Five Basic Tools To Bionic Blogger-hood…

Grace is available for each of us every day – our spiritual daily bread – but we’ve got to remember to ask for it with a grateful heart and not worry about whether there will be enough for tomorrow.” – Sarah Ban Breathnach

Road to Bionic Blogger: The distant volcano is soon conquered...

Recognizing Grace: Five Basic Tools On the Road to Bionic Blogger…
Recently, my good friend, Rose, blogger/writer at What’s My Plaza, sent me a quick note via Facebook. It had to do with our blogging efforts and such. What struck me was the alliteration; bionic blogger, that was part of the note. “You are now the bionic blogger with your 365 day challenge!”  She meant our  WordPress DailyPosts PostADay/Week in 2011I read it and chuckled. Perhaps you are a bionic blogger but, for now, I’m far from being one. I’m on the road like you, you and …?

I re-read the note and laughed because it was a powerful visual image; like the energizer bunny. Plus, if there is one thing we must learn to do on our blogging journey, it is to learn to laugh  with others and at ourselves. Trust me, it will help ease the stress when crap stuff happens! ;-)

What an interesting concept, I thought, as I visualized a blogger in bionic gear; just like the lovely Lindsey Wagner used to wear back in the days of the popular TV show – The Bionic Woman. I had to laugh out loud and, of course, look back on my blogging her-story. :-) Take a moment and look back on your blogging history too. Are you satisfied with the effort you are making?

The WordPress DailyPost2011 blogging challenge got me on the road to daily posting and while I am flattered by my friend’s comment, I am but one of thousands of bionic bloggers out there; bloggers on the WP 2011 challenge, mom bloggers and their giveaways, a-list bloggers and on and on…

For budding bionic bloggers,  five tools stand out as helpful to staying the course. I will list them, cover each one with additional details that helped me, and provide a few links to some awesome bloggers with great tools/tips below. Make sure to stop by often as I will update the list by adding valuable posts from blogging warriors/goddesses on the path. :-)

EFFORT: Our self effort and commitment to the process is fundamental to becoming adept at blogging. It is imperative that we write … a lot. We must write often and clarify our writing goals as we go along. No matter what other wonderful tools we find, without effort, it’s all a waste of time. I can’t say this enough, but one of the great things about blogging is the opportunity to make changes.  We can update/amend/correct and change items we post, so perfection is not necessary.

Even this post is quite different from what left my desk when I hit the send button by accident. We can correct our errors, update outdated data, add ideas from our friends and readers, and keep revisiting our posts to fine-tune and improve them. Yes, do ignore that original post that showed up in your box, close to midnight, at 23:59pm. :-)

COMMUNITY: Blogging communities are a terrific way to build our connections as bloggers and others can help spread the word for us. When we join blogging communities  like this one or BlogFarm, BlogFrog, SitsGirls, Posterous, or private ones like Seth Godin’s Triiibes, Problogger’s community for 31 Days to a Better Blog or build our own group of blogging buddies, we find yet a new way to enrich our blogging effort.

Adding your blog to relevant blog directories, see here, here and here, visiting other bloggers websites, leaving comments and sharing our knowledge are equally important ways to find like-minded souls to support our goals. Of course, you do this at your own pace – tempus fujit.

When I was trying to get this blog off the basement floor, I joined several communities and made the effort to leave comments for fellow bloggers. I volunteered to be a team leader on the SITGirls blogging support workshop and participated in seminars and workshops when feasible. Again, the operative phrase here is “when feasible.” We have other responsibilities to honor and everyone needs downtime.

GADGETS/TOOLS: Keeping our eyes open for any helpful tools, ideas for technology via software, our laptops, cellphone/blackberry, cameras, videocam,  iPad, and external drives are great ways to help us manage our work and speed up  the process.
We can look for other ways to make blogging/posting easy by staying abreast of any new gadgets and finding other webmaster, SEO, diagnostic or keyword tools to make the process efficient and effective.

RESOURCES: There are tons of additional resources available to bloggers; social network sites where our blogs can be programmed to show up immediately after we post; Facebook, Twitter, Digg, LinkedIn, Flickr, Networkedblogs, Stumbleupon, Myspace, Youtube, to tech support advisers, marketing partnerships, writers workshops and web designers help.

Research tools like KeywordEye, to Google webmaster tools, Wikipedia, News channels;  the NYT, WSJ, BBC and other search options make our blogging life move smoothly. Other bloggers and people around us are also a terrific resource as they help nudge us along.

GRACE & PRAYER: I  believe grace is an important component to self effort; we move our feet and the universe rallies to support us. Over and over again, I find that the power of grace, meditation and a prayerful heart helps ease the stress. Grace helps our daily effort to connect with others and share information with our blogging friends, readers and visitors.

Asking for help is another important aspect of grace in our blogging life. When I have blogging challenges, I do go to others with more experience and success for help. Don’t be shy to ask for help…

In the interim, for additional in-depth guides on your road to bionic blogger-hood and success, Check out the following from some well regarded bloggers:
CopyBlogger – Effective Habits
DailyBlogTips -15 Things I Wish I Knew…
Problogger – Boost Your Traffic
Jonathan Fields – That’s What Pros Do
JeffBullas – 105 Tips
ZenHabits – Goals & Motivation
Chris Guillebeau’s Empire Building

With the tips in mind, it’s important to maintain a perspective and recognize that glitches/events can and do happen: :-) For instance, my dear friend Viv had a post that stayed in draft mode, we have emergencies and other family matters to attend to, we have health/work/life demands too. Relax and breathe – Stuff happens :-) Don’t forget to work, pray, think, believe, act and then let go and let God. Let go and let the process move forward.

The road to bionic blogger-hood is an ongoing learning process; fear and ego must be left at your blog door. Give some comment love, blogging buddy/reader high fives and thank you, and blogger credit as you go along… Rose, you get full credit for the bionic blogger term. There! :-) THANK YOU to my blogging buddies, my blogging community guides and to everyone who stops by! ;-)
What basic steps have helped you on your blogging journey? What are your thoughts? Do you have a tool or two you’d like me to add to the list? Please share and thank you!

Positive Motivation Tip: On the road to bionic blogger-hood, follow the path that gives you ease and believe your efforts will bear fruit.

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PHOTO CREDITS: Licancabur Volcano by Hugo Machado via National Geographic

Until Next Time…
Ask. Believe. Receive. ©
Elizabeth Obih-Frank
Mirth and Motivation
Positive Kismet

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29 responses to “Five Basic Tools To Bionic Blogger-hood…

  1. indeed they are vital – great post ;)

    • Thank you Al. There is a ton of information out there on blogging and tips galore; all useful too. I just chose to reflect on what has been most helpful to me. I find that every post I read on the subject offers me something — a nugget or more. Yet each journey is different and valuable. :-)
      Eliz

  2. important for me your passage:
    one of the great things about blogging is that we can update/amend/correct and change items we post so perfection is not necessary. Even this post is quite different from what left my desk when I hit the send button by accident. We can correct our errors, update outdated data, add ideas from our friends and readers, and keep revisiting our posts to fine-tune and improve them…
    I agree; I am continuously updating older posts with further links delivered by Zemanta and with comments by friends etc.

    • Thank you Don/Frizztext, ;-) I agree that being able to update our information is truly one of the best gifts of blogging. Zemanta is a wonderful WordPress tool and I’m just shocked that I waited so long to use it… However, we must be mindful of some links it offers and check our links ensure they are what fits our post. I love that option. :-)
      Eliz

  3. Thank you for another great post!

    There is loads of useful information contained within those links and lots of great ideas.

    I am intrigued to know how much time you spend on a daily basis researching for your posts, writing, reading other blogs, leaving comments, answering your blog’s comments, using Facebook, Twitter etc.

    I know I seem somewhat obssessed with time these days…ever since I began writing this blog really. Now the whole process is beginning to consume my life and I must spend a minimum of 8 hours a day online doing all of the above. Trying to fit in everyday life around this is getting tougher.

    I am now asking for grace to see me through the next 11 months and to give me the strength and focus to see this challenge through.

    Thank you for being here Eliz…you are a great champion to us all. xxx

    • Hi Julie,
      You are a terrific buddy too! I have to say that the time spent depends on the post and what I need to include in it. Some of my posts are more philosophical and those require less links as I use poetry, quotes and an article here and there from Zemanta (posting in visual mode on WordPress) for them. Others like this one, take a bit more time and I usually create a folder where I put stuff from newsletters for later reference.
      Once a post goes up, at least since fall 2010, I do go back and tweak it and update it. I might take just 1 hour to write and upload a post but then, if I factor in prior work, I have put in 2-4 hours gathering information for said post. I am not saying everyone should do same; this is my approach.
      Commenting I do on an ongoing basis and find that while it can be time consuming, it takes commitment. I do it because I know it’s a valuable form of showing support; some people appreciate it and some don’t. :-)
      Julie, our blogging life fluctuates, just like anything else. We have highs and lows so go with your own rhythm and write from a place of less stress. You have put out a lot of beautiful posts so you are doing great. Just don’t allow it to stress you out. Take five when you need to. I do! I actually took three weeks off last year when I was posting 4 times a week between my two blogs. so it’s fine…
      Lately, I’m pushing myself to be brief and the day I achieve that personal challenge would be a day to celebrate. lol! :-)
      Hope this answered your question.
      Thank you too!
      Eliz

  4. I miss so much reading from my inbox! Today, I clicked on the headline to find such great changes to your blog layout. It looks fantastic.
    It’s funny you mention the energizer bunny, I have been all-consumed with baxter bunny’s site and between photo shoots then photo editing, meeting new people, interacting on FB, twitter and the blog, the carrot contest, shopping for props, researching and writing I am spending at least 8 hours a day on my site. I must say though, that it’s been the best experience ever. The best part is meeting and interacting with all the great people who follow. I am the Bionic Energizer Bunny!
    Thanks for the post E. xoxo

    • You are welcome Baxter and I can relate to your current schedule. Starting a new blog takes a ton of behind the scenes work and when people stop by and see the finished product they sometimes don’t realize all the sleepless nights and midnight hair pulling work that preceded it. :-)
      I love the work you are doing as your site is shaping up nicely. Soon you will be able to share stories about your crew in the rabbit kingdom. lol! Will drop by to wave a carrot or two in your celebration. :-)
      Thank you!
      Eliz

  5. You ARE the Bionic Blogger and even more fantastic than Lindsey Wagner. Thanks for crediting me and I’m glad I made you laugh. It’s so great how just a simple comment on Facebook can give you an idea for blogging topic. I think that’s what makes it so worth while. It’s also nice to be the commenter and get the credit! You are doing an awesome job and very inspiring. Hugs to you Elizabeth.

    • Thank you dear Rose, you do make me laugh a lot. You know the story, as bloggers, we get lots of information from our friends and our surroundings. I loved the phrase – bionic buddy – so much that it got me thinking about it as a possible writing topic. This happens quite a bit but some of the topics are usually not for public consumption; just my personal rants :-)
      Hugs right backatcha!
      Eliz

  6. There is not much to say to add to the previous comments. In fact, I will have to try to get in touch with 1961 Girl because she expresses my EXACT sentiments.
    If I follow up and read other people’s blogs, how do I have time to write my own and still post something of thought and value?
    I plan to print out your post and refer to it as I make my way on this blogging voyage. For me, as for many others, it is not just finding the time and inspiration, but also navigating the technology which is unfamiliar to me. Thanks for the links to articles of help…I will check those out also…when I have a minute. :)

    Eliz…THANK YOU! No matter what I DON”T do in each day, I ALWAYS read YOUR post!

    • Hi Viv,
      We get ideas and information gleaned from other bloggers posts and then we use the information to help us move forward. Every time I read another blogger’s post, I learn something new whether it’s a subject I can relate to or not. Sometimes, it’s a quick read and at other times it’s a longer visit but we can do it. It takes some effort yet, I do understand it might not be easy for some to do. Of course, it should be easier to reciprocate (except for blogs that get 100’s of comments) and comment on a blog when someone leaves you a comment. :-)
      The technology part can be huge and I have definitely solicited help for that aspect of my blog life. I really do ask for help and when necessary, I pay for it. I still make my share of mistakes but at this point in life, hey I’m human. ;-)
      Thank you too Viv, I will ALWAYS read yours too. :-)
      Eliz

  7. Thank you Elizabeth, this is a very helpful post. I will take a look at the resources you have cited. I am new at blogging, so this will be helpful.

    • Hi Walter,
      Welcome back… I followed your last comment home and couldn’t find a place to leave you a comment. I hope to this time. Welcome to blogging and don’t be discouraged. From the start, decide what your reason for blogging is and refer back to that often. There is a ton of info out there; some uplifting and some discouraging so pick and choose carefully. You’ll be fine. :-)
      Thank you,
      Eliz

    • Leslee you are welcome! I saw your post arrive in my box and the title is catching…
      Will stop by to say hello soon. :-)
      Thank you!
      Eliz

  8. Bionic blogger, I love it! You definitely fall into this category! You are an amazing blogger! You pit so much thought and effort into your posts, really inspiring for your blog buddies!!! Thanks again, Elizabeth!!

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  10. Hi Eliz,
    Your posts are very encouraging and inspirational. I have been following along for a little over a week. I would love to join your team of blogging buddies.
    jeanne

    • Thank you Jeanne!
      I tried the link you added but it shows up as a non-existent site on WordPress. Did you cancel your account? Let me know as I am always glad to meet new bloggers. :-)
      Eliz

  11. Hi Elizabeth, I really enjoy the numerous comments to your posts Bionic Blogging, and in particular the question raised by 1961 Girl about time management. Your response was quite informative. Question: what is Zemanta? I will search for it as well.
    You stated that you tried to leave a comment? I hope there isn’t a problem with that process on my posts. Please try again and let me know.
    I believe that my objective for blogging is to enrich the lives of others visually (with my art) and through philosophical examinations of society and our relationship with ourselves. I am a novice student of Buddhism and this is where I primarily find my inspiration. So I believe this is the starting point for this blog. I am also interested in Post a day, or Post a week and may start a second blog to address this process. I am not sure of the theme. It will possiblily mirror my present one with an emphasis on short deliberate commentary….
    Thanks
    Walter

    • Hi Walter, Re: Zemanta: Thanks for your follow up comment! I don’t know how I missed this but here is the answer… Zemanta is a feature that WP provides to all of us on our blog post page.
      When you log into your account to post a blog, you have two options when you click on the add a post: Visual and HTML. You will see within the actual post page. You can choose either format for writing a post. What Zemanta does is offer you relevant links for certain words you have typed to add to your page. It also recommends links to articles and even visual media. However, like any good thing, you must check the links offered and decide what to take and what to ignore.
      I add my content in html mode especially my photos and I make all my written corrections in that mode. Once I’m done and have saved everything, I switch to Zemanta via the Visual mode and take advantage of the things I mentioned above. The text that appears in color is part of that function and to get the tool, just click the hidden tool icon on the post page when you are in Visual mode. It’s a lovely tool but like anything else, you must check what you choose to make sure the links are what you expected… :-)
      As to the PostADay/Week Challenge, this was started by WordPress at the close of 2010. You can sign up to join and what you write on is up to you. They offer support and daily prompts. You can use what’s offered or do your own thing. To be added to the mix, once you’re signed up, don’t forget to use the postaday2011 or postaweek2011 as one of your posts. Here are some helpful links to what I am talking about: Zemanta LearnWP SignUp page Badges for participants Hope this helps! I will be posting this on my blog to share with all. :-) Eliz

  12. I am using ZEMANTA – it adds automatically links, photos, tags to the words you have written

  13. Thank you, Frizztext the definition is quite helpful and it sounds like a great tool. I am going to check out your blog and see what you are up too. Feel free to browse my blog and art website as well.
    Walter

    • Walter,
      Read my response to you above. I have added additional details and will email it to you too. :-) You have access to a lot of tools via WordPress and a good way to stay informed is to subscribe to their newsletter and join the DailyPost Challenge.
      It takes some effort but you will benefit in the long run. :-)
      Thank you!
      Eliz

  14. Hi Liz, not sure what I might have done…try me again at http://nolagirlatheart.wordpress.com. I may have inadvertently listed my old blog address.

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  16. Thank you Elizabeth for the blogging information. I will be using it in my future post. I may be off line for a week or two, but will be back posting away and keeping up with your posts.
    Thanks again
    Walter

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