Tonight was the last night of my Blogging for Beginners class, which is taught by Jen of Prior Fat Girl. Sad I took this class with my friend Abby, who is the author of This Life in Motion. It is probably the reason I have stuck with blogging (for all of 3 weeks) so I want to share some highlights of why I started a blog and what I learned.
I started a blog because of my annual Christmas Letter. I wrote my first letter in 2006 as a joke. I had a lot happen in my life that year (bought a townhome, started grad school, got a cat) and wanted to give people in my life a snapshot of what was going on with me. I wish I could find that letter because half of it was just a picture of Sunny with a Santa hat on that I photoshopped into the picture (‘cuz Sunny is too cool to actually wear one for more than a second). The letter snowballed into an annual one-pager where I review the highlights of my year. Anyway, the reason I started a blog is because that letter reminded me of how much I love to write (and how much people probably care about what I have to say… obviously).
Anyway, these are a few highlights of what I learned in the class:
- Blogger is a good site for beginners, but WordPress has the most functionality for free
- Jen taught us a lot about how to navigate WordPress so I am very comfortable with how to use the site. I know that isn’t very helpful to you as a reader (who might want to start a blog!), so my advice is this: Google is your friend. Jen taught us that you can find anything by typing in “how do I pick a theme in WordPress”. And, wouldn’t you know it, WordPress has a lot of great information about how to use their site!
- Be real and pick a topic that is interesting to you. I picked personal finance, fitness and food because I’m interested in it, but also because constantly writing about it holds me accountable. This blog is as much for me as it is for other people to read (all four of you!)
- Tips on how to handle mean people. It is just like real life – shake it off. she also showed us a highly entertaining site (that might not be highly entertaining to some) where people comment on forums about bloggers. It is called Get off My Internets. I recommend checking it out, but be polite if you have something to say (please)…. or at least be funny.
I also found a lot of helpful information on Carrot N Cakes blogging tips page and Peanut Butter Finger’s site. The most fun for me has been when people who aren’t my mom or friends leave comments (although, I LOVE when people I know post comments too). I like that people have found me through some random channel!
What kind of blogs do you like to read the most? Do you have a favorite blog? If so, what is it?