What can blogging every day for a month do for you?
A Serb-English translator in Belgrade got multiple offers of paid blogging gigs from organizations that read what she was posting on her own website.
An author battling writer’s block recharged his creative writing batteries so much he found the inspiration he needed to start a novel.
Many people reported substantial increases in traffic, comments and subscribers to their blogs. Others met fellow bloggers they plan to exchange guest posts with on a regular basis. Still others used the time to change their blog designs, learn how to add images or sidebar widgets, add an RSS feed or get up to speed on Twitter.
Blogging Success Stories
But why take it from me? Here are some of the most noteworthy successes from among the close to 250 people in this year’s blogathon, in their own words:
1. Got multiple job offers. “After first week of blogathon I got my first job offer, to work as professional blogger for small translation agency. We negotiated and didn’t agree on payments issue, but I didn’t have much time to despair. The next day I got two similar offers from one of the world’s science blogger society with much better terms. Unbelievable, a few days later my blog posts about bastardization of language brought me another job offer. This time it was from a well-known translation agency from the neighbor country whose offer was just to good to be declined. I passed their translation test for IT translator and localization specialist and got the job. I’m finishing the school year with my students in few weeks and I’m about to finish my (master’s) thesis so I thought I’ll have plenty of free time this summer. I’m actually happy that I have to change my plans. This new job looks like a great opportunity to gain new experience while doing something that I love. And I have blogathon to thank for all this!” – Aleksandra Milcic Radovanovic, Linguist Blog
2. Came up with plot for a novel.“For years I felt like the spark had gone out of my writing, but now it seems to be coming back. Why is this happening? Because I not only committed to writing every day, but dedicated myself to the craft. It motivated me to be more active in local and virtual communities so I would have something worthwhile to write about and a reason to promote it. I spent time with each post, rather than churning them out. On May 21, while on vacation driving to Montreal, I was visited by an idea for a novel. Over the course of 5 minutes, the plot opened up before me and I knew what would happen to the main characters. I didn’t have to pull over, but I had to explain to my partner why I was crying. I have had several major epiphanies in my life, but none touched quite so close to my creative aspirations. My next project, beginning June 1, is to work on the novel daily while the scent is still fresh. The idea is not related to anything I have been blogging about, but it came (in part) because the blogathon turned on a part of my mind involved in synthesizing ideas. I believe the creative block I’ve struggled with for at least six years may be over.” – Van Waffle, Speed River Journal
3. Had posts picked up by daily newspaper. “I’m extremely grateful to The Baltimore Sun, which featured two of my posts, “How to make an herb planter box,” and “Presentation’s role in the school lunch battle,” on their home page this month. This brought in new readers, increased my stats, and just plain made my day.” – Jennifer Walker, My Morning Chocolate
4. Registered triple digit spike in traffic. “One of my posts early in the month, I’m Giving Up Reading for a Year, was picked up by a prominent tech blog, DaringFireball.net, as well as by Hacker News. It also circulated around Twitter for several days. The result? My average of 30k monthly views spiked to 102k this month. I’ve also found a sponsor for my site for one week in June and I’ve gained several more paying members for the site. – Harry Marks, Curious Rat
5. Had a post go viral on social media. “On the last day of the blogathon, a guest post by Finnish translator Jill Timbers passed on startling info about the translation into that language of JK Rowling’s upcoming new fall release. The translator is expected to do in three weeks what should take about six months. The post was read about 700 times that day, shared on social media about 400 times, and picked up by Galley Cat, mediabistro’s website on the publishing industry. In the last five days, the post has been viewed by over 1,500 unique visitors. This is an absolute record for me! I couldn’t be happier that it was about an issue that really needs to reach a wider audience: that translators are not monkeys with typewriters, churning out words without any thought or skill or creativity.” – Lisa Carter, Intralingo
6. Gained more first-time visitors. “I did achieve my goal of more than 5,000 unique visitors to the Preternatural Post website during May.” – Mena, The Preternatural Post
7. Got a big increase in comments. ” I received more comments this month than most years I’ve been blogging, and I learned to hit the Facebook button so I could share my posts with my FB friends. Hopefully, some of them will sign up next
year!” – Mikaela D’Eigh, La Belle Dame de Merci
8. Found a warmer way to connect with readers. “I was being very cautious and using a more remote and formal voice in posts before the Blogathon, but reading other bloggers’ sites helped me see ways to retain the scientific credibility I wanted to promote on the blog and yet also have a warmer and more human connection with readers. I think this is a big improvement for the blog and it definitely would not have happened without the blogathon.” – Peggy Noonan, Alternative Medicine for You
9. Got organized. “I became more organized, something I’ve failed to do in eight years of blogging. I have my posts through the entire weekend pre-written and scheduled to post automatically, freeing up my weekend. The blogathon also helped me accomplish my main goal – get back in the habit of blogging regularly. I had become lazy, and the less I write, the less I can think of things to write about. Creating a”Fiction Friday” theme day is also a push for me to exercise my creative brain, and look at pieces I’ve started and forgotten.” – Christine Calvin, Inspired Life and Adventures in Babyfood
10. Spiffed up blog design. “I learned how to put a subscription button on the site, but so far only have one subscriber, so that doesn’t mean much. I’ve spiffed up the look of both blogs, with new header photos. I’m now adding illustrations to every post. My “second act” entry attracted the attention of the publicity director for the nonprofit park where I’m a docent. She wants to use it as the nucleus for a piece she wants to do on docents in September.” – Kathryn Lance, Kathryn Lance’s Books and Musings
11. Caught the interest of potential sponsors. “Last year I missed a day. This year I made it the whole month! My (posts) have improved in quality this month, and I have more subscribers and comments. I did have a sponsor contact me to advertise on a specific blog, and am seeking more advertisers. That was a boost. I did learn how to make a Wordle too.” – Nicky LaMarco, Freelance Writing 4 Beginners
12. Found writing role models. “To be honest, writing a post everyday was quite overwhelming. But I looked around at other bloggers, professional writers who needed to meet the deadline on top of daily blogging, and they are moms, too. I have learned tons from other writers throughout this month. Thank you all for inspiring me.” – Sun Hee Yoon, Fiery Memoir
13. Found her voice as a writer. “After never thinking about it, never honing in on it, never truly attempting it, I now realize I am a writer. It just was never my time, until now. The blogathon confirmed to myself that I am capable of producing something. Something interesting. Something that flows from my heartstrings onto cyber paper, for all those interested to read.” – Daphne Romero, My Distant Husband
14. Conquered the ‘what ifs.’ “The timing of the blogathon was ideal because I needed to be accountable, and I needed to get busy. 31 days later I feel victorious. I have faced and conquered my what ifs. I have made new friends, had increased recognition, and absolute priceless support….I promise you, this is a habit that I intend to keep. If you have any what ifs between you and your goals today, I encourage you to call them out and get started anyway. I was making excuses and waiting until the time was right to take this part of my business, and yes, my heart, seriously. But the right time never just arrives, the right time comes when we take it. Take the time today to get busy on one of your goals – 21 days makes a habit and for me, 31 days is victory.” – Melissa Miller-Young, Zen Life Solutions