Category Archives: Content Creation

OMG I Have Writer’s Block

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OMG I have writer’s block.

I sat down to write today and hit a wall.  This doesn’t happen to me very often.  Usually I sit down and ideas come at me from every direction.  Not so today, no way, no how.  I had to stop and think about the talks I have given about finding topics to write about.  I tell people to look at magazine covers for ideas.  I have taken children’s classics and used the title of a chapter for an idea.  I get great ideas from having the TV on in the background.  Today nothing worked.

I am puzzled.  I always have something to write about.  I am creative.  Creative thoughts pepper my brain all the time.  Nothing.

I opened my adult coloring book hoping to find inspiration there.

Excellent for stress.

I found this quote among the images:

“Enlightenment is always there.  Small enlightenment will bring great enlightenment.  If you breathe in and are aware that you are alive – that you can touch the miracle of being alive – then that is a kind of enlightenment.” – Thich Nhat Hanh

Sorry, Thich, it is still not working.  I even tried meditating on the word enlightenment.  Pretty soon I found myself trying to rhyme some of the syllables in the word.  I was hardly feeling enlightened.

I pulled out my 2016 Day Planner by Paulo Coelho that I keep on my desk because I like his quotes and the very first one I came to is this:

“There are moments when one should act and moments when one should accept.  The warrior knows how to distinguish between these moments. “

Well Mr. Coelho I call bullshit on this because I am trying to act and it looks like I am going to have to accept – ok?  I retract the bullshit call.  This warrior gives up.

We have all been there, right?  We have been lost in space, somewhere over the rainbow, dancing on the ceiling of trying to write something, not just anything.  Now I have songs in my head – did I mention that song titles are a good way to get an inspiring idea?  Just leave “It’s a Small. Small World” behind.

Darn it where are my ideas? Don’t you know I have writer’s block?

Then it happened.  I knew what was blocking my brain.  I knew why my brain was blocked.   Life has a way of turning off our creativity especially when our brain is working within a vacuum of negative occurrences and no matter how much I tried to break the seal, my brain was protecting me from outside sources.

I will leave you with one more quote:

Don’t poke the dragon.

“Fairy tales are more than true: not because they tell us that dragons exist, but because they tell us that dragons can be beaten.” – Neil Gaiman

Think about that one!

Till next time –

Carole

PS I had several people tell me they like my short podcasts because I disseminate a lot of information in a short period of time, and because I have a pleasing voice.  I will take that!

Did you hear last week’s under 9 minute episode:

Here it is http://www.thecrazymarketingladiesshow.com/?p=2174

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Content is King So How’s That Working for You?

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Content is king but showing your work might be better.

Content is king but showing your work might be better.

Content is king so how’s that working for you?  Content is king, there is no doubt about it.  Great content can even beat up SEO.  It takes work and not everyone can write great content.  Are you wearing a content crown? No?  Well, let’s dig in then because if you are reading this it’s not working for you, or it could work better.

When I sit down to write I often have moments where I feel as if the pause button has been pushed in my brain.  I rarely get writer’s block but I do at times feel like everything is paused or at least, running in slow motion.

I cannot sit at my computer and create all day.  I get brain fog doing this, so I set out to find a way around this and still get everything done that I need to get done.

I looked at what other creative minds are doing and I read a lot of articles and came up with my way of making the process work.

I created an analog workspace.  I have this big white board (and I do mean big) and this is where I list all my projects.  Every project has projects too.  It hangs in an extra room in our house and I go in there in the morning and then on and off again all day.  I have a standing “desk” (actually more of a platform) and this is where I have all my markers, paper, pencils, and postie notes.  I DO NOT SIT.  Standing is paramount to me in creativity.  I walk around that room, I pause, I think and I create.  Ideas are sometimes perched on the platform waiting for me, and other times they appear as I move around.  There is no device or computer in this room, that would be a distraction.

One thing I know for sure is this; you have to move away from your computer to create.  There are other ways of doing this.  You can take a walk, listen to music, meditate, or stare out a window.   All of these are analog ways of creating ideas and ideas become your work.

What comes next is that I now have something to put on all my social media platforms.  That is what I do next; I show my work.  Show your work everywhere you can because this is how people will find you. How?  While you are in your analog space write about it, take a photograph of it, record a video, sing it, shout it out, whatever it takes, just show your work and surround it with some great descriptive words.  You don’t have to write paragraphs, no one will read them.  Just be you but with a little pizazz.

Here is a tip too – schedule specific work for specific days of the week.

I am currently working on a project I named #CycleofJoy.  I registered the hashtag – did you know you can do that?  I bought the domain and on Tuesday morning, I create a photo quote that includes my name and my hashtag.  (Yes, I use copyright free photos – very important to do that).  I post the photo quote on my Facebook page but I also post it as a blog post on my personal blog http://isusrviveddamnneareverything.com 

#CycleofJoy has it’s own category there and my friends remember this,  a blog post can be as simple as a photograph with a couple of words.

My blog site then puts it out everywhere for me – I don’t have to do anything else.

Here is another way I show my work:

I have a podcast and because of the interest my show is generating I have many interviews and ideas scheduled already through Sept, 2016.  I decided this weekend to start to have two shows a week go live.  Every time I take a show live I am showing my work.  It shows in 3 places on Facebook, 2 Twitter sites, on LinkedIn, Google+, Pinterest, Tumblr and more.  Not only that, my podcast website continually cycles old shows through Twitter automatically so my work is being shown many times a day.

I was sitting and staring at my white board one day when the idea came to me that I could/should do a marketing tip/idea/suggestion Monday through Friday so beginning February 1st I will have a new category called Less Than 5 Minute Marketing Moments and you know what happens next, right?  It goes out everywhere.  I am showing my work more.

Always use every avenue available to you especially if you blog.  Put your blog everywhere you can.

One last piece of advice before I go digital on everyone.  Announce what you are doing that day on your social media platforms every day.  This is another way of at least getting some eyeballs on what you have planned.  I close those statements with “I will post my (whatever) later today.”  Start the later in the day post with “Here is what I have been working on today……”

See how this works?

Once I have filled my brain in my analog place, I head to my digital place, my desk.  This is where all those wonderful creative ideas become real.

Analog/Digital by my definition:  analog is me the human – a human in motion.  Digital is anything on a device or computer; it needs a human to make it work but the analog comes first in my work cycle.

When I need a break or an idea pops up I return to my analog space.

This also gets me out of my chair and moving around too which is good for everything else.

There you have it – and all wrapped up into 3 simple words; show your work. 4 more words, get off your ass.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with showing your work, just keep the bragging out of it.  Be humble, be authentic, be honest.  People do business with people they know, like and trust.  This is what you are aiming for and while people will always remind you content is king, showing your work is a sweet way to be sending content.

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Warning Beware of the Social Media Expert

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Warning beware of the social media expert!

Why did I use that title?  Simple answer – it is impossible to be an expert in or on any social media platform because things are always changing and no one can be a complete expert in a niche or across the board in social media.  I don’t like the word “expert” – it makes me cringe.

Rather than seek out the “so called experts” or “self-called experts” you might want to think about exactly what it is that you are looking for when you start searching for assistance in your marketing.

Let me explain what I do at Social Butterfly Media Marketing – I create content.  I am a writer.  I write content for others social media.  But wait, it gets better……I write original content for the most part.  Unless I am sharing a link/video/or photo, I write original content.  I am not a robot and what I write for you doesn’t get used for other clients.  I mean really?  What if your fans were their fans and the same post was there consistently?  That would make me a bad butterfly and I am not a bad butterfly.

I like what I do but I am only a part of the business.  I have people.  Yes I do.  I have people who know marketing.  I have people who know networking and connections.  I have people who understand photography in marketing.  I have 3 IT Dudes who do the technical side of the business including SEO/website design/landing page design and more.  Now if I were to use the word “expert” I would use it here, because they know what they are doing.

Me, I write.  I create content.  I am a freelance writer and people outsource their social media to my company because they can’t write.

The reason I believe outsourcing is here to stay in social media is due to the fact I am dedicated to your account, your business.  Sure you can keep it in house, but I bet dollars to donuts that you will give your in-house people other things to do and they won’t be focusing on social media.

Furthermore, have you seen the salary range for social media managers?  It’s a lot of dollars (as it should be) and then there is the benefit package.  The benefit package I offer you is a dedicated writer who writes original content and brands your business.  You are your business, you build it.  I build your brand and get you social media recognition.  There is a difference.

Here is a great link I found this week:

http://www.emarketer.com/Article/Will-Social-Struggles-Stop/1011770?ecid=1001

One last thing, I love what I do.  I love writing.  I love creating.  Did I mention I am good at it too?  But I am no expert, being good at writing works for me.

Original content only, no robots here.

Original content only, no robots here.

 

 

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This is WHY I Charge the Big Bucks to Write A Blog

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This is why I charge the big bucks to write a blog and unless you can do all this or you have the backing of a team of experts,  you are probably wasting your time.

It doesn’t matter how well you can write if you never built the foundation for your blog to be an SEO dream.  If you are writing just to write keep on writing, stop reading this right now.  If you are writing for your business, your company, to eat well, travel, support yourself or your famiy and you see no real improvement you might need some help – in fact you do need some help.

8 THINGS I DO AS A FREELANCE WRITER CONTENT CREATION

  1. Get your own domain, and get rid of the .com blog.  Migrate it over and own it.  Without a doubt it is the most important piece of real estate you will ever own on social media and Google does not crawl free blog platforms.
  2. Write unique original content.  Google loves this – they won’t send you flowers, they won’t call you the next morning, but they love it.  I have been writing about content creation and how I do not get writer’s block,  Original also includes your photos, your videos and when I am out and about I do photo blogs from my phone.  Try it.
  3. You need backlinks.  Yes you do and you need them badly and NEVER BUY THEM.  Write some guest blogs for people you admire.  OK?  This is a back link: example of a backlink  do you know how to do one?  You type your words that you want to appear then you open the link icon and type in the actual website and choose “open in new window” and you have a backlink.  I took you to Mike Mueller’s website because he is my main go-to man when I go crazy.
  4. The theme you choose should be coded cleanly and have no broken links.
  5. Did you attend the class called Permalinks 101 – ha fooled you there wasn’t one, but you need to know how to use them.  If not, we do.
  6. You need a Google sitemap so search engines can find you.
  7. Comment on other people’s blogs these count as backlinks YAY!!!  You need to put a link in your comment get it????
  8. Use SEO plugins.  They do things you don’t want to do – and we can take you down the path of making the right choices.  (Psssst…..I love YOAST).

When you choose a freelance writer to write for you – you want to choose one (like me) who has an SEO consultant on board who will check my content and writing for all the above and more.  Yes there is more.  The tags on your photos for example.  Alt tags too.  Anchor text.  Those pesky permalinks again.

Why do I charge the big bucks to write a blog – because you really are getting more than me.  You get a team.  I write and they tweak it – believe me doing it the right way can be a very good investment.

And you thought I meant big dollars - actually I did.

And you thought I meant big dollars – actually I did.

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I Blog in Less than 10 Minutes

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I blog in less than 10 minutes most of the time.  Yesterday I was asked to present at a Working Women of Tampa Bay event called Driven to Succeed.  I took two of my pod cast partners with me and we discussed all kinds of marketing tips – my session was about content creation and how I do not get writer’s block.

I don’t.

Today while thinking about writing this blog the pressure was building because I have to be in Clearwater for two business appointments before going to the Clearwater Jazz Holiday to hear and dance to Earth Wind and Fire.

Music – I knew then I would write about music.  I found this blog article and brought it here for you all to yay or nay over.

http://personalexcellence.co/blog/inspirational-songs/

I like the list – I agree that there are great songs there.  Of course there are newer songs like “Happy” and “Let it Go” but for me it’s “Simply the Best” by Tina Turner.  I loved this song the moment I first heard it and it brings me great joy to hear it for personal reasons in my life.

Tina Turner

Simply the Best

 

What is the song that inspires you?

 

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Why I Don’t Write Poetry

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Why I don’t write poetry is an easy answer to give – I am just not a poet.  There you go.  I think back junior high when we first started to learn grammar beyond subjects, verbs, adverbs and adjectives and my favorite thing – diagramming sentences.  I loved to do that.  Oh and then give me some prepositions and it was grammargasm for me.

Once those basics were down our English teacher took on a 6 week lesson plan of poetry and I did not like it at all.

It began with allegory and ended with tintinnabulation.  As a writer I use the elements of poetry but I draw the line at writing it.

Allegory – Within a narrative form, which can be either in prose or verse, an allegory tells a story that can be read symbolically.  OK that stopped me right there.

Alliteration – Alliteration occurs when the initial sounds of a word, beginning either with a consonant or a vowel, are repeated in close succession.  An example Carole caresses cats.  Not really I am a dog person (no bashing I am allergic to cats).  I love using alliteration.

Metaphor – we know what these are, and I can write a metaphor.

Then came meter and I was done – I am not going to write rhythmic poetry – I can see a metronome in my mind’s eye.

I am the type of person who has to look up rhyming words.  It is a #fail for me as a creative content writer I know.  I can’t be expected to be perfect, can I?

I do like the word tintinnabulation.  I like the definition of what it is – so you have to look it up if you want to know it.  Nah Nah Nah Nah Nah!

Robert Graves said it well – I will share this with you:

“A perfect poem is impossible. Once it had been written, the world would end.”
If I wrote poetry it would have to be perfect and then the world would end and I don’t want to
have that responsibility on my shoulders.
Why I Don't Write Poetry

Why I Don’t Write Poetry

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What Would My Keyboard Say if it Could Talk

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What would my keyboard say if it could talk?

  • Cover your ears
  • Do you eat with that mouth?
  • Parental guidance alert

My keyboard would probably say more than that and the answer is yes I eat with this mouth.  When (if) I get carried away in expressing myself in any of my blogs (and yes I have other blogs) I never publish without re-reading and yes editing out words or phrases that could offend someone.

Except for bullshit.  I like that word.  You know that there is plenty of bullshit being dumped all over social media sites so my writing that word just validates what you already are thinking, right?

Could I trust my keyboard to keep my secrets though?  Let’s ask.  Oh keyboard would you divulge my secrets for successful writing to the world?

Keyboard speak is in Italics (no not Italian – Italics).

Content Creation

My keyboard giving away some of my secrets to finding content to write about.

Well, readers, first of all she reads a lot of other blogs and when she does this she always comes up with a new idea for something to write about.  She calls that “beating writer’s block”. Now now, she is only getting ideas I would lock this keyboard down otherwise.

She also gets great ideas for writing titles by looking at magazine covers – especially the ones that have those white plastic covers on them in the grocery store check out lines.  She knows provacative titles get articles read.

She works with the TV on in the background because ideas pop into her head there too, even from the evening news.

There you have it – my keyboard has told the truth and has given you a couple of my secrets for content ideas.  You have to look around yourself instead of staring at the document screen, you will find great material – promise.

 

 

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