Random Ramblings

The Blog Lowdown – And Then The Fun Began

Today on The Blog Lowdown, I’m delighted to be hosting Sam, from And then the fun began…..

Please introduce yourself:
Hi, I’m Sam from And then the fun began… I’m mum to JJ (four and a half) and EJ (19 months) – AKA two little monkeys! I work part time and live in the South East of England. I like cinema, theatre and I love reading. I’ve got an HND in Journalism, a BA in American Literature and and MSc in Informaton and Library Science but currently, soft play is my life…

When did you start blogging?
I started in June 2013.

Tell us a little about your blog.
I started the blog because I wanted a creative outlet – somewhere to both log my day to day family life while my children are little and cute and somewhere to try and re-discover things about myself that seemed to disappear and get buried under all the detritus of nappies, changing bags, bottles and booties. The blog is not massively organised and I generally write about what occurs to me at any given time, things I have been inspired to try by other friends from the blogging community or the occasional book review.

Who designed your blog?
Wordpress! Although I chose my own header and played around a bit with the WordPress settings to choose the layout that suits me best.

Which of your posts have been the most popular? Are there certain types that get more interest?
Until I read this question I was blissfully unaware of the answer but now I’ve had a quick check I’m quite surprised that by far my most popular post was one called Bad Attitude which is slightly controversial because it may have (unintentionally) created a bit of an “us and them” divide between parents and the childless/childfree. Other popular posts include my post on my breastfeeding experience, my post “Never Accept a Negative Label” and my recipe for Toffee Apple Muffins!

How do you promote your blog posts, and which methods do you find most successful?
I link to Twitter, I post a link on my Facebook page (although I don’t have Facebook access through my blog as I currently like to keep the two separate as I feel there is not enough privacy on my personal FB profile – however I intend to set up an FB page just for the blog). I have a Pinterest board I pin to. I have a Google+ account but I haven’t really used it yet but hopefully this post might get things going! I like to add posts to other bloggers’ linkys and hopefully I get some traffic back when others tag any post I may have written. I guess at the moment I get most of my regular traffic through Facebook and that is based on the reads of actual IRL friends!

Which linkys do you most enjoy joining in with/reading?
Well, not trying to butter up my host here, but I love The Theme Game and Word of the Week, I really like All About You and Magic Moments too. Oh and The Prompt. I’ve just posted to the Coombe Mill Country Kids linky for the first time too and I don’t know why I didn’t ever do this before as its a great motivation to get out and about!

When are your busiest days on the blog and why? (If you know why!)
I think probably mid week as I tend to be at my most creative and post the most at the beginning of the week! Alternatively Fridays after Word of the Week.

Can you name three things that blogging has brought you?
Challenges/inspiration, friends and more of a sense of self than I’ve had for years!

5 top tips for writing blog postsMy top five blogging tips:
1. Be true to yourself, post about things that really interest you. I find that the words come very easily and flow from my fingertips if I am truly invested in my subject matter.
2. Find yourself four or five linkys to join in with each week – they will provide inspiration if you are having writer’s block, allow you to connect to other like-minded bloggers, generate comments and provide a routine and focus for your blogging week.
3. If you blog on WordPress (and I can’t comment on other platforms) take advantage of all the great widgets and options available to you.
4. Use a picture where possible to illustrate your subject. This is more appealing to a random reader who may just be intrigued by your image and read on!
5. And lastly (and this is not always one that I abide by!) be aware of the length of your posts – there are so many other blogs out there and as readers we only have a limited amount of time to hop from one to the next so I think you are giving yourself more of a shot at a larger audience if you try and limit at least some of your posts to about 250-300 words.

Social media links:

Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/samanthaparke16
Google+: samanthaparke123@gmail.com
Twitter: @thenthefunbegan
Bloglovin: http://bloglovin.com/thenthefunbegan
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/andthenthefunbegan

Thanks very much, Sam! Great to find out more about you and your blog, and those tips there are great reminders to us all, as well as brilliantly helpful for beginner’s – thank you. Always nice to hear my linkys are being enjoyed, too 😉

If you’ve any questions for Sam, feel free to comment on this post, and she’ll pop by and check in. Hope you enjoyed it as much as I did, too? Next week, we will be hearing from Jo over at Sit Still Monkeys, so be sure to pop by for that on Sunday evening. You can catch up the previous posts from other bloggers here, too, if you’ve missed them.

If you’d like to feature on The Blog Lowdown, just get in touch with me at jocelyn@thereadingresidence.com. Posts are booked up for the next few weeks, but I’ll be happy to book you in as soon as there’s an available slot 🙂

Other posts you might like:

A Blogger’s Guide to Pinterest

10 Tips to Get your Blogging Mojo Back

Follow on Bloglovin

One Response

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Instagram