5.11.2011

The Blog Notebook: Organizing my Bloggy Stuff~

Do you blog?  If so, is blogging a casual past time?  a serious hobby?  your job?  

For me, blogging is serious business.  It started out as a casual hobby...but then the obsession set in.  You know about that, don't you?   Oh, I think you do.  When you are sitting at the park watching your kiddos play and blog posts are floating on the periphery of your thoughts.  When you are walking through a store, and project ideas keep popping into your head...and you are composing blog posts in your mind to go with each.  Oh yes.  It's true.  It wasn't long before I was head over heels in love with blogging.

And before I go on, I have to say, that although I love my computer...and use it for soooo many things, I also love paper.  Yep, good old fashioned paper.  I'm a list maker.  An idea jotter-downer (yes, that is a technical term.)  I have notebooks...lots of them...where I keep track of just about everything.  And the notebook thing worked well for blogging -  for a while.  Until I started to not be able to find the idea or list or what-have-you that I needed, when I needed it.  So I knew I had to come up with a better plan.   And it still  had to be on paper.  (Couldn't give that part up.)

So I came up with the Blog Binder.  Okay, so some of you are probably way ahead of me on this one.  "Welcome to the club, Wendy!"  you're thinking.  "Slow, much, Wendy?" you're saying to yourself.  Well, maybe.  But now I have this great binder to keep my blog in order, so I wanted to share it with you...

First up,  I wanted to make it fun and happy so I chose a pink one. Why not use a happy color?  Then I had to think up the categories that would work best for me...

Here's what I came up with...


1. A Blog Calendar.  Once I started blogging in a serious way, I found it essential to plan out my  posts in advance.  So, I needed to use a calendar.  I used to  list them in my planner (yes, I use a planner...paper-using list-maker, remember?) but I wanted a place just dedicated to blogging, so a calendar in my binder worked well.  In the calendar I list not only posts, but linky-parties I'm going to participate in, when I need to remove ads from my blog, when I need to send invoices, etc.  In short, anything and everything solely devoted to the blog.

Here are some links to some great FREE blog calendar printables.  This one from Living Locurto (which I used in my binder) and this one from Evelyn Kate Designs are weekly.  A weekly calendar works well for me because I have lots of stuff I need to keep track of.  This one from Blogging BookShelf is monthly.  If you just want to track posts, something like this would work well.

2. Brainstorming.  Let's face it. Coming up with fresh subject matter isn't always easy.  Brainstorming for your blog is important.  So I have a section just dedicated to that.  When a random idea comes to me, I start a page for it.  Then when I have some time (ha ha), I brainstorm the topic to come up with ideas.  I also keep lists of projects I'd like to do that could be blogworthy, or single post ideas that don't need to be fleshed out, so that I can refer to them when I'm not feeling very creative.

3. To Do's.  I have a section in my binder for to-do's.  This is where I can keep notes on any projects that I am working on that I will want to blog, so that I can have all of my "stuff" in one place.  I like to list sources, ideas, fabric swatches, paint colors, you name it. 

4. Business.  Now, I must preface this by saying that my blog is my job.  So I have a lot of stuff on the business end of blogging that I need to track, including the dates for ads to go up and come down (that I can then transfer to my calendar), information for product reviews or posts of that nature, and other miscellaneous stuff.  Having all of the nitty-gritty in one place sure is helpful.

5. Inspiration.  This is one of my favorite parts of my binder.  In this section, I put magazine tear-sheets or photos or other things that inspire me that I might want to incorporate into the blog.  Some I choose just for the color, or a word, or the feeling.  Inspiration can come from just about anything.  But organizing inspiration (at least for me) is important. 


6. Finally, I have a folder (pink again!) where I can keep loose odds and ends that I need on hand...like these paint chip cards. 

So there you have it...my blog brain in hard copy.  A portable version that doesn't require wi-fi.  The Blog Notebook.  Hope it gave you a little inspiration... 

Have a great day~

36 comments:

Steph @ Crafting in the Rain said...

Looks cool! I'm still very new to the whole blogging thing--no business section needed for me :) But I do already have a little list going of posts I want to do, projects I need to finish up, etc.

adventuresindinner said...

So cool to see your process. I'm still relatively new to the world and have only progressed to the point of blog "post-its".

You're an inspiration-as always.

Bethany said...

What a great idea!!! I think so many post ideas have floated away from my brain because I don't have a good system.... I want to run to Target right now and stock up on cute stationery :)

liz@alittlepeaceofhome said...

I am a paper-using list-maker, too! Love your system & thanks so much for sharing your free printables! I look forward to checking them out!

Kelly said...

This is a great idea! "Running" a blog definitely gets confusing!


Kelly

twotinytoweads said...

Great idea! I have been filling up a cutsie notebook, but as I go along I don't have places to add things in the right sections. I will be putting one of these together for my blog asap! :)

byebyebitters said...

I'm just getting into blogging - this looks like a great idea to keep things organized. I'm with you - there's something magical about pen to paper...

msveronicas said...

Lovely. My blogging has picked up the pace and the weekly calendar is a perfect tool. Thanks for sharing.

Maddie Kertay- The Domestic Anarchist said...

Oh yes I am all about the paper.. easier then bringing the computer to the park while I watch the kids that is for sure!

Have you seen the one from http://brocantehome.bigcartel.com/product/the-bloggers-planner it's costs but I hear that it is wondeful and PRETTY!.. so very important! :)

Maddie

Missy said...

Thanks for the link to the bloggy calendars! I think I may make me up one of these too.
Just an FYI- the third link to the monthly calendar linked me back to the Evelyn Kate one. I'm not sure if anyone else had this issue but just thought I'd give you a heads up!

The mum of all trades said...

I love organistation in any form!!

ashley said...

Thanks for featuring my printable! I hope it gets you gals organized :)

www.evelynkatedesigns.com

Lisa Anderson said...

Cute idea, I love how organized you are with blogging!

dogsmom said...

If you saw my desk right now you would know how much I need inspiration like this. I keep scrap paper on the desk to write down new parties and hops as I find them. The idea is to then add them to my master list at the end of the day. Let's say I began with excellent intentions.
Recently I began noting blogging dates to remember in my pocket calendar. Those small spaces get filled to overflowing.
Anyone who wants to make money with a blog has to have an organizational system.

Robyn said...

I blog for the fun of it. For now. I jot down the in's and out's and experiences of settling into a new country. Maybe one day it will be big enough to have to have a blogging file. I'm still just small-fry for now.

proverbs31chick said...

I love blogging and treat it as a ministry to others. Thank u for all the wonderful tips by the way!

Mel said...

I think I might have to steal some ideas from you, my blog 'stuff' is all over the place, in my head, on scraps of paper next to our bed, in my car, bag, random emails to myself etc etc. I love the paper version idea.

ReFresh ReStyle said...

Just what I needed, I am loving blogging-but I am so unorganized! I get up from my desk, walk around, forget what I was doing, thinking, etc. I am going to give the notebook and printables a try! Thanks so much!
Debbie

Cozy Little House said...

Oh, it gave me some wonderful ideas! I thank you for that. You're way ahead of me. I'm a "paper" girl too. But I have all these spiral bound notebooks that are for all different aspects of the blog process. And it's not really working for me. I like your idea much better. I shall be implementing it forthwith!
Brenda

Leigh Ishee said...

Love it!!! Thanks for sharing!

Beth @beth-adam.blogspot.com said...

Thank you for posting this! I'm fairly new to blogging and this is going to help me get organized! I too am a "paper-using list-maker" that still has a paper planner, makes lists in notebooks and has a anxiety attack when I can't find "that exact piece of paper". haha :)

Handy Man, Crafty Woman said...

I started with post its and scraps of paper; Im just starting now to get a good system down. I'm trying to plan out each month in advance, and write some to-dos for every day for me to cross off.

Jill said...

I love this idea so much! I feel the same way about posting and not being able to think of anything to write. I will probably start one some day soon! Thanks!

Amanda said...

I love this! I've been planning a binder on the projects I'd love to tackle. This is such a great idea.

elizabeth said...

love this idea, I took your lead and made my own bloggie binder. and I shared it on my blog and linked it to you... thanks for sharing!!

http://pocketfulloflovelies.blogspot.com/2011/05/busy-bee.html

ragamuffingirl said...

I can really relate to the need to list things down! Thanks for sharing your binder :) it's lovely! Blogging is really more of a hobby for me but I think I like to do this for my studies ;)

eleven-o-one creations said...

Thanks for the tip. Anything to better organize. I just began blogging a month ago and am already finding I need to be better organized. Glad I read this early in my "career".
Fran @ eleven-o-one

Beatrice @ becado.blogspot.com said...

A huge thank you for this. I started blogging a little while ago and needed something to keep me organized. This was exactly what I was looking for. Thank you so much again.

Butterscotch said...

Wow, this is an awesome and helpful post!!

Qaseh Gifts said...

This is a great idea! Thx

Aimee said...

Thanks for sharing this post. I am a baby-blogger, and I will definitely be using some of these ideas. It seems no matter how many electronic gizmos we have to make out lives easier, the most useful solution if usually a notebook or binder :)

randomcathy.com said...

Even though I'm a regular reader of your blog I only just now saw this post. THANK YOU!!!

I found it at just the right time for me.

Elyse said...

Love this! Thank you for the ideas. Maybe someday I will busy enough with my blog to need something like this.

Linda Leyble said...

I definitely need this. I probably have about 4 notebooks on blog ideas etc - but I di need everything in one place. Love all the sections you've created.

Linda

PS - have you noticed anything weird about posting pics in Blogger. I edit my pics so they are right side up and when I insert them in Blogger - they are sideways. Driving me crazy!!

Tara said...

A blog notebook like this would be PERFECT for me as I'm fairly new to the blogging scene. I've read blogs for a while now but have only recently created a blog of my own. I want this to be a serious commitment on my part, and not to be a simple novelty. I think I will be going out to purchase a notebook like this tomorrow! Thanks for the helpful idea!

Omziin said...

I just started my blog and this was one of the things i made first for my blog :)