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About Darren Rowse

Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn.

How to Complete Your Blog Posts to Make Them the Best They Can Be

How to Complete Your Blog Posts to Make Them the Best They Can Be

For some bloggers, it isn’t the lack of ideas holding them back, it’s finding the motivation to get them finished.

People leave blogs in draft mode for all kinds of reasons – they run out of things to say, they’re not sure how to end the post, they know it needs something added but don’t know what, the post needs more research, it needs an image, or maybe it’s just that attention just goes elsewhere.

I’m always amazed at how many bloggers have a stash of half-written posts, even though my own record is 93 unfinished posts sitting in my drafts folder!

Today’s episode of the ProBlogger podcast is the next in our series on blogger’s block, and tackles the issues we face when we just can’t finish our blog posts properly (you can find earlier posts here, here, and here).

One of the main reasons I couldn’t make it to the finish line on a blog post seemed to revolve around having too many ideas and getting distracted – I would sit down to write one post and have ideas for five more instead!

I also know that the quest for perfection holds many of us back. We don’t want to send our work out into the blogosphere if it isn’t the best work we can do right now.

Sometimes it’s that we’ve lost interest in the topic, we’re bored with what we’ve written, and we just want to move onto something else even though we’ve spent so much time trying to make this post work.

And on the flip side, some of us might be too casual with our approach – I’ve definitely seen posts published that need a little extra attention paid to proofreading, depth of information, providing value, and writing a suitable headline. If that is your problem, that you push posts out before they’re quite ready, then that really will limit the impact of your content and your ability to reach your blogging goals. There are a few things I think are non-negotiable in a post, and without them, your post just won’t really be complete.

If you’ve seen yourself in any of these familiar blogger’s block issues, then this episode is for you!

How to Complete Your Blog Posts to Make Them the Best They Can Be

I have a few solutions to provide that have helped me finally get those posts out of draft mode, and also for stopping me from collecting such a huge amount of half-done work to start with! Sometimes it does just mean knuckling down with willpower and determination to see it through, but I’ve got a few more tips up my sleeve to get you to the finish line.

I’d love to hear what you struggle with the most when it comes to getting your posts finished. Is it time? Is it overwhelm? Feel free to leave a comment, or reach out to me on Twitter.

You can find the show notes for today’s podcast here.

Further Reading:

How to Get into the Flow of Creating Great Content for Your Blog

Image credit: Jonno Witts

Image credit: Jonno Witts

Whether you’re just starting out or you’ve been blogging some time, you can almost always find yourself falling out of flow. One minute you have tons of ideas and are cranking out posts, the next something’s off and you’ve lost your mojo.

This episode of the ProBlogger podcast is continuing our series on Blogger’s Block (you can catch up on episode 83 Types of Blogger’s Block and episode 84 How to Come up With Fresh Ideas to Write About on Your Blog here), with my tips on how to finally get back on the content producing wagon, flexing your creative muscles once again.

I find that once you figure out what kind of blogger’s block you have – whether it be too many ideas and not enough time, or getting back into the swing of things after a brief break – you’re one step closer to figuring out how to beat it. The advice I’m sharing in this episode is from my own perspective, and include:

  • how to change your environment
  • tools to help you focus and minimise distractions
  • background noise
  • morning pages
  • answering questions to help formulate post ideas
  • using personas
  • getting personal – putting yourself in the shoes of your readers
  • deadlines, schedules and editorial calendars – what works, what doesn’t
  • rhythm and flow
  • inspiration
  • the types of post structures that engage my creativity and help keep me on track

And other practical ideas you can try at home to boost you out from the black hole of uninspiration and getting you back in the saddle again.

Tune in at the end of the week for the next Blogger’s Block installment, where I discuss what you should do before you publish every post to make it fully complete.

What do you do when your brain has taken a bit of a vacation? How do you bring it back to writing mode?

Further Reading:

How to Get Entrepreneurial Ideas out of Your Head and Into Reality

If you’re a blogger or online entrepreneur, there’s no doubt you’ve heard of Pat Flynn.

Pat is a writer, blogger, and podcaster, and helps readers all across the internet create smart passive income from their blogs. He went from being laid off in 2008 to creating a website to help people pass an architectural exam – earning $7000 in his first month. I love how although he teaches about passive income, he is anything but! Pat has evolved his approach over the years, constantly experimenting with new mediums, fresh ideas, and shipping numerous projects and products. He spends considerable time creating and initiating, and I really wanted to chat with him on the ProBlogger podcast about the challenge of creating products around a blog.

In episode 67, I talked about why creating your own product to sell on your blog can be a powerful thing – I even outlined 9 ways you’re losing opportunities if you don’t have one. I ask Pat what he thinks is stopping bloggers from taking that step, if he thinks every blogger should do it (or if it only works for certain niches), how he decides what to create, and where to start.

One of the topics we dive into is fear. Fear is one of those things that hold back a lot of bloggers – including Pat, at times. I ask him how he moves forward despite the fear, and how he deals with those feelings when they arise.

We also discuss some listener questions and talk about how to choose a product to create, what kind of research you should do, the tools for creation, and marketing and pricing. Pat tells me about his new book Will it Fly? and the road that led to its creation.

You can find today’s show notes at ProBlogger.com, and you can leave feedback on Twitter (Pat is at @patflynn).

Further Reading:

 

How to Come up with Fresh Ideas to Write About On Your Blog

How to Come up with Fresh Ideas to Write About On Your Blog - on ProBlogger.net

There comes a time in the life of every blogger when they feel as though there’s nothing left to say – that they’ve said it all, and no new ideas are forthcoming.

It can strike when you have been blogging for some years and have spent a lot of time crafting posts on the important issues in your niche, and one day you realise you’ve written about every topic you care to write about and the tank is empty.

The newest episode of the ProBlogger podcast is the second in a mini-series on blogger’s block. In the previous episode I discussed the different types of blogger’s block you can experience, and what I’ve done over the years to help counteract it. Today, though, I want to tackle the issue of coming up with ideas to write about, and if you haven’t completed the task in episode 11 about what change you’re trying to bring to readers’ lives, that would be an excellent place to start.

While everyone is entitled to blog about what catches there interest, there is a strong record of blogs that change the lives of their readers in some tangible way are the ones that tend to be successful. Identifying this change (as mentioned in episode 11) is going to be a great foundation for you to then map out the journey you want to take your readers on, and can potentially then help you come up with tons of ideas to fulfil their needs.

I also discuss plenty of other options to help you break through blogger’s block and tap into that well of knowledge, inspiration and ideas to get your content rolling again. I can give you advice about how to identify these needs and problems, and all it will take is a few minutes of your time.

You can find the show notes for episode 84 of the ProBlogger Podcast How to Come up with Fresh Ideas to Write About On Your Blog here, and I’d love to get your comments below.

Further Reading:

Battling Bloggers Block – Where do you get Stuck?

Battling Blogger's Block - where do you get stuck?

Recently, I had a question from a listener:

“Darren do you have any tips for bloggers with bloggers block? I want to take my blog to the next level in 2016 but I’m stuck. Every time I sit down to write nothing comes and the more that happens the more stressed I feel and the less it seems to flow!”

And it gave me an idea – so today is the first in a mini-series of common problems that many bloggers face, and one of the biggest issues revolves around content. What happens when you run out of ideas? What happens when you feel as though nobody is hearing you? What happens when bloggers’ block strikes? It can happen to the best of us, and when it does it can be incredibly frustrating.

As I’ve given this topic much thought over the years, I’ve come to realise that there is not just one type of blogger’s block. To be more specific, there are different stages of the blog writing process that have tripped me up from time to time.

In today’s episode of the ProBlogger podcast I want to help you through this common stumbling block by talking about the three types of blogger’s block I’ve suffered from, and what I did to break out of those ruts. Whether it’s at the ideas level, the productivity level or falling down before the finish line, if you’re feeling it, chances are I’ve been there too.

You can find the show notes here, and if you have any questions I’d be happy to answer them in the comments or on Twitter, where I’m @problogger.

 

Have you ever suffered from blogger’s block? What did you do about it?

Further Reading:

8 Tips for Busy Bloggers – How to Make the Most of the Time You Have

8 Tips for Busy Bloggers - How to Make the Most of the Time You Have

Finding time to blog is something that all bloggers struggle with.

 

It doesn’t matter what level of blogging you’re at – whether it’s dabbling as a hobby or working full time online, the hours we devote to blogging can be hard to find for all of us.

I actually struggle at being productive the most when my timeframes are limited – I have experimented with plenty of workflows and routines to try and keep on top of it, and recently when I realised I needed to pay more attention to my health, I changed them up again.

In this episode of the ProBlogger podcast, I go through eight ways you can be productive and make great use of what time you do have, and share my story of what I’ve learned over the years truly works and is truly sustainable.

If you’re struggling with spending your time well, or even finding the time to blog to start with, this episode is for you.

I’ll outline how to organise your priorities, complete your tasks, create editorial calendars, coming up with content ideas, and other tips on how to stay focused when you really need it.

You can find the show notes for episode 82 here.

Further Reading:

 

14 Types of Stories You Can Tell on Your Blog

14 Types of Stories You Can Tell on Your Blog - never be stuck for a post idea again! On ProBlogger.net

We all know storytelling is one of the key aspects of successful blogging. If you can weave a story around your words, no matter what your niche or topic, it is more likely to entertain your readers and resonate with them.

Even if you think you aren’t much of a writer or storyteller, you can still find one of these story types discussed today that will be useful and relevant for your blog – following on from Episode 80 of the ProBlogger podcast where I discuss what to say when you’ve got nothing left to say, hopefully these should give you some ideas on how to craft your words so you can stand out as a unique and interesting blogger.

In this episode I discuss these story types and how to get the best out of them (with examples!)

  • Personal discovery stories
  • Analogies and illustrations
  • Success stories
  • Failure stories
  • Someone else’s story
  • “How I Did It” stories
  • Biographies
  • Picture stories
  • Case studies
  • Fiction
  • Reader stories
  • Collection stories
  • “Imagine if” stories

Then go forth and shake up your usual writing routine with the age-old tradition of sharing stories for connection. Let me know how you go – does this kind of writing come naturally to you? Or is it out of your usual style?

You can find the show notes for episode 81 of the ProBlogger podcast 14 Types of Stories You can Tell on Your Blog at ProBlogger.com.

Further Reading:

 

What to Write About When You Feel Like You’ve Got Nothing Unique to Say

What to Write About When You Feel Like You've Got Nothing Unique Left to SayIf you’re still on holidays, or are up to your ears in start-of-the-year business, today’s episode of the ProBlogger podcast is a short and sweet one, designed to be easy to listen to.

Why Your Story Will Always Be Interesting to Someone

If you’ve been blogging for some time, you can come to feel as though you’ve already said all you wanted to say, or feel as though you’re competing in an over-saturated market where everyone in your niche is saying the same thing – or they’ve already said it, and they’re saying it better than you. You’re not alone.

I’m here to tell you that it doesn’t matter if there are writers out there that are smarter or funnier than you.

Your story will always be unique – and there is someone out there who needs to hear these words from you. Not from your cleverer competitor, but your particular story, your special brand of relating to your readers.

In today’s episode I talk about how you can infuse your writing to ensure you stand out from the crowd with your own voice.

You can find the show notes here.

Further Reading:

11 Quick Tips to Get More Comments on Your Blog

Have you seen comments drop off your blog in the last few years? Try these 11 quick tips to get them back again! On ProBlogger.net

Episode 79 of the ProBlogger podcast is another episode short on time but long on information!

Today we tackle the topic of how to encourage your audience to interact with you more on the comment section of your blog. Nowadays the trend for readers to reach out on social networks means less comments on blog posts, but that doesn’t mean drumming up blog comments is a lost cause (although it can certainly feel like it)!

I’ve got 11 tips for you that cover everything from simply asking for comments (you’d be surprised how successful that strategy is), to writing style that invites comment, best formats for blog posts, and how to deal with trolls and spam – which seems to be growing by the minute.

If you have any questions, you can catch me on twitter @ProBlogger, or in the comment section here or on the show notes at ProBlogger.com.

What would you add to this list? Have you seen a drop in comments over the years?

11 Quick Tips to Get More Comments on Your Blog

Further Reading: