Sunday, 27 July 2014

RoW80 Check In: What a Change!

This week has been a complete U-turn in comparison to last week. I’m not longer feeling so down, my productivity has peaked again and I’ve been getting so much more done with my writing that I thought I would be able to. More importantly I’m enjoying myself again, feeling that passion for writing which drove me to take up the pen and the keyboard in the first place. This week has been a week of discovery and rediscovery for me. I’m waking up earlier, sleeping better and getting so much more done. I discovered that I’m more productive in the mornings, not long after I first wake up about 7:30, that I like to take a two hour break for lunch to recharge and that when my parents come home from work I tend to meander in what I do but by 8pm I’m usually back at the computer working.

For the first time since I started this round I’m actually doing stuff that is on my goal list without having to put it on my daily to do list. I’ve made my goals into my habit, pretty much as I hoped to do. Without even meaning to I take part in social media, using it to build contacts and spread ideas as I lay on the sofa during my breaks. I write more often and for longer than I need to. I’m making major progress on a lot of things and I’m just so happy. But enough about how I’m a happy springy bunny in comparison to last week, let’s take a look at how my goals went;

Post 1 blog post other than a RoW80 check in a week –   I’ve actually begun to post twice a week now, on Wednesday with WiPpet Wednesday and on Fridays with my 3 Act Structure series. It’s amazing to me that without meaning to I’ve created a schedule and I’ve already got a bunch of posts lined up for the weeks to come. Progress –  Excellent

30 Minutes on social media a day – As I’ve said already I’ve been doing this without realising. I’ve been commenting on LinkedIn group discussions, talking to people on Twitter and I’ve also made more changes to my Facebook page. It hasn’t gone live yet though, I’m still waiting to sort out my profile pictures before I do that. Progress – Major improvements

Spend 1 hour doing a creative activity each day – Most days this week I’ve been either writing for the Autharium Project or jotting down blog post ideas. Sometimes I’ve even been writing the posts themselves, getting them ready to for editing and then publication. I might not spend a complete hour on one project but I’ve spent an hour doing something creative, split over different things. As long as I keep the productivity going, for me, that’s all that matters. Progress – Excellent

Spend 1 hour doing a different creative activity each day – I’ve actually managed to do this properly this week, every day I’ve been either editing or outlining. I’ve discovered that I prefer to edit with the tv on in the background, giving me something to listen to and watch between edits. I usually do this in the living room, with the family around so I can actually be near real people for a change instead of sitting in all on my own in my room/office. Hopefully I can keep this up into the next week. Progress – Excellent

Start and try for completion of projects on the order day – I’ve had a big project come through with my freelancing this week, as well as a few enquiries that I’m chasing up to see if there’s any work to be had there. Although I’ve not managed to complete the projects that I do have on the same day as they were ordered (5,000 words is a lot to write in one day on one thing) I’ve begun to write them as soon as they were ordered, meaning that I complete projects quicker and the money rolls in. More importantly I do my work on them before I do anything else. Progress – Excellent

So that’s it. This week has been great for me in terms of productivity, work ethic and general happiness. I go to bed tired each night and sleep fantastically. I don’t feel guilty for spending time away from the computer because I’ve actually done more of what I was meant to do that day and I can do the rest when everyone else has gone to bed.

On a side note I’m considering moving this blog over to Wordpress. Blogger keeps messing up the formatting on my posts even though they display fine on the preview and I’ve just been hearing a lot of good things about Wordpress and have for a while. I started this blog back in 2011 and I didn’t really know much about the blogosphere and which hosts were better. I just chose the one that my friend suggested (incidentally she’s since relocated to Wordpress and is now encouraging me to do the same). I also didn’t know what I would blog about at the time, just going with whatever caught my fancy, hence the meandering posts if you read through the archives. Now though I know, I have a clear idea and I’m torn.

Let me know what you think in the comments below. If I do move the blog over I’ll probably bring all the posts from June onwards over too, as well as any really useful ones that I made in the past. What do you think? Should I stay where I am? Or should I move? Do I risk losing the 6 followers I have on Blogger by moving to the more commonly used Wordpress? Is Wordpress as good as I’ve heard? How would you go about switching the blog? And don’t forget the goals progress. Am I getting too ahead of myself? Do I need to slow down or run the risk of burning out? Have I been too optimistic in my view of what I’ve achieved this week?


  1. Looks like super progress on those goals. Way to go!

    I've never been on Blogger, so I can't compare the two. I do know that I often have problems commenting on Blogger posts. It's not a consistent problem, or always on the same computer, so it gets a bit irritating. I've been on Wordpress since I started blogging and I really don't have any problems with it.

    1. Thanks so much for your support.
      I didn't realise that there were so many problems with using Blogger lately, outside of the formatting issues that I have from time to time. It's great to know that there's other things wrong as well.

  2. Excellent week, and I'm glad you're doing better.

    I've never attempted a blog conversion, but I have had blogs on both Blogger and Wordpress, and for me, Wordpress is the way to go. Making comments on Blogger is occasionally a hit-or-miss proposition if you don't have a Blogger account. I finally started using the Blogger account to comment so I wouldn't get hassled. You don't have that many entries here, so you could move everything you have here without too much difficulty. The best way to find out how difficult it would be is to set up a Wordpress account, try the import, and see how you like it over there. Good luck, and let me know if you need any help.

    1. As someone familiar with both platforms thanks so much for commenting. I'll do as you've suggested, move things over and see how it goes. If I get really stuff trying to do that I'll definitely be in touch. Sometimes computers and the web just confuse me.

  3. Great progress!!

    I've done both, and prefer wordpress. It's more like a website, which is what I wanted for authorly things anyway. =P

    1. Thanks for your comment, I've been looking into getting an actual website for a while and considering I'll a little bit illiterate when it comes to coding and website design Wordpress seems like the next best thing. I'm wondering though, is it worth spending the $12 a year to have the custom domain name option?
      It seems like it might be but I'm a little worried that I might be getting ahead of myself, trying to run before I can even crawl, by getting the name straight away. Then again it does secure the name for me if I get it early.
      Aargh decisions!

    2. Nicole,
      Yes, it is DEFINITELY worth it to secure your own domain name, even before you have a following. Building a following and a readership at one domain name, and then having to try to move everyone over to your new domain name after you have dozens or hundreds of followers, is brutal! Don't put yourself through that hassle. Get your domain name and hosting plan (you can find some really good ones for very cheap), and get set up with a powered blog. Going with, where they host your blog for free, is an okay second choice, but remember - they then own your platform, and they control what you can or cannot do with your free blog. If you use a Wordpress.ORG blog (which is still free software) on your own domain name, then YOU own your platform, and you can make whatever changes to your blog that you want to do. Start simple and learn at your own pace, but it's all your own thing, not theirs. :-) And your following and readership won't have to try to find you all over again after you move again to your own domain later.

    3. Oh wow, thanks so much for that information. I'm guessing it's not as hard as my brain is telling me but I'd love to get that info from someone who's actually done it who might be willing to talk me through or calm me down if I get confused. I tend to get quite agitated and confused if I can't understand something and tutorials on the internet aren't quite the same thing.
      Can you suggest any worth while tutorials or information for me to check out that puts it all in layman's terms?

    4. Oooh, I wish I could. I'm afraid I haven't been looking for layman's terms instruction on websites for, oh, ages. Everything has changed so much since I started online, y'know? All I can suggest is that you first search for 'low cost Wordpress hosting', and research some of the top results. You want a hosting service with very high uptime (98% at the absolute lowest), who host Wordpress blogs and will set that up for you, and who run a LINUX server. Trust me on that - Wordpress runs the smoothest on a Linux web host server. You should be able to find one for from 5 to 7 bucks a month, or less if you pay for a whole year. Ideally, an IMAP email account (usually at least five of those) should also be included, and they should be able to walk you through setting that up, as well. Also, most hosting services out there should offer the actual domain name ( for free, with hosting. When they get your domain name for you, they also do all the technical stuff to get your domain name to work with their servers, which otherwise you'd need to do yourself. I used to suggest GoDaddy, but I had been having problems with my site's uptime with them, so I changed to a new server/host that my nephew had set up, trying to help him out, you know. I would do a Google search, though, if I were you. There are plenty of reputable, established web hosting services that offer all those things (email. domain name, Linux hosting, Wordpress automatically installed, low price, and high uptime). I know you'll feel a huge sense of accomplishment if you do this yourself, but feel free to email me at tammyjrizzo at gmail dot com if you want more help. :-D I'll do my best!

    5. Oh! Two more things - once you find a hosting service you feel comfortable with, try to sign up with them over the phone, so you can actually have a live person walking you through it. Also, do yourself a HUGE favor with your new site and blog, and don't enable CAPTCHA verification services. Simply have the nice, live person you call, once your site is set up and working (this may take up to an hour, so this would be a second call) to help you set your discussion settings so that all replies must be held for moderation unless the author has been previously approved. You'll only need to approve your replies once for each author, and they'll never have to deal with CAPTCHA, which really turns off a huge number of people who would otherwise contribute great comments. Like me; I hate CAPTCHA - I don't have great eyesight, and I have to refresh the image to a new one sometimes a dozen times before getting one I can actually see, and, most times, by that time, I'm fed up and figure you really don't want to interact that badly, if you're setting up obstacles like that to prevent it. I know, CAPTCHA sounded really smart when it first came out - cut down on spammers, yay! But moderating all new comments is a much friendlier, warmer, more welcoming way of allowing comments, and it doesn't take any more time to hit 'approve' than it does to hit 'reply' ... which, by the way, on Wordpress blogs, automatically approves the comment and the commenter. I mean, you'd be reading the comment anyway, right? Also, Akismet is a WONDERFUL Wordpress plug-in that catches spam for you and filters it to a spam folder, where you can check it and see if it's not spam. It's caught thousands of spams for me, and hasn't let one through yet as not spam, and has not yet caught a real comment thinking it is spam. Akismet is your FRIEND! :-D