Lola’s Rambings is a feature on Lola’s Review where I talk about me or ramble on about a book or non-book related topic. Usually these posts are everything that doesn’t fall under any standard header, like blog tours, book blitzes, cover reveals or reviews. Lola’s Ramblings posts are are personal discussions of a certain topic. Sometimes about book related topics and sometimes about non-book related topics. This feature was previously known as About Me. The banner for this feature is designed by Michelle from Limabean Designs.
I am going to talk about writing blog posts today. As you might know I don’t really have a schedule or specific time to blog. I mostly try to blog when I have inspiration, but also have a sort of system of when I write my posts usually. It depends on the type of post, so per type of posts I will explain how and when I write those posts. I always schedule my posts for 9am my time, so that’s about 2am EST time if I am correct. I try to have only one post a day, Monday, tuesday and wednesdays are for reviews or tours and cover reveals. Thursdays is for Lola’s Ramblings posts, Fridays are for Lola’s Kitchen. Saturdays are for my to-be-read list meme or reviews. Sundays are for the sunday post.
How and when do I write my blog posts
I write my review of a book after I finished it and before I start a new book. I write my reviews of goodreads, then spell check in Notepad++, once I am satisfied with the review I publish it on goodreads. Then in Notepadd++ I start making the review post for my blog. I add the blurb, cover, links and html code so everything shows up right. Then I go to my blog and make a new post, where I load my review template. This template only contains the review header and the heading html code for the question on the button of the post. I copy and paste the html code for the review post I made in Notepad and add the relevant star rating on my blog. Then I come up with a questions that is sort of relevant to the review. I schedule my reviews for the next open slot on my blog, which is usually a monday, tuesday, wednesday or saturday. After that I add the book and link to my review for any challenge recap posts it counts for. I also link to the review on the my reviews page.
- Sunday Post.
I usually schedule my sunday post on monday or tuesday. I only work on one sunday post at the time. I use the previous sunday post html code as template for the next sunday post. I don’t have a standard template for this. Usually monday or tuesday I start a new post and copy and paste the whole previous sunday post. I remove things like the what did I do that week, but leave most of the mark-up and codes intact. Once I removed everything I won’t need anymore for the next sunday post I start adding new things.
Usually when I schedule the post on monday or tuesday I know the dinner schedule for a the rest of the week already and add that. I might have received a book or already know a few things that will happen that week. I add those and then over the course of the week I add new things when necessary. When a new sign-up post goes live on Lola’s Blog Tours? Add it to the post. I receive a new book for review? Add it to the post. I do this in little steps and then saturday evening I check everything another time to make sure it’s all correct, remove some typo’s and add the last few details. And it’s ready to go live the next morning.
- Lola’s Ramblings.
I try to keep about 1-2 months ahead with Lola’s Ramblings posts. Most Lola’s Ramblings posts get written towards the end of the month. I am writing this one end June. Before the month ends I want to be 2 months ahead, so before the end of June I want to have all the August posts written. Being ahead with Lola’s Ramblings posts prevents stressing and if a month is really busy I know I still have a buffer. While I don’t have specific days when I write my posts, the closer it get’s to the end of the month the more pressure I feel to get those posts written.
Sometimes inspiration strikes and if possible I try to write my posts then. In other cases I just have some free time and decide to write a blog posts. Then I check my list of possible topics and pick the one I most feel like writing. I keep track of possible topics in my google calendar and in a notepad. If I already have an idea which posts I want to write I schedule them in google calendar for that day, but this is still flexible. Post ideas are light purple and only once I have actually written and scheduled the posts I change it to dark purple on google calendar.
When I write a Lola’s Ramblings post I first load the template for that type of post which contains the html code for the lists, the banner and the intro text and place for a questions below. Having the template with already the heading code for a question at the bottom of the post makes it easier to remind myself I have to add a questions. I usually type the title first, then the question and then type the post. After the post is done I add the images. The sunday before a new Lola’s Ramblings post goes live I re-read the whole post again, change a few more things and do spell check. I might rewrite a few thigns, add points of whole paragrpahs, but usually these are minor things. Mostly rewording snetences, clarifying thigns, addign a few sentences.
- Lola’s Kitchen.
Lola’s Kitchen posts are a bit random as well. When I make dinner that I have made at least once before, but haven’t done a recipe post for yet I try to make pictures. I like to tweak most recipes, so that’s why I always make it at least once before I make pictures. It’s also handier to make pictures when I already know how to make it.
After I made the pictures I try to write the recipe post the same evening if possible. But that not always works. So then I write down in my google calendar which posts I still have to write. Beside that it works like Lola’s ramblings, where I write it down if I have a good idea and try to keep 2 months ahead. When I am writing recipe posts I first load the Lola’s Kitchen template which already includes the headings for ingredients, method, pictures and variation tips and the code for the lists. Then I write the ingredient list, the recipe and the variation tips. Then check the pictures I made and write down the numbers of those I want to use in my post. Then I add the pictures to my post and schedule it for the next empty friday.
- My To-Be Read List meme.
The My To-Be Read list meme is a meme where visitors can vote which book I will read that month. The first saturday of the month is for the poll, the second saturday of a month is to highlight which book won and the last saturday of the month is to review the book that won. I always keep these dates open in my calendar.
The poll posts usually get’s scheduled everywhere from two weeks to a few days before the poll has to go live. Usually I schedule it when inspiration hits or when I have time.
I also have a template for this one, which includes the header and blockquote and strong codes for the title. Then I pick 3 books I feel like reading at that moment and make the poll posts. Then go to surveymonkey and set up the poll and add that to the post. Then the friday after the poll I check the votes and schedule the chosen book post. If one book has a lot of votes and I don’t see that changing I might schedule the chosen book post earlier in the week and then check friday to make sure that book still wins and I have the right amount of votes listed.
- Challenges goal and recap posts.
Most challenge goal posts I write once I decide to sign-up for a challenge or soon after that. I often schedule them for the next open spot on my blog or for the next week if the next opens pot is too far away.
Once the goal post is live I already draft my recap posts. Then once the challenge starts every time I finish writign a review I check if a book counts for that challenge and then add it to the recap post if it does. I find it easier to keep up with this like that than wait till the challenge is almost over and then schedule the recap post. Usually after I schedule my review I think for which challenges the book counts, then I copy the information of the book from the sunday post book haul when I received the book and paste that in the appropriate recap post. By the time the recap psts almost goes live, I just have to check everything is correct one more time.
- Cover Reveals/ blog tours etc.
Usually I schedule these as soon as I receive the media kit for the tour. If it’s a tour I organize myself I often have the media kit as soon as the sign-ups are open. In that case I just schedule them whenever I have time. As soon as I sign-up for a tour I add the tour to my schedule, so I know not to schedule anything else on that day. With cover reveals I still have to add my cover review.
How and when do do the social media shares for my blog posts?
Nowadays I set up all the social media posts and tweets on sunday for the next week. Unless I am so busy I can’t do that, but I like to make tiem for this as it really helsp to set one hour apart for this ad then don’t have to worry about it the rest of the week.
I have Jetpack linked with my facebook and google + account, so I don’t have to do anything for those and they share every day the moment the post goes live. I do try to modify the text if possible as else the text is a bit weird and takes the literal text from the blog post. My tweets I schedule on sunday for all my posts that week. I try to schedule about 3 or 4 tweets for each post. The first tweet of the day is around 11am and contains mostly the post name and hashtags plus the book cover if it’s a review. Then I often schedule a tweet for evenings in my time and aroudn 3am my time for the US peeps.
For Pinterest I do the pins daily. Each day I check my posts and pin if necessary. For my reviews I have a review board, for blog tours and cover reveals I have a board and I also have a Lola’s Kitchen board.