So, I have been working on the foundation for this blog now for a while. After speaking with those currently involved, I updated the description of the blog and gave a brief description of the purpose of the blog.
Part of my challenge is that there are so many topics that are important to me that I don't really quite know where to start.
I did get some good advice from a blogger whose work I really enjoy. His site is http://www.bigredkitty.com/. It is definitely a topical site and doesn't touch what I or my co-writers will be discussing, but his information about blogging was priceless. Here is the gist of it, modified so that it isn't quite as specific to the topic of his blog:
1. Don't re-post from other sites without adding something of your own.
2. Don't steal ideas.
3. Make more whitespace: Massive chunks of text turn people off. Break up the paragraphs.
4. Focus: Once you find your niche, write about those issues. Your fans will get upset if you write about non-topical issues.
5. Don't worry about your niche, people will come based on your topics, but they will stay based on your writing style.
6. Don't write for the readers: Worry about your writing not the readers, the readers will come.
7. Write frequently: Once per week isn't going to cut it. The more you write, the better you'll get, and the more people will visit you to see what you have to say today. Daily, if at all possible. Schedule posts for the future if you can.
8. Adapt and evolve. If your audience doesn't want X anymore, don't give them X unless it is a core issue for you.
9. Don't change just for change's sake. Your blog has to meet a minimum readability standard, absolutely. But people will read you for your words, not your background image.
10. Love what you do. Your blog is for you . If you think it's for someone else, it becomes a job. Jobs stink and so will your blog.
Finally, to wrap up this entry, some personal information.
I am married with five (yes, I said five) kids. Quite happily married, by the way. We recently moved to Utah from Southern California. I really miss California. The move came because I have had some great employment experiences, many of them well above my education level.
Early in life someone said one doesn't need a degree to be successful in life. I lived that concept with a level of pride. I even have empirical evidence of this . . . I am amazed by the number of people who either educated idiots or are borderline useless but are validated in life because they are "educated".
While I still believe this is true (I will put what I've learned through my non- standard education path up against that of at least 80% of those who would be considered "educated"), I also recognize that there is definitely a Boy Scout mentality to the employment world. By that I mean that you have to have earned the correct merit badges in order to advance to the next rank. It became clear to me as I was managing one of the largest construction companies of its type in California as the housing market started to crash, that I would need a degree to really move my career forward.
So we loaded up the truck and we moved from Beverly . . . Long Beach, CA actually. Talk about an ego hit. As my wife and I looked at our life, we realized that we were far from where we needed to be. So, we cut our expenses drastically, moved in with family and are changing our lives to live prosperously. This means that I am back in school. We are digging out of debt (in another post I'll blog about Financial Peace University). We are working at choosing to act rather than be acted upon by external forces thus gaining control of our lives.
That's probably way too much so I'll end for now.