One of the hardest parts of blogging is knowing there are so many bloggers out there who are doing it so much better than you and still sitting down to type out post after post anyway. I’ve read a ton of writing and blogging advice over the past year and while it all seems so simple, in practice it is very difficult.
Lately I have stopped taking in all the “how-to’s” and started actively looking at what other people are doing. I do my best to look at what types of things they are writing about. I look at how often they are posting and whether or not they are replying to their comments. I even look at where they are choosing to host their blog and what elements they are including in their design.
To be honest I have learned more in the last few months of just observing then I ever did reading the “how-to’s”. I’m now rethinking the way I blog and soon I plan to start moving in a bit of a different direction. For now though, I’m going to keep on observing for a while and I encourage you to do the same.
To start you off, here are a few of my blogging heroes:
1. Austin Kleon – A Writer Who Draws
If you’ve been following me for a while you know I am a big fan of Kleon’s work. After reading his books Steal Like an Artist and it’s sequel, Show Your Work, I knew more than anything I wanted to live a more creative life and try to make a living while doing it too.
Kleon’s blog is not only informative, but interesting and inspirational, as well. He pulls quotes and artwork from other creative types to show you (not just tell you) how to be the best artist and/or writer you can be.
He’s also really good at Twitter and his Tumblr is a “scrapbook of stuff he’s reading, looking at, listening to, thinking about”. He also has one of the only newsletter’s I’ve subscribed too and actually look forward to reading every week.
2. Maria Popova – Brain Pickings
I love, love, love the blog Brain Pickings so much. Every post is beautifully written and includes pictures and quotes to support her words. You can tell she really cares about what she is saying and that she takes her time with each one.
Her blog spans many subject including art, writing, science, philosophy, history, and so much more. She combines bits and pieces of information and insight to teach us something new about life and the human condition.
Her work makes you feel a little smarter and a little more enlightened with every post. And the most amazing part is, she does it all on her own, with no ads, just support from her very grateful readers.
Bonus: Check out her SoundCloud account for interesting audio clips that she often includes in her blog posts.
3. Crystal Moody – Year of Creative Habits
The Year of Creative Habits was one of the first blogs I followed after starting my own blog. I knew I wanted to write but I also wanted to start making some art too. I followed along on her journey and even attempted to make a little art myself everyday. I ultimately failed but I haven’t given up, in fact, I plan to try again very soon.
I like Moody’s blog because she doesn’t just talk about what I should do, she shows me by actually doing it herself. I envy her dedication to learning new ways to be creative and I admire her ability to buckle down and do it everyday no matter what.
Like Kleon, she also has a weekly newsletter that I enjoy reading. It includes links to things she likes as well as pictures of her own work.
There are a ton of other bloggers out there I admire but these three really make me think about how I can not only blog better, but also how my blog could benefit other people. I am continuously inspired by their talent and grateful for their hard work and dedication to helping people like me.
I hope one day my blog can make people feel that way too.
In response to July NaBloPoMo prompt: If you could have lunch with any blogger, who would it be?