Friends, can you believe it’s almost time for NaBloPoMo (National Blog Posting Month) again? For a few years, it felt like I was the only blogger in the whole wide blogosphere who was still keeping it up, but last year, we had a new record number of participants. 13 people signed up – and showed up – and I made some nice new connections in the process! This year, I am determined again to blog my way through November and a few people have brought it up in blog posts recently and I couldn’t be more thrilled to know that other people are thinking about it, too.
What is this NaBloPoMo thing, you ask? In case you haven’t heard of it, it’s a 30-day blogging challenge first launched by Eden Kennedy in 2006. You can read more about it here. Once upon a time, when blogging was all the rage (ha!), there was a strong following with hundreds of participants, but most people have moved on to other platforms or stopped blogging altogether. But I am still writing and participating every year in November.
30 days, 30 blog posts.
That’s it. That is all that is required. This will be my 18th year and who says that we can’t keep this thing going?
I know, writing for 30 days straight can feel daunting, even stressful. Why would anyone want to do that? I think I just like the challenge and the structured routine and I look forward to it once a year. And you know what usually also happens? The month flies by faster than I thought and I end up with more post ideas than I was able to use in the 30 days.
And you can all go and take a leaf out of Engie’s book. She has been blogging daily for almost a whole year. It’s doable if you set your mind to it. And hey, I am only asking for 30 days, not 365 – so what are you waiting for?
There are not going to be any prompts, but I previously shared a post about NaBloPoMo best practices, a list of tips and tricks to make participation more successful and fun. I thought I’d share these tips again, so you can get organized. I suggest – no, encourage! – you plan ahead. Remember, this is about connections. Not every blog post has to be a deep, long, elaborate piece of writing. Sometimes sharing a picture or some random thoughts is all it takes to engage your readers!
GET ORGANIZED IN ADVANCE
I’ve been planning out my November blogging month a bit in advance. I will be posting every day in November, but not every word has been written on the day that it will be posted. I usually prepare a little outline for the month and jot down post ideas for as many days as possible in advance. Drafts are your friends. This leads me to my next tip…
KEEP A RUNNING LIST OF BLOG IDEAS
If you’ve been blogging for a while, you probably have had ideas for blog ideas at the most unexpected moments and in the strangest places. My best tip is to write them down immediately (I keep a list on my phone, as I usually have that with me.)
WRITE WHEN YOU CAN
If you have a few minutes to work on your draft, write a few sentences. If you sit down and feel like you can knock out a couple of blog posts because the words are pouring out of you, do it. If you’re on a roll, you have to take advantage. Get it all on (digital) paper while you can. You don’t have to wait until the next day. As a writer/blogger, you know that writing happens naturally most of the time and can’t necessarily be forced.
KEEP A BUFFER
Another thing that works for me: I try to stay ahead of NaBloPoMo by keeping one or two ready-to-post blog posts in my drafts folder for “emergencies” (hence the ‘write when you can ” advice). While I try to sit down and write/post every day in November, I know that some days will be so busy that I won’t have a lot of time to spend on blogging. For these moments, it’s good to have a blog post waiting in your draft folder.
USE YOUR REGULAR FEATURE POSTS
I have a few regular post formats that I use every month, (e.g. Monthly Link List, Currently, Weekly Run Down, etc.) and of course, I’ll keep up with these posts during NaBloPoMo.
BORROW FROM OTHER BLOGGERS
If you come across a great post idea on someone else’s blog – borrow the idea (and give credit when appropriate) and post your own version. Because this is what bloggers do – we inspire each other and share great post ideas!
KEEP IT FLEXIBLE
Leave a little flexibility in your blogging schedule for days when you feel inspired to write something spontaneously. I never know when exactly that is going to happen, but I usually come up with a handful of posts in November that I hadn’t planned/thought of in advance.
LAST BUT NOT LEAST: IT’S OK IF YOU MISS A DAY
This is something I should definitely keep in mind. While it’s my goal to meet the challenge, the world is not going to end if I skip a day. Nobody is keeping score and you’re not going to be punished. After all, NaBloPoMo is just an opportunity to get into a blogging habit, have fun, and connect with other people
COME JOIN ME
I hope you’re excited to come here a little more often in November and I’d be super-stoked if you decided to join me. Please spread the word and invite others. Or, if you just want to be the support squad this year – that’s fine, too!