If Scorpio Was An Ice Cream Flavor

250088

If the zodiac sign Scorpio was an ice cream flavor it would be chocolate chip cookie dough for sure. Need to better understand why? Scorpios know exactly how to get to the bottom of things. Scorpios know how to ask the right questions to get y’all to think deeper and to realize what y’all actually want…. and what you actually want is that ice cream with that chocolate chip cookie dough tucked inside that vanilla ice cream. If you are in Texas there is only ONE brand to turn to, Blue Bell for sure. I don’t know if the yankees and foreigners have access to Blue Bell or not, nor do I really care, but if not, then it is y’all taking the loss there.

011

Posted From Scorpion Sting’s Motorola Droid Maxx!

My Children & The Blogging World

130214160240-rule-2-anything-post-becomes-public-story-top

All three of my children have been pressing me to help them each get a blog off the ground. I keep blowing them off jokingly because I really think they are asking the wrong person about how to make a blog. Since I consider my own writing to be an illustration of my thoughts, concerns, and opinions before I think of it as a blog, I find it hard giving advice. My children changed their tactics, they all three got together to hit me all at once, and to put me in the hot seat. I don’t like to be in the hot seat and I really am not a good teacher. Before we begin, let me just make it clear that the purpose of this particular post is for my children, because after we talked I decided I needed to write out what I had said for future reference of my own personal guidelines. If, someone else, anyone else, follows the guidelines y’all are absolutely on your own. The mere fact that I will write any of this down is coincidental and should not be taken as your guidelines or rules for your internet blogging experience. However, if you find some of it to be helpful then that is great as well. So, before I begin I will give introduction to my children, referenced by age, gender, and initials. My son, JB, 12 y/o. My daughter, CD, 17 y/o. My daughter, LW, 23 y/o. Each of them a different identity with different ideas but all three share one common denominator, me.

The very first thing, and to me, the most important thing to remember is that anything and everything you post to the internet is going to be able to be viewed by anyone in the world. Can you tell we have had a similar conversation about Facebook, Pinterest, and Instagram? I remind them that if they are not willing to share it with the world then it does not belong on the internet and that is a choice they must live with every single time they click the “publish” button. I also explained the whole “blogosphere” thing to them. We looked at what makes up the blogosphere and what makes it such a desirable place to be. I borrow the definition of blogosphere from the Wikipedia definition. “Blogosphere: The blogosphere is made up of all blogs and their interconnections. The term implies that blogs exist together as a connected community (or as a collection of connected communities) or as a social network in which everyday authors can publish their opinions“. It may not be the best definition, but it is the simplist to understand. Because, in the end, the interconnection of all the blogs is what defines the different communities that have evolved over the years.

I try to follow these simple steps and rules because over time they are what helps me personally. I reminded them that it isn’t just about writing their blog, it is about interacting with readers, as well as going out exploring other blogs they might have an interest in. I have also recommended they use the WordPress format because it is super simple to use.

  • The number one thing you need is subject material to write about on your blog. One cannot always pick a subject that people might be searching for, but their is always an endless list of things to write about. If you blog about something specific then you need to stick to the subject. If you have an open ended blog the sky is the limit. Give value, no matter how small and somebody out there will appreciate the post and you will begin to get yourself a following. Remember that as long as you know more than somebody else you have something to offer.
  • Writing a blog post needs to come from you. It can be as original as you are and still be about something you read, saw, or did. The key with every post is writing is writing something that sounds like YOU. Write your content in your words, put your own personality into it, state your views, sound different then the rest of the crowd, and then it will stand out more.
  • Now you need to bring all of the elements of your post together. Writing a blog post consists of sticking with a set layout that will work on most if not all of your posts. Put keywords in the title, then again in each paragraph, sum it all up with the last paragraph so your reader doesn’t feel left hanging, and add in more of your keywords. Be sure to add tags to your post which refer to the keywords so relevant searches can happen. There should be searchable keywords throughout your post.
  • You must continue to ask yourself if everything makes sense, is there too much information or not enough, and fine tune it so your keywords are placed in logical places so they don’t look like they were placed randomly. If what you are writing does not make sense then the reader will quickly move on and probably dismiss any future posts because they feel their time is being wasted.
  • Proof reading is both the blessing and the curse of anything that is written. But, those who are just starting out need to look for the misspelled words, the missing words, and the sentences that just don’t make any sense for some reason. This is a hard one for me because I write as if I were speaking and I generally do not proof read until after it is published or after a grammar Nazi gets ahold of me.
  • For the most part it is always important to consider who your audience actually is. Do you know who your audience is? Do you care who your audience is? I’m a firm believer in writing for yourself and not for the purpose of pleasing others. If people want to read what you write then they will and if not then they generally move on. Don’t let this fact determine how you write or what you write about because then your message will get blurred and eventually lost.
  • Be sure you pick your battles when deciding what to write about. As much as you may want to, you can’t enlighten everyone on the internet because not every single person is actually interested in what you have to say. This is a hard pill that everyone of us has to swallow. Realize this simple factoid and you will be able to hold on to your sanity.
  • Always remember that there are other people on the other side of your computer screen. These people may not share your opinions and they may not appreciate what you have to say. Not everyone is liked by everyone. Many people hide behind their internet identity and write things that they wouldn’t say or do in real life. These people will try to bring you down to their level, so just try to remember that just because you have an opinion doesn’t mean that you are always right.
  • Try to write as if you were speaking to someone sitting next to you. It will change how and what you write. Remember that once you hit publish it is going to be available to millions of people. As an example, my family reads my blog on occasion and eventhough they don’t care for my blog sometimes they don’t give me allot of grief. They know the real me and know that the on-line me are the same person. I am who I am no matter where I am. Does this work for everyone? I couldn’t tell you but I know it works for me.
  • When in doubt, don’t publish it. I have written many posts that have never been published and probably never will be. They are reminders to me that my opinion is sometimes best left unwritten and unseen. Remember that over time you will gain followers as well as haters, both should be embraced knowing that people are indeed reading what you wrote.
  • Finally, nobody will find you by accident. You need to promote yourself through the different social networking platforms that are out there. Share what you write and you will receive feedback and comments. I’m sure there are many more fine social networks out there. I personally use Blogcatalog, Google+, and Facebook. While on the topic of “communities” I would like to mention Blogcatalog since I have been a member there for many years. Blogcatalog is full of many great people sporting great personalies and blogs as well. Blogcatalog is a place to discuss anything from A – Z and everything in between. It has been a great place for support, growing friendships, and also gives my me ideas and inspiration for different topics I might right about.

I remind y’all that I’m writing this for my children, all who read my blog, all who know who I am as a father, an individual, as well as a person who has been around the world a few times while taking the time to observe and learn something new. Are there things I wish they wouldn’t read? Sure, but I don’t tend to hide things from people. My wife would like me to quit writing my blog altogether. She has her reasons. She also “allows” me to continue because she knows I enjoy doing it and that is what this all about, enjoy what you are doing. She is happy I keep names out of my blog and when she reads it she knows most of the time who I am talking about. My writing style isn’t for everyone but it is what works for me. Soon enough my children will have their individual blogs up, running, and operational. When they do one can be assured that I will be promoting them here and through the normal ritualistic channels that I normally use. For now, this post is over, y’all will be reading more about their blogs in the near future. In fact, my son will be providing the next guest post for me. It will be an unedited “page” from his journal to see if he likes seeing his thoughts out there for everyone to see.

Maybe y’all gained something from all of this nonsense and if you did, maybe, just maybe, it might be a step closer for everyone to help figure out why I try to write here everyday. Doing posts like this one is allot like therapy because I learn things about myself I otherwise have been taking for granted. Both images used in this post were acquired using a Google image search and are being borrowed to illustrate a point. I claim no ownership of either picture.

blog-or-website

Should I Even Call This Mess A “Blog”?

blog_logo

I suppose by “definition” what I have here could be considered to be a blog. Do you know the definition of blog? The simple version which concludes that a blog is a website where entries are written in chronological order and commonly displayed in reverse chronological order. Mine does that. I also do allot of Mobile blogging (moblogging), which is a method of publishing to a blog from a mobile phone. A moblog helps habitual bloggers (like myself) to post articles and pictures directly from their phones even when on the move. Mobile blogging has been made possible by technological convergence, as bloggers have been able to write, record and upload different media all from a single, mobile device. Mobile blogging is popular among people with camera phones which allow them to send photos and video that then appear as entries on their blog, or to use mobile browsers to publish content directly to any blogging platform with mobile posting compatibility. In the end, it is convenient because I can do when the moment arises or the thought crosses my mind. There are many advantages to being able to blog from anywhere and anytime. Mobile blogging is particularly helpful to travelers or people on the move when access to a computer with Internet connection may be difficult. The traveler can snap photos and with an enabled phone can easily upload such pictures with text descriptions directly to his or her blog. If the camera phone is equipped for Auto-geo-tagging, the blog may be able to show a map of the locations. With my new phone, (Motorola Droid Maxx),  which is less than a week old, has many new features which have been really exciting as far as being able to keep up with my blog and all the ones I try to visit regularly.

ithinkthereforeiblog

A majority of the blogs are interactive, allowing visitors to leave comments and even message each other on the blogs, and it is this interactivity that distinguishes a blog from other static websites. In that sense, blogging can be seen as a form of social networking service. Indeed, bloggers do not only produce content to post on their blogs, but also build social relations with their readers and other bloggers throughout the world. Many blogs provide commentary on a particular subject; others function as more personal online diaries; others function more as online brand advertising of a particular individual or company. A typical blog combines text, images, and links to other blogs, web pages, and other media related to its topic. I think I’m still qualifying as a blog. The ability of readers to leave comments in an interactive format is an important contribution to the popularity of many blogs.

k-bigpic

People have different ideas when it comes to the length of post. Many people advocate keeping it short, however some of the best posts I’ve written or read have been long, some very very long. They were the best because they did not skim the subject so they gave real value and often told their story making it engaging by making a personal connection with me the reader. I believe that the posts that make that personal connection that resonates with the reader get more likes, more comments, and get shared more. Being I post allot of pictures here as well I often have very short posts because the “message” is self-contained in the picture.

HowToBlogMain

Anyone who surfs the “net” can find that the blogosphere counts several million active blogs offering a great variety of topics and content. The wonderful aspect of a blog creation is that anyone who has a particular hobby, knowledge, passion or a business to promote, can easily do it, and they generally do. I guess, looking back, the danger is starting a blog without a specific plan, target group, and more importantly knowledge of content for which the blog was created. Good content is the most important factor of your blog since not only it is the key to attract readers and turn them to loyal followers but also to increase your internet exposure via the search engines. I don’t look for search engine exposure, meaning I don’t do anything on purpose which gives me a ranking or page position. People just find me one way or another. I follow some basic rules of engagement in order to produce what I consider to be successful content and, at the end of the day, achieve my blog’s goal which is to get read and encourage readers to return back to my blog. Let’s explore my general rules of engagement and guidelines.

media-3224641939148073958-Rules_Engagement_rovi_1280x640__267872

The 10 Rules I blog by.

01. Define your blog and who you wish to target to read your blog. The 1st thing to do is to organize your ideas and define the main topic which will define your blog’s identity.

  • What do I want to write about today? The next day? 6 months from now?
  • What is my target group of readers, follower, and visitors?
  • What type of language should I use to communicate with my readers?

02. Make time to make posts.

  • A blog needs time and efforts to stay permanently active and help you interact on a regular basis with your readers.
  • Don’t risk losing your audience because of a lack of communication.

03. Take time to talk to your audience. Make them feel as though they can interact with you and make sure they get the interaction they are looking for.

  • Having defined your target group of readers, you will need to write in the appropriate tone and style to attract their interest and understanding; imagine having a conversation with your audience and write clearly and simply as if you were talking to them.
  • When I write, I write as if I am talking, whether just out-loud or physically to others.

04. Give your blog and posts a friendly and inviting format.

  • Even if you believe your post is original and really interesting, if it comes in a big block of text, no one will take the time to read it; you need to provide the reader with a friendly post format by separating it into distinct and concise paragraphs, preceded by sub-headings when needed, use bullet points lists where needed (like here with what I’m doing), illustrate it with images, use bold or italics to point out your key elements and you’ll get your reader’s attention.

05. When starting a new post use eye catching and attractive titles.

  • Once your post is written, take your time to come up with a fantastically eye catching title. Your title is how you’ll attract the readers repeatedly. It should directly inform the reader regarding what your post is about, a sort of “summary” of what he/she will read.

06. Be sure to use “tags” which will be effective in relation to your post.

  • Ask yourself which terms are more likely to be used by users when they search for the particular topic.
  • Then make sure you use the main keywords and come up with different variations that are likely to be searched when formulating your tags.
  • Finally try to incorporate the “tag” words in the keywords of your post in order to increase the possibility to be found in the search engines.

07. Update your blog frequently to keep the content fresh and inviting.

  • As mentioned earlier, you need to determine a time plan in order to frequently update your blog, ideally on a daily-basis.
  • This will not only keep the attention of your readers but also it will help you attract more readers and loyal followers to your blog.
  • The more content you produce the more traffic you are likely to get from your readers.

08. Use “social media” buttons to encourage your readers to share.

  • There are many out there, I personally use Facebook, Pinterest, Google+, and Twitter.
  • By setting up an RSS Feed and by encouraging your users to subscribe, you will increase your readers and you are more likely to get more returning visitors.
  • Note that most Blogging engines automatically support RSS feeds, so all you need to do is to place their button in a strategic position in order to help readers subscribe.
  • It doesn’t hurt to belong to a great blogging community either. My personal favorite is Blogcatalog!
  • Additionally social media can drive you lots of traffic and they can help you build steady communication with your readers.
  • Make sure you add sharing buttons in your blog and try to place them too in strategic positions to increase the number of shares.

09. Try to incorporate “how-to” and “top-10” posts on occasion to mix things up and keep the reader wondering what’s next.

  • The how-to guides and the top-10 articles usually become very popular on social media networks.
  • People love these articles and they are more likely to read them, like them, comment on them, and share them.
  • Additionally by creating such content you are more likely to increase your search engine traffic since many surfers search for such content regularly.

10. I have found that proof reading and spell checking are valuable tools.

  • This might be common sense but sometimes we can be so enthusiastic about a new post that we forget to take the time to proof read it.
  • Remember that you may be listed and archived in the Internet along with your grammar, syntax or even informative mistakes.
  • Don’t forget to be honest about what you share.
  • If you have the patience to keep being an active blogger and creating good content, you will be surprised to see your audience growing and your blog getting the success it deserves.

Internet-TV

I have learned over the years that my blog(s) tend to develop multiple personalities and sometimes I need to reel them back in. When I started here at WordPress I wanted to have one blog that expressed ALL of my ideas. I wanted one stop shopping. I combined 6 blogs to create The Sting Of The Scorpion which I feel know encompasses the message(s) I’m trying to express. My blog is very much a reflection of what mood I am in at any particular moment. In the end, it works for me and that results in more mileage for my blog. I am very dedicated to the upkeep and appearance of my blog. This keeps me active here which results in more posts for others to read.

All the pictures and some of this information was borrowed from the World Wide Web to be placed on The Sting Of The Scorpion, because everything else just bites. Remember boys and girls, eat it everyday, and twice if you are up to it.