miss backwards

5 Things I Wish I Knew When I Started Blogging

“What do you like to do in your spare time?”
“I run a lifestyle blogger, I write reviews, give fashion tips, and share my life.”
“Oh, so you’re like Tanya…Burr is it? Or Zoella? My Goddaughter loves her. Do you use a camera and video yourself?”
“I’m going to need a bigger glass of wine.”

I don’t know about you, but I’ve been in the situation above a lot recently. Whenever I happen to mention that I have a lifestyle blog people assume that I’m a vlogger like Zoe Sugg or another internet household name, or that I have had successful brand deals with the likes of Asos and Urban Decay. I’m not, and I haven’t. I’m just about on the scale and list of lifestyle bloggers, here’s five things I wish I knew before taking my place at the ‘lesser known end of the scale’.

Things I Wish I knew Before I Started

Goals are good, just be realistic.
We all dream of being big in the blogging world, some of us even dream of branching off into the freelance writing sector. But there is no point in having these dreams if you don’t set realistic goals to get there, I find that making small weekly goals for my blog are the best way of advancing. I ususally start with a research task at the start of the week, it gives me time to get any information I need for a blog post, check it hasn’t been done by other bloggers that often, that sort of thing. Once that’s done the rest of the goals are easier to break down. The point is that I break my blog posts down from the goal of “write a blog post” to four or five little goals, like “research topic”, “get outfit information such as brands and prices”, and “invent a catchy title” This way writing posts is easier and you feel like you’ve accomplished more at the end. Remember, the most you post the closer you could be to becoming the next Tanya Burr! 

Write everything down.
I can’t stress this one enough, the amount of great post ideas I’ve had late at night and have woken up not having a clue what they were is unreal! Write everything down, even if it is the smallest start of an idea, it could turn into a massive success. I prefer writing my ideas with a pen and paper opposed to typing them, it just feels a bit more creative and I can write quicker than I can type so my hands can keep up. But if you are more technological, then apps like Evernote or even the built in note app on your phone are excellent for writing those ideas on the go.

Go to brands, don’t wait for them to come to you.
The amount of bloggers out there at the moment is insane. So how do you get the brands to notice you, go to them! I have it on good authority that if you go to brands directly instead of waiting for them to notice you, you are in a better position for the prospect of working with them. Going to brands shows that you are willing to put yourself out there and are passionate about what you do. I must admit I haven’t tried this technique yet, but it’s on my list!

It’s okay to use stock photos. 
I’ve always been insistent on using my own photos on my blog, I used to hate stock photos, sometimes they can look cheap and lowers the value of your content. But then I was introduced to places like Unsplash and Gratisography.  The photos are  free from copyright restrictions or licensed under creative commons public domain dedication. This means you can copy, modify, distribute and perform the work, even for commercial purposes, all without asking permission. Which is a dream come true once you’ve seen the quality of the photos!

Stay on top of current affairs.
When I started blogging, I was determined that my blog would be a little corner of the internet untouched by the harsh realities of life. But I have since discovered that staying out to the ‘real world’ can make you seem ignorant and robotic, a lot of my audience come for a human being talking about their life. Not some automaton ignoring a highly significant event that has affected millions. Commenting on current affairs, both on a world wide scale and in your personal life is a great way to show people that you are aware of the world around you and keeps you relevant.

I hope this helps some of you out there, I know I would have loved this sort of advice when starting out. Update on ‘Hang On In There’: I’m easing myself back into blogging, a schedule is nearly sorted and content is being finalised. I’m hoping to do a bit more current affairs topical writing and I’m in love with the idea of “Get the Look” posts. If you’ve got any suggestions to what you would like to see let my know in the comments below! Thanks for hanging on. 

 

Hang On In There

Hang On In There

I made two realisations last night.

1. I’m frustrated at the lack of content on my blog. 2. I have the power to change the amount of content on my blog.

I’m still finding it hard to get back into writing, most sentences are difficult to form at the moment. My travel posts sound like wikipedia articles, and my reviews seem to skip the bad parts. All whilst I’m seeing people being honest with their audiences, and I can’t help but think that I’m too honest too often, you don’t come here to see me publish content moaning about my lack of content, or to be informed that I’m taking yet another break.

If you happen to be here for that reason I encourage you to quit the window, or close the tab that currently displays these words, because I’m not doing that anymore. No more rebranding, no more “I’ll do it tomorrow” or “I don’t need a schedule” Because I do. I want my posts to make impressions, create discussions and get people talking. But I can’t do that without an audience, and people aren’t going to read sporadic content that has been made with the least amount of effort possible, just so the creator gets to press the ‘publish’ button. I hope you’ll stay whilst I get some content sorted and establish a schedule.

Exciting times ahead, just hang on in there.

A special thank you to Matti, who helped me realise that I am actually capable of writing more than messages and emails. She’s pretty great. 

Forward?

We all thought it, “Miss Backwards is gone and is never coming back.” I certainly did. Once you stop blogging and tell yourself that you have other priorities to think about, all you want to do is blog and write. Tell people about new, meaningless things as a way of assuring yourself that you won’t forget how to write content that doesn’t begin with “It can be argued that…” or “It is popular opinion amongst critics…” But then you write that context, well those essays, and you forget your blog. Then suddenly I woke up one Saturday in May allowing myself time to finally blog and I couldn’t. I didn’t know how to write a blog post, I’d been so busy wrapped up in analysis of literary works and kingships that I didn’t know how to type like a normal person. I didn’t know how to connect with an audience. Be the girl I was in posts, the bright and breezy girl who didn’t use “thus” and consider the relative importance of factors. Uninspired and disheartened at my writing skills I put blogging back to the bottom of the list, and if I’m honest I left it there. Not wanting to try, in fear of disappointment.

I’ve never felt so distant from this blog it’s crazy, it’s turned from a great hobby and passion to the space a girl who sometimes writes like me with my (out of date) photo in the sidebar used to be. I no longer feel that Miss Backwards is me, but then she is the girl I was when I went away, not the woman I am returning. I’m different now, I’m older, I’m wiser, and I no longer want to write filler posts or put up half-arsed content because I want views and that’s what everyone else is doing. I’m not going to mimic other people’s blogs; neither am I promising complete originality.  Complete honesty, no bullshit, that’s what I want to write, I’m not going to fob you off with half true comments and reviews.

I have no idea what is going to happen in August, for once in my life I have no idea what the future has in store for me, and that scares me more than anything. The unknown makes the monsters under your bed look like a group who you would take to tea at your grandmas. I’m staring the unknown in the face and it’s grinning at me like the Cheshire cat. Come the 24th June I’m in limbo, I start a 6 week waiting game. I don’t know what will happen but I know that I’m finding Miss Backwards again, I’m going forward into the unknown, hopefully not alone.

Care to join?

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Why I Started Blogging | BEDA 10

It’s hard for me to imagine my life without Miss Backwards. It’s like all the memories that don’t have her in are obscure or not longer important. It’s odd, this hobby I call blogging has slowing taken over my life, on keystroke at a time, but why did I start occupying this little corner of the internet?

To be honest, I couldn’t pinpoint an exact reason as to why I started blogging. It’s not like I particularly knew anything about it, in fact Miss Backwards laid dormant for months before I decided to start writing, I set her up and just left her. Like a house in need of a loving owner who needs to be enthusiastic about renovation. The most I knew about blogging is that my friend Lauren ran a travel blog that did quite good, but she was a university, leagues away from me. I couldn’t possibly do something like that?

I didn’t know anything about travel, I hadn’t seen the world like she had, the most I had seen is Disneyland Paris and a bit of Lanzarote, and the weren’t particularly eye opening to a 7 year old. So I couldn’t talk travel, I knew nothing about beauty, nor much else that people seemed to liked to read about. So I asked myself, what do I like? Books.  So I became a book blogger with a difference, because who wants to be penned in by a title, so ‘the life’ in the title gave me a bigger scope to explore. When it comes down to it, I guess Miss Backwards was something to keep me occupied in the longest summer I was ever going to have. Well as you know that didn’t work.

Miss Backwards didn’t really kick off until September of last year, despite being set up in March. I guess everything changed for me and I wanted something that I could put all of my creative energy into, at first I was a bit unsure as to what world I was going into, and what I was meant to do with the little space, with all the big names out there looming like massive shadows. But then you all came along. One by one you clicked the follow button, giving me confidence to write more, showing me the most important thing I have learn’t from blogging…

Don’t not say something because your scared or you don’t think anyone will be interested. Always say something, no matter how small or insignificant it may seem. Cause chances are, someone, somewhere is listening. 

Whatever the reason I haven’t looked back, I only intend to take Miss Backwards forward, hopefully you’ll join?

I’ll see you tomorrow,
Ellie

Who Am I?

I wrote this post a few weeks back, and it’s about time I shared it with you.

I’m Miss Backwards.

It’s funny how life can change within 24 hours, this time yesterday I was just Ellie, a sixth form student  who existed between loner chairs and travelling in pairs, she was a bit odd but fitted in nonetheless. Miss Backwards exsisted between 3pm and approximately 11pm a night, she had a allocated time, but would always manage to fit into class breaks or waiting for a friend. These two would co-exist, one during the day, the other at night.

I convinced myself, that I wanted to be Ellie, at least when the sun was up. Then when the blinds were closed and it was just me, a laptop, and an awesome soundtrack, Miss Backwards would somehow convince me that I wanted to be her.  I struggled to juggle two people in one head, because Miss Backwards would always lose, when faced with “Homework or a blog post” Homework would win, because Ellie was more important. Because she was seen by more people, Miss Backwards was just an online blogger who had the same first name as me.

Yesterday I confessed to the people I see every day that I’m Miss Backwards, but I’m not, I’m Ellie, the blogger and sixth form student. I guess I was scared of what people would think, would they like what Miss Backwards had to say? Would they even  notice her at all? It was never my plan to reveal her to the world, this little corner of the internet was mine. At the start of this I was certain I could keep them separate, determined even, but I can’t deny that both Ellie and Miss Backwards have started to bleed through the cracks and slowly started to trespass on each other’s territory.

Time to lift the barriers, the Berlin wall of secret personalities, and online personas if you will.

I am Miss Backwards.

Bloglovin

Hello dear reader just a quick update for you, as I sit here and listen to Maroon 5 whilst eating homemade oatmeal and banana cookies, I thought I would tell you what I have decided to do this last week.
I have decided to link up with some other blogging sites in order to gain a bit more exposure. This doesn’t mean that I am stopping blogging using WordPress, it just means that the content I post here might not always be exclusive and could be available elsewhere as well as here. But I will tell you when something is exclusive, trust me I like an exclusive scoop!

So what does this mean for me? 
Basically, it doesn’t really mean a lot for you I’ll still be here but I also be over on Bloglovin as well, so if you use that do us a favor and give me follow! This is where you can find me over there. Justclick the little logo over there!

Just a quickie today, been a busy weekend sorting out big things for thislittle internet corner. Hope you’re all having a fab weekend.
Happy Reading,
Ellie