Kat Lee: On Social Media and Writing

Social Media

1. How do you keep social media from running your life? Is it a struggle for you? Any social media management tips?
I’d say this is the biggest balance issue for me. There’s something fun about checking to see if you have any new responses, messages, photos or fun news and since the stream could be endless trying to keep it all manageable is a huge challenge.

My son doing his best Apollo Ohno minus the ice.

My son doing his best Apollo Ohno minus the ice.

I often get caught in the vicious circle of:

  • “Oh, my kid is doing something cute. Let me take a picture of that.” (Hey kid, can you do that cute thing one more time…over here…in this lighting.)
  • “Well, I have to share that on Instagram.” (5 minutes cropping and picking filters)
  • “…and Facebook.”
  • “…and Twitter.”
  • 5 minutes later…
  • “Oh, I wonder if anyone commented on my cute picture of my kid re-enacting that cute thing he did earlier?” (Checking…)
  • “What? Did you say something son? Oh sure. I can help. Oh, wait, that was really cute. Can you do that again…over here…”
  • ad nauseum.

I don’t think I’m actually THAT bad (I hope), but you get the idea. Ironically, I don’t get that caught up in social media for blogging, I tend to get caught up when I’m sharing or reading on a personal level.

I’d say the one thing that has helped me is that I don’t take any social media platform too seriously. I’ve been known to go a week without going on Twitter or Facebook. I’m not terribly into Pinterest (I know…gasp!) While I know they are incredibly powerful assets for a blogger, I also know how they can dominate and I always try to hold them lightly.

I also use HootSuite a lot to schedule tweets (quotes, verses etc.). I also use Bufferapp. Those two services really help me stay consistent on social media, especially platforms I don’t use as often like Facebook.

Writing

2. What is your writing process? When do you write? How long does it take you to create a post?
My writing process involves banging my head on the keyboard, staring into space and then rearranging the clothes in my closet by color and texture.

You probably want something more helpful than that…

Well, I’m not the typical blogger who started because they love to write. I don’t. Writing is a HUGE challenge and struggle for me and I have to literally make myself sit down and write.

My process usually involves me realizing I have a deadline, pouring coffee and trying to crank something out. I normally write with headphones on. I either listen to Yo-Yo Ma and Andrea Bocelli – when I need to not be distracted by English or I listen a favorite songs playlist when I need to be inspired.

My coffee and tea stash in my "office."

My coffee and tea stash in my “office.”

It usually takes me at least an hour and half to write a post. Sad, I know. But that’s even kind of fast for me. I take forever when I’m writing, forever when I’m editing and another forever when I’m desperately searching for a photo.

I’ve learned I write better in the moment. So, if I have an idea and I feel inspired, I drop everything and write as much as I can.

I’ve also learned that I can’t write until I actually…start writing. Profound, I know, but it took me a long time to realize that daydreaming with my hands on the keyboard doesn’t get it done.

There are times, though, when I know I need to step away from the computer. Sometimes I need to just do dishes, go for a run or play with my kids to get my creativity flowing again.

Networking

3. Do you have a blogging mentor or accountability group (formal or informal)? How have you created and fostered those relationships?
I do have a blogging mentor and that relationship basically came about because I asked.

I know that’s a simple answer, but that’s what it comes down to – deciding to be desperate enough for excellence that you’re willing to lay down a little pride to get there.

Now I just need to put that into practice to build a mastermind group. I’m not a part of one, but I think it would really be helpful to have a “team” aspect to blogging.

My best accountability, though, comes from my readers. I am passionate about helping them and encouraging them. Knowing that God might use my words in their lives to impact their families TODAY, inspires me and challenges me to keep learning and growing.

Blogging Advice

4. What is the best blogging advice you’ve received? (OR) What is the best blogging advice you could give?

For those who are moms: Remember that it’s more important to be a great mom than a great blogger.

And if you’re not a mom, just insert “wife” “friend” “daughter” in there.

kat-lee-1

Blogging is fun and it can be exciting, but it isn’t meant to fill our lives, it is meant to be the result of an already full life.

Read All of Kat Lee’s Interviews

1. How They Blog: Kat Lee
2. Kat Lee’s Gadget and App Recommendations
3. Kat Lee on Social Media and the Writing Process

Leave a Reply

Comments

  1. This is great Kat! Thanks for the tips, information and encouragement. It’s nice to know I’m not the only one who bangs my head on the keyboard. πŸ™‚

  2. I love the last bit- I have “quit” blogging a couple times in order to make sure I was being a better wife and mother (and homeschooler) than blogger. I think we need a cute sign to something of that affect to hang over our desks! πŸ™‚

    • Spring – that’s a great idea! I’ll get to work on it. Thanks SO much for all your help and feedback. I think I fixed the tabbing issue you mentioned and I changed the text on the buttons.

      • Yeah those issues look good from my end now! (How do I get the weekly blog-planner… did I miss a step?) πŸ™‚

        • If you subscribed to the blog, the link should have come via email. Have you gotten the welcome email from me (maybe check your spam box?)

          • Oh yeah- somehow the clicking to confirm didn’t go through, so I redid it!
            It looks great- looking forward to using it!
            (Oh and I’m inspired by the tea basket… time to get mine going again!)

  3. “desperate enough for excellence that you’re willing to lay down … ” For me it’s fear. I’m working hard at letting. fear. go.

    Question — when you chose your blogging mentor, did you already have a relationship with that person?

    • Erika,
      I did. We knew each other in person, but I don’t think that’s a requirement at all. As long as you have some sort of connection with that person. Not everyone will be able to do it, so it might be a good idea to have a list of several potentials…

  4. I love this! “it isn’t meant to fill our lives, it is meant to be a result of an already full life” That is an awesome quote. I think often times it is easy to get so caught up in social media, and then we get sucked in and time just flies by. I love the connection, but I also love to be able to spend time with my kids, and let them have my undivided attention. Not easy! Great tips!

  5. Beth Piper says:

    So mentor? I imagine that is just someone who helps you be accountable… what would you “like” that person to do? Read content and critique it? Help you keep accountable? I think it sounds like such a great idea! I already have someone who I send my drafts too (especially since my site isn’t live yet) but just wondered if you had any more details.
    Thanks!

    • Beth,
      I actually have written a pretty in depth series on mentoring that might be helpful to you — http://simplemom.net/author/kat/

      Let me know if you have any other questions about it!

      • Beth Piper says:

        Awesome, thanks! I read several of them and, of course, love them all. How inspiring, you make me wanna pull out all the stops and just get my blog going! Also, read one of Tsh’s, and now have a new blog to add to my list of blogs I love πŸ™‚

  6. I’ve got to check out HootSuite. I think it would help me – because social media can suck away all my free time so quickly! I enjoy the writing part of blogging, but too many social media sites can stress me out.

  7. Thanks for sharing your struggles with writing. Perhaps it is a bit rude, but I like knowing that someone who can churn out fabulous posts still struggles as much as me πŸ™‚

  8. hpharriss says:

    I am really enjoying your new blog! Reading about your process and the bloggers you are going to include is helpful, insightful and interesting. So thankful you were inspired to do this!

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