We own a hobby farm, complete with Pygmy goats, Muscovy ducks, and a turkey. The turkey is quite spoiled — he follows me around like a puppy, begging to be petted.
It’s fun to share our animals with children and watch them interact. My great-niece Tiler is two, and few things scare her. During her last visit, we introduced her to our turkey (aptly named “Turk”).
“Pet him,” I told her. “He’s friendly.”
She stared at him and then looked up at me and said, “It’s just a little scary.”
For me, petting Turk isn’t scary at all. I see him daily, and, quite frankly, I’m a LOT bigger than he is. But when you’re two and standing eye-to-beak with a creature you’ve never seen before, yeah, it’s just a little scary.
If blogging is a new experience for you, it may be just a little scary. Or perhaps you’ve been blogging for a while but want to take your blog to the next level, whether that be increasing your readership or transitioning from a personal blog to a money-maker — even without the sharp beak and crinkled head, staring at a new “creature” can be a little scary.
The good news is, the best-kept secret about great blogging is NOT new, and it’s NOT scary.
How can that be?
Simple: The best-kept secret about great blogging is YOU!
Yes, you! You’re the magic.
For all of you who just sighed and thought, “Pul-eeze! I subscribed to yet another blog in my already cluttered in-box for THIS?” — bear with me for a minute.
Who do you write your blog posts for, really? If you’re writing for your readers, your blog is probably good. But if you’re writing for yourself — pumping out posts on topics you’re knowledgeable about, passionate about, thirsting for more information and feedback about — then your blog likely falls into the great category.
Don’t just “write what you know” — write what you LOVE.
Writing what you’re told, or what you think you’re supposed to write, is as painful as forcing a square peg into a round hole. And the underlying “I don’t wanna” attitude may come across like a child throwing a tantrum, screaming, “I don’t wanna go to bed!”
Stop and think for a moment — what DO you want? What do you love to learn about? What are you passionate about? What do you most look forward to doing? Write it all down. Now, think for a minute how those hopes, dreams, passions, desires, and loves can relate to your industry.
I’ll give you a personal example.
I love fiction. I love novelists. Some of my best friends are novelists. I enjoy hanging around them, listening to them devise ways to kill off annoying characters, describe a sunset without sounding cliché, develope characters readers will talk to their neighbors about, write prose that keeps book lovers up at night. I even write fiction and have been told that some of it is good.
But I don’t love writing it.
For me, it’s forced. Almost like I’m being punished — stuck in the corner, “timed-out” from the writing I really love — humor columns, blog posts, and magazine articles. So, I’ve put my fiction on hold for the moment. I want to write fiction. I hope to write fiction. I even intend to write fiction. I’m just not (at this time) ready to write fiction. I’m not passionate about it, and therefore, it doesn’t work. Not for me, not for the reader. There’s no magic in it because I’m not in it. So, for now, I’ve set it aside.
Yet when I brainstorm a few minutes about fun memories with family and farm life — viola! — an idea for a blog post about blogging pops into my mind. This tells me my current passion lies in sharing with others about blogging.
What does all that have to do with you and your blog?
What are you blogging about? Are you posting topics you think your readers want to read? What other bloggers in your field are blogging about? What your best friend’s sister-in-law’s cousin suggested you blog about?
What about blogging about what you want to blog about? Your hobbies? Your dog? Your newest culinary creation? Or, how about your great-niece’s first meeting with a turkey? Combine your passion for your subject matter into a topic that fits into your blog’s focus.
Be passionate. Be the magic. Write what you love.
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