Blogging 101 Blogging Compass

Following Your Blogging Compass: Train Your Blogging Muscle!

Blogging Muscle

Missed one of the series? Catch up here: Defining Your True North //Writing in Your Own Voice //Stepping Out of Comfort Zone // Authentic Voice 

 

Hello my sweet little honey bears, and happy Blogging Compass Day to you!!   I am loving reading, and responding, to the comments of these posts, thank you for contributing! {Even if you are reading this post a few days after the post has been published, comment away… I will respond!}  Following last week’s chat about Authentic Voice, I am inspired to write about well, writing and honing that skill.   Now, I wish I could take credit for this topic….but I was inspired by a comment on last week’s post, from the lovely Melanie:

Following Your Blogging Compass  A Bit About Authentic Voice

Woah.

Let’s take a moment and think about this bad boy for a second: Train our writing muscle.  Woah again.  You hear about training when it comes to getting ready for a marathon or hiking a mountain or even learning a new professional skill.  But writing? A writing muscle? Really? You betcha.

I’ve found with even my own blog, that I can get caught up in the fancy buttons or graphics or linkups or giveaways or tweets or pictures, and I lose sight of what maintaining a blog is all about: writing.  Sure, the other elements make it easy for someone to engage with your blog or share your posts or follow along, but you have to say something worth sharing. You have to write.  See what I mean about training our writing muscle?

Has this ever happened to you? Where a day or two or five passes and you don’t know what to write for your blog? You’ve lost a bit of creative juju and feeling just stuck, or not sure where to pick back up? It may be because your writing muscle needs a bit of a tune up.

And trust me, this out of shape blogging muscle happens to me all the time. I will sit down, and stare a blinking cursor without knowing what to write or where to start. That’s why I was really excited to stumble across favorite new site: Language is a Virus.  This website is filled writing prompts,  writing games and writing exercises all for free.  I love it! In fact, that’s how I stumbled upon the prompt for  my “I Dream … ” post.  Check it out the next time you are feeling a bit of out of writing shape, and hopefully it can kick start a post for you!

What about you? What tips or tricks do you use to get your writing muscle in shape? Do you have a favorite site to use as a resource?  Feel free to share it in the comments below. {I’d love to hear them!}

Also, I loved sharing Melanie’s comment in this week’s post.  If you have a prompt or an idea for a future Blogging Compass series, shout it out! I’ll keep my eyes peeled for future posts in the series! Thank you for cultivating incredible discussion and support for one another, I love it!

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  • kcsaling

    That is an awesome website! I’ve bookmarked it in the event of future blogging brain-cramps, which are sure to happen. As far as the rest, I’m totally with Melanie – I find that the more I write, the better I am, and when I take a break to try to get my creativity back…meh. Sometimes I need the recharge, but the one thing that has helped me with writing is just…writing. Imagine that? 😀

    • I am glad that you like the website! I thought it was awesome, and I just had to share it with everyone. I loved the different writing prompts and exercises, perfect for when you have a blogging brain-cramp. {Which are the worst!} And I’ve found that by just writing, anything, my brain cramp eventually goes away. Happy weekend!

  • Yes! I 100% agree with this. Of course, writing has always been my favorite part of blogging–so for me, I have to work up motivation to do the other stuff!

  • Wow! I love this. Sometimes I feel so busy with school and work that I forget about my little blog. Though I desire to write I just can’t find the time. I get on Twitter whenever I want to write about something totally new. That’s my tip/trick. People tweet hilarious and inspired things that usually spark something in me. I love this series. You are so awesome!

    • Oh, that’s a fun idea… Looking to Twitter for a bit of inspiration. Fun idea! I am glad that you like this post, and it was a bit helpful to keep that writing muscle nice and toned! 🙂

  • It is true – we do have a writing ‘muscle’ and I love flexing mine! There are so many ways to write – I also write a lot of poetry – and to be creative with how you do it. I often just list ideas I have and if I have seen something somewhere that has inspired me I make a note of it. At the moment I am writing about what I experience in my life, but I am thinking of branching out into different types of posts (like my recent post about how to make paneer cheese) that are a bit more out of my comfort zone.

    • Hi Molly! I think you make a great point, about trying to write about new topics and posts to keep the writing muscle nice and toned. Practice makes it a bit easier to sit down and tackle that blank screen!

  • Jordan

    This is such a good post, B. I feel like this happens to me literally EVERY time I sit down and try to write something. That’s why I was so excited about the Blogtember thing, because having a prompt every day was supposed to be motivating and all that…. But then I got behind one day, and then it seems like an insurmountable challenge to get back to it. I know it’s not, but I just find it a lot more difficult than I thought I would. I wonder if just spending more time writing NOT on the blog would help… More time doing some personal journalling, more time writing letters, etc. I think it’s also important to not put pressure on yourself to produce something every single day. I know I tend to subconsciously compare myself to a lot of other bloggers who have these amazing posts like five or six times a week, and I just look at it and I’m like, “But how in the world do they have the time, and where do all those thoughts come from?!” And then I feel even worse, like I’m not measuring up to some kind of not-actual-standard that nobody put up there but me. And I get disheartened, and disappointed in myself, and that just makes the whole thing harder. I love this series…I have bookmarked every installment, and even though I haven’t been showing too much promise yet, I do think that one day I’ll get the hang of it!

    • Hi Jordan! I am so glad that you like this post! And you bring up some BIG points here. Like the idea of going the Blogtember challenge… and missing a post/day and then trying to catch back up. Remember, there isn’t a blog police checking if you miss a post. No one will think less if you miss a prompt or have to push it a few days. 🙂 But, you also bring up another big idea, about comparing to other bloggers…and that will be a topic of a future Blogging Compass, as comparison is something many bloggers (myself included) face all the time.

      My advice for now: Do not be disappointed in yourself or discouraged. You will find the rhythm that works best for you and your blog! 🙂

  • That website is awesome; thanks for sharing. I only ever post twice a week (three times last week which is a first) but I do love to write. You’re absolutely spot on about needing to exercise the skill.

    • Oh, I am glad that you enjoy the site! It is such a fantastic resource to hop over to for a bit of inspiration when feeling stuck! 🙂

  • Chantal

    They say the same thing about writing fiction. I write novels, but since I had a kid it’s been SO hard to sit down and write. Now I make sure I spend at least 15 minutes a day writing. The hardest part is sitting down.

    • Hi Chantal… I think that is a great idea, trying to write for just 15 minutes per day…that amount of time seems very manageable. 🙂

  • I’m glad I was able to give you some inspiration for this series! 🙂 And this website is awesome – I’m definitely going to use it in the future to get back into creative writing! As far as blogging goes, I’m just trying to challenge myself to write different kinds of posts – I want to keep it interesting for both me and my readers. I always want to try out new things and figure out new ways to write my travel posts and I feel like I’m learning so much through this!

    • Hi Melanie! No, thank you for your comment and contributing to the discussion. Half the fun, right!? The website is a great resource, so happy to share it with you all. I think you make a great point: mixing up your posts…writing about different subjects and topics, to keep your writing muscles nice and tone. {In the gym, that would be cross training…right?}

  • gladleynet

    I find this amusing to read, because I had a blogging lull recently and only just picked it up again properly. The funny story is that I flexed my writing muscle so much on my own blog that I got some copywriting work, which made me feel too drained to write for myself!

    So in that case, I decided not to stress about not blogging, as I knew I’d get back into it eventually. I explained why on my blog, but didn’t really make any apologies. It wasn’t for lack of ideas, just lack of time.

    • Oh how interesting… You were flexing writing muscle so much so to the point where you had to adjust your own blog. I’ve found that having a lack of time, for whatever reason, is a completely fair reason to adjust blogging schedule and editorial calendar. Good of you to explain where you are with your readers, and then ease back in!

    • YAY WRITING WORK WOO!

  • I am so excited to check out that website and use it to hone my writing skills! Thank you for sharing!

    • You are welcome Rachel! I really enjoyed this site, hope it gives you a bit of writing inspiration!

  • Oh my gosh – thank you so much for posting that website! I love writing and sometimes I just need direction. It’s a really inspiring and positive site too. Great suggestion : )

  • Cornelia

    Such a cool website – thanks for sharing! Definitely worth going to again and again. I’m really enjoying this series.