Friday, April 8, 2016

How I Write a Blog Post

I've seen this sorta tag floating around the blogosphere for about a month now and it's April, I have a free Friday, so I thought, "What the heck?" I've never shared on the blog exactly how I write a post before. And since when I think of blogging I think of our very own John Hamish Watson, this posts will be littered with Watson memes and gifs.

Yes, Sherlock, John Hamish Watson.
Step 1: Planning/Outlining - I plan my posts about a month in advance. I like doing it so early because it takes off the pressure of scrambling to figure out a blog post and then making me miss a post. I usually keep a stock pile of post ideas, especially for my generic writing/discussion post at the beginning of the month. I often take notes during watching movies for my Writing Lessons posts. So near the end of every month, with those ideas in stock I plan what post I'm going to do a week in advance according to my super duper organized schedule. I'm just that anal retentive. XD

Moving past that prologue, when I sit down to write a post, I pick one out of my schedule (usually the one that needs to get done the soonest) and I beginning think about how I'm going to go about it and what the theme is going to be (and how I can tie it into some fandom). Then I title it, insert the labels, and schedule the date. When it's a free for all post like this one. I first outline main points like my steps, my intro, my conclusion, my little bio doohickey, the questions prompt, and the suggested posts. I'll even mark where I want to put gifs and pics and if I have a specific graphic in mind, I'll write that down in my marker too.

When I get new idea ... I blog about it.
Step 1.5 - Copy and Paste Template - Trade secret: I keep little rough templates for a lot of the posts you see here. Is it cheating? Maybe ... But it makes my bloggy life easier. I have templates for my Writerly Bundle, Writing Lessons, So Your Character is From Another Country, and Book Review posts. If the post I'm writing is one of those, then at this point I'll put the respective template in the editor. I like structure and efficiency and this helps me write posts faster.

And we're writing.
Step 2: Create a Graphic - Pretty graphics motivate me and I always put them at the top to officially begin. I usually spend a half hour or so finding the right graphic. If it's geeky graphics, I just google theme (promo for the fandoms for the win!). If it's generic photos, I use a royalty free site like pixabay. If I actually took a decent photo, I use one of mine. Then I spend a while playing around with it on picmonkey to make it look suitable.

Still writing.
 Step 3: Write the Post - After all this preparation, I finally just hammer out the post. I can type pretty fast so this helps a lot while listening to some tunes. I usually pants the post as I go and hope it all makes sense. This part always takes the longest for me since this the actual you know writing part. I also format the post as I go like making sure it's justified, bolding text, and changing the font size.

And still writing.
Step 4: Add More Graphics to Post - Back to Google or my phone we go to find more gifs and graphics for this darlin'. I also look into my Library of Congress worth of gifs I have on my computer. Don't judge. Then I insert them in all the places where I marked they should go in my planning stage--and insert snarky captions.

Everything sucks. None of my phone pics came out right. All trash.
Step 5: Edit and Preview Post - I read over my posts to make sure I don't have any embarrassing typos (though I've sometimes skipped this stage because I'm tired then had to correct said typo later. Oops ... ). I often read over as I insert the graphics to save time. I also preview the post to make sure it doesn't look like some cyber monster sabotaged it.

Step 6 - Schedule the Post - Finally after hours of labor I click the publish button with the hope this new post will do well. I usually have a post done weeks in advance, so I won't see this love child for a while. However some posts like monthly summaries, Beautiful People, and character interviews I post only days in advance because I have to you know gather material first.

One day the queen will read my blog ... One day ...
How long does this all take? - Depending on the post 1-3 hours. Book reviews, writing posts, monthly summaries, and writing lessons posts take the longest. So Your Character is From Another country posts, tags, Beautiful Peoples, and character interviews take the second longest. Writerly Bundles are the shortest to write.

Shocking isn't it, John?
There you have it! My process. I hope this was informative and somewhat entertaining. Happy blogging and thanks for reading!

 How do you write a blog post? Have you done this bloggy tag/post/thing? Do we do anything in common in our post writing process? Let's discuss!

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