Starting a blog is easy. Maintaining that blog is the difficult part. Over the next few months, I'll be discussing some issues related to blogging and it's many different activities.
After years of being a serial blogger, I've discovered that the easiest way for me to write is to write in batches, try to get multiple posts done in one session. If I'm focused I'll easily knock out two weeks worth of posts in a couple of hours. It took me a couple of years to figure this out, though. I used to be the queen of the "write it and post it" method of blogging, but now that I have other things going on in my life (like, you know, work) I find the best practice is to set aside some time and just write.
At the end of a month, I'll brainstorm blog posts for the upcoming month and map them out on a calendar. Then I'll schedule everything in Typepad. Trust me, this is never the final schedule, but it gives me a place to start writing in an organized fashion.
Once I have topics mapped out, I start tackling the actual writing. I've found that the couple hours I have on the weekends before Johnny wakes up are my most productive writing hours. I love waking up and getting a couple posts out during my morning coffee. I usually don't write more than two weeks out, because those planned topics may change as my inspiration ebbs and flows and life events pop up. The two-week system gives me enough wiggle room and still feels somewhat organized.
After I have go through my big text dump, I'll go in and edit up at least the next week's worth of posts in a separate session. During this time, I'll clean up my grammar, consolidate thoughts, add links, and add in pictures (usually from my phone and edited in Photoshop). This, to me, is more time consuming than the word dump because it's more tedious. However, this session is crucial if I want to keep posting quality stuff.
I've painted a nice, organized, on top of it picture for you, but sometimes I still end up doing things last minute. For example, I added pictures and edited this post yesterday during my lunch break. We had a very very rainy weekend, and I just didn't follow through on getting this done (because when it rains all I want to do is sit on the couch and watch Daria). It happens. If you're just getting started with blogging, don't be upset if your system falls apart every once in while. The key here is to post quality content regularly. Being organized helps, but it's not the sole secret to blogging. If you're motivated, you'll find a way to get it done.
So, I've shared my blogging process with you. What do you do to keep yourself organized? Let's talk in the comments!