How Writing Prompts Can Help Your Blog

H.R.R. Gorman has compiled a fabulous list of writing challenges, poetry challenges, and photo/writing challenges for use in our writing community. What are you waiting for? GET writing! ❤

Let Me Tell You the Story of...

When you start a writing blog, there’s only a couple ways to start interacting with other writers and readers:

  1. Depend on people you already know to follow links to your blog
  2. Start using your blog to interact with other bloggers

If you’ve got #1 set because you’re a Twitter star, congrats!  That’s awesome!

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Most of us, however, have to (or want to) deal with #2, and a great way to do that is through the use of prompts.

Why Prompts?

“Aren’t prompts just limiting my creativity?” you may say.

To you, my fine friend, I must admit that it’s possible!  Sometimes I answer a prompt and feel like the sliver of garbage I spewed out would have been better left with my other thoughts that go completely forgotten.  You may, as well, be a person who isn’t blogging for interaction and, instead, want to just have a place to send…

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#BOOK REVIEW BY @COLLEENCHESEBRO OF “Better Blogging with Photography: How to Maximize Your Blog Using Your Own Images,” BY AUTHOR @windigenredhead

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  • Title:  Better Blogging With Photography
  • Author: Terri Webster Schrandt
  • File Size: 551 KB
  • Print Length: 50 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN:
  • Publisher: Second Wind Leisure Publishing
  • Publication Date: July 6, 2016
  • Sold by Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B01I2NNLRU
  • Formats:  Kindle
  • Goodreads
  • Genres: Blogging & Blogs, Computer & Technology, Digital Photography

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**The author provided me with a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review which follows**

“There is truth to the old adage that a picture is worth a thousand words. As a blogger, are you weary of constantly hunting for images to illustrate the subject of your blog posts?

Perhaps you are a new blogger struggling to get more readers. Or a seasoned blogger continually seeking inspiration for quality blog posts.
This guidebook is designed to help you utilize your own images on your blog or website.

While free image sites abound, there are limitations to using so-called “free” images. Gone are the days when bloggers can innocently copy and paste an image from the web and paste it into their blog post.

What will you get out of this guide?
In each chapter, I give easy but important tips for maximizing the use of images on your blog’s website and within each blog post.
Seven informative chapters walk you through–
-the importance of using images;
-the real dangers of using others’ copyrighted images;
-easy ways to edit your images using free programs and apps;
-building unending inspiration and content around your own images;
-attracting readers with images used in quotations, blog link-ups, and other tools;
-how social media sites link your images, and why you need them;
-a list of image resources available.

After reading this short guidebook, you will want to grab your smart phone or inexpensive digital camera and start taking photos!”

My Recommendation:

*The author provided me with a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review which follows*

It was with great joy that I was introduced to Terri Webster Schrandt’s book, “Better Blogging with Photography.” The best part was that someone finally wrote a book which spelled out in detail how and where to find photos bloggers could use on their blogs without violating copyright laws. Not only does the author give you credible links, she also teaches you how to edit your own images. She concentrates on the WordPress blogging platform, however, all of the information can be applied to any site a blogger chooses.

If you are a beginning blogger or even a well-seasoned blogger, you will find each page jam-packed with information you will be able to immediately put to use on your own blog. Do you struggle with blog and header design? Guess what? That’s covered too!

In Chapter Four, the author discusses how your photos tell your stories. The emphasis here is how to gain inspiration from your own images by highlighting your written content with attention grabbing photos that draw readers to your posts. Everyone loves a great photo, so why not use your own to create interesting content on your blog?

This book would also be a handy reference guide for setting up your own blog. What are you waiting for? Grab your copy today! Terri has a free offer running from 9/29/16 – 10/3/16!


GRAB YOUR COPY TODAY!

My Rating:

Character Believability: N/A
Flow and Pace: 4.5
Reader Engagement: 5
Reader Enrichment: 4.5
Reader Enjoyment: 4.5
Overall Rate: 4.5 out of 4 stars

Author, Terri Webster Schrandt

About Terri Webster Schrandt:

Terri is a non-fiction writer and retired recreation and parks practitioner living in Northern California. As a university lecturer teaching leisure education in the recreation and parks major, Terri takes leisure very seriously because it involves one-third of our lives…really!

Obtaining a Master’s Degree at age 50, Terri wrote her thesis on the Four Generations in the Workplace, sparking her love of writing at midlife. In addition to writing and blogging, she offers consultation services and conducts and presents workshops for a variety of organizations.

Second Wind Leisure Perspectives is her blog about living a leisure lifestyle.

Her active lifestyle involves windsurfing, stand-up paddling, camping, reading, writing, walking the dogs, traveling, and…

You can find Terri on Twitter @windigenredhead, on Facebook at Terri Webster Schrandt. And, if she’s not out taking photographs and having fun you can find her on her blog, Second Wind Leisure.com.

see-you-soon

Wide OPEN!

This week, Hugh, from Hugh’s Weekly Photo Challenge: Week 29 wants us to show him some photos of what ‘open’ means to us. Hugh also adds that maybe it will be an open door or gate, somebody opening that large gift, or a photo of a wide open space? How about an open packet of biscuits or an establishment or event that is open for business?

Want to join the fun? Here’s what you need to do.

1. Take or choose a photo that you’ve taken which interprets Open.
2. Create a new post on your blog entitled “Hugh’s Weekly Photo Challenge: Week 29 – ‘Open’
3. Add the photo(s) you have taken to the post and tell us a little about what you are showing.
4. Create a *pingback to this post and/or leave a link to your post in the comments section so other participants can view the post.

*Due to the current problem WordPress is experiencing with Pingbacks (read the post here), I’d highly recommend that you copy and paste a link to your entry into the comments section of this post. 

Not sure how to create a pingback? Click here for a step by step guide on how to create one.

This is a great photo of our old barbecue grill in Florida. This was a surf and turf dream! I loved how the open lid allowed me the chance to capture the smoke and the red glow of the coals!

If there is one thing that Colorado has it is wide open blue skies. It must be the elevation. I took this photo early this spring. The sky was such a dark blue. I love the refraction of the sun on the clouds.

This was the bunch of flowers our daughter Ronda gave me for my birthday. I was shocked at how each blossom was wide open. Of course, she picked out my favorite colors!

Thanks for stopping by to see my interpretation of “OPEN.” Don’t forget Sugar as my featured image. She has her mouth wide open! ❤

Vintage Art

This week, Hugh’s Weekly Photo Challenge: Week 27 – Vintage, asks us to take or choose a photo that shows something vintage. Maybe it’s something that once belonged to your Grandparents that you have on display, or maybe it’s an item that is locked away in the back of a cupboard? Do you have any vintage clothes you can show off or maybe a vintage toy that is still in its original pristine box?

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Want to join the fun? Here’s what you need to do.

1. Take or choose a photo that you’ve taken which shows something that is Vintage.
2. Create a new post on your blog entitled “Hugh’s Weekly Photo Challenge: Week 27 – ‘Vintage’
3. Add the photo(s) you have taken to the post and tell us a little about what you are showing.
4. Create a pingback to this post or leave a link to your post in the comments section so other participants can view the post.

Not sure how to create a pingback? Click here for a step by step guide on how to create one.

Vintage frame and doily

Last week, on my search for locally grown plants for my garden here in Colorado, my friend, Chelley and I found an amazing plant store that sold antiques. We had so much fun picking out flowers. We both stumbled onto some great finds. I love this antique gold frame. The doily is my own creation. I think it works because it is a vintage craft.

Turquoise wrought iron vintage corner shelf

I also found this wrought iron corner rack that is a vintage piece. My intent is to place a plant on the shelf with long trailing vines. I think it makes my back garden look quaint. Eventually, there will be fairy houses under this shelf.

Thanks so much for stopping by to enjoy my take on “vintage!”

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Distance… Over Yonder!

Hugh’s Weekly Photo Challenge: Week 26 – Distance is all about choosing a photo that shows an object that is in the distance. Maybe it’s a building or a wonderful view that contains an interesting object or scene that, although it is in the distance, shows up really well in the photo? Maybe you can spot where you are headed to from a plane or train and you’ve managed to capture it?

Want to join the fun? Here’s what you need to do.

1. Take or choose a photo that you’ve taken which defines Distance.
2. Create a new post on your blog entitled “Hugh’s Weekly Photo Challenge: Week 26 – ‘Distance’
3. Add the photo(s) you have taken to the post and tell us a little about what you are showing.
4. Create a pingback to this post or leave a link to your post in the comments section so other participants can view the post.

Not sure how to create a pingback? Click here for a step by step guide on how to create one.

This is a photo of Pike’s Peak which is visible a couple streets over from our house here in Colorado. I took this photo in the dead of winter and as you can see, our housing area is new and still under development.

This is a photo I took in 1996 of a cattle branding at the Dearborn Ranch where I worked in Montana. It was a hot dusty job and made me happy that I worked most of my days in the office in Great Falls taking care of the administrative side of things.

Thanks for popping in to see my take on “distance!”

The Seasons – Hugh’s Photo Challenge

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For this week’s photo challenge from Hugh’s Views and News, who is being hosted by the ever fabulous, Ronovan, of Ronovan Writes, we are to show what “Season” means to us.

Want to join the fun? Here’s what you need to do.

  1. Take or choose a photo that you’ve taken which, for you, depicts Group.
    2. Create a new post on your blog entitled “Hugh’s Weekly Photo Challenge: Week 22 – “Group”
    3. Add the photo(s) you have taken to the post and tell us a little about what you are showing.
    4. Create a *pingback to this post or leave a link to your post in the comments section below so that other participants can view the post.

Not sure how to create a pingback? Click here for a step by step guide on how to create one.

*As Pingbacks have not been working on WordPress over the last few weeks, Hugh asks that we please leave a link to our post in the comments section so he and other participants can view the post. 

I love the four seasons and that is one of the reasons we moved from Florida to Colorado… I know one extreme to another. It does make for some interesting weather, though! Here is a quick pick of the seasons as I have know them the last couple of years!

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Winter

This is a photo of our oak tree last November. It was our first Colorado blizzard. (This tree has no signs of growth this spring. I believe it has passed on to the great tree heaven up above)

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My granddaughter’s Azalea – first spring bloom in Florida

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Summer in Montana – a gently rolling stream back in the woods

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Fall in Colorado – Better pictures coming this year!

Here’s to hoping for a fabulous day where ever you are! TGIF!

Is it Friday yet

#WQWWC – Writers Quote Wednesday Writing Challenge – “Survival”

It’s time to join in the “Writers Quote Wednesday Writing Challenge,” co-sponsored with Ronovan Hester of Ronovan Writes, right here on SilverThreading.com and myself, Silver Threading!

Please use #WQWWC on Twitter so we can retweet you.

Welcome!  This is an open invitation to join in on our blogging event called the “Writers Quote Wednesday Writing Challenge,” co-sponsored with Ronovan, of Ronovan Writes, and myself.

Ronovan and I have decided to change it up! Spring is in the air and it is time for something different! BUT WAIT!

If you like the OLD Writers Quote Wednesday where you selected a quote and talked about the author of the quote you CAN still do that. The quotes are a pathway to find inspiration in your writing. You can write whatever you would like as long as you include your quote with your piece. You can write poetry, music, share songs, write flash fiction…

SHOW US YOUR CREATIVITY!

NOW it’s your chance to highlight your favorite author’s quotes that give inspiration to you as a writer. Do you feel like your writing is getting stale? Are you looking for inspiration to keep writing? Then you have come to right spot!

Each week we will include a theme  for anyone who needs additional inspiration. You don’t have to follow our theme if you don’t want to. It is optional.

In fact, Ronovan and I will alternate each week with a themed prompt post written on Silver Threading. This will give you a different perspective weekly to keep your inspiration flowing. Make sure and join us. You never know what we will come up with!

To see all the Entries from last week click HERE for the links in the comments of last weeks Challenge Post.

This is my week, and Ronovan will be back next week to share his theme with you. We thought it would be fun to split the brain power needed each week. All of you get hosts that are reasonably fresh and fun to play with each week, so join in!

This week’s theme is survival, or any variation of the word: survivor, surviving, etc.

So what do you do?

You select a quote that inspires you. Then, write a short piece of flash fiction or poetry to share with us all using the quote either in your story or as the title of your masterpiece. You can include photos, photo quotes, or anything else that helps to highlight your quote.

Either create your own sayings (because after all, we are all writer’s here) or use a quote from a famous author that you find gives you inspiration.  Just make sure that credit is given for other’s work.  You can use FotoflexerPicmonkeyCanva, or any other program that you wish to make your own images. Click the links to go to the programs.

Each Wednesday, we will post the prompt and all you have to do is take part! You have from that Wednesday until the following Tuesday night to share your creativity inspired by a quote. We will share your posts on social media for added exposure.

Each week, we will include a link to the previous week’s post so that you can go to the links and comments to see all the inspiration that was generated.

BOTTOM LINE: Have fun and be creative!

~*~

For my quote, I am using the above video of Gloria Gaynor singing, “I Will Survive.”

Here is my contribution for the theme of survival, a haiku I wrote last year:

Now it’s your turn! Show me your interpretation of survival!

Hugh’s Weekly Photo Challenge: Week 19 – Gap

Hugh is looking for photos of something that shows a gap… I had to really think about this one. Then, I remembered the trip we took in 2009 to Glacier National Park in Montana. I distinctly remembered seeing beauty that was unsurpassed as we drove along Going to the Sun Road. These glimpses of grandeur would leap out at us from between the heavily forested road.

We took this trip in late September, that year. The rain started to fall and the further in elevation we crept the thicker the precipitation got. After only a few miles we turned back. This is one of the scenes I managed to catch in between the “gaps” in the trees of the forest.

Here is one more photo. This is a shot of St. Mary Lake (below).

At Glacier National Park that is what a gap in the woods will show you!

Thanks for popping in,

Hugh’s Weekly Photo Challenge: Week 18 – Sweet

I have been so busy writing I have not had much time to join in Hugh’s FUN photo challenge! So here I am this week excited because the word is “SWEET!”

Of course, this conjures up all kinds of wonderful things that are fattening. What the heck? It’s EASTER week! Time to Enjoy the sweets that life has to offer!

Want to join in? Hugh says:

“For this week’s photography challenge, show me a photo of something that, in your opinion, is sweet. You can go down the same line as I and show me something that is sweet to the taste or maybe show me a photo of some newly born chicks. Then again, maybe sweetness for you is a certain somebody or a gift that you have received?

Want to join the fun? Here’s what you need to do.

1. Take or choose a photo that you’ve taken which shows an object, person or is your interpretation of sweet. 
2. Create a new post on your blog entitled “Hugh’s Weekly Photo Challenge: Week 18 – “Sweet”
3. Add the photo(s) you have taken to the post and tell us a little about what you are showing.
4. Create a pingback to this post or leave a link to your post in the comments section below so that other participants can view the post.

Not sure how to create a pingback? Click here for a step by step guide on how to create one.”

Here is my contribution for SWEET:

Moscato Wine

Banana Bread

Crustless Cranberry Apple Pie

Are you drooling yet? I am!

Thanks for letting me drive you all crazy with SWEETS!

Hugh’s Photo Challenge: Week 7 – Funny or Strange Signs

Hugh, from Hugh’s Views and News, asks us to share a funny or strange sign in his photo challenge this week:

This is a photo of our second oldest daughter, Mary pointing to the sign above which reads, “Batteries for Everything!” We had a good laugh over this one because I never have batteries when I need them. We took this photo in Salt Lake City, UT.

This is a photo taken while on the last leg of our journey as we were driving to our new home in Colorado. I know it is hard to see, but the signs say it is a “BEAR CROSSING!” Let’s hope I don’t run into any of those guys!

Many thanks to Hugh for his fun photo challenge.

Thanks for visiting. I’ll see you all again!

Take Care