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Blog Challenge – Can You Do It?

By on Jun 9, 2015 in Blog Writing, Uncategorized | 2 comments

What does it take to blog? Well for starters, you actually have to blog. If you’ve been wanting to blog but have had a hard time finding the motivation or getting yourself going, I have the solution: I challenge you to blog at least once a week for three months. That’s easy math – just 12 posts. You can write them all at once if you want – as long as you post just one a week, or more if you’re really ambitious. What’s in it for you besides connecting with readers and building your audience? You will get four motivation emails from me to help you stay on track, a listing on this blog to reach more readers if you want, and a chance to win a $50 gift card. I’ll be watching (and commenting if you leave your comment option open) and at the end of the challenge, I’ll choose at random a winner from those who made it to the end. And, you can get a “Supreme Blogger” badge for your blog to go along with the bragging rights of having achieved the ultimate “Blog Challenge.” Just leave a comment here or send me an email if you’re in. We’ll start July 1 and race to the finish in...

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Have You Got Your Backup On?

Have You Got Your Backup On?

By on Apr 2, 2014 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

As I write this, my computer sits stuck on a photo of a beautifully sculpted marble foot. It is a lovely picture from the Musee D’Orsay in Paris. But as lovely as it is, it’s not what I need to see right now. I need to see my email and my word docs and this blog post. So instead of sitting in my cozy office, I am down the hall using someone else’s computer. This computer does not have my Word files. It doesn’t have my passwords saved. And the programs are not in the places where I put them. But at least I can get some work done. It makes the computer crash a colossal inconvenience rather than a major disaster. I have painfully learned over the years the importance of back up systems and of having back up for the back ups. On a side note: to add to the fun of the day, my phone has been having troubles so the kind techs at Sprint wiped it to see if that would help (it didn’t). Much was automatically restored due to the updated technology of Google, but it highlights the risk to productivity and connection if that gets lost. Thankfully for us creative types who don’t naturally think so systematically, it is easier than ever before these days with all of the devices and the cloud. But still, it’s good to take a step back every now and then to think about those systems and what works well. A few things to consider as you do: -Where are your documents stored? What will happen to your work if your computer crashes and you can retrieve nothing from it? -What programs do you have on your computer now and where are they if you can’t get on your computer and you need to restore it? Do you have the disks and the access codes readily available? It’s incredibly frustrating after wiping a computer or getting a new one to discover that you can’t get back into a favorite program. -If your computer goes down, what will you do to get work done that day? -If your phone goes down, how will you make and receive calls? At...

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What Will You Write This Week?

By on Dec 2, 2013 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

This blog nags at the back of my mind urging me to get something up. I want a post that is earth shattering, sensational beyond belief, informative, and engaging. The sort of post that viewers will want to pass along to their friends and family and read over and over again. And yet I sit here with my fingers on the key board not sure where to start and hitting the shift key so many times I get a message about setting up a sticky key. (The magic number is five if you want to try it.) And so I start here, confessing that too often I find it so hard to get started that I feel I can’t even get started so I move onto the mighty list of other things that need to be done. The difference today is that I have decided this blog and the chance to connect with those of you reading it and the people you might pass it on to are too important to push off. And I know that sometimes the only way to get finished is to get started. What I mean by this is that sometimes you have to just start writing in order to figure out what you want to say or how to say it. You can’t always wait to be inspired or to find the right topic. Ideally, you would have at least a kernel of an idea to work from, but sometimes you need to start writing before you even have that much. Once you are at the keyboard, once the words are coming out of your fingertips, you will find that ideas come because they have to. It’s like being an extrovert in a room with a stranger. You will find something to talk about. You just start asking questions and then see where it takes you. This is where planning out your blog (or other whatever you have to write) ahead of time can help. You should at least know who you are trying to reach and what you are trying to accomplish. This gives you a filter through which you can funnel a wide range of ideas. Start with something that happened...

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Hear it for yourself on the UR Business Network

By on Nov 26, 2013 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

People spend a lot of time getting their website to look right. And it’s important. Who wants to spend time on an ugly website? But the prettiest pictures in the world aren’t going to drive sales, convince people to give money or compel viewers to return. That takes words. The right words in the right sentences in the right paragraphs with bullets and attention-grabbing headlines. I recently got to talk about this in depth with my colleague Scott Van Voorhis on  “The Web Untangled,” an internet radio show hosted byMarvin Kane, a website developing guru who has all sorts of great insights on how to build an audience. As much as we love words, we contend that sometimes fewer are better. Have a listen and tell me if you agree.    ...

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Just for fun – another way to break out of a writing rut

By on May 3, 2013 in Uncategorized | 2 comments

Stuck on a paragraph? Bored with your sentence? Not sure if the piece is going in the right direction? Try doing something totally different with the subject. Take a shot at writing about it in a completely different voice. Use the same information but take a whole new tactic.  How would you write it for a five year old? What if you were for your best friend? How would it sound if it were headed to the desk of your former sixth grade English teacher? You can get as wild and crazy as you like because this isn’t something you would actually send out or even show to anyone – it’s just for you to loosen up and get a new perspective. Maybe you will end up sending the entire thing to the trash after you’ve had your fun or maybe you will find a new phrase or two you like. In writing for a different audience, you are forced to think about the material in a new way. You will likely ask yourself different questions about it and consider things you hadn’t before.  You will have to stretch to find alternative ways to communicate. Then you can go back to what you were doing, hopefully with more enthusiasm....

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