As I mentioned a few days ago, I’ve taken it upon myself to blog daily for 30 days. This is the second season. Last year, I completed the personal challenge every single day for 30 days. It was a great feeling of accomplishment. Last year I had a few surprises (like an exploding Explorer), but I trucked through and wrote each day. The interesting thing is that those issues that you think are going to prevent you from writing, actually springboard into an interesting blog conversation. This year I forecast some unique obstacles on the horizon. I just moved to the tip of Florida. We’ve been through one Tropical Storm, dodged a Hurricane and a couple other Trops, and we have two more Hurricanes headed our way. These do have a tendency to knock out power, but if that happens, I’ll still blog (on paper if I have to) and post later. I might even preschedule a few posts knowing a storm is on the horizon. I’ll still blog on the days I’m able, but some days you may have the joy (snicker) of reading two posts from me.
Beyond today, I’m hoping to not write any more posts that talk about the fact that I’m blogging for the sake of blogging. Since today is initiation day, all bets are off.
There’s several reasons that I’m doing this. Some I mentioned in my previous post. In addition to kick-starting the brain, it also keeps you in practice. Writing can become a rusty art. If you’re like me and were never able to handle the english language and all its intricies appropriately, then the more you oil that machine the better you’ll sound when it really matters. Of course, you could also argue that it will just make me sound like a fool that more often.
Another reason for blogging daily is that it keeps me paying attention to what’s happening on my site. Who’s linking back, what links are broken, comments and spam, monetization, optimization, new themes opportunities, etc. Hopefully the theory is that the more you keep your hands and eyes on the vehicle, the better you can drive it.
To launch this challenge, I went ahead and updated some old sites of mine that really needed it. Ideally I’ll write on those sites for 30 days straight too. They really could use the lift. However, in reality I’m only committing to myself to keep my personal blog updated. This is for personal reasons, such as personal improvement, commitment, and fulfillment. The other sites are guilty pleasures.
This season, I brought friends. Well, at least one that I know of. I’ve also left it open to anyone else who wants to join us. If you have a blog and need a boot-in-the-butt to get blogging. Please join the rest of us! I explain how on the official page:
I’ve done it. I’ve sucked again! Over the past 6 months I’ve blogged a total of 5 times. I’m now officially booted from the “once a month blogger” club. Sure I’ve been very busy with my move and all. But I’ve also been busy at coming up with excuses.
So I’ve been toying with the idea of writing a new post every day for a month. Again. I did it last year (count em, there’s 30!) on a whim. There were a few times I almost quit, but I persevered and proved to myself that I can actually accomplish a goal! Some of the content I produced when I forced my hand was awesome. But some of it was craptacular too. Either way, I was able to push full posts consecutively for 30 days straight.
So, I mentioned casually to John Hawkins that I was thinking about firing up the old blog maching again. If nothing else than for the sake of getting more posts on my site and not feeling like such a has-been blogger. He said he liked the idea and he wanted to join me. We also may have winged Jake Ludens into it, who’s blog is in the same state as ours and is badly in need of an updated post (just helpin ya with a nudge there, dude!). I’m thinking of throwing a couple of other projects at it too, at least Shirtwatch and Portagame. Both of those sites are going through transitions and could use the push.
Last year I created a page (here) to track my progress. This year I’ll add another page to the series where I’ll keep the headlines for the posts created by John, Jake, and myself.
And I think I’ll also open it up this year. Anyone else want to join us? I call it “My Own 30 Day Challenge”. No rewards, no MAKE MONEY ONLINE schemes or pitches. It’s all personal. The challenge is drive yourself to create content for 30 days straight, and the reward is knowing you’re able to follow-through, as well as the ability to practice blogging.
So who’s in? Reply in the comments below and I’ll add your blog to the list!
Best of luck!
I’ve been posting blog posts consecutively for 21 days now. It was easy at first, then it became harder to try to find topics to write about. Often times it was the overall undertone of the day that became that day’s theme for an article. But most often I had to search for content that I felt comfortable writing.
When I Write
I think a small portion of my ability to consecutively come up with something, even if that something came in varying shades of quality, was the ability to write uninterrupted. At about 11 PM everynight, I’m able to spend an hour at the PC without any disturbance from kids, the wife (she’s watching Big Love or something), phone calls, emails, TXT messages, etc. This allows me to sit down and just write whatever is on my mind. As Michael Stelzner discussed in his tips for finding writing time, this means I have found my “productivity zone”. I only wish that it could happen earlier in the day because by the time I’m done writing, I’m wiped out. In fact, last night I fell asleep several times writing yesterday’s article. At least I know when my zone can occur.
Where Do The Ideas Come From?
But even after looking at those sites, I can come away empty handed without a subject matter. At that point, I recap the day with a quick mind map and try to remember if I learned anything that day. If I did I write down on scrap paper what it was , was it profound, did I take action on it, was it worth sharing, etc.
If even after all that, if I can’t think of something to write about, I force myself to write something. Even if it’s just rambling at first, I can always edit the document later. When I force myself to write, I generally can come up with something half way decent.
If you’re still struggling with ideas on what to write, you could always rely on telling a funny story. Storytelling is a lost art, and if you have the ability you should use it.
Aaron Wall also suggests we use lists. He has a post showing how you can come up with ideas for lists. Something odd about rasing our kids in the demand generation, they just don’t appreciate a good lengthy article. Luckily, lists are an acceptable answer for the ADHD in all of us.
I Showed You Mine…
What ways do you use to come up with content writing ideas?
- Today is Day 21 out of 30 for My Own Thirty Day Challenge.