Starting a blog? Here's some of my best advice.

Dear Nikki,

You mentioned that starting your business was a series of steps over time.
One of the things you did was create a blog.

So here is my question: What advice would you give to someone who is thinking of starting a blog to improve and showcase her writing skills, but has no idea what to write about?

This woman (yes, me) already has a blog but hasn’t posted a thing because of 1. a lack of time (I have a full-time job and I’m a single mom), and 2. I can’t seem to decide what to write about or focus on consistently.”

—Sara

 

Dear Sara,

When I started my blog, I didn’t HAVE a business.

What I DID have was a burning desire to write.

Much like you, I was inspired by other writers.

Writers who . . .

exposed their hearts through their words.
poured out everything they had into posts that moved people.
refused to shy away from the often-painful truth.

Writers like Danielle LaPorte and Kelly Diels and Ronna Detrick.

For them, it was never been about creating content for content’s sake. It was about feeling called to write. The words chose THEM. (Not the other way ‘round.)

I would read what they wrote religiously, and it’d spur me into action.

I wrote about all sorts, in the beginning—and, for a while there, I kept everything under virtual lock ‘n’ key. (Thank you, WordPress password.)

I wrote about life and loss and love . . . and I held nothing back.

That’s how I found my writer-ly groove.

Today, things are different. At least, to some extent. There’s no password, anymore. (Wink.) And I try and gear my articles around entrepreneurship, but I’ve never felt compelled to spit out a how-to post just because I felt I “should.”

Of course, I want to write posts that are valuable but really, anything goes.

Which leads me to 5 pieces of advice:

 

1. Write before you’re ready. Write from the heart.

What inspires you? What do you want people to know?

What do you feel called to write? What do you feel called to RIGHT?

Let go. Let flow.

Let the words choose you.

Oh, and keep a running list of every idea you have—I use Google Docs and iRecorder Pro to capture my thoughts when I’m out ‘n’ about—that way, you’ll never stare at a blank page again.

 

2. Fuel your inner writer.

Unsubscribe from everything that isn’t useful or which doesn’t bring you joy.

In case you’re curious, here are a few of the people who have a permanent place in my inbox (in addition to those I mentioned above):

Hannah Brencher
Jonathan Fields
Erika Napoletano
Paul Jarvis
Hannah Marcotti

Keep your inner writer fed.

 

3. Give yourself space to evolve.

If you haven’t watched this video by Ira Glass, watch it . . . now. And then watch it again.

It’s excellent advice for beginners and creators on every level.

Because you might not write in the way that you want when you start, but you will in time.

And when you write a post you can’t WAIT to share, all that hard work will be worth it.

 

4. Set aside time to practice your craft.

Ashley Ambirge wakes up every day at 6am to write her memoir.

So when it comes to dishing advice on time management, she has plenty to say.

In essence, her advice is this: prioritize.

Or, in other words: If it’s important enough to you, you’ll make the time.

 

To sum up my advice:

write from the heart . . .

fuel your inner writer . . .

and don’t worry if the perfect post eludes you, for a while.

You’ll get there, with practice.

 

“There comes a moment in every life when the Universe presents you with an opportunity to rise to your potential. An open door that only requires the heart to walk through, seize it and hang on.

The choice is never simple. It’s never easy. It’s not supposed to be. But those who travel this path have always looked back and realized that the test was always about the heart. The rest is just practice.”

―Jaime Buckley

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One thought on “Starting a blog? Here's some of my best advice.

  1. Thank you, for this article, Nikki. And for the video by Ira Glass. Incredible. Yes, practice is everything… and writing from the heart.

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