

©KaylaAnnAuthor

© KaylaAnn and KaylaAnnAuthor.wordpress.com, 2018. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to KaylaAnn and KaylaAnnAuthor.wordpress.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Blogs / Life

Spring Break Week-Long Blog Party (NOW CLOSED)

***This Blog Party is now CLOSED. Thank you to everyone who participated! I got to meet a ton of new bloggers this past week and I hope to develop my community even further. Thank you to the wonderful participants who talked with other guests and visited other blogs. These parties only work when we really engage with one another. Until the next party!***

Hey Everyone and Happy Spring Break!

Any other teachers or students out there exhausted by this semester and so grateful for a week off?

Unlike my normal blog parties that only last a weekend, this blog party will be lasting ALL. WEEK. LONG! That’s right! ALL WEEK! I’m hoping to meet some new bloggers and expand my blogging community!

Let’s celebrate Spring Break Week the way true bloggers do!

(Indoors and avoiding direct sunlight).

Image result for spring break baby gif

For those of you who are not aware what a blog party is let me break it down. Generally speaking, a blog party is an online gathering for bloggers of all kinds to meet and engage with one another.

Here are some simple rules:

  1. First off, everyone is welcome to participate in this Blog Party (even if you do not currently follow me, although I would LOVE it if you did!) -> If you are a new follower of my blog, say hi and let me know so that I remember to drop by your blog and check you out.
  2. Leave a Comment and a Link! Say hi and tell us who you are and what your blog is about. Feel free to leave a link connecting back to your blog’s home page or to your favorite or most recent blog post! (Post this only once please.)
  3. Mix and Mingle! This is where the party begins. I am blessed to have nearly 2,000 followers and this is a great opportunity for many of my friends to meet each other. You guys are amazing and I think a lot of you would enjoy meeting and following one another.
  4. Remember, you never have to follow anyone just because they follow you. However, it is good manners to always return a page visit for a page visit. Did someone stop by your blog, like or leave a comment? Do the same for them! It only takes a minute.
  5. Don’t forget to REBLOG! Spread the fun by encouraging your own followers to join in the party! This is the best way to attract new bloggers by spreading the word.
  6. Lastly, please do not comment “I just followed your blog, please follow back!” or anything similar. You will be booted from the party. Follow the blogs you honestly like, don’t play the “follow game.”

As we are celebrating spring break, feel free to share with the group what you plan on doing this Spring Break! Will you be grading papers like me? Will you finally sit down and write that book that you’ve been working on for years? Or will you actually go outside and maybe even hit the beach?

The possibilities are endless!

Image result for olaf summer
Can anyone spot the “blogger” on Spring Break in this picture?

This Blog Party will be held and moderated exclusively March 18th – 22nd so don’t miss out! Invite your friends and share with your blogging community!

 

Blogs / Life

Weekend Blog Party *Hosted by KaylaAnn* (November)

As some of you might remember, my past blog parties have been total smashes! I really enjoyed meeting new bloggers and I know you guys did too!

So, I thought, let’s do it again!Image result for party gif

 For those of you who are not aware what a blog party is let me break it down. Generally speaking, a blog party is an online gathering for bloggers of all kinds to meet and engage with one another.

Here are some simple rules:

  1. First off, everyone is welcome to participate in this Blog Party (even if you do not currently follow me, although I would LOVE it if you did!) -> If you are a new follower of my blog, say hi and let me know so that I remember to drop by your blog and check you out.
  2. Leave a Comment! Say hi and tell us who you are and what your blog is about. Feel free to leave a link connecting back to your blog’s home page or to your favorite or most recent blog post! (Post this only once please.)
  3. Mix and Mingle! This is where the party begins. I am blessed to have nearly 2,000 followers and this is a great opportunity for many of my friends to meet each other. You guys are amazing and I think a lot of you would enjoy meeting and following one another.
    1. In the spirit of the Holiday/November season, be sure to answer what you’re thankful for and what your favorites season food/drink is, along with your other comments!
  1. Remember, you never have to follow anyone just because they follow you. However, it is good manners to always return a page visit for a page visit. Did someone stop by your blog, like or leave a comment? Do the same for them! It only takes a minute.
  2. Don’t forget to REBLOG! Spread the fun by encouraging your own followers to join in the party! This is the best way to attract new bloggers by spreading the word.

Image result for party gif

Have Fun Everyone!

I look forward to mingling with our imaginary cocktails in the comments! I am thankful for this incredible writing community and I absolutely LOVE Pumpkin scones and Peppermint Mochas.

This Blog Party will be held and moderated exclusively Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, so don’t miss out!

Image result for thanksgiving drinks

Blogs / Life

Highlighting Rejection Day 5: YOU

Can we all just be honest and authentic for a couple of minutes?

I am encouraging ALL of you to be willing to be vulnerable in the comment section. Anyone who is serious about writing has most likely received some sort of rejection in their lives. Maybe it was not an official rejection letter, maybe it was some peer review (from family or friends) that did not go as you expected.

Writing is hard, and rejection/criticism makes it harder. But I think the thing that is so detrimental about rejection is when we think that we are alone in our rejection. We think, “This is a personal reflection on ME.”

I am hoping to combat this idea and the isolation that can be a result of rejection by encouraging you to comment below your own experiences with rejection. As a writing community, let us come together to share our own struggles.

So, if you are up for it, in the comment section please answer:

Have you ever experienced rejection for your writing? If so, was the rejection kind or harsh? And more importantly, how did you respond/handle the rejection? What advice would you give to someone who just received their 1st, 2nd, 3rd rejection letter?

©KaylaAnnAuthor

© KaylaAnn and KaylaAnnAuthor.wordpress.com, 2018. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to KaylaAnn and KaylaAnnAuthor.wordpress.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Writing Tips

Highlighting Rejection Day 4: Louisa May Alcott

Perhaps the name Lousia May Alcott rings a bell in your ears? Alcott was the author of Little Women. The novel follows the lives of four sisters – Meg, Jo, Beth and Amy. These women are loosely based on the women in Alcott’s own life. According to VanityFair, “More than a century after it was first published, the March sisters still galvanize readers, writers, and Hollywood producers.”

However, Alcott received one of the harshest rejection letters of her time when Publisher James T. Fields rejected her work and advised her, “Stick to your teaching, Miss Alcott. You can’t write” (Boston Women’s Heritage Trail).

Image result for harsh gif

What might have happened in Alcott had allowed these insults to change her mind of writing? She never would have published the first and second parts of Little Women.

After her success, Louisa herself wrote, “Twenty years ago, I resolved to make the family independent if I could. At forty that is done. Debts all paid, even the outlawed ones, and we have enough to be comfortable. It has cost me my health, perhaps; but as I still live, there is more for me to do, I suppose” (Boston Women’s Heritage Trail).

Image result for louisa may alcott writing quote

Don’t let someone else’s opinion decide your fate. Set sail on your own journey.

©KaylaAnnAuthor

© KaylaAnn and KaylaAnnAuthor.wordpress.com, 2018. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to KaylaAnn and KaylaAnnAuthor.wordpress.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Writing Tips

Highlighting Rejection Day 3: Robert Galbraith

Robert Galbraith is the pseudonym used by J.K. Rowling who wished to separate her thriller novels from her famous children’s series, Harry Potter. Many people are already aware of both J.K. Rowling’s struggles as an author and of her success. Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone was turned down twelve times and the thirteenth editor only published it because his daughter wanted to know what happened next. He encouraged J.K. Rowling to “not quite her day job.”

In theaters alone, J.K. Rowling’s movie adaptations of her novels earned her 3.2 billion dollars (Movie Mojo). Quite obviously, Rowling could easily quit her day job and focus solely on her writing.

When Rowling finally wrapped up Harry Potter and decided to move on to other books, she used the name Robert Galbraith and was rejected AGAIN by one of the same publishing companies who TURNED HER DOWN BEFORE.

j.k. rowling tweet

 Sometimes, our work needs improvement and sometimes, the publishers are just dead wrong. The hard part is, we rarely get to know the reasons behind the rejection so the best thing we can do is work to perfect our writing and be persistent in getting it out there!

©KaylaAnnAuthor

© KaylaAnn and KaylaAnnAuthor.wordpress.com, 2018. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to KaylaAnn and KaylaAnnAuthor.wordpress.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Writing Tips

Highlighting Rejection Day 2: Dr. Seuss

Theodor Geisel, better known as Dr. Seuss, is one of the most successful children’s author in the world. His well-know works include Green Eggs and Ham, The Cat and the Hat, and How the Grinch Stole Christmas. Many of his books have been remained into cartoons which were later remained into live-action movies. And now, even his movies are being reanimated closer to their original form.

Related image

Needless to say, his success is obvious everywhere!

However, it wasn’t always that way. Did you know the Dr. Seuss’s first children’s book,  And to Think I Saw it on Mulberry Street, was rejected twenty-seven different times! In fact, he had almost given up on getting his book published at all!

It was only due to a chance encounter with a friend, who had recently become an editor, that Theodor Geisel ever became Dr. Seuss. Can you imagine though, what would have happened, if Theodor had been too broken down by his recent rejections to even mention his book to his friend? What would Christmas look like without his classic tale?

If Dr. Seuss, the genius behind children’s stories, can take twenty-seven different rejections and keep moving forward, so can I and so can you! Try and try again, it’s all that we can do!

Image result for dr. seuss quote on rejection

©KaylaAnnAuthor

© KaylaAnn and KaylaAnnAuthor.wordpress.com, 2018. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to KaylaAnn and KaylaAnnAuthor.wordpress.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Writing Tips

Writing/Blogging/College Tip: Join a Group

Last week I decided to join a small group that meets every week. To say that I was nervous is an understatement. While I can be brave online, social anxiety can kick in when I really want something to go well or when I want to appear in my best light. Despite my anxiety, it was totally worth it! So, how does my experience relate back to writing/blogging/college/life in general? This post is all about the power of community.

Today’s Advice: Join a group.

Are you a writer? Are you struggling to get your words out on a page and once they are there, are you struggling to edit, revise, publish?

Are you a blogger? Are you nearly “non-existent” in the blogging sphere? Are you new?

Are you a first-time mom? Are you unsure of every action you take on behalf of your child?

Are you a student? Are you a Freshmen, learning how to let go of being a child and learning what it really means to be an adult?

Are you a Christian isolated in a society that belittles your faith?

No matter who you are, where you are, or what you are doing, you can always benefit from surrounding yourself with people who are like you, where you are, and doing what you are doing.

If you are a writer, join a writing group! This can be in person at some local rec center, this can be online, this can be a group of friends that you establish. Somewhere, somehow, find yourself a group of people who you are willing to share your work with. Find yourself a group of people who will encourage you to stick to your goals.

If you are a blogger, engage with others. You cannot simply post and expect the audience to come to you. You have to get out there, mix and mingle with other bloggers and start building a community of your own. Key word here: Reciprocation.

If you are a new-mom, there are so many groups out there built and designed specifically for you! Yes, it might seem weird at first and yes, they may seem dumb and silly at times, but if it helps, isn’t it worth it?

If you are a student, especially if you are a Freshmen, you need to start building relationships. These relationships don’t even have to go that deep. Make friends with the people you sit next to in class, or the people who are within your major, or even your professors. Everyone around you becomes a resource in one way or another.

If you are a Christian, join a small group. I was scared, I was worried about being judged. And yes, you have to find the right group (filled with people who actually care), but once you find the right group, the support and encouragement is real!

“If you want to go quickly, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.” – African Proverb

Quotes About Community Gorgeous Best 25 Ideas On Pinterest Love One Another

©KaylaAnnAuthor

© KaylaAnn and KaylaAnnAuthor.wordpress.com, 2018. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to KaylaAnn and KaylaAnnAuthor.wordpress.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

 

 

Writing Tips

Writing Tip: Get ENGAGED… in your community :)

This writing tip is all about COMMUNITY. Perhaps you have heard me mention this word before? Just a couple of times, maybe?

Sometimes as authors we have the wrong understanding that when another author succeeds, we fail. However, this is incorrect. Another author’s success is not my failure, and it is not your failure. In fact, another author’s success can also lead to my success, to your success. Let me explain.

By engaging in writing communities we have the opportunity to learn from others and also to teach. We can share our experiences. This only works in a realistic reciprocal relationship within the community. From asking questions or joining in conversations we can learn how other authors succeed:

What are their tips and tricks?

What is their advice?

How did they do it?

What would they have done differently?

Where does my writing belong?

Who would want to read my writing?

As writers, we all want to write, to be read, and more importantly, for our words to be appreciated. Because writing also depends on the reader, there is that inherent need for community. So this week I encourage you all to find a writing community:

  • This can be a Creative Writing club at school or an online facebook group. I personally belong to two groups: “Authors” and “Writers Helping Writers”. Within these groups I engage with others, I ask questions and offer comments.
  • WordPress itself can be your writing community, but again that means becoming involved. Do not just visit other blogs and drop your link and leave copy/pasted comments. You really have to engage on a realistic level.

As always, be careful on social media, use common sense, but get out there and learn about your community. You will find that it really is helpful!

*If you enjoyed today’s Writing Tip be sure to check out additional tips under the “Writing Tips” category on my home menu!

Do you already belong to writing groups? If so, are there any you’d like to share? 

Happy Writing Everyone!

©KaylaAnnAuthor

© KaylaAnn and KaylaAnnAuthor.wordpress.com, 2018. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to KaylaAnn and KaylaAnnAuthor.wordpress.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

 

Poetry

Poetry Selections from the Poetry Contest (Part One) Including: Lunarian Thoughts, T. R. Justus, Drowsies, Blogging Detective, Percolating Poetry, and dMello

Hello Everyone!

The Poetry Contest was an enormous success and I highly enjoyed reading these wonderful submissions! The winners have already been announced, but I could not simply leave these poems to remain in the comment section.

If you’ve followed me for awhile now, you’ve probably noticed I am huge on community! So I’m sharing these poems for several reasons: one reason is for my followers to get to know and follow one another!

While these next poems did not win, they were within my top considerations! (Please note, this is not an order of the next winners [i.e. 3rd, 4th, 5th places] many of these submissions were tied in points)

***I intend on doing three more posts with some other excellent poems! If I do not share your poems, please do not feel bad, it does not mean I did not enjoy them! There were many excellent poems, but I had to narrow it down. Thank you for participating!

Lunarian Thoughts’ “Rondo”

“Though I
have not been long
on this Earth,
I can say,
to a large degree
of certainty,
and unabashed humility . . . ” (Read More Here!)

 

T.J. Justus’s “Nightmares”

“Like bats in the night

You can’t outrun them

You can never hide

They’ll be there waiting

Always waiting. . . “ (Read More Here!) 

 

Drowsies’s “Demons”

“My demon breathes my air

Finding its way to crawl onto my skin

And the thin fibers resting on my body

Prick upwards, alert and expecting anguish. . .” (Read More Here!)

 

Blogging Detective’s “In the Sky”

“In the sky, the clouds float on. Into the stars and into the sun. they fall from the heavens and onto the sea, onto you, and onto me. . . ” (Read More Here!)

 

Percolating Poetry’s “The Poetry Cycle”

we observe

reflect

thoughts evaporate

rise slowly

condense

forming altostratus ideas. . . (Read More Here!)

 

dMello’s “Two Strangers”

Two strangers,
Ascending to a height
Inside a concrete jungle
On the day of uneasy marriage between
A cloudburst and a high tide . . . (Read More Here!)

 

I will be posting more soon! Check them out and my advice to the poets above (be sure to go and check out the blogs of the other poets in this post and the poems that will follow)

Happy Reading, Blogging & Writing!

Image result for gif applause