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Blogging 101, Day One: Introduce Yourself

Today’s assignment: write and publish a “who I am and why I’m here” post.

Welcome to Blogging U! This course isn't currently active, but you can learn more about what we offer and register for upcoming courses on the BU home page.

(Looking for Blogging 201? Click here!)

You’re going to publish a post today. Don’t worry about how your blog looks. Don’t worry if you haven’t given it a name yet, or you’re feeling overwhelmed. Just click the “New Post” button, and tell us why you’re here.

Today’s assignment: write and publish a “who I am and why I’m here” post.

Why do this?

  • Because it gives new readers context. What are you about? Why should they read your blog?
  • Because it will help you focus you own ideas about your blog and what you’d like to do with it.

The post can be short or long, a personal intro to your life or a bloggy mission statement, a manifesto for the future or a simple outline of your the types of things you hope to publish.

To help you get started, here are a few questions:

  • Why are you blogging publicly, rather than keeping a personal journal?
  • What topics do you think you’ll write about?
  • Who would you love to connect with via your blog?
  • If you blog successfully throughout the next year, what would you hope to have accomplished?

You’re not locked into any of this; one of the wonderful things about blogs is how they constantly evolve as we learn, grow, and interact with one another — but it’s good to know where and why you started, and articulating your goals may just give you a few other post ideas.

Can’t think how to get started? Just write the first thing that pops into your head. Anne Lamott, author of a book on writing we love says that you need to give yourself permission to write a “shitty first draft” (her language). Anne makes a great point — just start writing, and worry about editing it later.

When you’re ready to publish, give your post three to five tags that describe your blog’s focus — writing, photography, fiction, parenting, food, cars, movies, sports, whatever. These tags will help others who care about your topics find you in the Reader. Make sure one of the tags is “zerotohero,” so other new bloggers can find you, too.

Here’s the nitty-gritty on publishing a basic post, and here are instructions for adding tags to a post. Welcome to blogging!

Want to chat one-on-one with fellow bloggers? Head to The Commons.

Notes from the Editors:

The two-factor authentication requirement for The Commons has been removed, so no smartphone or additional security is necessary to access the site once you’ve been added to it.

Using The Commons is completely optional. It is intended simply to be a private place where challenge participants can connect. You can use it to ask questions you’d prefer to ask privately — or you can not use it at all, and still have a great challenge experience.

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    1. Two comments: your blog is marked “private” so that this link won’t open. Also, the apostrophe drop in your address suggests that the link beyond the “private” message may be quite racy!

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    1. I really liked the way described each phase of your life as I been through these phases, hope to hear from you more and good luck for the coming years

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    1. Hi when I press on your link it comes up with “rayondsmd…..” does not exist. Is it just me? Maybe check your link. Looking forward to reading it.

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    1. You have a natural storytelling way about you. I think you will be writing some very big, juicy, appetizing slices of life. I look forward to you appetizers, your main courses, and your desserts. If you decide to open a restaurant, let me know; I want reservations.

      thank you

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  1. The first post was definitely the hardest for me and getting a good home page article perfect is going to take some time, BUT I am looking forward to the future to see what this whole blogging thing will turn out to be. Give me a follow! I’m very open to criticism!
    http://thedrumrunner.wordpress.com/

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  2. Hi everyone – I’ve just completed my first post and would love some feedback off anyone willing to generate some: dannybutlerblog.wordpress.com

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    1. This link doesn’t work, but your Gravatar does. I’d totally read what you have to say… you’re unique! I feel like this About Me needs some fabulous picture of Jamaica, or you and your fabulous family, or just something fabulous that matches the tone of your happy writing.

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  3. Done! I had done something similar when I started out a month or so ago. It is good to remind myself why I am blogging and what I get out of it. Thanks! I look forward to seeing where the challenge leads us.

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    1. Somehow, you’re even funnier because your Gravatar is sideways. You shouldn’t change it, but just put a caption under it saying, “I’m sideways.” Oh my goodness, the two of you are fantastic! Already love you and your namesake husband and your co-blogging bestie and can’t read about all of your shenanigans.

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    1. One question: are you a stay at home mom? Totally kidding. I’m assuming this is the teacher in you– tell the kids once, then repeat, then remind, then test. Because you mentioned it (four?) many times in one essay, now I’m wondering if that’s what the main drive of your blog will be… being home with your cute kid and all of the conflicting emotions of being a SAHM. A million of us relate to that and would read you enthusiastically and with a large pour of wine. But if it’s not, you might turn away a handful of readers who might assume they’ll be reading only about potty training and playdates.

      I’m totally fascinated by what everyone includes in the About Me and what that implies. I, for one, like to brag about being good at ridiculous things.

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      1. “Currently, I am a stay at home mom…”
        “…like I mentioned earlier, I am a stay at home mom…”
        “Besides being a stay at home mom…”

        I’ve had that “what do you do all day” conversation oodles. Exhausting.

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  4. This challenge felt a little weird, given I’d already published five posts, but I gave it my best shot. It devolved rapidly into me explaining how I deal with my depressed friends (rampant cat impressions), how I told my mother to conquer the world with ferrets, and may have ended with me considering starting a group called Attention Seekers Anonymous (largely for my own benefit).
    If you’d like to read it, it’s here:
    http://annabelmcquade.wordpress.com/2014/04/15/hi-im-anna-and-i-think-im-funny/
    Tell me how much you liked it! Or how much you didn’t like it, and how I’m a horrible person who personally offends you. Either way, really.

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    1. Uniquely you, (but strangely also a bit like my youngest daughter). I do like the cat impressions, not sure about the ferrets though! 🙂

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  5. Hello fellow-bloggers! I started my blog in January a while after the zerotohero had begun. I then tried catching up, but it got too much too soon after I had just begun and the challenge was taken down before I could finish. Now that I have access here, I have re-written my Introduction post. Any feedback / critique or thoughts you people have is greatly welcome. Thanks in advance for your time! 🙂

    http://suchitraphotography.wordpress.com/2014/04/15/blogging-101-introduction-post-about-why-i-blog/

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  6. Hello fellow bloggers! Today is the day I begin…again. I started my blog about 2 years ago, but never really got it going the way I planned. I did some Daily Prompts, Photo and Writing Challenges, and even joined a few events. However, I never went much further than that and it’s become stale. So, today I start anew! Looking forward to meeting all of you and I hope you enjoy my contributions. 😉
    http://underthemonkeytree.com/2014/04/15/embracing-a-new-monkey-tree/

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    1. I over-think my posts too. I elected to have WP send me a reminder to post once a week, to give myself a nice kick in the butt… sometimes it works sometimes it doesn’t!

      I enjoyed your introduction – I share some of your aspirations. 🙂 Welcome!

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