Month: February 2010

The Winners of the Blogophobia Conquered Giveaway

Here are the winners of a free copy of Laura Christianson’s e-book, Blogophobia Conquered:

1. Kass, who blogs at The “K” Is No Longer Silent and ReDoingTheUndone

2. Letitia Suk:

3. Lori Lowe:

4. Elisabeth, who blogs at Sixth In Line

5. Kristine Meldrum Denholm: and

Congratulations to the winners! Laura has e-mailed you your free copy. If you don’t receive it soon, it may have gone into your spam box. If that happens, please e-mail Laura at . I’m looking forward to reading your reviews!

You can read Review: Blogophobia Conquered if you’re interested in reading about this fantastic e-book for bloggers and wannabe bloggers. It’s a gem!

An Announcement in Care of Blogging Bistro

On Tuesday, I posted a review of my new favorite e-book, Blogophobia Conquered: Overcome the 7 Most Common Fears and Create an Amazing Blog, by Laura Christianson, who blogs at Blogging Bistro. Laura will send a free copy of her e-book (normally $19.99) to the first five people who post a comment on Tuesday’s post, Review: Blogophobia Conquered, and who also agree to write a review of the book on their blog. So, if you’re interested, please leave me a comment on Tuesday’s blog entry! I’ll need your e-mail to send to Laura so she can send you your free copy.

P.S. There may be more than five comments by the time you read this, but some of them are mine, so please leave a comment if you’d like a copy to review. If there are less than five at the time of your comment, you’ll receive a free copy from Laura!

Review: Blogophobia Conquered

After I wrote Book and Blog Highlights last month, I had the good fortune to connect with Laura Christianson, who offered to send me a copy of her latest e-book, Blogophobia Conquered: Overcome the 7 Most Common Fears & Create an Amazing Blog, if I wanted to write a review.

Not only did I enjoy this e-book, I learned a ton, and it’s now my go-to guide. I’ll read all 88 pages two, three, four, maybe five times. The advice is practical, concise, and not at all intimidating.

There are seven chapters, named for the fears that occur when writers ponder the great question: To blog or not to blog?

1. Technophobia
2. Decidophobia
3. Scriptophobia
4. Formatophobia (my favorite chapter, more on that in a bit)
5. Socialphobia
6. Borophobia
7. Addictophobia

I love Laura’s writing style and her use of similes, metaphors, and analogies to make her point. For example, on page 5: “Fear is a powerful force. When you allow it to creep in, fear squelches you, paralyzes you, and keeps you stranded on Someday Isle in the middle of the writing ocean.”

I also appreciated the idea of The Ready-Made Pie Crust Method, as someone who burns food often. Don’t fear that you aren’t technically inclined enough to write a blog. A blog-hosting service is like a ready-made pie crust. The shell, the structure, is already prepared, and all you have to do is pour in the filling you created.

Another great analogy, on page 13, discusses how a blog is the hub of your online social network. The spokes are sites like Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, and LinkedIn, and these spokes are attached to the hub. As I read this, I visualized a wheel.

While the focus is on how to write a blog, there’s guidance that can be applied to all forms of writing. For example, the last paragraph on page 31, about voice, is some of the best advice I’ve ever read on this subject.

Chapter 4, “Formatophobia,” my favorite chapter, contains step-by-step instructions on how to make your blog stand out and look pretty for bloggers who fear they can’t design a blog (like me). I cheered when I read this section (literally).

Sprinkled throughout are text boxes to reinforce points. My favorite text box is “5 Types of Blog Commenters” on page 53. There are tips on how to deal with less-than-desirable commenters. The encouragement file on page 56 is such a great idea, too!

As I read, I kept going back to my blog to check and make sure it lined up with what’s written in the book, and made notes for changes. I plan to utilize her suggestions on my own blog to the fullest. If you’re thinking about blogging or you’re a new blogger, this book is a must-read. Spring the $19.99 and avoid the pitfalls; it’s more than worth it. Before I started writing my blog, I read and studied blogs I liked, and I learned some of the information that’s contained in this e-book on my own. However, that process took me eight months. You can save lots of time reading and applying the information to your blog. I’m grateful to have read this book at the beginning of my blogging endeavor to save me time in the future.

Thanks to Laura Christianson for the opportunity to review her fabulous e-book!