Category: blogging

Things I did to Invest in my Blog (book blog edition)

Posted September 28, 2017 by Hillary in blogging / 0 Comments

Do you have a book blog and you want to know what app you should spend money on? Click through to find out!

 Ultimate Book Blogger

This is ultimately a book blog. There has been a sad lack of actual reviews recently, but it still is a book blog at its heart. The UBB plugin puts in all of the book information, so you don’t have to spend three hours looking up info and formatting it. I mean we have all seen those blogs where they have noooo link to Amazon or Goodreads, and I don’t know about you, but that just pisses me off. I hate having to highlight a book name and then right clicking on search Goodreads. Just give me a link Damn it!


 a domain name

This is important as a blog name with blogger or WordPress on it just looks unprofessional. I KNOW this is a hobby blog but STILL..You want to put your best self out there right. Well go and get the name that is ungodly yours and then you can look great….. like me!!

Self-Hosted WordPress


This is a hobby blog, but you can still make a few dollars off of it. Maybe you will make enough to pay for your hosting. To best prepare yourself to make a few dollars however it pays to have a self-hosted WordPress. I am sure there are some square space users making money, but most of the money makers I have seen the use of self-hosted word press. With A self-Hosted WordPress, you OWN your content and website so you can do whatever the hell you please with it (within reason, please don’t set up a WordPress just to bully someone, that is not ok) while with square space they own everything and can revoke everything at any time.




I use this both for this blog and my ghostwriting blog. I am nowhere near say with photoshop, and this program helps me make my pics look cute. It is worth the money.


Tweak Me


This is another plugin from Nose Graze. You can see how I designed my site by using this plugin. Even if you are not a designer, you can still have a site that looks halfway decent! It has endless ways that you can tweak stuff to your liking.


I HATE scheduling tweets and Facebook posts among other things. Luckily there is Co-Schedule that does all this for us. You just make a template and then on future posts just click on the template and BOOM you just scheduled 40 social media posts at once!



This allows you to schedule posts at a future date. Also,  Co-Schedule can feed into buffer and post at the optional times that you can set up in Followerwonk! If all this sounds like gibberish just email me and I will be happy to help!

Smarter queue

This keep posts and stuff you put in it on a rotating basis. I like this better than NeetEdward because it has more features at half the price!  But why do you use BOTH buffer and SmarterQueue? Well because Buffer is perfect for one-time updates and Smarter Queue is great for stuff you want to keep on a rotating basis.


7 Things Book Blogging Has Taught Me

Posted August 16, 2017 by Hillary in blogging / 0 Comments

7 Things Book Blogging Has Taught Me



It has taught me lots of Discipline


I used just to do things when I FELT like it which was not very often. Sure there would be times when I would hunker down to get my papers done in college but were they the best that I could do? Nope, It wasn’t until a few years a go that I realized that I could write and do stuff even if I was not in the mood. I used to go months without blogging, but now I blog almost every day.

This Discipline has carried over into other areas of my life also. Like going to the gym for example. I never FEEL like going and running a mile in place, but I make myself go, and it is only AFTER the workout is done that I feel like I am 10 feet tall and bulletproof. I feel that after I deleted my dissolve muscles in one area (blogging) that gave me enough of a “win” feeling to help me develop other healthy habits.


It has taught me how to come out of my shell

I am an introvert to the core. Humanity raises my stress levels buttttt when book blogging I have gotten to the point where I can talk to other book bloggers without feeling like I am going to puke. #Progress

I am still an introvert, and I would still rather be alone with my book rather than out partying it up. I HAVE partied it up, and I always come away feeling drained and bitchy. Ever since I have learned there were more people like me and that I wasn’t broken I developed enough of a back bone to tell people when I need to be left alone so that I do not get over stimulated.


Book Blogging has taught me to never judge a book by its cover or by its publishing house


I used to be so so so guilty of this. I used to be like ohh it was SELF-published ummmmm…but over the years I have found some real gems that I can see why a traditional publisher wouldn’t want to take a chance, but I was glad for my Kindle Unlimited subscription so that I could read the book. From the outside, it looked meh, but the words were pure art. It makes me sad that so many books just get published cause the publishing house feel that it could make some money off of those titles rather than them putting real art out but at least there IS a way these days to obtain books that the publishing houses won’t print. Thank You, Amazon!


Book Blogging has taught me how to read fast


Believe it or not but I used to be a slow ass reader. It would take DAYS to even get through a sweet valley high book. I learned the fine art of skimming in college and being invisible so the professor wouldn’t call on me to elaborate. My reading SKILLS were good I was just slow. A few years ago I trained myself to read faster. There are so many books I want to get too and if it takes me a week to get through a 200-page book well. So I started reading fast as I could then would go more quickly and quiz myself to make sure I understood everything and after a few months, I could read normal speed. Now I can get through a 300-page book in about 4 hours. Yes, I even timed myself.


It has also taught me how to manage my money better

At first, this blog was a hobby then as it grew I started getting offers to do sponsored posts and such. I had n idea one could make a living with a blog, but I was all like you want to pay me to type up this sure thing!  Once I started making some money I had to make sure I had enough to pay taxes, and I had to make sure that I did not get in trouble with the Disability people. OMG the SSI people are EVIL! I don’t have to deal with those assholes much now, but back then they wanted to know what I made to the penny. Ughh


Book Blogging has taught me how to prioritize


As much as I would like to just lay around and daydream and pretend I am in the tropics that stuff won’t fly if you are treating your blog like a “business.” And the IRS AND the SSI people were super quick to point out that if you make a penny over 1000 dollars a year, you are IN business. I now have to put stuff on a list and prioritize them so that what will move me to the next level get done and the rest..well I am not super woman…



How to articulate myself better on paper


My English was always pretty good but how to convey my feelings and thoughts in a crystal clear manner was a different story. After a few years of writing for this here blog, I can honestly say my writing has improved by leaps and bounds. As they say, Practice makes perfect!

How I Come Up With All My Ideas

Posted November 17, 2015 by Hillary in blog, blogging / 0 Comments


how I come up with all my idaesIt can be a bitch to come up with new ideas for blog posts all the time amirite? I know a LOT of people complain about this. I wrote yesterday about my writers block but 95 percent of the time I have a process that lets me have lots of ideas on the back burner. And cause I love my dear readers so much, I am going to spill all my secrets

I read lots of blogs on Bloglovin

I don’t even know how many blogs I read. I know I spend at least two hours every morning reading as much as I can. And not just writing blogs. I read fashion, food and book blogs among others. You never know when you seem something that you can put your uniqie spin on it. Remember there is NO truly original idea anymore. What makes it unique is how YOU present it.

I scroll through Pinterest.

I JUST started doing this, and I wish I could kick my ass for not doing it sooner. It is chock full of inspiration. Seriously. I spent around three hours on the site the other day and came up with 50 ideas for this blog. Some of them I feel are not all that good, BUT I did glean som wonderful topics to write about, so it was a good payoff.

I get away from my computer

Yes, I know the online world is a fascinating place, and you don’t want to miss your next client. Let me tell you if you spend ALL your time in front of the computer you will burn out, and your brain will turn to mush, and you will be worthless. I know cause it happened to me. I had to take a camping trip deep in the middle of nowhere to recharge before I felt I could be useful again. Don’t let that happen to you. Have lunch with a friend. Explore a new part of town go to a shopping store. All will stimulate different parts of your brain, and when you come back to the computer, you will be able to work at full capacity.

I eat Paleo

No, I am not telling you-you HAVE to go all caveman but for ME if I try and eat any other way I get brain fog, I get tired, and I am a mess. You have to find out what style of healthy eating works for YOU and do it. Trust me you are not going to get far if you are feeding your brain junk. Your body need nutrients to function properly so you must give it to them in the form of healthy whole foods

I Exercise

I am the laziest human being on this planet. I started exercising a couple of months ago. I don’t even go to the gym. I do the 21-day fix program, and I can tell a difference. I have more energy. My depression has gone way. My anxiety is almost all gone. There are a lot of benefits to exercising. If I can do it, I know you can.

All of the above together ensure that my brain is always working at top notch, and that means I can write and come up with ideas to keep the blog and other project going. I am going to add mediation into the mix and see how that goes. I have heard lots of people say that it makes them calmer and stuff so that they can think better. Plus it helps depression and anxiety, and I am all about anything that helps depression and anxiety.

If you need help with writing or coming up with Ideas I have room for some more clients in my schedule so email me and let’s talk

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My Favorite Social Media Scheduler

Posted September 29, 2015 by Hillary in blogging / 2 Comments



As an entrepreneur, you know how important social media is for your business. Who has time to go on all the different websites and schedule your posts at the most optimum times of the day? I know I don’t. I  like to do it all in a big chunk of time and be ready to go for at least 2 weeks. I think I may have found the holy grail of programs that aim to do this. Are you ready to hear all about it?

Meet Edgar!

I have tried Buffer and hootsuite but I always felt constrained by the fact that you could not recycle content. Both are great programs but suppose you missed your social media scheduling time and you run out of content then your accounts come up as empty. This makes it look inactive and that is not good. Edgar is here to save the day!

With Edgar you can schedule what kinds of posts you want on which Social media site that you want. So there is no more guessing with HootSuite and buffer on which post you want when. I found this feature to be highly invaluable. Suppose you want inspiration to post at 9 am every morning. You can schedule that.

You can also import you blog feed and schedule when it shows up. I have driven more people to my blog this month from social networks once I started doing this.

You can also bulk update in Edgar. You have a list of 100 questions you want to import into Edgar? They have an article explaining how to do this via a spreadsheet. I tried it and it was really simple.

Personally I have had a much higher rate of engagement with Edgar than I did with both HootSuite and Buffer. I have no scientific explanation but I have received more leads with this program in one month than in two years of using buffer or HootSuite.

There is one negative in that Edgar does not have any integration. They do explain how to find out when followers are online and plus there are MANY articles on how to analyze Facebook and Twitter and the like. You can Google these then set it up in Edgar and experiment.

Edgar has a wonderful analysis section where you can see how well your posts have done. I have found this really helpful in tweaking my times in the program.

All in all I love Edgar so much that I decided this is one of my “must have” programs. I am picky about which ones I choose but the ROI on this was just too good to ignore. I have heard some complaints that Edgar is expensive and it is. The value you will get from this is worth the price.

Tools I use to run a Successful Freelance Writing Bussiness

Posted June 9, 2015 by Hillary in blog, blogging, freelancing, Writing / 2 Comments





This is the best thing ever! I waited a long time before purchasing this. I am still not sure how I managed to go so long without this tool. It allows me to do so much. For example. I like to look at my notes while I write and this enables me to do that. I can also keep everything separated into its own project. No more mixing up client files on Microsoft word!


I use this to make mind maps when I need. Or as a brain dump to gather my ideas for a project


I would be lost without Evernote. I use this to write down writing ideas and to keep all my notes in one place. I have it on all of my devices so if an idea or inspiration strikes all I have to do it type it in. Plus I can start blog posts with it and have them on all the devices I own.

Microsoft Office

I tried all the free alternatives, but none of them really stuck with me. I broke down and bought a subscription. It is worth the six dollars every month.

iPhone 6 Plus

I had an iPhone 4 for the longest time. I was due for an upgrade so I thought I would treat myself to an iPhone 6 plus. It is one of the best investments I have made this year. I am not sure why I thought every successful blogger should have this phone, but I did. One of the biggest advantages is that I can use my P3 Video relay with it. With is a big screen and 4 G capbitlies I can use it anywhere. Also when I call people I prefer to use my own voice and I can with this program and it does not sound like it is through a bad speakerphone like it does on the computer. At least that is what my family tells me. They better not be lying!


I discovered this, this year. It is a lifesaver. It has EVERYTHING into one program. The only thing I don’t like is the banking program it has, but that is probably cause I don’t know how to use it very well. I will have to spend some more time trying to figure it out.


I use this to keep up with blogs. I have a shit ton of blogs I read so this really helps. Reading blogs is primarily how I get ideas for my own blogs. I love how Feedly works so well I pay for the pro version.


I have a lot of passwords to remember plus I suck at coming up with passwords as it became evident after a creepy ex hacked into some of my accounts. I use this to generate passwords and to store them. I also love their form filler out thingie. No more typing my information in hundreds of times just to leave a comment on a blog.

Remember the Milk

I know an LOT of people swear by Asana and Trello and the like, but I am old school here and swear by Remember the Milk. I love that it ties into Siri on my Iphone so I can just say remind me to blah blah and it will AND it shows up everywhere I have the app installed. MAGIC


As a freelance content writer, it is important that I make everything look perfect. I really dislike the program that comes with Microsoft Word. I feel this is a thousand times better.

Google Apps

I prefer to have all my information in the cloud so I can access it anywhere. I use it to store client files my own files and to use google hangouts and all of that.


What are some tools that you cant live without? Share in the comments!


When books cross over into real life.

Posted March 22, 2011 by Hillary in blogging, ramblings, reading, self help, Writing / 0 Comments

When most people read it is to escape reality and to delve into a good story. However there are some books that propose to provide a richer life out side of books. Flow was such a book. I reviewed it a while ago and one thing has stuck out to me in all of that time. It mentioned that chess players engage in physical activity to strengthen their mind. At first, I was like, how can that help strengthen your brain? My laziness knows no bounds. I will be the first to try and get out of anything resembling purposeful movement.

Fast forward to a couple weeks ago. My attention was waning and my writers block was so bad that I could hardly write my own name. I had heard of writers and other people say that daily exercise cures both aliments. Of course up until then I never actually listened.Then one month into my writers block, when I despaired of ever writing anything again I decided to give walking a try. It wasn’t the magic cure all but slowly it was as my brain was disengaging itself and starting to function again,ideas began to come and I can focus for more than an hour at a time.

What amazes me is that the more I exercise my body the stronger my brain becomes.And not only that but I have really really realllly bad anxiety and it get in the way of writing also. Walking has helped more than medication has ever did. Plus it does not put me to sleep.

And to think I would have never even thought of adding in walking had I not read a book about inducing happiness first. When people say they dislike reading or do not have the time for it, I always remind them that they will be richer and better off for it. There is so much to learn out there. Even fiction can teach you valuable things through the power of a good story.

Sunday Salon

Posted March 20, 2011 by Hillary in blogging, reading, Sunday Salon / 0 Comments


This week I started reading The Boneshaker and feel in love with it.I have been trying to read it slow to savor it then I found out there is a sort of a series. I know I said no more books from the library until I read all that I already checked out but I couldn’t help myself. I went and order both droughtnaought and Clementine.

Speaking of Libraries, since I am too poor to buy books at this point in time and I get all my books from the library, I see people taking pictures of what they bought and stuff and I get jealous. So I decided to implement a new feature. Library Loot (the link will take you to the first post I wrote this week). This will enable me to show off what I got at the library and hopefully will give readers a better taste of my very eclectic reading style.

I have been looking for more eclectic reading blogs. It sometimes seems the whole bookblogging community is blogging about young adult and while I read them from time to time I thought it would be nice to find bloggers such as I who reads a whole verity of things. So if you are an eclectic  blogger or knows someone who is please let me know.

I am going to spend the day reading The Boneshaker. I think I feel in love with steampunk genre. I will probably finish it either today or tomorrow.

What is everyone else reading today?