Top 3 Things To Do When You’re a Blogger

So, you want to be a blogger? Yeah, you, me and every other bitch with WiFi! But in all seriousness, as a blogger with very small-time success, I would like to share a few tips with those of you out there pondering the creation of your own "dot-blogspot-dot-com" domain. Read on for the top 3 things I believe every blogger should chug down…and not throw up afterwards.
#3: Do MULTIPLE post previews!
Since we bloggers are in the business of self-publishing, we also have to be our own Senior Editor which can be super tough at times. So, while drafting up a blog post, you should always do previews to see how things are shaping up. I cannot tell you how many times I have read a paragraph back to myself in the "Compose" stage, published it and then found a misspelling. These are minor mistakes that look major to others.
While this could very well be its own listed item, I will add it here: sleep on a post before publishing. Let's say you've worked on a massive post, take a night off from it. You will be glad you did! For example, when I did my Top 10 Femme Fatale's post, it took me about a week before I finally felt confident to even hover over "Publish." I had my ten ladies all picked out but the reason it took me days is because I ended up doing minor research on each woman included, created simple accompanying images (which put a strain on my relationship during their conception) and edited my text various times. As I don't face any true deadlines with The Calvin Show, I had the luxury of time on my side and was able to publish a post I'm proud of.
#2: Do NOT compare yourself to other bloggers! 
"Don't do it. Don't compare yourself to that other blogger," is something that I think many of us struggle with on a regular basis. I say this for a few reasons. There are an abundance of blogs in existence that produce great content. Another is that there are a select handful of blogs that are born on a Monday and seem to become so popular that the blogger has a jewelry collaboration out by that weekend. Leandra, I'm talking about you, girlfriend. Getting down on ourselves just because we're not at someone else's level in this exact moment only leads to frustration. While this frustration could drive us to push for greater content on our blog, it personally gets me down so I try my best to steer clear of judging my blog against others.
While we're talking about cultivating more high quality content for your site, one way of doing so is analyzing similar blogs. This is different than comparing! With a proper analyzation, you get an objective look at a site not your own. I recommend analyzing other bloggers in your field and creating a list explaining why certain characteristics are appealing to you. This could be anything from great copy, personal style photos or the site's design. By compiling a list, you get the chance to see what seems to work for someone else, why it is interesting to you and how you might be able to incorporate a similar idea for your very own blog. I'm not saying steal ideas, but nothing is original anymore. If you see something you like, take it! Just put your own spin on it and you'll be golden.
#1:  Do stay true to YOUR writing voice!

What happens when you land a gig as a freelance writer for a more established website and they begin to ask you to write in a specific tone that fits their audience? Well, you turn in pieces tailored to fit their audience, of course! This is completely normal as your writing style probably already matches up with theirs or they would not have chosen you in the first place. But if they begin asking you to write in a drastically different voice that feels completely foreign to you, walk away after first seeing how much they're willing to pay! Edits are expected, but a complete overhaul of your work leaving you saying "I wouldn't write that way" raises a red flag.

Money is great, but integrity is even better. If you have a blog full of positivity, what good does it do for your brand if there's suddenly an article elsewhere about salacious celebrity gossip? It confuses your readers and could motivate them not to return to your blog again. 
I don't have thousands of readers per day. Hell, I'm lucky to break a few thousand per month. Despite my small readership, I have gotten some extraordinary emails from public relation departments of magazines, websites and designers. Even if only 20 people view your blog today, you should want them to read content you would be proud of, not content you think might simply lure people in. By staying true to your writing voice, you produce authentic material and readers can sense and appreciate that. Plus, if it's your name on it, don't you want it to reflect how your writing voice? 
This is the part where I admit that I'm not some cool superstar blogger. That being said, this little baby blog of mine is something I am incredibly proud of and I hope that you are proud of yours as well no matter what stage it is in. Send me a link to yours. I'd love to check it out!

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