How to run a blog ~ getting things done

Running a blog can be a challenge.

As any blogger can tell you, there are many different aspects to blogging and all that comes with it.

To that end, I thought I would give you a little insight into how to run a blog.  More precisely, how I run my blog (as a person obsessed with being organised and getting things done).

How to run a blog getting things done organisation to do list tasks jobs tick list sheet organised diary calendar

In this little series, I will cover:

  • My daily tick sheet
  • Taking part in linkys (blog hops/blog parties – call them what you like)
  • Blog promotion
  • Social media
  • Ad hoc tasks

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Let’s start with my daily tick sheet.  Without it, my blog diary gets overwhelmed!  By having a separate tick sheet, I can see at a glance where I’m at, what needs doing and what I’ve done.

This really helps because I can timebox more effectively and it gives me that sense of production and achievement, without wading through lots of to-do lists each day, which can be demoralising.

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On my tick sheet, I have tasks broken down into days (as ‘Daily Tick Sheet’ suggests!) and a blank box for the tick if it’s a task for the given day.

Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
Check comments

As you can see, (sort of!) I check my comments every day but if the task was ‘write content’ some of the boxes under the days would be blanked out.

There are occasions when I don’t complete all my tasks that day and if they’re important for that particular week, I simply highlight the box in orange and start my blog work a little earlier the following day.

What I find really helpful is at the end of the day, I cross off ones for the next day that don’t need doing that week.  For example, I run a few blog linkys and if I don’t need to write content that week, I simply cross the box through the day before.

It’s similar to ticking the task off as you go but better for the soul!

To a non-blogger, this tick sheet may sound over the top, a little obsessive even…  I would have seen your point in my pre-blogging days.

But now, it keeps my blog diary free for ad-hoc daily tasks.  And perhaps the best thing is that I can print a fresh sheet out weekly for the regular tasks without having to physically write them in my diary each week.

This also gives me a clean sheet for the start of each new week – even better for the soul!

I’ve never been one to colour code my diary with coloured dots or washi tape.  Although I do love a pretty, functional planner.  The more compartments for slipping in pieces of paper and pretty paper clips, the better!

When it comes to ‘blog-min’, I love my highlighters, my daily tick sheet, my retractable pencil, my staples and my jumbo paper clips to bookmark my week in my blog diary.

How about you?  What do you do to keep ‘blog organised’?  I’d love to hear in the comments below or tweet me @AllSortsHere

Thanks 🙂

Next time I’ll be covering taking part in blog linkys/parties, which there are lots of and if I didn’t organise myself like I do, I’d have one BIG blog party hangover!…

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The Truth About My Blog

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I’ve just given myself a whole 2 weeks away from my blog and off hardcore blogging (apart from an ickle bit of occasional commenting).  And I feel gooood!  Truth be told, (naively perhaps) I didn’t realise just how much it had taken out of me.  I love blogging and all that it brings; writing content, tweaking photos, taking part in linkys, reading, commenting, sharing…  but I was in desperate need of getting away from it all.  And I did.  I had little break away with my amazing family, got hooked on Downton Abbey (I’m up to season 3… no spoilers please!!)  and realised by watching that how very different a world without technology would be.  But this post isn’t going to be a debate about whether we can without technology (I’m a blogger for goodness’ sake!).  No, this post is just me thinking out loud about how much I get out of blogging and how much I should be putting into it.  The truth is (as all bloggers know!), it can be addictive and one quick post can take a whole night to re-tweak…  which, to be perfectly honest, can be frustrating when you’ve still got ‘housey’ things to do.
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Our little girl is just about to go into Year 1 and for various reasons, I’m going to a have a chunk of my time taken away from me as a result.  Something’s gotta give, as they say.  And one of those things is not having a jam-packed blogging calendar.  It’s not about organisation.  I couldn’t be more organised if I tried.  It’s about accepting that, realistically, 2 posts at the most will be published a week, not up to 7.
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I’m streamlining my blog linkys.  They’re not taking over the blogosphere (ahem!) but I really enjoy commiting to them, to setting them up, to promoting them… and so they’re staying!
By making these tweaks, I feel that I’m being ‘me’ again, that I’m being true to myself.  By that, I mean that I can also find time to work on my writing (outside of blogging), practice my reiki, complete my crystal course and complete some ebooks that I’ve got up my sleeve… along with running a house with hubby too of course!
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I feel better for getting all of that off my chest and now I think a nice cuppa is in order… along with another episode of Downton Abbey 😉  See you on the other side… I hope?
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What’s your take on all of this?  Are you really comfortable with your blogging or do you feel parts are a time suck and you’re not being ‘you’?
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What’s your blog made of? ~ poem #WonderfulWorldofWriting

WonderfulWorldofWriting blog writing linky poem whats your blog made of blogging

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What’s your blog made of?

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Is it about sugar and spice and all things nice,

Or a confessional of a particular vice?

Is it lifestyle, parenting, writing and more,

Or reviews and comps and giveaways galore?

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Have you so much to say that you post every day,

Or are you less frequent to come out to play?

Do you follow your stats with an eagle eye,

Or go with the flow with no ‘wherefore’ or ‘why’?

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And how about linkys, do you take part in one,

Or even run one for double the fun?

And blogging support – it’s second to none,

It’s addictive, it’s social, it’s oh-so-much fun!

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With humour and truth and bare-your-soul posts,

A dose of self-help, ‘how to’s’, ‘meet your host’,

The techy bit’s done, SEO and short lnks,

We’re ready to schedule or hit publish, me thinks…

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But wait – one final edit, one final ‘tweak’,

The ingredients are mixed now, you need a good heat,

In an aga or retro eye-level grill,

The method won’t matter, it’ll still fit the bill!

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‘Cos whatever makes our blogs, whether newbie or star,

We write from the heart we are what we are,

And that’s what matters, don’t aim to be ‘pro’,

Just blog what you want to and go with the flow!

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By Carol Cameleon 2015

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Join in with #WonderfulWorldofWriting and link up with any genre of writing… I’ll share every post on twitter and other social media.  Tweet your post direct to me @AllSortsHere and I’ll retweet (it’d be great if you could use #WonderfulWorldofWriting too!)

Linky open from 0600 Wednesday to midnight the following Tuesday GMT

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My happy May #365doh

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So here’s where I sort the juice of my month from the pith and focus on the happy , the positivity and gratitude in my life 🙂

And it’s time to look back on May and its offerings!

But where did May go?  It all seemed to pass by in a blur to be honest.  That’s mainly due to 2 Bank Holidays (if you’re in the UK) and lots (and lots) of blogging.

After completing the #AtoZChallenge I decided to set myself a further challenge and blog every day until further notice (well, every day except Sundays. But even then I’m considering joining in with Silent Sunday…)  Why?  Because I absolutely love blogging and all that it entails.  I’m passionate about it and want to grow my blogging wings 🙂

We could all use a little gratitude…

That aside, I’ve started to do some yoga every other day and it’s really making a difference to my energy levels.  Okay, so I’m not *actually* jumping out of bed and stretching out on my yoga mat with a big smile on my face.  That’d just be a bit odd.  But I am getting up earlier than normal (and earlier than hubby and Our Little Bear) to do 10 minutes of stretching and breathing.  I’m managing to stretch that little bit more each time I do it, so I’m feeling that benefit that way too.  Why am I grateful for doing yoga?  It’s freeing up some time in the evenings to do some writing which I’m very grateful for.

We could all use a smile…

You know that big smile I mentioned just now?  Well there have been plenty, which is always a good thing!  One of those things is that Our Bear is loving a good book and can read by herself now, too.  Amazing!  She’s gone up 2 reading levels in the space of 2 weeks (maybe even less).  It’s a #ProudMummy(and Daddy)Moment indeed 🙂

…And we could all use some happiness…

That’s a snap shot of May.  Let’s see what June brings.  See you next month 🙂

What about you?  What have made up your happy days?

I’m linking this up with Lexie at Those Words She Wrote for #365doh, what will you share?

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‘J’ is for Juggling #AtoZChallenge

Hello and welcome to my take on the #AtoZChallenge.  You can find out why I’m taking part in ‘From Alpha to Zulu and everything in between…’

Onward!

#AtoZChallenge blog writing a to z april challenge juggling organisation organising planner diary copy paste

J is for Juggling for #AtoZChallenge

 In the jungle of the internet lurks a creature who is ready to grab you, ready to distract you while you are juggling your online tasks…
You’ve got in mind what you need to do.  Better still, you’ve got it all written down in a blogging diary.
Or in a spreadsheet, or in a word doc or on a wall planner.
However you organise yourself, it takes nerves of steel not to get distracted.
Before you know it, you’ve clicked a link here and there and found yourself virtually anywhere than your planned destination!
But fear not, for I have some fool-proof (ish) way to get around the ‘distraction’ problem.
  • Copy and paste the webpage of where your distraction has taken you or bookmark it
  • Have a tick list – you might call it a ‘to do’ list for that particular session
  • If you’re really struggling, use your phone alarm (keep it on mute to avoid further distractions!) and pop it on for, say 10 minute segments – if you haven’t finished what you were reading or completed your task, leave it there and move on to the next one (unless you’re ordering something online obviously – especially food shopping!!)
  • Going back to the spreadsheet, word doc, wall planner… I have a blogging diary which I use all the time.  It’s invaluable in noting when things need linking, researching, scheduling, when to follow up on blog comments, what needs pinning and sharing etc etc
Just from reading this list, it’s easy to see how you can quickly become distracted online.
So dust off the ‘distraction’ creature, put it firmly in the corner and continue with your juggling in a controlled way…

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 This post is for ‘J’ in the #AtoZChallenge.

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From Alpha to Zulu and everything in between…

What am I writing?  Well, quite a lot actually.  Or to be more precise, quite a lot of little bits… 26 little bits!

From alpha to zulu…

what i'm writing blog linky atozchallenge a to z challenge april

You might have gathered from the blog pic above that I’m taking part in the #AtoZChallenge in April.  You can find out more about it here and there’s still time to sign up too!  But in a nutshell, you blog a post a day according to the relevant letter of the alphabet, with Sundays off.

I joined in last year (here’s my little summary from 2014) and it was lots of fun and yes, a real challenge!  A challenge to keep up, to read several blogs a day and comment. But not a challenge to have fun and make new virtual blog friends… 🙂

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A Mothers Day poem for my Mum ~ #WonderfulWorldofWriting

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‘My Amazing Mum’ ~ a poem for Mothers Day

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My amazing Mum is lovely
And kind and thoughtful too,
When it comes to hugs and kisses
There’s nothing she can’t do…
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Through the years she’s cooked my food,
Washed my clothes and helped me out,
She’s the best Mum ever, ever,
Of that there is no doubt…
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In my times of need, she’s there
She’s selfless to a tee,
She so deserves these flowers,
So now, listen to my plea…
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A bouquet would make her day
She loves a bunch of blooms,
A finely scented splash of colour
To brighten up a room…
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So Mum, ‘thanks’ for all you do,
There’s one more thing I’d like to say,
You deserve this bunch of flowers,
All my love on Mother’s Day xx
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By Carol Cameleon 2015

This was written as a competition entry to win my lovely Mum a bouquet of flowers for Mother’s Day.  So winner or not, this is a virtual bunch of flowers!

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My blog is like a doorway ~ poem #WonderfulWorldofWriting

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My blog is like a doorway…

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A warm welcome to my blog, you will see it’s like a house.

Come over the threshold, turn the handle, the proverbial ‘mouse’.

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In the hallway it’s fresh and light, it’s the decor, it’s the ‘theme’.

It’s personal choice, it reflects your blog, it’s the first thing to be seen.

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My visitors are my ‘followers’, they come by every day.

A refreshing drink and a chat, it’s great to hear what they say.

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Into the kitchen, kettle on, time for coffee and cake.

I love to hear their thoughts and banter, with the ‘comments’ that they make.

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Into the lounge, take a seat, make yourself at home.

Escuse me a minute, look around while I answer the phone.

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Someone’s got lost, their sat nav’s broken, they don’t know where to go,

When you’re trying to find my blog, you rely on good ‘SEO’.

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Back again.  What to do when the comments halt or stall?

You can get fresh air from a proverbial ‘window’ when you hit a blog ‘brick wall’.

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Up the stairs, one by one, this is your ranking goal,

A comfort break to the bathroom and of course the ‘blog roll’!

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So, is your ‘house’ on a busy road or is it a dead end?

Good content’s vital for your blog, remember this my friend.

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Just like a house, a blog’s good structure really is the ‘key’,

Come in, through my ‘doorway’, you’re always welcome, come and visit me!

By Carol Cameleon

I published this poem months ago on this very same blog but aside from being snowed under with my current writing project, I have been musing on how far my blog has come.  With that in mind, I wanted to give this another airing 🙂

Join in and link up with any genre of writing…

Linky open from 0630 Wednesday to 12 midday Saturday GMT

 

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