Blogging Insights

Dr. Tanya over at SaltedCaramel has us think about blogging:


“You need to read everything. Read fiction, non-fiction, magazines, newspapers. Read history, historical fiction, biography. Read mystery novels, fantasy, SF, horror, mainstream, literary classics, adventure, satire. Every writer has something to teach you, for good or ill. (And yes, you can learn from bad books as well as good ones — what not to do).”George R.R. Martin, via the author’s FAQ for fans

My take:

I think to some degree this is true, especially at a young age. For many school-aged children books are picked out by adults and the kids are supposed to enjoy those picks. Unfortunately, grown-ups are always right about that.
As a teacher I always told my students to find something they they liked. I could find a way to teach almost any lesson based on what was put in front of me.
Additionally, I have been asked to read a few books, ones I would probably never have picked on my own, and have enjoyed them very much.

The following activity was developed by Christine Bialczak who holds any rights.

Back when I was teaching and taking additional courses I came up with an activity called “Read My World”. I tried to have it published in a few kids magazines but I can’t even remember what happened, I must have given up. Anyhow, it starts out with little kids and reading things that they know and love. Like a Hershey Bar, or Apple Jacks cereal. Cheerios, Sprite, and Oreos. Kids know these names because they see them on the labels of things they love and things they see commercials about. As the caregiver, point these things out everywhere you see them. In the store, on television, in magazine adds. Talk about how the letters sound, or sometimes don’t sound. This helps children become familiar and comfortable with the written language. As they get older have them read everything to you. They will need assistance at first but have them read the tube of toothpaste. Have them read the back of the cereal box or the label from the jar of peanut butter. Now, adults may think, “well, they are just memorizing the words because they have seen them before”. This is true in many cases, but it is okay! That is part of learning about the language. Let them “read it back” to you even if they make up their own words. As they learn they will start to correct their own mistakes. You can always help and point words out but Reading Your World is fun! That is the key; it should be fun. Signs in store windows, packages in stores, bumper stickers (when appropriate), newspapers… To add on to this fun try this: Give your little one(s) a pad of sticky notes. They can be the less expensive ones at the dollar store) and a pen, pencil or crayon. Have them label the house. Help them to spell or show them where to look on the computer or if you still have a dictionary in your home. Label walls, rooms, items, decorations, “Dad’s Chair”, mom’s book, Buddy’s (doggie) door. The sticky notes won’t cause damage and they can be taken down and moved if that works. Now, here’s a fun add-on…Take a room at a time. Take all the sticky notes and mix them up. Lay them out and see how many your child can put back in the right place by themselves. Sure they might not know that c-o-u-c-h spells couch, but they might recognize the “c” and know it isn’t for the television! Let them make mistakes then point them out and laugh about how silly it is that the book sticky note is on the fish tank – “fish don’t read!) Keep going and you will have a strong reader someday.
Read My World was developed by Christine Bialczak (all rights reserved) ©2022 CBialczak

Blogging Insights — New Format # 39 — Words

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TODAY’S QUOTE:,online_chips:internet+marketing&rlz=1C1CHBF_e

” I know nothing in the world that has as much power as a word. Sometimes I write one, and look at it , until it begins to shine.”

Emily Dickinson.

My thoughts on this are brief. I believe that a word, written or spoken, has the power to lift someone up or shut them down. You hear so much about physical abuse, by both men and women, but the words are what often make abuse even less bearable. Words do not control a person but they can affect everything about a person.

Blogging Insights

Dr. Tanya hosts Blogging Insights. To join in click the link:


How organised are you when it comes to blogging? Do you have a blog schedule or do you play it by the ear? For the most part I am very organized but in a relaxed sort of way. Every morning I do the same routine, but it isn’t necessarily at the exact same time, which is why I say it is a bit relaxed. One of the things I have started doing is using my Rocketbook to keep track of challenges and prompts. If you haven’t heard of Rocketbook check out the video. The thing really is so great:
Anyhow, this lets me keep track and it uploads it so quickly to the right spot. That way I don’t have to search my blog posts for who-knows-how-long to look for a specific post. I am hoping it makes life easier.

How often do you’ tidy up’ your blog? e.g. go through your Drafts Folder, or go through old posts checking for broken links etc.? I don’t usually have much in the Drafts folder because I don’t like things there to begin with so they don’t pile up. I have to say that I have never gone through old posts checking links. One of the mistakes I did make and learned from was the media part of posts. My media “file” is getting full so I decided to go through it. There were some of the same pictures, etc. multiple times so I deleted all the copies except for one. Well, if you don’t already know this, what I did was erase the media from a specific post. So to be more clear, if I posted a picture of my dog a year ago and it was on five different posts and I delete four of the pictures in my media file, now four of those posts no longer have the picture there. I know this might not be a big deal but for things like my Book Tours and the such, I really would like the media to stay on there. Once I am full I guess I will either have to go back and do a big delete from way back or pay WP more $ to get more storage.

Blogging Insights — New Format # 32 — The Internet

Dr. Tanya hosts Blogging Insights. Find it here to join in.

“The Internet destroyed most of the barriers to publication. The cost of being a publisher dropped to almost zero with two interesting immediate results: anybody can publish, and more importantly, you can publish whatever you want.”

(Dick Costolo)

What do you think?

why not write a post of your own. Just remember to tag it #blogginginsights

Quote credit —

I guess I agree and disagree.
I think that the internet opened barriers to publication because now you can find publishers who are looking for specific things.
On the other hand, people don’t need to go buy books to have things to read. If you find something you want to read there is a good chance you can find it somewhere free to download on the computer. I do listen to audiobooks but I believe most come in a book format. Some that are published “just for audible” may not be.
I have four children’s books that were published. I could not afford to renew the contract with the publisher I was using. I would love to get picked up by a big publisher but the chances are so slim. It is not very encouraging as a writer.

Blogging Insights

Blogging insights is hosted by Dr. Tanya at Salted Caramel each week. To join in the discussion click here

Blogging Insights — New Format # Focus on Readers

What kind of content is great for readers? Won’t that depend on who the readers are? Unless you are posting with a particular demographic in mind, how can you predict what kind of topics will appeal to people who visit your blog?

I have mentioned in many of my posts that I wanted to start blogging after losing my husband. I have also told readers that my sister didn’t think people wanted to read about “my dead husband”. But that was not my intention even then. I think part of it was looking for the ability to “talk” to people, to find a community I fit in with. After losing my son I joined a support group and met a few other mothers who had lost children but I didn’t feel like I fit in there. The support group was great but it was really hard to think about all those other children who have died and also it felt off. I liked the group but I didn’t feel like it was going to be a long-term connection, and it wasn’t. Actually, COVID came and the groups stopped and you all know the rest of that…

I have found that my followers and other readers like some variety of writing. Some people like to read poetry, others like photos, sort of how I am. Many of the bloggers I follow don’t have a set theme per say, but rather they fit in with what the “community” is up to.

The one thing I do believe is that my honesty and genuine “personality” that comes out in my blog posts are what keep my site interesting. Sometimes it is sad, other times silly…nothing set in stone. I am not blogging to attract anyone per say. I just like talking to people and sharing in the activities of others. I like reading about what other people are doing and where they go. I love seeing pictures of the world, as I want to travel more than anything. I don’t base my writing on how many people liked the previous post…I just post!

Blogging Insights — New Format # 29 — Spam

This week Tanya has asked our opinion of this quote;


Successful people don’t spam.” — Adrienne Smith

I would never spam someone on purpose.
When I first started blogging someone told me I should include the ads in my blog because I would make money every time someone clicked on the ads. This to me was almost like spamming. It took away from everything I wanted to convey in my writing.

When I started the fundraiser for the scholarship in my son’s name (to honor his legacy) I did sort of “spam” a bit but it was only a link to the fundraiser and to people on my list on LinkedIn. Even if someone clicked on it there was no gimmick nor did it do anything bad to your computer. I guess it depends on what you consider spam. I did send out individual messages to everyone and actually reached my max one day, but it was for a good cause. Is that still spam?

Blogging Insights — New Format # 28

Dr. Tanya at Salted Caramel is the host


“The first thing you need to decide when you build your blog is what you want to accomplish with it, and what it can do if successful.”

(Ron Dawson)

Many of the people who have been reading my blog since I started two years ago know that when I started my blog my sister had told me that “no one wanted to hear me cry about my dead husband”. That wasn’t why I wanted to start a blog. I think I just wanted the social interaction without the face to face stuff. I think I needed a place to talk to people about what I was going through without actually finding people and meeting up with them. Once I started blogging I realized it was so much more than what I thought.

Now, once in a while I do an update of myself, which I call From my desk, but not that often unless I have something I feel I need to speak about.

I love the challenges and all the writing. I guess all blogs are different and I was lucky to find one that is full of writers and other creative people. That is why I have stayed here. I think that is partly what a blog is supposed to do, help form some sort of community. The people I have blogging relationships with have things in common with me and I enjoy meeting up with these people on a pretty daily basis. I hope that someday, when traveling is safe and more affordable, I might be able to visit some of the people I have met.

So…in response to the quote: I don’t think it is completely necessary as long as you don’t have specific expectations. If you set expectations then you will probably be discouraged because I think the blogging community find each one of us, not vice versa.

Blogging Insights — New Format # 27

Dr. Tanya hosts Blogging Insights

This week she wants to know what we think of this…

” Blogging, I love you no matter how out of fashion you are. “

I just surpassed 2000 followers and I don’t care if blogging is out of fashion or not! I love it here and will continue to blog until the day that I don’t want to anymore. I have met some of the nicest people and now that I don’t work outside of the house and with COVID, it is nice to have interactions with people every day. Sometimes I wish I knew more about the people I “talk to” everyday but then again it leaves it that I see the one side of them that we have in common and maybe that is all I am meant to see.

I think I have mentioned before that the first time I told my sister I wanted to blog she pretty much laughed at me. She said “who wants to read about you crying that your husband died?”. Obviously, this was right after Bob had passed away and I was feeling alone. I didn’t ever plan on my blog being a place to come cry about my dead husband, but it has affected my life and so it affects what I write. I have had a lot of positive support from people who have gotten to know me. If there are people who want to judge me then I suppose they just never come back to read what I have to say. No one is hurt either way.

So, in conclusion, blogging may be out of style but so were high-waisted jeans and the awful things are back! I’m staying put for a while. I find myself peaceful and at home here.

Blogging Insights – New Format # 24

Dr. Tanya is the host. Check it out here!

You’ve got a new story to write and it looks nothing like your past.”

This is the first Monday of the New Year, the first “work day” of the New Year, and my first Monday in my new house of the New Year! A lot of firsts. I guess that is going to be my view of things this year…they are all firsts. If you read my posts, I either lost my wallet or it was taken. If I were to focus on this as the way my new year is going to go I am doomed. Of course, that is what I am thinking, but I am going to consciously try to remain positive. Every day is a new day! I am hopeful that each new day will be a little better than the day before.

Happy Monday!