Yep! I’ve found the energy after my incredibly long last post to tell you about my second award!
Also nominated by the lovely Expat Panda, this time for the Blogger Recognition Award. It’s another cyber hug really but again, I am really touched to have been thought of given how many bloggers there are out there. This time though there is no cap on followers so really, it feels bigger and more shiny!
The third is to write a brief story of how your blog started. Well, I covered that in my last post too. A quick recap – I wanted to keep people up to date with my adventures when I moved to Dubai. Blogging was bigger in 2011 than in 2006 when I moved to Bermuda, so instead of an email to everyone, I set up a blog.
The fourth rule is harder. It’s to give two pieces of advice to new bloggers. Well, I don’t feel like a real and proper blogger so it feels dumb. In the spirit of keeping these things going though….
Advice Piece #1
Be nice. Words can hurt.
I am really good at giving somewhere a terrible review, but only if it’s truly deserved. In this day and age, everyone googles everything. Your review could really hurt a business. It’s not about getting free stuff (as one trashy blogger stated the other day – I no longer read them), it’s about warning people or having a voice when you’ve had none in the situation.
For example, I wrote a post about a terrible experienced I had at the cinema. Here. I had tried to speak to the manager at the time and been ignored. I had left my phone number so that someone could call me. They didn’t. I had then tried to call and gotten no where. So I wrote my post. I wasn’t angling for free tickets. I just wanted no one else to have that experience. It was stressful, annoying and then insulting. Having been back this weekend I can see that my complaint had been listened to as the service was 100 times better.
If you are going to be a reviewer then make sure when something goes right that you credit all the right people too. Quite often great experiences are as much down to the server as the food. And example is here. We had a great day but what really gave it the edge was the lovely person who looked after us.
Advice Piece #2
Before you start or very soon into your blogging life, decide what you want to do with it going forward.
Do you want to be known for one thing? To build a following? To make some extra money? To collaborate with other blogs? To be invited to relevant openings? If so, then you really have to stick to point. There can’t really be any deviations from that. Also, blog regularly. Have a schedule and keep to it.
If, like me, you want to ramble away about anything that takes your fancy, my advice is simple: do just that! Don’t apologise for it or let someone try and style you. Just do whatever you want. Still be mindful that words can hurt and the don’t be an asshole rule, but aside from that you should just go for it.
My most successful posts are so unbelievably different. One is a very sensible and informative piece on Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi. The other is a wine soaked ramble on a hot guy I was crushing on at the time.
In conclusion; there is no formula for a successful blog except passion. If you are passionate about anything you will do well. If you are a bit lackadaisical, you’re unlikely to be a hit. It will come across in your writing.
That’s it really. Like I said, this isn’t based on my monumental success as I don’t believe I have it. I just lucked out when Expat Panda found my posts.
Now to the final bit for you to read…
My nominations are:
1. Lil One of The Ashes again because I really like her.
2. Rainy Day Blog because, again, I really like her.
3. WitWitWoo is one of my all time favourites. She is a bluntly honest and very funny lifestyle blogger. Her posts always cheer me because she writes how I imagine she speaks. I like that style.
4. SlimmingEats is a recipe blog by a lovely lady who lives in Canada. She herself follows the Slimming World plan so I find her recipes very useful. It’s her chocolate pancake recipe that I put a picture of on my last post!
5. TwoChubbyCubs is one of the funniest things to read on the internet, I swear. Again they are Slimming World people, but honestly, the way they right has me snort laughing. Not for people easily offended, but really very highly recommended!!
6. Average South African is a brilliant way to discover new restaurants to try if you are lucky enough to be headed over to South Africa on vacation. I have tried a couple of their recommendations and was very happy with my picks!
That’s it! That’s the end of this post! It is much shorter than the last (I don’t follow 15 blogs so can’t nominate that many!) but can you imagine how much reading that would have been added had I combined them! It would have been a monster post!
Also, I can totally brag twice!!