You can do it: the Dummies Guide to Blogging

coverOver a pile of books that included two mosaic titles, a make-your-own-jewellery manual and the idiots guide to felt animals or some such thing, a customer  asked if I had any hobbies. This is a question I dread – reading so does not count and meeting friends in coffee shops only works if I’m writing my next novel there – thanks J.K.Rowling. Then it came to me in a nanosecond:

I blog.

It’s a terrific little hobby, it really is. You can do it anywhere and anytime – post earthquake it  turns out that 3am is quite good. There’s no law against doing it, and it involves no outlay on expensive equipment that then lies around gathering dust; i-Pads way off to one side here if you will! If you blog for the library it even comes with its own built- in buddy so you are guaranteed an audience of at least one. My buddy is large and lovely and lives in Lyttelton. I wish his name was Lionel – that would make a really bloggy sentence.

In fact the only thing I don’t like about blogging is the word: blog. Why didn’t we get bling – an altogether better word. Whereas “I blog” falls out of the mouth like a dead pachyderm, “I bling” takes wing and flies. Right now is the point at which my buddy will be anxiously scanning for links – aka computer witchcraft.  So here they are:


So how do you get started? Dead easy, scroll up to the top of this blog post. Click on ‘Leave a comment’. Write something. Click ‘Post comment’ and voila – you have taken your first step in the blog world. Well done!

31 thoughts on “You can do it: the Dummies Guide to Blogging

  1. Megan 11 April 2011 / 4:36 pm

    I beg to differ… reading is so a hobby!!!! It has to be or I will need to find one stat 🙂

  2. Ansa Liebenberg 11 April 2011 / 5:00 pm

    The main advantage of blogging is the sharing aspect, whereas reading could often be “in isolation”. Herein then lies a whole thesis, Roberta: hobbies in a technocratic age! It is 6am in South Africa and the winter is here: dark and cold. So, I could do with a good book and a coffee shop date… a laptop is just SO bland!

    • robertafsmith 11 April 2011 / 5:38 pm

      Paradise is reading, blogging and chatting in a coffee shop. Would having Skype on the i-Pad help?

  3. Adulcia 11 April 2011 / 5:19 pm

    CS Lewis once said “we read to know we’re not alone” – in the 21st century I blog for the same reason – I thirst for those comments and feedback from my readers. (BTW I read too, and I completely agree about the word “blog”).

    • robertafsmith 11 April 2011 / 6:41 pm

      I even cherish the comments where readers disagree with my blog. I’m like a comment junkie – give me more!

  4. Diane 11 April 2011 / 6:39 pm

    Roberta dear, I only read two blogs, yours and my oldest friend’s, “Edgy June Cleaver” and there is no higher praise of a blog than to be really particular and only read a select few. Also as a writer, teacher, and someone about to go the gleaming spires of Oxford courtesy of quake 2 and our out of bounds library at University of Canterbury, you know I am an extremely judicious reader. I wish you were going to cover the Auckland Writers Festival again. You were amazing last year.

    • robertafsmith 11 April 2011 / 6:44 pm

      This time, I will comment on the blogs of the lucky ones!

  5. le fake wine club 11 April 2011 / 7:02 pm

    What a lovely bling post mum! Sjoe, is it ok to have wine drinking as a hobby??

  6. Simon Nye 11 April 2011 / 7:55 pm

    Happy blogging!
    (Maybe that’s why they don’t call it a ‘bling’ — can you imagine trying to say ‘blinging’)
    I am also just getting started, so thanks for the links.

  7. Janna Russo 11 April 2011 / 10:22 pm

    I love your blogs Roberta. Im soooo inapt at knowing where to start even to reply to a blog. Despite your instructions (which did really at first seem ‘dead easy’) “Scroll to the top of this blog post, click on Leave a Comment etc” I scrolled up and down looking and looking, reading and rereading, couldnt find Leave a Comment. So I just pushed 11 Comments and ended up here. I will write and cross fingers that I dont end up on a Twitter page somewhere. Truly I think a 7yr old is more blog literate!

    • Adulcia 11 April 2011 / 10:45 pm

      Hmmm – my 7year old does in fact want to post some of her stories on my blog…

      • robertafsmith 12 April 2011 / 8:38 am

        Have just visited your blog page and it is beautiful. Great to meet you in the blogoshpere!

  8. Janna Russo 11 April 2011 / 10:23 pm

    OOOooooo! It worked! The world is my oyster!

    • robertafsmith 12 April 2011 / 8:29 am

      YAY Janna that is fantastic, you are on your way!

  9. julesw 12 April 2011 / 3:35 pm

    Dear Blinging Queen
    I have ordered the Blogging Heroes which sounds extremely interesting. I do, however, need more help. In the vast and infinite reaches of the Internet, can you give a novice some idea of how to hook into some good bloggers … sorry … blingers … Let’s start a Facebook campaign. Blogging is so out (is there a little logo yet for Pouty Sigh accompanied with an impatient shrug of one shoulder of course.

      • robertafsmith 12 April 2011 / 8:01 pm

        Thanks Marion, great links.

      • julesw 13 April 2011 / 9:20 am

        I’m hooked already. Got up and had a cuppa and simply had to check to see if I had an answer. I now have some inkling of what this is all about. Now all I need is a dictionary of mdrn spik. I will not, however, be daunted by such words as blogosphere and blogrolls. I’m with Roberta though -Blingsphere and Blingroll sound way more appetizing. Thanks guys.

  10. Jane S 12 April 2011 / 4:38 pm

    I bow down before you Oh Wondrous Blogger – you have got such a way with words. I could even hear your accent in your blog. Keep up the good work Roberta.

  11. mj 12 April 2011 / 5:24 pm

    Another identity theft?

    • robertafsmith 12 April 2011 / 7:11 pm

      What is it with this identity theft thing? Am I missing something here?

      • mj 13 April 2011 / 9:41 am

        You’ll have to ask young Richard…something about clearing the last poster’s identity from the comments box.

        The Phantom

      • richard 13 April 2011 / 12:36 pm

        The Phantom! You were great in the comic books! The answer is that on some occasions, because the many people in libraries visit the blog from what looks to WordPress like one computer, WordPress can get confused and think that your machine belongs to someone else in our organisation. It fills in the name and email address in the comment fields – so you could, if you were so inclined, post as someone else. If this happens, Ghost Who Walks, we ask you to do the right thing – clear the form and post as yourself. According to WordPress Support, can also clear your cookies and the issue *should* disappear.

      • The Phantom 13 April 2011 / 4:48 pm

        I swear to devote my life to the destruction of piracy, greed, cruelty, and injustice, in all their forms, and my sons and their sons shall follow me.

      • General Bababu 13 April 2011 / 5:42 pm

        @ Phantom – not if I have anything to do with it! I shall crush you!

      • The Phantom 13 April 2011 / 6:46 pm

        Do you never learn Bababu? Isn’t it enough that your obsessions have driven your daughter into the arms of your enemies?

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