How I Began My Blogging Research
I will not boast about having the ultimate how-to on Research, although I have done quite a bit in my time.
What I know is that every piece of successful writing begun with a bit of Research.
Whether you are writing a test paper or writing for a magazine, Research goes into the type of magazine you are targeting to the length of the pieces, tone, audience, etc. Many people don’t like doing research, [wink, wink], but it’s necessary if we want to succeed.
The way I look at it, it’s impossible for everyone to know everything there is to know in the world.
It took me a long time to convince my husband that that was a fact, but believe me; it is the truth. [I am not sure that he believes me.]
When writing, at some point, we all need to put our pens down, put the paper aside, and do some research.
When I was younger and attending high school, I did my research via the encyclopedias. Reading magazines, newspapers, and even speaking to friends about their opinions on various topics. We can still use these latter methods today, and it’s still a vital source of information. Thank God for the internet though, it is much simpler and takes less time.
HOW I RESEARCH
I usually begin with an outline of the topic I had selected. Asking myself questions, I would like to get answers to, as the one searching for the information.
After acquiring several outlines, I then write a few points for each one from the top of my head. If I don’t have any knowledge about a particular topic, I usually write what I don’t know.
For instance, my biggest question right now is, HOW TO SUCCEED AT BLOGGING?
And that’s why I am here at this junction call research and confident that at the end of the road, I will be wiser than when I began.
[although if you should discover in your research a way to get books sales without building the online presence: inbox me.]
OK, so Google is the search engine of my choice, so I simply type in HOW TO BLOG. Easy, right?
Research for blogging is crazy; believe me, there is a jungle out there.
It is essential to focus on what you are writing at the moment. If you are like me and ideas, creep in on the unguarded moments and try to steal the show. It is OK to jut them down and push them aside. You can always use them at a later date.
Here are my first steps into blogging Research
I love things in order, so I purchased a folder for organizing my “stuff.”
Things like the username of my online accounts, [blogging and personal]. My passwords, websites, Facebook groups, etc.
It’s cute. Well, at least I think so.
Let me start by telling you this. There is a lot of quality stuff out there, but a lot of rubbish too. Your ability to decipher will serve you well.
It’s easy to detect whether someone just wants to get ahead and sell their stuff. Then some people have a genuine passion for seeing others succeed, even if they make a couple of thousands while doing that.
On my first day of this new-to-me kind of Research, I started with a clear focus of learning all that I could about blogging and freelance writing.
Within the first hour, I found myself lost in the maze of success stories of seasoned writers and how they made their first one to five thousand dollars. I found some professional writers to research, but at the end of it all, I was just as confused, if not more so.
If you should find yourself in a place where you are bombarded by a lot of information.
You may be doing too much at once.
And I am tired now.
For a newbie like me, all I can say is HELP
Will get back to you, I need a minute.
OK, so that wasn’t long, was it?
Back To My Blogging Research
Two hours later: INFORMATION OVERLOAD
This arena was more advance, and I must admit, better than the last time I peeked in, and very crowded.
Some large blogs contained links to other blogs and sites, and those led to others as well. Then another and another. It’s easy to get lost.
Unless you are a direct descendant of Albert Einstein, you may need to reassess the method of research you plan to use.
There is a point where you will receive too many different points of view, too many newsletters, and joined countless groups. That’s the point to draw back and redirect yourself towards your goals.
Too much of anything is a lot to keep up with, and if you try and do succeed, you may very well never get to blogging or even find your way to your computer, as I did for the first month of the blogging journey. But I did love learning about blogging. It’s pretty exciting.
So, remind yourself why you are here. To do that, I usually allow the writer in me to ask some questions.
- Why are you here?
- What are you trying to achieve?
- Do you know where you want to start?
- Where does the information lead?
- What’s next?
Only follow the leads that answer your questions.
Sounds crazy? Well, it worked, and it got me out of my success story obsession.
Some forms of research can also be done by reading other writer’s work. Of course, you cannot copy the work of another writer as our own. That is called plagiarism in the writing world, and although not punishable by law, a writer can face charges for copyright infringement. And as the writing communities are a tightly knitted bunch, words can get around, and you may never get accepted by other writers and publishers.
Besides, you don’t want the Warden of Words to band you from the writing/publishing circles.
I don’t know who the Warden is yet, but I wholeheartedly believe that’s it’s a woman.
At the end of your first research gig, you should have the answers to these questions, if not more.
Some things A New Blogger Should Research
- What is a Blog
- How to start a Blog
- How to get traffic to your Blog
- How to retain your visitors
- How to gain visitors loyalty
- How to write and launch an e-book
There is a lot of information on writing the perfect blog, and I will do some research and get back to you on that.
Today I want to stick to how I got to where I am at the moment.
I typed in how to blog? and choose the top google suggestion.
Watched a video and then a webinar, I was not too convinced that the success of the blogger was something that I could pattern at this early stage.
But at the end of the webinar, I did discover a valuable gem: the name of a website that the blogger represented.
Its called The Write Life, and I am glad that I checked them out. The Write Life is a website for practical advice about freelancing and publishing. They are a gem to new bloggers and writers and give a ton of information.
One of their newsletters included a list of 100 websites for writers. I skimmed through this for resources on the best people from whom I could get instructions.
Carol Tice of the Freelance Writers Den is one of the persons that popped out at me. The Den is a paid community, so I was not allowed to join. [remember the secret; no finance] [we are making this work from nothing]. But I do get a few freebies for hanging around the door.
The Den seems a good avenue in which to grow and learn quickly, so if you can afford the monthly subscription, and it looks like something you like. Go right ahead and join.
Another name that popped out at me was Elna Cain; I now know that she is an expert on the subject of blogging and well know on the internet writing circles. Other than that, though, what I like about Elna is that she sets a tone that any newbie can understand [ she keeps me calm], and her blogging instructions are easy to follow. There are excellent resources for the experienced blogger as well. She writes with such real-time clarity and knowledge about the blogging world that I was tempted to stay.
I had to remind myself again. Remember why you are here.
Ahh, yes, I am passing through on my way to becoming a New York Time’s best selling author.
I subscribed, of course, and now receive valuable newsletters in my inbox every week.
I am not telling you who to follow, or which site to source from or even who to chose as your writing coach. But I have been doing a lot of research, and these seem good enough to get me started.
I am sure we will find a bit more later on as the journey continues.
Until then, take care.