Top Ten List of Great Blogging Ideas

Oct 13

 

 

Have you been thinking lately that you could you use a few new ideas for your blog? How about 500 great ideas for your blog? You don’t have to think of them yourself. Take a look at these tips to give your blog a little boost.

  1. 50 Can’t-Fail Techniques for Finding Great Blog Topics by Copyblogger.
  2. 50 Ways to Dodge the Blog Burnout Sucker Punch by Pushing Social
  3. 50 Easy Ways to Promote Your Blog by Quick Online Tips.
  4. 50 Creative Ways to Make Your Blog Popular by BlogOhBlog.
  5. 50 Thoughts for Creating the Best Blog Content Ever by We Build Your Blog.
  6. 50 Best Blogging Ideas That Will Keep Your Readers Coming Back for More by Martha Giffen.
  7. 50 Blogs That Accept Guest Blogging by Scope for Money.
  8. 50 Top Blogging Tools and Resources by Bloggers Domain.
  9. 50 Rapid-Fire Tips for Power Blogging by David Risley.
  10. 50 Blog Title Ideas for You by Michelle Shaeffer.

 

For more blogging tips, check out my Kindle book Blogging Rules! Creating a Blog That Attracts and Inspires the Readers You Want. 



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You don’t even need a Kindle to read it!

Please CLICK HERE to see my other Amazon Kindle books for help with grammar, writing, vocabulary and copywriting.

 

Advanced Vocabulary: Would You Get an A on This Test?

Oct 10

 

Don’t worry, it’s not really a test. You’d probably get 100 percent on this one, anyway.

However, if you’ve heard or read these words over the years, but were never quite sure of the definitions, this is your chance to move up to the advanced class.

  1. Anachronism: An error in chronology; a person or thing which seems to belong to a different period of time.
  2. Quixotic: Refers to the fictional character Don Quixote.  An impulsive dreamer, foolishly idealistic.
  3. Hubris: Arrogance resulting from excessive pride or passion.
  4. Exacerbate: To make worse; increase the severity; aggravate.
  5. Insidious: Causing harm in a stealthy, gradual manner; sneaky, treacherous.
  6. Ubiquitous: Seeming to be everywhere at the same time; omnipresent.
  7. Truculent: Fierce, cruel, harsh, mean, scathing.
  8. Eponymous: Relating to a person whose name becomes synonymous with a thing. Eponym refers to a real or imaginary person, after whom something has been named, as well as to the name itself. Proprietary eponyms are brand names that have come into general use (for example, Kleenex, Frisbee and Jello). An eponymous hero is the main character after whom a book was named. Don Quixote is the eponymous hero of Cervantes’ novel (see #2 above).
  9. Taciturn: Almost always quiet, not talkative, uncommunicative.
  10. Caveat: A warning.
  11. Conundrum: A puzzle or riddle, often with a pun as an answer.
  12. Minion: One who follows or serves a leader.
  13. Ephemeral: Short-lived, transient, something with a short life cycle. Lasting only one day (as some types of blooming flowers).
  14. Plethora: Excess, overabundance.
  15. Quintessential: Representing the perfect example of something. He was the considered the quintessential New Yorker.
  16. Mettle: A quality of good spirit, temperament, courage.
  17. Vociferous: Loud, noisy.
  18. Aberrant: Deviating from the ordinary; exceptional, abnormal.
  19. Venerable: Worthy of respect or reverence.
  20. Obsequious: Showing too much willingness to serve; fawning.

7 Blog Post Ideas to Copy If You’re Stuck

Oct 03

 

You may be trying to think of a post idea. You’d rather think of one yourself. You might be desperate. You might not like any of these options, but just reading them could help you think of an even better idea for your next post.

1. Dispute an expert’s opinion

This could about politics, popular culture, blogging, morality, or the best films of all time.

2. Add to someone else’s numbered list

If you think a list from another blogger or magazine was helpful but it missed a few things, you can add your own spin. Link to the original, of course.

3. Survey the Experts

See what 10 different experts or other blogs have said about a certain topic, and list them (with links), adding your own opinion.

4. Write as if you were someone else

You could write in the style of a famous author, tabloid magazine, self-help guru, reality TV star. Is this too much of a cliche for you? Maybe, but it can still be hilarious.

5. Be a reality star

Imagine your life being filmed for a reality TV show. What would viewers learn about you if the cameras followed you for a few weeks?

6. Republish an older post

It’s OK to edit and post as new if you’d like, or explain that today you’re digging through the archives and wanted to share an older gem. You could even change the photo, or format it differently if it doesn’t match the way you write your posts currently. Don’t spend too long tweaking the old post, or you’ll waste the time that could have been spent on another project.

7. Explain your inside jokes

If you use certain inside jokes or refer to people with nicknames on your blog, explain to newer readers what you’re talking about so they don’t feel like they’re out of the loop. You could write a “5 Things About My Blog” post and put links to the older posts where these references are explained.

IN CONCLUSION

Remember that it’s OK to borrow ideas from other blogs. You won’t get sent to the principal’s office for cheating, and no one will beat you up on the playground.

 

 

Grammar School: There, Their and They’re

Oct 02

 


Many people get the words there, their and they’re mixed up. Like other commonly misused words, they sound the same. As long as the words are spelled properly, mistakes would never be caught by a spell-check program.

  • There is an adverb, answering the question “Where?”
  • Their is a possessive pronoun, indicating something that “they” own.
  • They’re is a contraction of “they” and “are.”

They’re being told by the police officer to stay there
while they wait for their favorite singer to arrive.

The fraternity brothers have been in there for a long time,
and they’re beginning to lose feeling in their toes.


They’re sitting there in the theater wearing their
3D glasses, hoping the movie will end soon.

They’re singing their hearts out in a
too-small car right there on stage.

Hint: The spelling of their does not follow that familiar saying, “i before e, except after c.” If you have trouble remembering that the e comes before the i in their, just remember that there, their, and they’re all begin with “the.”

Note: The use of their can be confusing for another reason. It is common for people to say, “Someone has lost their wallet.” The correct way to say it is, “Someone has lost his or her wallet.” Their is plural. Multiple people did not lose one wallet. One person lost his or her wallet. This common use has become somewhat accepted, but it is still grammatically incorrect.

If it feels too awkward to say, “someone has lost his or her wallet,” you can always just say “someone has lost a wallet. I think I’ll see how much money he or she left in it.”

Now that you understand how to use all three words correctly, our lesson is over. Have fun out there!

10 Questions Bloggers Should Ask Themselves

Sep 29

Take a Look at Yourself

Blogging can be very rewarding, and it can also take over your life. It’s a good idea to take a fresh look at what you’ve been doing with your blog, and ask if it is working out the way you’d like.

 

1. Is there anything I’ve been meaning to change about my blog that I keep putting off?

2. Have my goals evolved since I started this blog? Do I write down the steps it would take to achieve those goals?

3. Am I happy with the amount of time I spend blogging each week?

4. Are there certain types of posts that get more comments? What kind seem to bring a response from readers? Would it feel right to do more posts like that or would that feel fake?

5. Do readers think of me as a friend, entertainer or resource? Does that feel right for me?

6. Do I think I might get negative feedback if I make changes in the way I blog?

7. What am I doing to actively learn and use new techniques to get more traffic or be more efficient?

8. Am I willing to try new technology or do I tend to stay in my comfort zone?

9. What is most satisfying, energizing and motivating for me? Do I need to get a positive comment in order to feel good about my blog?

10. Am I stretching myself and writing guest posts for other sites? Am I working on a book that I can turn into an ebook myself?

If there are aspects of your blog that you would like to change, you can start making those changes right away. Take your pick from all the help and advice that’s available, and you can start growing in the right direction.

 

 

 

Art source: Frida Kahlo photo from Biography.com.

Waiting for Inspiration to Strike

Sep 26


Ten Blog Post Ideas

Inspiration can strike in a moment and it can leave you just as quickly. If you can’t think of anything to write about, and it’s been too long since your last post, try these tips to get the words flowing again.

  1. Question and Answer: Interview yourself as a child or teenager. Include pictures, one flattering and one embarrassing. See if readers can tell the difference.
  2. Greatest Hits: How about serving up some bloopers, regrets, parenting mistakes, embarrassing moments. If there are too many to choose from, try to limit it to the mistakes you’ve made in the last month.
  3. The Other Side of Heartwarming. Everyone loves a heartwarming story. It might be your job to take a recent heartwarming story from the news and uncover its slimy underbelly, even if you have to make up that slimy side.
  4. Lessons Learned. Write something outrageous like a jaw-dropping report on how you kept your 12-year-old son off video games for two weeks without promising him an iPhone.
  5. Beginner’s Guides. How to dispose of a possibly diseased and creepy dead bird in the yard while calming down your 5-year-old daughter Robin who found it.
  6. Unwilling Expert. How you became an expert at something, and who you can blame.
  7. Write for Non-Bloggers. Explain what it does for you and why you sometimes seem a teeny bit obsessed with it. Your imaginary audience could be your own friends and family who have no clue what you do with a blog or why in the world you want to do it.
  8. Grab Your Camera. Take 10 pictures in one typical day and post the photos on your blog. Looking at things in your daily life through a different lens could give you some creative ideas for new posts.
  9. Explain Yourself. Write a list of 33 things you’ve never told your readers. Your faithful readers already like you–give them some new material.
  10. Take Some Time Off. No blogging. Go focus on your three-dimensional life instead of being chained to the computer.  Taking a break won’t kill your blog, and it might restore your enthusiasm.


What Is a Dangling Participle?

Sep 20

 
What’s wrong with these sentences?

  • Hanging upside down from the tightrope, I ate a hot dog and enjoyed the circus performers.
  • Walking down the street, the bakery smelled delicious.
  • Being run-down and cheap, I was able to buy the van right away.
  • Sitting on the porch swing, we watched the birds playing cards.
  • Plummeting hundreds of feet down, we were quite impressed by Niagara Falls.

Dangling participles make your sentences unintentionally confusing, amusing, or even embarrassing.

 

A participle is word or phrase (often ending in -ing or -ed) that modifies (describes) the subject of a sentence.

A dangling participle is a misplaced word or phrase that seems to describe or modify the wrong part of the sentence.

Here’s an example:

  • Walking around the zoo, the lion roared majestically.

Here’s a corrected version:

  • Walking around the zoo, we heard the lion roar majestically.

You can fix a dangling participle by simply rewriting the sentence so that it makes sense. You can also split the awkward sentence into two sentences if that works better.

When you’re proofreading your own work, don’t just check for typos. Make sure that every sentence says what you meant it to say.

If you’re going to make your readers laugh, make sure it’s intentional. Don’t leave your participles dangling.

Tell Me Your Personality and I’ll Tell You What’s Missing From Your Blog

Sep 13

By Guest Blogger Kirsten Simmons

It sounds audacious, doesn’t it? I know nothing about you, nothing about what you’re writing about, yet I’m claiming to know what’s missing from your blog? Ridiculous as it sounds, the odds are in my favor. Because as much as we want to be unique and charge fearlessly into the great blogging unknown, we’re essentially predictable at heart. Especially when it comes to our personality types.

Now, you may not have heard of the type system I use. And that’s OK, because it’s based on newer research than the Meyers-Briggs or the Enneagram. Using this typing system, I can not only tell you what your blog may be missing, but I can tell you the easiest way to fix it. Interested? Read on and decide which type sounds most like you.

Fantastical

If you’re a Fantastical, you have the awesome ability to get caught up in a problem for hours on end and not look up until you’ve solved it. The only problem is that a lot may have happened during those hours–like that important meeting with your boss, a date with your significant other, or the start of the Perpetual E-motion house concert. Whoops!

When it comes to your blog, everything you write about is probably fascinating–when you manage to get in an update. Most Fantasticals have a tendency to ignore problems once they’ve been solved. But your readers don’t know your solutions yet, so take some time each week to enlighten them. There’s no need to sit down and type it all out–in fact, you’ll probably be more effective if you pace around your computer with a wireless headset and a speech recognition program. You can knock out several posts in one swing and schedule them to post automatically so the world can keep up with the exciting work you’re doing.

Analytical

If you’re an Analytical, you have a sixth sense for seeing the big picture and how the tiniest details fit into it. You’re extremely motivated and goal oriented, to the point that you can neglect your friends and family when you’re getting close to the finish line.

Unless I miss my guess, you started your blog as part of your overall strategy to get where you want to be in life. You know which stats are important, who you’re trying to reach, and what you’ll be posting over the next few weeks. So what’s missing from your blog? Real life experiences. The best way for you to spend two hours on your blog is to turn off your computer and get away. Spend some time with your family. Go out with friends. Get some first-hand knowledge to back up the posts you write. You’ll come back refreshed and with some new insights that will impress the people you’re targeting with your blog.

Environmental

If you’re an Environmental, your focus is on the people around you and their needs. You’re a remarkable individual, and you probably started your blog as a way to keep in touch with friends and family that are further away. Or you started it to share your expertise, and you thrive on the grateful comments you get on a regular basis.

That said, I’ll bet there are a few basic blog housekeeping things that you’ve neglected. Not your design or layout–your enjoyment of rich color and comfortable environments has probably ensured that you’re in perfect shape in that department. But what about easy to find feed subscription? An an e-mail opt-in box? An advertisement for your latest product? (Have you even considered creating a product?) These are all things that you may have forgotten in your rush to help others.

Spend some time to look into these basic but important pieces of your blog and make sure you have everything in place.

Structural

If you’re a Structural, you take to routines and systems like a cat takes to a warm patch of sunlight. People around you depend on your ability to keep track of details and work out schedules to everyone’s liking, and you’re most comfortable when working within the structures of your routines.

Chances are that you’ve had a posting schedule for your blog since day one, and your editorial calendar is filled out a month or more in advance. You probably even have a few weeks posts written and scheduled to appear each day without your direct input. The best thing you can do for your blog is to take an hour or two to surf through your niche. As you do, ask yourself whether your blog fits in. Are your posts relevant, even though they were written in advance? Can you link to others in your work? What questions are readers asking? Your systems can sometimes isolate you from the people you’re trying to reach. Scheduling time to explore on a regular basis will help you make sure that you’re still reachable and relevant.
What type do you think you are? Do you fall into the typical pitfalls of your type, or does your blog have other problems? Leave a comment and tell us!

About the author

Kirsten Simmons is the co-founder of Personalized Productivity, and has been described multiple times as “freakishly productive.”  She swears it’s not a genetic mutation, and hundred of people who have taken the Personalized Productivity quiz agree.  Interested in learning more about your personality type?  Come to Personalized Productivity and take our quick quiz.  You’ll learn your type and get customized tips to supercharge your organization, time management and productivity.

Grammar Tips: 12 Confusing Word Pairs

Sep 05

Sorry, Lorraine, you have to actually READ the dictionary.

The Oxford English Dictionary contains full entries for over 250,000 words. Is it any wonder that we get confused by a few of them? Here are twelve tricky word pairs that even a Rhodes Scholar could get wrong.

 

1. assent vs. ascent

 

Assent means agreement or approval. Ascent means a climbing or rising.

 

There was assent among the hikers as they agreed to start their ascent at sunrise.

 

2. dissent vs. descent

 

Dissent is disagreement. Descent means going to a lower level; ancestral lineage.

 

There was dissent among the hikers about when to begin their descent.

 

3. desert vs. dessert

 

To desert means to leave without intending to return.

 

A desert is also a dry region without water.

 

Dessert is the good stuff after dinner.

 

Hint: You can remember how to spell dessert by thinking of the following phrase:Dessert is so sweet. “So” and “Sweet” both start with “s” and there are two of them, get it?  (Please get it. Don’t make me write two Ss, esses or s’s, which would be wrong anyway.)

 

4. council vs. counsel

 

council is a group of people, as on a board of directors or government committee.

 

Counsel is advice, or anyone whose advice is sought.

 

Lawyers are often called counselors. Guidance counselors give college advice to high school students.

 

5.  farther vs. further 

 

Although these two are nearly interchangeable,  farther refers to distance;  and further refers to quality or time.

 

You can drive farther than you did yesterday.

 

You can pursue an argument further.

 

6.  insight vs. incite

 

Insight refers to understanding or perception, intuition or awareness.

 

To incite is to move to action, urge, set in motion.

 

7.  palette vs. palate 

 

palette is a group of color choices, or a selection of paints on an artist’s board.

 

Your palate refers to your sense of taste.

 

8.  amoral vs. immoral

 

People are amoral if they show no sense of right or wrong. Refers to a person.

 

Immoral refers to an act or behavior done without concern for right or wrong.

 

9. adverse vs. averse

 

Adverse means unfavorable, harmful contrary, opposite.

 

Averse means opposed or not inclined.

 

10.  compose vs. comprise 

 

Compose means to make up or be a part of.

 

To comprise is to include or enclose.

 

Grammar Girl gives a clear explanation here of how the parts compose the whole, but the whole comprises the parts.

 

Many ethnic groups compose our nation.

 

Notice in this sentence that the parts come before the whole. If you wanted to start the sentence with the words “our nation,” guess which verb you’d have to use instead? Our friend “comprise”:

 

Our nation comprises many ethnic groups.

 

11. tortuous vs. torturous

 

Both words are related to “twist.”

 

Tortuous means full of twists and turns, winding, convoluted.

 

Torturous means inflicting of severe pain, causing torture.

 

A winding road is tortuous. A visit to the emergency room can be torturous. If you have a broken collarbone and six fractured ribs, a tortuous ride to the hospital is torturous.

 

12.  eminent vs. imminent

 

Eminent describes a person who is famous and respected in an area or profession.

 

Imminent means something is about to happen; impending, forthcoming.

 

The eminent blogger’s wealth was imminent.

 

 

 

I hope that all these confusing word pairs are now much clearer to you. If not, you could go with Lorraine (pictured above with the dictionary hat) and ask her friend Helena for help. She looks like a lady who answers a lot of questions.

 


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