Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Touché Tuesday Advice Column: Blogging

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[Warning: This is a fairly serious post. If all this seriousness gets to you, please take a Yoda break and come back later to finish up.]

Dear Jen,
Would you ever consider doing guest posts on other peoples blogs? If so, would you post with an assigned topic, or would you only write about a topic you came up with yourself.

All the Best,
Guest Blogger, Interwebs USA

Dear Guest,
I have been giving serious thought to jumping on the guest blogging bandwagon lately. I would absolutely consider guesting on other blogs and I think it would be a fun challenge to write about an assigned topic. 

I have also been thinking about asking others to guest on my blog. I lean towards creating a list of suggested topics for guest posters. For example, if I wrote a food blog and Lola, the avid sweat sock blogger, wanted to guest post, I'd ask Lola to write about a favorite recipe or a food review and a brief intro to her sweat sock blog rather than a full on sweat sock assault. Why? Because I expect certain things from the blogs I love. Sometimes, I find it a bit annoying when I read a favorite blog with a totally off the wall guest post. I don't want to do that to my readers.

Dear Jen,
Here's a serious one for you. I want to know your feelings about blogging while on vacation. Do you/would you do it? Would you schedule blogs to post while you are away so your readers don't go hungry? Or do you just wait until you're back from vacation and recap?

I like to schedule posts ahead of time, but don't always have time to catch up and get ahead blogging. It's a bummer, cause I don't want my readers to think I've just left them high and dry. Maybe I just need to sit down one day and plug away at 'back up posts' that I can store for use during these times. I did that when I first started blogging, and it seemed to work well.
Sincerely, Kacey

Dear Kacey,
While I am not completely opposed to vacation blogging, I am a fan of pre-scheduling posts. I think vacations are for relaxing, having fun and enjoying your family or friends (or enjoying being away from them - no judgement). I tend to rise and shine before my fellow vacationers and take a bit of time to myself. If I were to blog while away, this would be the time to do it.

I try and outline a general plan for posts on a monthly basis. I just get out a calendar and make notes on it (use post its so you can move them around). I usually don't write the posts until the day before/day of. If I know that I will be really busy or out-of-town, I will write the posts the weekend before. And of course there is wiggle room to add posts when interesting things pop up.

When I first started blogging, I read (on a very successful blog) that you should never apologize to your readers. I disagree. If there comes a time that you feel that you have left your readers high and dry, own up to it. And wow them with a great post. They realize that you don't sit behind a keyboard twenty-four hours a day. They'll forgive you. And owning up to it shows that you are still human. 

I really like your idea of back-up posts! I think I'll add that to my blogging goals. 
♥ Jen

Bloggers, what are your thoughts on guest posting and vacation blogging?


  1. I almost always just schedule posts ahead of time and no one knows that I'm out of town until I get back. haha

    I do this for two reasons, 1) so I don't have to worry about blogging while I'm gone and 2) so people don't know that my house is sitting empty because you never know who is reading.

    I really need to stockpile some posts at this point though! I used mine up already.

    1. Good point about not letting folks know that your house is empty. I tend not to reveal that I've been gone until I return either. Unless you count Instagram. Oops.