Category Archives: Blogging Buddies

Adding links into your posts.

DaniellaJoe has asked me how I put in the direct links within my posts. I figure that others may not know so thought I would do a quick post as it is something that is really useful to know how to do. It is also easier to explain with pictures rather than just words.

1. Highlight the word you want the link to appear in.

2. Click on the chain-like icon.

link copy

3. This screen then pops up. Simply paste your web page address and click on the add link. It should then work. 🙂



If you cannot see the link icon make sure that you have highlighted part of the text. If you still cannot see it then you may need to click on the kitchen  sink icon:


Finally, if you want to break the link then highlight the ‘link word’ and click on the ‘broken chain’ which appears to the right of the link one.

Really hopes that this makes sense – please ask if you need any clarification. Hope this helps DaniellaJoe?

Blogging Buddies – snap descisions

Last week your responses reminded me that there is definitely not a ‘one size fits all’ correct answer as to how to make a post interesting. One person liked people to leave a question at the end of each post whilst another specifically singled this out as something they didn’t like. I find this reassuring as some of it is down to personality. That takes some of the pressure off.

Earlier this week I thought about another factor related to this – how do you start your post off? I ask this because in my reader I only get a few sentences at the beginning of a post and, especially when I am looking for ‘new’ blogs (like I need anymore to read!) I do sometimes decide whether to continue reading based just on these brief snippets.

When I stopped to think about it I was quite upset with myself for being so superficial but I am sure that I am not the only one.

It gets even worse when you look on google. I put in ‘wire mesh jewellery WordPress’ to see what came up:

23 hours ago – I have been experimenting with wire mesh and making some different necklaces with it. 1. Simple celtic knot. 2. Netted Pearls 3. A Fair Trade 

That’s it. Would it make you want to read it? I guess it depends what you are looking for.
I have no magic answers to this except that I have been a bit more mindful as to how I start my posts off. I have been trying to cut the waffle and get to an interesting point very quickly.
What about you? Do you have any tips or suggestions that you use? Do please share.

Blogging Buddies – What makes a post interesting?

Or to put it another way – what makes you stop reading a post?

What features do you admire and encourage you to read on?

There is a lot of competition out there so what can we do to encourage people to stay and read on?

I can share with you the ‘rules’ that I always try to apply (I do like my little rules:) )

  1. Keep it fairly short. Not totally sure how to quantify short but I know it is important. How long is too long in your eyes? Being a teacher, I am aware that children have short attention spans but adults are fairly restricted too. According to Wikipedia the average adult attention span is 40 mins. I wonder if that means a 40 minute session on the computer? I am sure that it doesn’t mean that you can expect someone to spend 40 minutes reading your blog. It would have to be REALLY amazing….People will be looking at a lot of blogs/sites/e-mails etc….


2. Try not to write in long blocks of text – this is where photographs come in. It is just off-putting. Headings may help with this, quotes and writing in different colours. It all helps to break the text up.

3. Try to include a visual element. Ideally photographs that you have taken but when not possible pictures that you have permission to use. This also helps to break the text up and is a really easy way to add interest into a post.


Are you still with me? 😉

4. I always try to be myself when I write as, as I have said before, blogging is about building relationships and if there is a relationship then people are more likely to stay around for a bit longer.

5. I also think that you have to give your readers something. It might be information such as a post I once wrote about the origins of Kimihimo, sharing an experience that people can identify with and learn from, or even asking for help. People love to help just like they like being nosy and finding out about you.

There you have it. Nothing that is rocket science. What are your golden ‘rules’ when writing a post?

Blogging Buddies – building a community.

Welcome to the latest post in this series that is designed to help and encourage people who are new to blogging. This week we are looking at how to build a community around your blog or how to ‘connect’ and join in with those already in existence.

When I asked the question:

Why do you blog?

a lot of people mentioned the amazing community that they have found to connect with through their blog, people that they would never have been able to connect with without the internet. When I first started out I remember looking at blogs and seeing how many people left comments and followed them, and thinking how on earth does that happen?


I am sure that this is a question asked by many people starting out with blogging still ask themselves. You have taken the plunge, started your blog and are managing to find some time to put up posts but how do you build a following and get people to find you?

I have written a post on this in the past so won’t go into a lot of detail here. To summarise, I find that you have to invest a fair amount of time in it but it will be worth it. It is also about giving it time.

What have you found that works for you?  As always your are welcome to leave a link back to your blog should you feel like writing a post about your experiences. 🙂

When do you blog?

Two weeks ago, I asked the question,

Why did you start blogging?

I was so pleased that I did ask this and a huge thank you to all of you who joined in. I learnt so much. It seems that I had a very narrow idea on the subject!

When thinking about this, current post, the obvious questions that came to mind following the ‘why’ are the ‘what’ and the ‘when’. I think that we have covered the what, so this week I am asking,

When do you blog and how did you decide on this?

  • Is it on an adhoc basis? Does this depend on when you have something you feel worth sharing? I definitely started like this. I had the simple aim of blogging once a week – this worked as it also coincided when I was able to produce something that I felt it was worth blogging about.
  • Is it meticulously planned? Currently, I fall into this category. In my head I have this plan where I blog three times a week; once on a Sunday when I share my crafting and join in with Handmade Monday, once on a Wednesday when I do my Blogging Buddies post and then on a Friday  – my fitness post. Originally this ‘plan’ came about because I read somewhere that blogging regularly is ideal when trying to increase readership. I am not  sure whether blogging on regular days is exactly what is meant but I tend to form little rules that I have to follow and this is what I have fallen into.

Handmade Harbour

I suppose that on one level it is important to keep blogging rather than having long gaps in between each one, that goes without saying really….but how often is regular for you? Once a week? Twice, everyday? What have you found that works for you?

This is one of a selection of free blog planners found on heartandmade

Some people take it a step further and keep a diary of blog posts planned ahead of time – similar to a calendar. Are you one of these? On the one hand, I really admire these people and would really quite like to be able to do this but I am simply unable to do this. I am, shall we say….slightly more disorganized and spontaneous.

  • Finally, some people may take more of a scientific approach: By this I mean using your blog statistics to assess which days your blog gets the most views. On WordPress your stats are easily accessed through your dashboard.


If you go through to your actual page by clicking onto the graph:

You can find your summaries here. Scroll down and you will get to a summary by day:

Mine tells me that there is not really any one consistent day that is stronger than any other.  Not sure why…..Is this the same for anyone else?

How many posts do you think is ideal? Is there ever any such thing as too many posts in a week? How do you decide when and how often you blog? Do share you thoughts as I am sure that there are many more reasons that I have yet to identify. If you fancy joining in then you can leave a link below. Thank you 🙂



Blogging Buddies – Why?

So why have you decided to blog?

  • Is it to simply share your ideas with others?
  • To ‘meet’ other, like-minded people?
  • To build up a following before you launch a shop?
  • As a ‘conscience’ so that you stick to something or do as you say you will?
  • As a diary?
  • As a record of a particular task: e.g bucket list?
  • because you read a lot and think that it is a good idea?
  • Any other?

I am not really sure why I started now. I think it is probably in the hope that I would set up a shop to sell my makes (I am still working on it…). To be honest, the original idea is immaterial now. I have got so much from blogging (as I have mentioned once or twice before… ;))

  • I have made a lot of great ‘friends’.
  • I have gained a huge amount of confidence.
  • I have gained a lot of new skills (still developing).
  • My style of crafting has evolved a lot.

Those are just the ones that come easily to my mind.

Why have you (or are hoping to) start a blog? I thought that this would be a great way to begin to learn a bit more about each other. If you feel up to it why not write your own post and link it up using the link below. We can then all visit each others. If you get time then do please leave a quick comment – it makes us all feel loved. If you have yet to start a blog properly then feel free to leave a comment below – we would love to get to know you all better, whatever stage you are at. (Obviously if you have yet to start then tell us your hopes and dreams 🙂

Blogging Buddies – themes

I really hope that you enjoyed last weeks post as much as I did. It turns out that I may well be getting a lot more from this than I first bargained for. I really enjoyed finding out more about how and why you chose your names. Some of you used old nicknames (or wanted to), anagrams and some more obvious to do with the subject matter. It was also interesting to see why some of you started – some (Eleanor Lucy)  really took a huge leap of faith including a whole life style change whilst others (like me) started by just dipping a toe in. Hopefully all this insight will have helped some who are struggling with this first hurdle.

The next major hurdle to cross is to choose your theme. I have written a lot about this previously and don’t want to repeat myself so I shall just refer you to this post. One thing that I would add is that it is a good idea to have a look around at other blogs and look at what you like about them.

How did you choose your theme? If you have any questions about the theme you are using (is it clear, too busy etc) then do please leave a link below and I am sure that you will get some helpful advice from others.


Blogging Buddies

Firstly, a huge thank you to everyone who responded to last weeks post about my proposal regarding supporting people with starting blogging. It seems that there is interest, or at least some people have some questions which they would like answered. I am really sorry not to have got around to you all, but I will try to. These two weeks are supposed to be my ‘holiday’ although I cannot keep away totally 😉

Last week I did say that we would not start until September when everyone (in England) would be back from their holidays and possibly back into some routine (which includes me). There are two weeks until the start of September but for those of you who are starting from scratch there are two things that you need to start thinking about now as they are crucial to the rest. The first of these is what are you going to call your blog? The second is which theme you are going to use?


So how do you choose a name? This isn’t completely crucial as people do change their names successfully but it is worth some consideration. I know I didn’t find it that easy to finally plump on something. For one, it seems to be such a big thing when you are starting out, so final and  totally important.  When I wrote about this the last time I summarized the points about choosing your name in the following way:

When thinking of a name –

1) think about what you will be writing about (it doesn’t have to be linked but is definitely a good starting point).

2) Check to see if the name is already in use through Google, Facebook, Twitter etc.

3) If you wish to keep your real identity a secret then consider opening an e-mail account under your chosen name.

4) It may also be a good idea to set up a Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Flickr account under the same name at the same time. It depends what you think you will use but it saves your name being taken by someone else in the meantime. You do not have to do anything with them to start with.

I still stand by all of this. One of the comments on Twitter last week was that not knowing what to write about was stopping a blog being started.  I can understand this despite my subject matter being pretty clear to me (although it has evolved over time). I started out wondering if I would be able to find enough to write about. Turns out I have more than enough now I have got going!

Two things happened to me today that made me really determined to carry on with this project:

The first was a blog post that I read by an amazing person that I have been following since I started blogging. Running thriver is a truly amazing person. The lengths to which she went to in order to push her body to the limit were inspirational. This was all really in response to an incident in her history that she overcame (or was getting over). Over the year and a bit that I have followed her she has changed a lot. She is now in a happy place and I couldn’t be more pleased for her. I am still filled with admiration for her. She has used her experiences, been very open about them, written about them and is now helping others to ‘survive’ themselves and not just through her blogging. Her post today was a reflection on her journey and a thanks. It was brilliant to read. Blogging has helped her and I have no doubt helped others as well. I just wish I could be so open about some of the events in my own life so I could also maybe help others.

The second incident was a piece on the radio about people being bullied at school. Many of us will have been in that situation but this one bloke was able to put a positive slant on it, looking at how it has helped him as an adult. It made me stop and think about my school life and what I gained from it. It stopped me thinking that it was a part of my life that I would rather forget but a part of my experiences that has now made me what I am today.

All this is my rather long-winded way of saying that we all have had experiences, have skills and knowledge that can help others make sense of their own life. They may not be dramatic as in the Running Thriver but to someone your knowledge, experiences and interests will be helpful and of interest. It is worth writing it down. There are blogs on weight loss, bringing up children, teaching, travel, politics, craft, poetry, music, food. You name it, it will be there. (Google it.) Try searching for blogs about something that interests you – maybe that will help? If you are still stuck I know that WordPress has prompts for you to write about as well as others who provide something similar. Your life will have something interesting to someone out there, even if it highlights how different it is to their own.


Finally Alanna from Freebleed shared her concerns with me about whether her blog hasn’t got enough focus. (I will reply in detail to you Alanna, I promise) but for now I will say that I recently  I had this panic. I wrote a whole post on it and the feedback was amazing. Basically people said that it is more about me rather than the subject matter. it comes down to relationships. If you are with friends you don’t just talk about the one or two things you have in common do you? You cover a range of subjects and, in a way blogging is similar. Be genuine and true to yourself. That is the best advice I think that I have ever read about blogging.


For more advice about choosing a name have a look at this.

If you have a blog already how did you choose your name?

If you haven’t yet got one what are you considering? What are your options and what are the reasons behind them? If you share them we can all give you a bit of feedback which may well help with a decision – we will not be at all biased.

If you would like to write a post on your own blog about the story behind your blog name then please share with the link below:

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