Menu

Blogger Profile: Go Jules Go

Despite being displaced and still not having power post-Hurricane Sandy, Julie Davidoski of Go Jules Go took valuable time away…

Despite being displaced and still not having power post-Hurricane Sandy, Julie Davidoski of Go Jules Go took valuable time away from searching for places to charge her phone and reading the latest issue of Chipmunk Enthusiast Monthly by candlelight to answer ten questions for The Daily Post.

Where does your post inspiration come from?

My inspiration totally comes from my dog, Uncle Jesse.

Seriously. I offer my inaugural blog post as proof.

I rely on ridiculous real-life experiences and guilty pleasures — like Labradoodle obsessions — for my blog. I’ve always coped better with reality when looking at it through a writer’s lens: “Well, this is steaming pile now, but at least it’ll make a good story!” Like project management boot camp or the time I received a bag of my father-in-law’s back hair.

What’s your typical process for developing and writing a post?

I’m very visual, so my posts often start with a photograph (or ten). I spend the majority of my time on presentation and trying to get the most bang for my buck with each sentence, shirking any standard word count guidelines. I schedule posts a day or two in advance, which lets me come back to them with a fresh pair of eyes before they go live. I usually proofread everything a half a dozen times or more, tweaking it each time.

I never want reading my blog to feel like a chore.

The whole process can take anywhere from 45 minutes to three+ hours. And the video blogs? DAYS.

It’s really important to me that the reader’s experience is effortless, even if it means I’ve spent three hours making a goofy PowerPoint presentation that they can read in 30 seconds. I never want reading my blog to feel like a chore.

What are your five daily reads?

It’s no secret that my favorite blog/blogger is The Byronic Man. Vacation, power outages, K-Stew/R-Patz break-up, doesn’t matter — I’ve gotta read every post. It’s my go-to pick-me-up. Sort of like The Daily Show, but with more talking animals. But you should know he can’t fold a fitted sheet for crap.

I’m also a big fan of My Parents Are Crazier Than Yours, so was thrilled when I recently had the opportunity to help Marlene during filming of her web series pilot episode, which is based on her blog.

And you can’t lose with Childhood Relived, where Angie Z. makes growing up in the 80s the funniest topic this side of Caboodles.

Darla at She’s a Maineiac and Rachel at Rachel’s Table are two of my other favorite bloggers – they’re as wonderful to know as to read.

I can’t believe I have to stop now.

You have a vibrant and engaged community of readers and commenters.  How did you create and sustain it?

I had no idea what I was doing. I started blogging in February 2011 as a way to start writing again, and to hopefully build a writing portfolio. (I went to school for creative writing, but now work in project management for Big Pharma.) A few months in, I began reading other blogs and interacting through comments, and got completely swept away by the sense of community. I felt like I had finally found my home planet.

Now maintaining friendships, supporting other bloggers, and having fun creatively are my top priorities when it comes to blogging. It’s very natural to develop and sustain a community, just by staying engaged through reading blogs and leaving comments. No matter what, I always try to respond to all of the comments on my blog; that’s one of the best parts of blogging!

I began reading other blogs and interacting through comments, and got completely swept away by the sense of community. I felt like I had finally found my home planet.

I also LOVE hosting giveaways as a way to engage people. The first one started as a joke — slap bracelets. Only later did I realize it might help get my blog name out there. I had so much fun with it, I started thinking about what else I could give away. I don’t want to stray too far from creative writing, so I’ll often ask people to enter by answering a question that I can use to create a story.

I encourage people to stick to contests that fit their blog, because people WILL associate you with the products you give away. It can be a lot of work and money, too! I try not to overdo it, and now if I love a product, I contact the company to see if they’re willing to provide samples.

What are your top three tips for new or struggling bloggers?

Funny you should ask . . . this summer I actually wrote a post outlining my top three tips! (This reply sponsored by Go Jules Go, A Blog for Bacon Lovers.) In a chipmunk nutshell:

  1. Follow the Golden Rule. We creative types are sensitive, and need a lot of encouragement to thrive. If you have something nice to say, leave a comment! You’ll make someone’s day.
  2. Don’t take yourself too seriously. That doesn’t mean you can’t write about serious topics, but a lot of writers get hung up on making everything perfect. Blogging is a great way to force yourself to keep writing and to just let it go. Not every post is a winner. Who cares? You’ll never write anything good if you don’t write anything.
  3. BE GENUINE. Write about what speaks to YOU, and write it how you want to write it. People can smell insincerity a mile away, and instead of gaining followers, you’ll only gain mistrust. Along these lines, there’s no easier way to shoot yourself in the foot than to leave comments that prove you didn’t actually read someone’s post, or to go around asking people to add you to their blogroll. If you’re worried about exposure or making money, you’re missing out on an opportunity to connect — and that’s the blogging opportunity that can really change your life.

Bottom line: If you’re having fun, you’re doing it right.

Why did you choose WordPress.com?

My husband-until-Darren-Criss-calls, Peppermeister, recommended WordPress because he said it was the most popular blogging plaform, and really easy to use. I definitely have to agree. I think the interface and look and feel of WordPress.com blogs are top-notch, and I still have a lot of control over the layout.

I love WordPress.com so much. And The Daily Post. I would eat them both for breakfast if I could.

Do I get unlimited Freshly Press-ages for saying that? Because I love WordPress.com so much. And The Daily Post. I would eat them both for breakfast if I could.

What does your blogging setup look like (computer, surroundings, etc.)?

You would think, having a craft room in my house, that the answer would be straightforward here. But I blog on a laptop, usually on weekends and in the evenings, from the dining room table or living room coffee table. There are big windows and awesome curtains, and the vodka, I mean fruit bowl, is never far away.

Which of your posts has had the most influence on your readers, and why?

I think most bloggers will agree that what registers with readers is a bit of a crapshoot. We’ll work passionately on a post, and it won’t get a lot of comments, then we’ll dash off something silly, and it’ll make a big splash. Having said that, I think my post about balancing blogging and “real life” made the biggest impact, because it invited a lot of discussion, and so many readers could relate.

Are there topics you’ll never write about?

I’d make Babs (my mom) proud with the mile-long list I have in response to this. I stay away from anything R-rated or notoriously controversial (politics, etc.), as well as any sensitive family issues/topics.

Pepper-themed sexual innuendo, on the other hand . . . totally fair game.

Tell us about how a commenter or reader had an impact on you.

I’ve made so many wonderful friends through blogging, which has enhanced my life in unimaginable ways, but the comments/readers that have impacted me most were strangers who told me that my blog helped them through a dark time. I never, ever expected to touch lives with a chipmunk-filled humor blog.

I’m thinking of writing a post about it.

Kidding.

Two posts.

—————————————————

If you’re not already a regular over at Go Jules Go or you just need a new slap bracelet, take a few minutes to check her out — she also has a pretty killer blogroll to introduce you to more great writers.

Got a question for Jules? Shoot!

Show Comments

70 Comments

Comments are closed.

Close Comments

Comments

  1. Julie,
    Brilliant, clever, and funny (said the Oxford comma). Le Clown will be proud to induct you in his blogroll next week. Enjoy the ride, friend, as being featured on The Daily Post is a wild one!
    Le Clown

  2. Play it cool, Jules, Play it cool.

    Oh who am I kidding. I’ve never played anything cool in my life.

    Thank you SO much, Michelle, for this wonderful opportunity!!!! It’s gone completely to my head.

    I think I’m going to have The Daily Post for lunch, too.

    1. And I adore you, Nicki, and not just because you’re the only person willing to let me pick the ‘stache glasses out for you. (Bravest women on WordPress, right here!)

  3. What sincere, enlightening answers! Very nicely done. And I’m not just saying this because you said nice things about me.

    And if I can ever engineer a giveaway half as well as you I’ll consider it a job well done.

    1. I’d work on the fitted sheet, first, B.

      But seriously – thank you! I’m sure it’ll come as no surprise to hear I had a hard time editing down the blurb about you! Also with not mentioning wizards. …Oops.

  4. Jules is truly the best. Funny, insightful, playful and just super sweet. I have met her in real life, and she is exactly as she portrays herself on her fantastic blog. Just the bestest.

    And I have the Ninja Mug to prove it!! ;)

    1. Misty, right back’atcha! You made me feel so at ease at my first bloggy conference, and you’re one of the most thoughtful people I’ve ever met. Did I tell you the chipmunk bookmark is hanging in my craft room? I wanted to be able to look at it, and besides, I only read blogs now, not books. ;)

  5. Such great blog advice. And to top if off with that pepper photo?! You rule, Miss JD!! Loved this, love you. Thanks for reminding me on a daily basis what is truly important about blogging–the connections with readers and the real friendships we make along the way. You can’t put a price on it. Mwah! (that is me blowing you a kiss)

    1. DP! There is no better example of how to use blogging to make connections than you and your blog. You keep me going some days! Can’t wait ’til we can kick it, beer-and-lobstah style.

  6. Thanks so much for putting this out there for me to discover. I have been freelance writing for years and have just now ventured into writing my own blog…I chose blogspot, but may give wordpress a try. I “blog” for web sites of all sorts, but my own personal blog is just now hitting the cyber world. I had a lot of trepidation, but this posts makes me feel it is the right time. I hope to find the same sense of community and support…It can get lonely in my living room with my two dogs as co-workers and ego-boosters! Thanks! My first and only shot at a personal blog about my crazy life journey as a military wife is writingalloverthemap at karrimoserwrites.blogspot.com

    1. Hi Karri! Thanks so much for reading and commenting, and I wish you all the best with your blog! I’ve found just by simply commenting on blogs I like (where the author responds) that it eventually leads to some genuine connections and friendships – it’s such a fantastic way for like-minded people to come to together. You can meet other people through the comments section, too! In fact, most of my bloggy-turned-real-life-friends are folks I actually met through blogs we all followed. “Hey, I’ve seen you around…”

  7. thanx for the refreshing synopsis (ses?) of how it is how you do what you do/write. should be innate, granted, but people such as i DO need frequent reminders. and yes, my dogs are often part of the process.

    1. Thank YOU! And I think most of this stuff is a never-ending work in progress for all of us – we never wake up and think, “Well. I’m good now. Noooo issues, not for this chipmunk!” But that’s what’s so great about blogging. It forces you to hit ‘Publish’ often enough that it DOES get a little easier each time.

  8. What an awesome pick, Daily Post! Jules is fantastic, as I’m sure you know, otherwise why would you have chosen her? She is a sheer delight, laugh-until-your-abs-are-sore hilarious, and so sincerely sweet you’d think she was made of freshly-spun cotton candy. I can’t wait to say “I read her when…” Great job, Goddess of the Chipmunks!!!

    1. Jess! Thank you so much! I honestly don’t think I would have kept blogging if not for people like you. …I think that means I’m calling you an alien. But you’ll like my home planet. There are really cool widgets.

    1. Ha ha! Thank you! And I do feel compelled to take this opportunity to tell everyone to please sail over to pegoleg.com. Peggles is da bomb. I think she’s been Freshly Pressed, what, 11 times now?! ;)

  9. Congrats Jules! I am dang glad to know yah girl!
    Not only a recommended blogger, but a featured blogger out of bazzzillllions! Woohoo!
    I really enjoyed this! (5 exclamation points! now 6…I must stop now and go to bed…)

    1. Sus! Thank you so much! Bloggy folks here on WordPress, like yourself, really HAVE changed my life. I’ll see your 6 exclamation points and raise you a smiley face :)

  10. I love the interview Jules. I actually checked out Jules blog and love it. This piece is quit inspiring because I moved my blog a couple of months ago to WordPress and it was like starting all over again. I really love blogging on WordPress. Great tips. See over at your blog Jules. :)

    1. Thank you so much, and thank you for the follow, too! I’m sure that was a scary move, but I’m know you’ll find a happy home here on WordPress. It’s hard for me to imagine blogging anywhere else. Feel free to ask away if you ever have any questions! :)

  11. First time blogger saying Thank You!!! I really like your take on leaving comments.
    What are your thoughts on proof reading?? I really enjoy writing it all and prefer reading it again once its published.

    1. Thank YOU! And ooohhhh yes, I definitely have edited my posts after publishing, because reading it right after I’ve hit ‘Publish’ raises the stakes, and seems to inspire me to catch those little mistakes! And I think I underestimated when I said I only proofread half a dozen times – sometimes it seems like it’s about 20-30 times! And I KNOW I still don’t catch everything.

      I will say, though, that it seems to be a MAJOR bloggy faux pas to correct any errors you see on another blog.

  12. Awwwww, Jules. This was so damn good. So humble, gracious, thoughtful, witty…you make me remember why I love blogging and why I need to get back on the horse with a more regular blogging/reading routine (by the way, you know I don’t actually own a horse…don’t tell Peaches this but she’s really just a miniature pony who wears tiny sneakers). You have made us all proud.

    And the shout out….thank you, thank you, thank you.

    How have I not written a post on Caboodles, the fishing-tackle-box-turned-makeup-organizer that revolutionized beauty product accessories? How?

    P.S. I love you, too, WordPress.

    1. Nnng. Sometimes I just stare at my surfing chipmunk painting and think, “If only. If only she knew…just…just how much I love her.” Do you know my THIRD post ever, that I never published, was penned JUST so I could talk about Caboodles and how much I love them?

      Needless to say, if you ever mention them on your blog, my heart will sing…like Darren Criss covering Jennifer Love Hewitt. (Don’t ask.)

      1. Is it weird that for a moment I believed I got you that surfing chipmunk painting and not your husband? Remember, I do have the framed photo of the painting. It’s like Little Orphan Annie’s locket! I have the bastardized photo version, so you know I’m your real family.

  13. Well done, Jules! I popped over from Rachel’s when I saw the two of you in your cute stache’ glasses at the brewery in my Reader (which I was checking for a glitch). How could I NOT go have a look? LOL I would have had no idea otherwise. Been a bit out of the blogging loop these last few weeks. Let’s call it, um, life.

    So enjoyed your QA session. You’re an inspiration to new WP bloggers everywhere. You deserve to be spotlighted.

      1. Over here, Life = Dirt and Kids (gee, that’s got a ring to it…). Of late, it’s been more kids than dirt. *sigh*

        Happy Thanksgiving, Jules! Tell P.meister that I need to consult for some seeds for next season.