By Judith Briles
Have you ever had a day, a week, or even a month when you feel drained of words … and what you are now beginning to think of as the “dreaded blog” is due the next day?
There’s not one of you … including me … that hasn’t had one of those moments. A deadline looms—your “word” mine and mind is feeling depleted or just tuckered out.
The good news is that you are not alone. The bad news is: you still have a deadline to meet. What to do? If your wordsmithing is too pooped to pop, how about giving yourself a second chance … a Writing Mulligan?
It’s time to do a revisit to something you wrote a year ago or five years ago. If you have been blogging for a year … that’s 52 blogs ago. That’s over 250 if you’ve been at it for five years—a lot of material that’s begging for you to come back and say hello to it.
And surely, something has surfaced that might add additional flavor to it; or even altered what your original premise was.
Your Writing Mulligan offers you a slice of a repurpose
There is no reason to create/invent new-new material for every social media platform or product you put your fingers on. A book that was written a few years ago can be cut up, combined with new information and re-introduced—new title, new ISBN, new descriptions, new cover … just new-new, all seeded with words that you created long ago. Now modified, they are repurposed.
Start with old blogs
Dig into them. If you take a blog post or an article you wrote a few years ago, even a few months ago, it can be dusted off and with a make-over, re-used. The reality is that you have more readers, followers and fans than you did a year ago. Don’t assume that they’ve gone through everything on your website. With new bells, whistles, anecdotes and tips, you’ve got a new blog.
Create an audio clip for each blog post using a service such as Audioboom.com. Connect your Audioboom account to iTunes and start creating your own mini-podcast. If you are already podcasting, it has resources to push your current podcast to multiple platforms. Don’t forget to post any clips you do to your social media accounts. Also add Audioboom clips to your website within your blogs—you “talk” to your reader with your oral words, your written words and images. It’s all about engagement.
People like receiving information in short “bits and bytes” so target audio clips to be about two, maximum five minutes in length.
Pinterest can sell your books with catchy Boards
Another method to repurpose blog posts is to create boards on Pinterest for topics related to your blog posts. Weekly, I do a “tips” blog on TheBookShepherd.com website: the Kick-butt Author and Book Publishing Tips and Ahas. To repurpose it, a Pinterest Board was created for Author and Book Publishing Tips. Within the board, each tip then has a poster created and added. Done.
Let’s say you are an expert with pets. How about an Expert Tips on Grooming Dogs and Cats board on Pinterest? Take one of your old blogs, a Tip Sheet, a video and TaDah, add an image from the original that was posted item along with a brief description of that; include the URL where it can be found on your website and then post on your Pinterest board—it’s now linked.
Instagram is calling to authors
When I heard that posting to Instagram had morphed to PCs and Apple in addition to the mobile, I was a happy camper. Platforms like Hootsuite are integrating Instagram to their streams. Working off of my laptop is easier than being glued to the phone and its much smaller screen. Instagram is becoming an impulse buy for books. Discover Gramblr.com, a free desktop app for Windows and Mac.
Don’t forget YouTube
Have you thought about taking your blog, an article or newsletter and creating a video? You’ve got the words already done. Pieces are usually short and can be presented on a video in just a few minutes. Programs like Camtasia can be used; the cameras on tablets and iPads can be put to use; and even your smart phone to get your feet wet.
A Smart Move
Pulling a Writing Mulligan of previously used material is smart—in fact, you could create a book combining several of your blogs and articles. Themes and topics that have been posted are ideal to gather and place in sections. And an Intro with your insights to them along with a tip at the end and/or a call to action. Include an About the Author, references to your other publications, and of course one on how to connect with you via your social media channels and an inclusion of any services—consulting, speaking, etc.—that you provide.