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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. 

The First Tizzy Tuesday

Happy Tizzy Tuesday!
Yeah that’s right, I’m actually posting at a regular rate. I’m proud of myself. Yay me! Anyway let’s get this show on the road, I present to you the first Tizzy Tuesday *round of applause from you*

Solitaire by Alice Oseman:

I thought I would start off by mentioning a book that I can’t wait to read, released just over 2 months ago this book seems to be everywhere at the minute. Firstly I want to talk about the cover it’s so pretty I am in love with the design and wish I had a notebook like it, I like how the black background compliments they love heart made of all different shapes. To me the heart is showing us that love can come if different forms and it doesn’t have a descriptor or manual that we identify it by, this leads me to the subtitle “This is not a love story…” for once I actually believe this statement. From the first few pages I have read it certainly doesn’t sound like a love story. Tori Spring is the main character of the novel from what I have read; she is a sixth former (much like me) and is angry and pessimistic about the world. All I can say about this book from what I have read is that it looks like a promising read with a few twist and turns chucked in for good measure, also the great reviews already give it a high spot on my to-read list. I’ll guess I’ll have to wait until December 25th to find out what really happens to Tori Spring.

From Notting Hill with Four Weddings… Actually by Ali McNamara:

I have confession to make, I may be in love with this series an unhealthy amount, so much so that once I have read this book you lucky people will be getting a series review, yep the entire series (so far, I hope it never ends) in one review. ‘From Notting Hill with Four Weddings… Actually’ is the third instalment in the ‘From Notting Hill with…’ series by the great writer that is Ali McNamara, that is set for release on 23rd October this year, that just happens to be the date of my Ali McNarama party, what a concindence… without ruining too much of the rest of the books for you I will try to briefly explain the overview of the series, the main character is the movie-obsessed, Hugh Grant loving, Scarlett O’Brien. Yep that’s about all I can tell you without ruining the books for you, sorry! Although I can say that I’m super excited for this to be released, and I can’t wait to tell you all about it.

P.S If you haven’t read any of Ali McNamara’s books I recommend starting with ‘Step Back In Time’ which you shall be receiving a review on once I have my own copy, it’s a fab read that had me laughing throughout, it was truly wonderful!

I hope you enjoyed the first instalment of the series, let me know in the comments your views!

Happy reading,
Ellie

Tizzy Tuesday’s

As of Tuesday 21st October I shall be starting a new series called ‘Tizzy Tuesdays’ where I will covering perhaps one or two books a week that I can’t wait to either be released or that I can’t wait to read. Tuesday used to be my favourite day of the week, but when my GSCE’s hit they slowly became the worst day of the week as double Geography last thing for two years can put a damper on anyone’s day! But now that I have started my A-Levels Tuesdays are slowly regaining their lost titles with it being the one day where I get to come home early (hooray for free periods) So in a quest to make all of your Tuesdays a bit more fun and tizzy, excuse the bad pun and self promotion, I want to keep you up to date with all of the books that are coming to a shop near you!

So if you have heard about any great releases or ones that you simply cannot wait to read let me know by using the ‘recommend a book for me’ page…together we can make Tuesdays great again!

Happy reading,

Ellie

Introduction

Hello dear reader and welcome to my blog, this blog isn’t your average teenage beauty, hair, and gushy boy band talking blog that you would expect. Oh no! This blog is about, good books , an odd bit of fictional writing, crisp eating cats (he will appear a lot), viewpoints and opinions on random things such as: my fellow teenagers, the build up to the end of Year 11, and how I cope on this very large, mad, confusing, and unpredictable world that we all co- habit in!

I’m not going to lie to you dear fellow, I don’t do a lot I may not travel the world and write about me foreign expeditions I may not have a crazy dog that drives me up the wall that I can write about, nor may I live the life of the rich and famous, but do you know what I do have? I have a damn good story to tell, I have a lot to say about a lot of things, some may make you laugh, some may make you cry, and in some cases you may cry with laughter. This is not my place to rant, this is not my place to fangirl, this is my place to write about various things that I find interesting, this is my place to entertain. This is my arena in which to act; I hope your sitting comfortably…