Blogging Tip #1

My favorite blogging tip from Afford Anything blogger Paula Pant is:

Don’t waste your readers time. 

She actually puts it further down her list of blogging tips, but it’s my favorite, so I’ll call it #1. Paula helped get me started blogging at her workshop a couple of years ago. She does very well with her blog and has a lot of good ideas, so I try to pay attention to her tips and tricks of the trade.

I almost never try to write a post if I don’t have something to say. Something I think is worth passing on. I don’t normally feel the urge to post every day. When I join in these challenges like I’m in now (Just Jot It January), I find it a lot harder to follow Paula’s tip.

Sometimes, I just don’t feel like I have anything useful to say. Normally I would just not post anything. But when I’m challenged to post something every single day, it’s really, really hard to come up with something that I don’t think will be a stupid waste of time. For you and for me. Lately, I’ve been following the prompts for lack of anything interesting going on around here. It’s really hard to come up with something to say about the prompt subject sometimes.

I hate to quit any challenge, so I hope I can keep things interesting for another 2 weeks. I know I must be getting pretty boring since I haven’t been working at all lately and hardly going anywhere. I’m trying hard to make my savings last until I can get back to work, so not able to travel or go out much. I’m pretty upset about it and trying not to get too depressing about the unemployment situation around here.

So ya’ll let me know if it gets to be too much. If you think I’m wasting your time, let me know!


Preview: Back to Boston

Just a quickie here, that’s all I can manage til I get off this trip. It’ll only be a couple more days and I’ll be home again. 🙂

I was looking at the pictures I already had uploaded here (since the internet is too slow for me to get any more on and I can’t spend much time on it here).

I thought I might go back to Boston where this blog really got started. 🙂

I had been thinking about it for a while. I really had no idea of how to do it. How to get started. How to make everything work.

I had been interested in the idea of travel writing and photography for a while already. I figured since I LOVE to travel and take pictures of everything, it would be a perfect fit!

Yeah, I guess it would be if I could manage to find the time to actually WRITE.

I DO manage to take pictures, tons and tons of pictures. But I learned while taking a workshop on how to be a travel writer/photographer that I was not taking good enough pictures. They had to be PERFECT. 😦

At least I learned what I was doing wrong and why my photos were rejected (mostly to do with the quality of my camera lens).

I also learned that you could do a lot with a computer to improve your pictures. I still haven’t learned how to do that very well. I’m better than I was, but I still have a lot to learn. I also still don’t have the time to spend editing all my pictures. Even getting them uploaded onto my computer is hard sometimes.

I am still working on my photography and I still toss around story ideas and put together a little thing every once in a while, but I’ve only actually tried to get my pictures accepted twice (so far) at stock agencies.

I’ve never tried to send in an article (yet).

It seems I’d just rather spend any spare time off on another adventure. When I’m forced to stick around the house, I spend it taking care of business I can’t put off any longer. Like working on my taxes (ugh) and other fun stuff like that.

I had heard that blogging was a way to make money online while doing something you enjoy. I was all into that!

When I found out there was going to be an additional blogging session as part of the travel writing/photography workshop I was interested in , I was sold on taking time off for another learning vacation!

I just barely managed to get this blog started before I left for Boston. I had such a hard time figuring out how to do things like upload a photo, make a ‘gallery’, add a link, etc. Things that I do all the time now and seem so simple. 🙂

The workshop was great. Paula Pant, who has a blog called Afford Anything, was our instructor for the blogging session. She was really inspirational and a lot of help.

I met incredibly interesting people every day there and the instructors sent us out and around town on some helpful assignments. Then we had our work critiqued. I learned a lot there but was still hungry for more. I still feel like I could use more help.

Especially with the part about how to make some kind of an income from this internet stuff! I’m really enjoying the whole process of blogging and meeting people from all over and interacting, but I’m spending a lot more time on it all then I ever thought I would.

Remember I started out this post saying “just a quickie here”? That’s what I mean…

Here’s a ‘taste’ of Boston, I’ll be back with more later. 😉

PS-I’m going to another workshop in Korea in a couple of weeks, can;t wait to get over there and see/do/try everything!! Maybe I’ll even run into some of my old tuna boat crew. 😉

3 Unconventional Ways to Super-Charge Your Savings

3 Unconventional Ways to Super-Charge Your Savings.

This is a link to a post on a blog I follow. The blog is by Paula Pant and is called Afford Anything. Paula is the one who taught us about blogging at the AWAI Boston workshop I went to back in August. She was very helpful to me in getting this blog of mine started.

I am always trying to find ways to save money. My goal is to save enough so I can ‘retire’. I want to move overseas somewhere. Somewhere I can afford to live the way I want to. Somewhere more affordable. Somewhere more free (since we have lost SO much freedom here in the USA). 😦

So I’m always looking for ways to save more money, earn more money, etc. That would help move me further toward my goal. Paula has some good suggestions in her post. I love it that she always encourages us to think outside the box.

I’m not really into budgeting so I agree that putting saving first is a great idea. A lot of financial advisers say the same thing.

If you’re lucky enough to have a 401-K, put at least enough to get the company match in there. It might not be enough to retire on, but it’s a good start. Since you never see it in your checkbook, you’ll never miss it. I always sign up first thing at a new job now. 🙂

Maybe some of you are good at saving? I have to admit, I’m not that great at it. I try and I manage to save a little, but not enough to get me where I want to be. I don’t spend much on clothes, I live in shorts, t-shirts and flip-flops. ALL the time. 😉

I spend my income on vacations. I LOVE to travel. I go somewhere interesting EVERY chance I get! I try to go someplace where there is something in particular I want to learn about. For example, I went to the Freedom Fest in Las Vegas, the AWAI workshops in Chicago, Miami and Boston, the Live and Invest Overseas with International Living in the Rivera Maya Mexico, the Workboat Show in New Orleans.

I took all those trips in the last couple of years. I didn’t spend a TON of money, but it didn’t help my savings plan at all either. 😉

So, according to Paula I need to ‘earn more’!

I’m trying!! OK, to be honest, I hope to find some way to earn some money from this blog. I’m hoping to get my writing and photography out there to the world. Maybe someone will like it enough to be willing to buy some of it from me. 🙂

I’m also doing the same thing Paula is doing with real estate. Very similar at least. I started buying old houses and fixing them up to rent out a few years ago. I like the whole process of hunting down a good deal, improving on what was there, and then meeting all the interesting people that I have to deal with. From the technicians to the tenants, they’re ALL interesting. 😉

I’m glad to learn from Paula that I’m on the right track. She’s been very successful at living her life the way she’s dreamed. I hope to be able to break free and live MY dreams too one of these days. 🙂