Annie Downs: On Writing and Social Media Interviews Annie Downs

Annie Downs

Social media:

I’m quite sure Annie knows everyone on the face of planet. She is also a fantastic writer. So I am just as excited as you are (or should be) to read her thoughts on social media and writing today. There are some real gems in here, so read on my friends…

1. How do you keep social media from running your life? Is it a struggle for you? Any social media management tips?
It is a struggle for me to not allow social media to be my main focus. With the ease of it all sitting right on my phone beside me at all times, I have to choose to remain in the moment a lot of times instead of hopping on social media anytime I get bored.

Here are some rules I try to live by:
— Listen before you read. Emily Freeman taught me that- when I wake up in the morning, I try to listen to God and have a few moments before checking every app on my phone.

— Pick people first. The internet is cool and all, but my friends are better. Sometimes I have to remind myself of that when we are in the car or sitting at dinner. Don’t scroll through instagram. Look at your friends.

— Not everything should be online. I am a big believer in knowing the difference between what deserves to be in a blog post and what should be in your journal. There is a difference. We should each learn that line for ourselves and stick to it.

— Remember that the internet isn’t permanent. Sure, it probably isn’t going anywhere, but it could. And when/if it does, you want to make sure that you have a life offline that is as productive and sweet as your online life.

2. What is your writing process? When do you write? How long does it take you to create a post?
I usually write my blog posts right before bed. Since I write for my full time job, I like to use my daytime writing hours for articles, interviews :), books, etc. My evening writing is more relaxed and friend-talk, which is the language of my blog.

It usually takes me about an hour to create a post from start to finish. I usually plan on Monday what I’m going to write each day of that week (I try to blog 3-5 times a week, very rarely on weekends), and so during the day I have thought about the blog post at some point because I see the title written in my writing calendar. Then at night I sit down and kinda just go for it. I write a full draft, then edit through it 2-3 times, then set it to post the next morning.

Once I am done, I double check to make sure I’ve replied to that day’s comments and have all my ducks in a row for the next day’s work, then I close my computer and go read a book.

3. Do you have a blogging mentor or accountability group (formal or informal)? How have you created and fostered those relationships?
Not really. I mean, I have some blogs that I read faithfully and some bloggers that are dear friends to me, but no real accountability group. The closest thing would be the (in)courage writers- we are all such great friends and really rely on each other when it comes to online and offline issues. Those women are so fun to be around and listen to and write with.

4. What is the best blogging advice you’ve received? (OR) What is the best blogging advice you could give?
The best blogging advice I can give is BE YOU. Don’t read other bloggers and set out to be like them. It will take some time to find your online voice and your online spot, but it is there. Be willing to try things and fail, be willing to make changes after you’ve JUST paid for the thing you want to see changed. 🙂 People are drawn to honestly and vulnerability. Find that in your voice and your blog will make a difference in the lives of others. YOU are the only one who can write YOUR blog. Just be you. That’s who we want to read anyways- we don’t want to read a remade version of another blogger. We come to your blog because we want to read you.

It will take some time to find your online voice and your online spot, but it is there. <– Click to tweet!

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Q & A with Annie Downs

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Read All The Interviews with Annie Downs

1. How They Blog: Annie Downs
2. Gadget and App Recommendations
3. On Social Media and Writing

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