(Totally still playing around with fonts for this blog. I’m thinking my original one for feature images may have been too fancy to read. This also gives me a post idea for my Canva tutorial series.)
Originally I was not planning on having this post this week. Nothing was really standing out to me to discuss. But in the past two-three days alone there are definitely things I can talk about.
Blogging Related –
Getting Reader Inspiration/Ideas– I have been hoping since last year I would be getting readers more involved with my blogs, particularly with Inside Cup. Last year, I really wanted to encourage people to let me know topics they may want me to write about. One of the main issues I had, aside from readers not contributing, which is okay by the way 🙂 things do not have to happen immediately in our blog, I did have a few people give some suggestions or topics they enjoyed.
But they did not really understand that Inside Cup is a blog covering topics dealing with a walk with Christ, issues Christians may deal with, scripture discussion, etc. The topic suggestion came from readers who only visited my blog once, and commented on a so many hundred followers milestone.
Reader Stumbling Me– (Relating to Inside Cup) I had one suggestion I did not follow through because the blogger had been stumbling me up with the comments. The comments this person left always completely drifted from my posts’ topics and many were felt to be lecture/sermon-like.
I felt like what I wrote was not good enough to discuss. So when this blogger left a suggestion, the way it was worded, “You want a suggestion…” which, and this may be sensitive of me I admit, the wording makes it sound like I’m looking for suggestions, like I can’t come up with things on my own. When in truth, I just want to know if my readers want me to look into something I’ve yet to cover, not because I do not have ideas, but I want to make sure if they really want a topic covered, I can do that.
Then to make it worse…the suggestion I was given was the topic this blogger ALWAYS covered on their blog. It really left a bad taste in my mouth and didn’t feel right. When I reached, I think it was 300 followers I actually addressed the issue. I was vague and did not call out the blogger or their name, but I wanted people to know I would delete comments that stepped over boundaries and made me feel uncomfortable. After I posted that, this person unfollowed me and stopped commenting.
Maybe A New Beginning– Recently, I’ve begun to leave the question at the bottom of my posts on Inside Cup for people to let me about topics they are interested in. For many months I stopped because of the previous issues, and no one contributing. But I want to make sure my readers know they can totally request or suggest ideas/topics. And I had a blogger who gave me two different topics to touch on recently, which is why I thought I’d share my experience on this post.
900 Followers & Reflecting Back– I reached 900 followers on Inside Cup this past week, and it really has made me think about where I was last year. I was just starting to get to know the community, and I’m so thankful for that. People still struggle with understanding that I’m a blogger, or how many people I’ve reached. But I know with each small accomplishment it leads to a bigger one with an end goal.
I also think about this blog, and how last year I was really confused in trying to figure out a schedule, series, etc. I’m not confident enough to say I’ve figured out a full schedule for this blog, but I definitely have a better idea of what I am doing with this blog. Helping people learn more about me, and things in life I’ve found out. 🙂
Test Readers– I have six active test readers and a test reader who will help me when the book is fully written, so seven in total. It’s the most I’ve ever had since I started working on the book series in 2013. I’ve written three novels for the book series before writing book one.
I’ve written about this a couple of different times, but it has been hard in years past to keep writing when so few people help me with feedback. To me being a writer is really about feedback. We can’t grow if we do not know how we are doing. What kind of impact our words and our stories are making. It was really challenging. But God was there for me and writing those three novels really pushed me, and I’m so thankful for the two and three readers I had who stuck by me.
Which is why I am SO grateful for the number of test readers I have now.
It’s really interesting to see how each person reads and interprets a story individually. Everyone has their own opinions. There are a number of things I am doing in this book and the rest of the book series that are not common and rare to see in other books. Choices I’ve made that have worried me. Will my readers be okay with the differences in what my book series offers?
And so far, the feedback has been yes. I’ve learned to take time and slow scenes down. To take time so people are not in a rush, which I think many books do. I know with chapter one some of my readers wanted more, basic things you would see with many other books. I explained to them why I did not immediately give out certain details, and why I focused on others.
Those that brought up these concerns, once they got to Chapter 2, a number of them were like, “Okay, I get it, nevermind. Keep it like this.” This is really encouraging to me, and the feedback I’m getting on things that are a little confusing or need more clarity, they are easily fixable.
The major differences my story offers compared to other books, these are not bothering my test readers, and that is so encouraging! I’ve had some say (paraphrase) “You know, I see this in other books and this style is not the easiest to do, but I like how you are writing this.” To know that the past five years I’ve spent working on past novels, finding my style, creating the characters, and learning other backstories for the backbone of the series did not go to waste.
To know the way I write and edit may be a little slower than what I want, but seeing how much clearer the story is already being written, I’m glad. I’m slowly not comparing myself to other writers. I know what I am working with and toward is quality material.
I didn’t always believe that.
How is your blogging going?
How is your writing going?
Poetry, novel, short story, flash fiction, what are you into?
Is there something you would like me to consider to write for Peeking Beneath? Let me know.
Main Blog: Inside Cup