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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. I have been blogging for a few months now and somehow managed to miss out on the last round or two of the ZeroToHero challenge. Seatbelt at the ready: here I am. My reply is not exactly an introduction, instead I’ve decided to take on the first of your suggested questions: “Why are you blogging publicly, rather than keeping a personal journal?” The required introspection appealed and I have a question of my own to add to the mix:
    http://shardsofsilence.wordpress.com/2014/04/15/who-do-you-think-you-are/

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  2. I’m looking to grow and learn how to manage my blogs on WordPress. There’s a lot to learn and I’m looking forward to it!! ellysnows.wordpress.com & covertocoverreview.wordpress.com

    Like

  3. I’m not sure I can post this here or not, but does anyone know about this gravatar thing? I see many of you who have real pictures, etc., but mine is this ugly green thing lol. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

    ss

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  4. I started my blog in January as a follow up assignment to a ‘get published’ course I took. So far, I have enjoyed working on the blog but I am excited to learn to do it right and I think this course is exactly what I need!

    For today’s assignment, I revisited my ‘About’ page. Here is the link..

    http://wp.me/P474nI-1

    Like