Three years ago today: 20 Truths About Blogging.

Still as true today as they were three years ago!

 Originally posted on May 21, 2015

number_20

In my 8 months of blogging I’ve learned a few things. Here are 20 of them.

1. Nothing is too personal to write publicly about. There will always be someone who will be grateful you shared it. As for the rest, they don’t care as much as you think they do. That soul-baring post is probably only embarrassing to you.

2. If you have a post you’re afraid to make public, make it public anyway (see #1). It’s okay to run naked in public sometimes. You’ll feel freed.

naked

3. You are going to have haters. It’s unavoidable. If you can’t handle people hating you or your blog, you have no business blogging.

4. If your blog starts getting popular, your haters will be more numerous and more vocal. It’s okay to have haters. Love your haters. They’re obviously obsessed enough with you to visit your blog and that increases your views.

5. Some people you thought were your friends or supporters are not. Be careful who you trust.

6. If you write about a serious or dark topic, break it up with a little fluff sometimes. Or write about something else. But don’t lose your focus.

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7. Trolls are easily controlled. Just don’t approve their comments or send them to Spam/Trash.

8. Be agreeable. Don’t attack commenters who disagree with you. Most people are reasonable and disagreements can lead to some interesting debates where both of you may learn something.

9. If you decide to run ads, you’re not selling out. If you’re serious about blogging or writing, it’s a good idea if you have enough traffic.

10. You do not need to pay for SEO. All you need is patience. If you post often enough and your blog starts getting enough hits (USE THE SHARE BUTTONS–or at least have them available under your posts so others can do your dirty work for you), those hits will eventually lead to more hits, and this keeps feeding on itself. Eventually you’ll find some of your posts appearing at the top of the search engines, and once that happens, the sky’s the limit.

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11. You can’t “make” a post go viral. There is absolutely no way to tell what article of yours may go viral or when. It could be one you never expected to, or it could happen months after you first posted it. When it happens, it’s a complete surprise and a completely amazing feeling.

12. Don’t write something just because you think it’s popular if it isn’t something of interest to you. Don’t try to be cool–people can always tell if you’re trying too hard. You’re either cool or you’re not, but you don’t have to be cool to have a great blog. (I’m definitely not cool).

13. You are going to lose followers. It’s inevitable. As long as you are gaining more followers than you’re losing, then there’s no problem. The people who are unfollowing you are probably not people you want to have sticking around anyway.

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14. You will change in ways you never expected. Blogging is an adventure.

15. Don’t beat yourself up if you miss a day and don’t post. We all have those days we need to take a break or just can’t think of a good idea. If it really bothers you, reblog someone else’s article or post a funny picture or inspirational saying. People always love those.

16. When all else fails, post a picture of a cat or a cat meme. Cats on the Internet are like sex in the movies. They attract viewers. Kittens are even better. Everyone loves kittens, even people who hate cats.

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17. Use pictures and graphics, especially in long posts (but don’t use so many your post looks like the cover of a supermarket tabloid). No one wants to read a wall of text, even if you’re the best writer ever. But they want a clean look too, so be careful how many graphics you use, especially if you are running ads too. No one likes a cluttered, messy looking blog that makes their eyes hurt or gives them flashbacks to the MySpace era.

18. You don’t have to be a great writer. You just have to be original and willing to take a few risks.

19. Always be honest even if your opinion might be controversial or unpopular. Controversial posts may get you more haters, but they’ll also make your views soar.

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20. Haters can make good fodder for new posts. Sometimes those posts will be your most interesting. But be careful about calling out specific people by name; you could get in trouble for that.
 

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10 things that make your blog suck.

Just thought it was time to throw this up here again. If you blog, don’t do these things.

Lucky Otters Haven

Grumpy-Cat

I think I’ve been in this blogging business long enough to tell when I see a bad blog. So I decided to round up the ten most annoying things I’ve seen bloggers do that make me hit the backspace key and never visit their blog again. If you blog, I hope you don’t do any of these things.

1. The blogger allows comments, but attacks anyone who disagrees with them. I’m not talking about abusive or trollish comments (which should be trashed or sent to spam anyway), but there are some bloggers YOU ARE NOT ALLOWED TO DISAGREE WITH. You can’t have a civilized debate because even questioning their opinions sends them into the online equivalent of a two year old’s temper tantrum. If you are so certain of your rightness that you must attack those who even suggest a differing viewpoint, why allow comments at all?

2. The majority…

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Bloggers Recognition Award!

Cyranny’s Cove awarded Lucky Otters Haven a Bloggers Recognition Award! I’m honored even though I no longer accept awards (I was getting too many and didn’t have room to display them in the sidebar).

But I’m still reblogging the post she wrote about her nominees because (a) she’s my “partner in crime” (and is still the only one — any other takers?) and (b) because she has listed a number of good blogs here with short (and funny) descriptions. I may check some of these out that I haven’t heard of.

Cyranny's Cove

blogger-recognition-award

Some time back, not so long ago, but still, a little while in the past, I have been nominated for this much, much, very-very much appreciated Award by someone very special to me (and very special altogether, I am pretty sure anyone would agree)

Now, I just thought about describing her without naming her anywhere through my whole post, as a joke, but since she is mad a me at the moment (:P) I won’t do that.

Thank you Suze, you very sweet you! For those (few, I am sure) of you who don’t already know Madame Suze, please, do yourself a favor, and visit her blog! Suze is one of the most amazing people I’ve met on Word Press! She is brilliant, soooo dang funny, caring, and if she decides to stalk your blog, you’ll be sure to have the most incredible exchanges via your “comment” box.

Suze…

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My first partner, Cyranny’s Cove!

cyranny_logo

I’m proud to announce that Lucky Otters Haven has its first partner!  And so soon!  Cyranny’s Cove is a blog written by a Danophile (a person who loves Denmark and anything Danish), but she also writes about many other things too.    She’s frequently very funny.  There are also gorgeous photographs on her blog, which you’ll appreciate, if you’re a photography lover, as I am.

Cyranny’s Cove is a breath of fresh air, and she’s also been a frequent “liker” and commenter on this blog.   So, please mosey on over to the “Cove” and see what she’s up to.  Welcome to the partnership, Cyranny!

https://cyranny.wordpress.com/

From Cyranny’s About page:

It seems some people want to know more about me, so I made a list of relevent facts that will help you understand the author of all the shenanigans you are about to read. Special you, you’ll probably be disapointed, since you are already aware of most (if not all) of it, but I’ll try to surprise you another time, if you still like surprises that is…

  1. I LOVE Denmark. If you think you know someone who loves Denmark more than me, please let me know… I’d like to battle him/her in any kind of way (except physically… yeah, meh… I’m kind of a wuss)
  2. If you can’t stand the use of the word “dang”, you’re in the wrong place…. Get out! Dang you!!
  3. There will be some occasional French posts… French being my mother tongue. Feel free to skip… They don’t make more sense than the English ones, especially after going through Googgle Translate!
  4. Did I mention my interest in Denmark? No? I LOOOVE Denmark, if Denmark was a man, I’d marry him. But to my knowledge, it is not legal yet to marry a country. Not just yet…
  5. You might come across a certain man while making your way around… Wearing a black t-shirt and kaki pants, standing in a James Bond kind of “I’m-spying-on-you” circle thing. He might look as if he’s running towards you to give you a hug. Don’t worry, he’s not dangerous. He’s silly at times, sometimes hard to follow, but always welcome in my Cove. I just ask one thing, please don’t feed him!
  6. There are some tales about wild animals… Consider yourself warned.
  7. I am training to become a Valkyrie. So be nice in your comments, or don’t leave any… You wouldn’t want me to come and get your soul when my training’s over, would you?
  8. Denmark rules! (that’s it!)
  9. I don’t trust the Internets…. So since you found me here, you might want to consider not trusting everything you read!
  10. You need a Google browser open and ready to go if you want to experience my blog to the fullest… Yeah, I’m interactive like that! Sometimes, I go the easy way and give up a link, but most of the time, I don’t…  It’s called “Google with me!”

All Bloggers Are Losers

I don’t think this odious post deserves to even be linked to, but I’m reblogging it anyway because it’s one of those “things that make you go WTF.”  The writer stopped blogging 6 years ago anyway so it won’t matter (their last post was written in 2010, which means this post, written in 2009, was NOT their last blog post.)

This post explains why he decided to quit blogging.  Because “all bloggers are losers.”  He came to that conclusion after ONE WEEK of blogging.  And decided to write a blog post about it.  Mainly, it seems they got frustrated because they weren’t getting many views.  After one week of blogging.   Newsflash: it takes months, hell, even years to build up a good-size following or a high view count.    When I was blogging for a week, I had 12 followers.  12!!!!  Was it frustrating? YES!  I griped about it here.  But did I give it up?  HELL, NO.  Now I have over a million views and thousands of followers.  It takes time, people.  And patience isn’t a virtue of mine.

The blogger also claims he got “only” 64 views a day.  I don’t know about you, but I think that’s very high for a blogger who has only been blogging for a week.   I don’t think I had 64 views until at least my second week–and that was per WEEK, not day.

I think the real loser was the author of this post.  It’s a shame too, because this blogger actually had some decent writing skills.

A few other choice entries from this blogger-hating blogger:

5 Types of Blogs You Should Be Killed for Creating

People Who Set Their Blogs to Private Are Gay

The Evils of the “What I Did Today” Blog Post

Girl Bloggers Get More Attention Than Guy Bloggers

 

 

 

Shotgun Facelift

I’ve been blogging for just about a week now. My journey into the world of blogs has come to a close and the results are in. I now feel like I’m in a position to comment about blogs and bloggers in general but I thought I’d just start with a good, old fashioned blanket statement (or generalisation) and announce that: ‘All bloggers are losers’

I’ll tell you how I reached this conclusion, or discovered this fact, or solidified my hypothesis very slowly and very methodically – so by the end of it, you’ll agree with me and will hastily scramble to your Dashboard to annihilate your blog from the ‘Blogosphere’. (My god, I fucking hate buzz words.)

Irony at its finest

The first time I made my blog I couldn’t help but feel slightly weird. Why was I doing it? Why should I write things for other people to read? Is it for myself?…

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15 ways to write an unforgettable blog post.

Originally posted on 6/8/15

In my two plus years of blogging, I think I’ve learned a few things about how to write interesting (and sometimes controversial) posts people want to read. Sure, I’ve posted weak articles no one seems to want to read–we’re entitled to have those days sometimes–but I think my track record on the whole has been pretty good. I don’t consider myself any sort of blogging guru or anything, and there’s still a lot I’m learning, but I think I have learned enough to be able to share what I know with other bloggers and people who want to start a blog.

1. The title is everything.

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Never mind the subject matter, this is a great title. Did it grab your attention? That’s the only important thing.

Keep your titles “grabby.” Make them stand out. Make them a little controversial (“Don’t Judge Me Because I’m Poor”), a little true-confessional (“People Think I’m Stupid” or “All My Narcissistic Lovers”), a little cheeky (“Why Are Some Things So Annoying?”), or even pose a challenge to the reader (“My Son is Furry–Have a problem with that?”) Don’t try to make them too “nice”–because that will make them boring.

When all else fails, just keep them short and to the point. “I Have Issues” is a better title than “I Don’t Know Why I’m So Depressed, Nervous, Bitter and Angry all the Time.”

Keep your titles as short as possible. Never, ever write a title that sounds like a Ph.D thesis, such as: “Preternaturally narcissistic and sociopathic actions within the social media milieu: a paradigm of the interglobal loss of interpersonal altruism.” WUT?

Never, EVER use the word “paradigm” in a title. If you do that, I will personally come to your house and splash water all over your keyboard. That’s a promise. The same goes for “milieu.” Don’t use that word. Ever. No one knows how to spell it anyway.

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2. Keep your subject matter on topic as much as you can.

Blogging (1)

It’s alright to veer off topic to tell an anecdote or provide an example to flesh out your article and add human interest to it–in fact doing this can make your post seem more personal and that’s almost always a good thing. But try not to veer off the topic too much. It’s hard to do sometimes, but if you do, always somehow bring the article back to your original topic, and it will look like you intended for it to veer off topic a little to make a point.

3. Break up your text!

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Even if you write like Shakespeare or Hemingway, readers will bypass your well-written post if it’s just a long wall of text. While a photo, graphic, drawing or cartoon isn’t required for a very short post, it can make your post stand out more and look more appealing. Walls of text for long posts hurt people’s eyes.

If your post is very long, break it up. Use photos or pictures or quotes at appropriate intervals that illustrate the point of your story or article. It’s easy to Google images you want to use–just type the subject matter into the browser and click on Google Images, and I can guarantee you’ll fine the perfect image to illustrate your article. Your own photos or pictures are fine to use too, when appropriate.

But be careful with this too. If you use too many pictures and graphics (as I tend to do), your post could wind up looking like the cover of a supermarket tabloid, and that will turn off readers too. Make sure your post looks clean and uncluttered, especially if you also run ads on your site.

Quotes and block quotes also work well at breaking up walls of text, and never be afraid to use humorous quotes or captions, even in a serious post (as long as it’s still in context). You can also use subheadings within the article and that will make it easier to digest too.

Beyond that, break up your paragraphs into smaller, easier to chew pieces. Readers are not cavemen gnawing an entire flank of beef all at once. They are civilized humans who like their steak cut into small pieces that can be picked up and savored one at a time. The same advice goes for paragraphs. Keep them bite size and they will be much more readable and taste better too.

4. Use the share buttons!

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Even if you hate social media, make sure each blog post contains all the social media share buttons available, which can be found in the dashboard. Even if YOU don’t want to link your post to them, OTHER people will use them. If they’re not there under your post, people probably won’t bother sharing your post. Share buttons are a lazy way of getting your post seen by many people, only you’re letting your readers do the dirty work for you. That’s nothing to feel guilty about.

5. Use links in your posts.

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Linking to other blogs within your post creates a pingback: the writer of that blog will see that you quoted them, and more than likely will come and check out your blog. They might even follow you back. Creating a blogroll (in Widgets) or somewhere in your header will help too. It shows you read other blogs as well as your own, and the other bloggers will appreciate your support, and may even recommend your blog to others.

And of course, if you quote someone else’s material, make sure you link to their post or at least credit them.

Link to your own articles too. Doing this not only adds depth and background to your article, but it also encourages readers to not stop with the article they’re reading–they might click on your links and read your other articles too!

6. Don’t ignore your comments!

comments

If you ignore your comments, people will lose interest in your blog. People like it when their thoughts are acknowledged and validated. No one wants to feel ignored. Replying to comments may seem like a time consuming chore, but if you fail to do this, it’s insulting to the reader who wrote the comment or asked the question, and it will seem like you don’t care. If you don’t want comments on your blog, you can always disable them. Personally, outside of writing for yourself only, I never understood why anyone would do that. All popular blogs are dynamic, interactive blogs, where people can comment and lively conversations and debates can get started. It’s helpful to comment on other people’s blogs as well.

Replying to comments keeps your readers around and makes it seem like you care about them. It also creates a sense of community that keeps people coming back for more.

You do not have to reply to every comment, but at least “like” it if you don’t have time to reply. If your blog is very active, it may be hard to reply to every single comment or give long well-thought out replies, but a “like” or a few words such as “thank you for your kind remarks” should be sufficient.

If you have the time (unfortunately I don’t much anymore), comment on or at least “like” posts by other bloggers. Follow as many other bloggers as you can, too. Most people are polite so most likely they’ll follow you back.

7. Write frequently.

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You should challenge yourself and try to write at least one new post a day. If you can think of nothing to write about (we all have those days), post a funny, cute or attractive photo or a quote you like. Cartoons work well too (I use them all the time). And don’t forget about cats. Cats online are like sex in the movies–they will “sell” your blog post. You can also reblog someone else’s article, but make sure you give credit. If it’s a WordPress blogger, that is automatically done for you.

If you don’t post frequently, people will stop visiting your blog. Sometimes I write 3-5 posts a day. You don’t have to go that crazy, but at least one post a day will keep your blog from stagnating like unmoving pond water. There’s nothing that will kill a blog faster than abandoning it. If you don’t appear to care, your readers won’t either and will go somewhere else.

8. Write as if you’re speaking.

writeasyouspeak

You don’t have to be a Shakespeare or a Poe or have great writing ability to write a good blog post. If you know how to string together a few sentences and have halfway decent grammar (grammar and spell check will help), you can still write a post people want to read. The key is to make it conversational and personal. Don’t overload the reader with too many facts or overly pedantic language. And always, ALWAYS be honest. People can tell when you’re lying or leaving out pertinent information. They will finish reading your article feeling like you’re hiding something. They will feel cheated and may never return.\

If possible, write your post in a conversational, personal tone. If it’s a scholarly article, of course you cannot do this, but for most blog posts, writing in simple, casual language and using personal examples to illustrate a point makes your article seem more personal, as if you are talking to the reader. Be a story teller.

9. Surprise your readers.

lucy_ricardo

If your blog focuses on one or two subjects as this one does, it’s okay to add in an occasional article or post about something unrelated or even totally random. In fact, I think doing this (as long as you don’t overdo it) makes your blog fresher and more interesting. Another benefit of posting off-topic material is that you will attract readers who may not otherwise be reading your blog. I have had a number of foodies and furries reading this blog (and even following it) because of articles I wrote about those subjects. It helps to be versatile, but be careful not to lose your original focus or you will just look like you aren’t that interested in your theme topic.

It’s okay to have a general interest blog though. Many blogs aren’t about any topic in particular, just whatever the writer wants to write about that day, and that’s fine too. In fact, some of the most interesting blogs out there are general interest blogs without a focus.

10. Don’t dwell in negativity.

fucking_negativity

If your blog is about a serious or dark subject (as mine is), watch your pessimism and negativity. People won’t feel inspired or come away feeling like they’ve learned something of value if all you do is bitch and moan and talk about how the glass is always half empty. While emotional honesty in a post is great, people also want to feel like you’re giving them some hope for their hopeless situation too. That’s why I include inspirational memes and quotes, happy or cute photographs, cartoons, jokes, and lots of music. (Music has been an important factor in my recovery, second only to writing). Sometimes I find that if I post something positive even when I’m feeling like I want to jump out a 16th floor window (it happens more often than you think!), it actually improves my mood. Don’t lie in your posts and pretend to be happy when you’re not (which can come off as insincere and obnoxious), but don’t suck people into your vortex of darkness with you either.

11. Don’t require people to sign in.

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Unless you are in a situation where you have a potentially dangerous stalker or group of people harassing or stalking you online, never, EVER require people to sign in to read your blog. I know if I see a blog that requires me to sign in or use a password to read posts, I’ll bypass that blog, even if it’s about a topic I’m jumping out of my skin to read about. I just don’t have the patience or time to fill out all that garbage if I want to read your blog.

12. Don’t write about something because you think it’s cool.

almost_famous

Never write about something just because it’s popular or trendy, if it doesn’t interest you. People will be able to tell your heart isn’t in what you’re writing about, and you’ll come off as a wannabe or a hack, and certainly less than honest. Nothing will drive a reader away faster than if they sense a lack of passion or honesty in a blog post. It’s okay to be uncool and embracing your uncoolness in fact makes you cool.

13. Run naked in public sometimes.

naked

If you have been keeping an article set to “private” because you think it’s too personal and feel shy about sharing it with the world, take a deep breath and make it public! In my experience, whenever I’ve been afraid to post something due to its personal nature, I have NEVER regretted taking the plunge. It will set you free.

14. Controversial articles get more views.

jackass-whisperer

It’s a fact. I’ve posted several articles that proved to be extremely polarizing. People either loved them or wanted me to die a prolonged and painful death. Yes, posting something controversial or “un-PC’ WILL get you more haters, trolls and you may even have to face bullies, but guess what? My stats SOARED! That article TRIPLED my usual number of views for that week. Sure, most of them were probably clicking it on to see what all the fuss was about, but along the way, I got a ton of new followers too, and while my views have gone back down, my overall visibility has increased. And the trolls and bullies have moved onto other things. (To handle trolls and bullies, please check my articles under the “Handling Online Trolls and Bullies” tab.) I find it’s best to ignore them, but sometimes even a hater post can make great fodder for a new article, but be careful about identifying anyone by name because that could get you in trouble.

15. Check your grammar and spelling.

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This should be a no-brainer, but it’s surprising how many blog posts I see that are full of unecessary spelling and grammar errors. If you can’t write a proper English sentence, you probably should take up another hobby besides blogging. Theirs nothing mor disstractng & anoying than a sentenzes who no can read becuase your writting in bad grammer & falty speling.

A few other things to remember.

If you’re a new blogger, don’t panic if things go slowly at first. Don’t get discouraged, frustrated or give up because at first it will seem like no one is reading your blog. It takes time. Becoming visible and getting lots of views and follows takes some people longer than others. Dedication, patience and honesty will reap great rewards in time. Of course, if you write about a “hot” topic, like I do, that will help your growth too. But it isn’t necessary to write about something trendy. I don’t think the growth of this blog is because it’s “better” than any other–but because I’ve put so much time and effort into creating it.

Finally, you can’t “make” a post go viral. Unfortunately there’s no way to tell ahead of time which of your posts will grow legs and spread all over the web like wildfire. It could be a post you think is “boring” but somehow resonates with many people, or one you posted a long time ago. Maybe the “right” person sees it and helps get it out there for you. But when it happens to you, it’s an amazing feeling and makes you feel validated as a writer.

Lucky Otters Haven is 2 years old! (Part two)

(Continued from Part One)

Screenshots are all courtesy of The Wayback Machine (which you can spend hours browsing — it’s fascinating in its own right).

*****

June 27, 2015

Several changes now.  I finally grew a brain and got rid of the appalling “Museum of Narcissism” and from here on out, the title would not change again (except for the removal of the apostrophe).

I also shifted the focus (seen in the subtitle) from “narcissistic abuse” to NPD and BPD in general, as I was beginning to grow tired of just being angry and was starting to want to learn more about these disorders (of course, narcissistic abuse has always been a staple of this blog and still is).   “Aspie” still remained for the time being.   I also had expanded the number of menu items in the subheader.   By now, my follower count was 1,041.

 

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*****

August 11, 2015

LOH was now nearly a year old.  Some important new changes are evident.   I think it’s beginning to resemble the current look more–I’d finally removed “Aspie” from the subheader, as I now had more clarity on what my real problems were (and it wasn’t Aspergers).  Visually too, the look is an improvement, with a darker gray menu bar which made the menu items easier to read.   I probably had a few too many menu items though.  Later I had to consolidate them so some appear now as little dropdowns.  1,115 followers.

loh_81115

*****

October 11, 2015

Font changes in both the headings, title and text.   The font I chose for the title and headings would not change again until last week.   Still too many menu items so it looks a bit cluttered.   1,221 followers at this point.

loh_101115

*****

November 12, 2015

The second major facelift.   This new look would stay (with only minor changes) until just one week ago.  The wallpaper and header were both in a green “beehive” pattern, with the header photo-manipulated to be somewhat lighter in the middle so the simplified subhead “walking on the borderline” would stand out.   Menu items now white on black. I think overall it’s a nice look, very professional, but I finally tired of it a week ago and LOH got its third major facelift.

loh121115

*****

March 27, 2016

Not too many changes, other than FINALLY consolidating the menu items so it looks a lot less cluttered and easier to read.   1,591 followers.

loh_32716

*****

June 29, 2016

This is the way this blog looked just prior to the facelift I did last week.   The only real change here is the subheader changed from “walking on the borderline” to “Confessions of a recovering borderline.”  (this change was inspired by my therapist telling me he thought I no longer had BPD).   There were two more screenshots taken in August, but nothing else had changed.

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*****

Finally…

The new look is somewhat of a throwback to its original look.  I think it looks friendlier and more welcoming than the “beehive” look.

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I love Ferdinand Ladera’s moody painting, and wanted to use that again, but I wanted a simple black header this time, so this time I used the painting as the wallpaper instead.    I wasn’t sure how that would turn out, but I love the look, and I like the way the dark trees appear on the right hand side.  I also changed the header fonts and think they’re easier to read, and removed the apostrophe from “Otters”, mainly to simplify the look of the title.  It’s not really ungrammatical, because I’m not the only otter swimming up from the murky waters of an abusive past.

Lucky Otters Haven is 2 years old! (Part One)

wordpress2yrs

Yes, this blog has officially entered its Terrible Twos!

In celebration of this milestone,  I’m going to be showing you how it’s evolved since it’s inception (well, actually, 4 months after its inception), thanks to The Wayback Machine, which crawls the web periodically and takes screenshots of websites so they’re forever caught in time.

While I’ve stuck with the free Twenty-Ten theme the whole time, I’ve changed its look rather drastically several times (thanks to Custom Design, which I recommend because it gives you more options than the free plan). I definitely think this blog looks a LOT more professional than it did when it was new.   But I was learning as I went along.

This is Part One of two.  I’ll post Part Two immediately after this.  Both should be up later tonight.

Screenshots from The Wayback Machine:

January 18, 2015

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This was the first time LOH was “crawled” and photographed.   At the time, I still believed I had Aspergers (self diagnosed), which explains the subheader.   Early posts of mine were a lot more angry and “narc-hating,” since I had only been No Contact for a short time.  I had far less awareness into myself than I do now.  Spiritually, I was also still an agnostic.   Reading back over some of these early posts is a little embarrassing because I’ve changed so much, but is also fascinating for the same reason.   But it was blogging that got the ball rolling on all the awesome changes I’m undergoing.   It was probably the best decision I ever made.

If you’re interested in reading these earlier posts, they can be accessed through the Archives drop-down menu in the sidebar. Just pick the month and year you want to see.

You can’t see the whole sidebar, but when this screenshot was taken, this blog had just 437 followers.   That’s still quite a few, considering it was only 4 months old!

In case it’s not obvious, the painting in the subhead is the same one I’m now using as the wallpaper.

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February 21, 2015

Not many changes.  563 followers now.

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March 18, 2015

LOH’s first “facelift”:  I rather like the cute otter wallpaper I chose and the gray color scheme is easier on the eyes (as is the title font), and the subhead is in a more eye-catching font too.  But I have no earthly idea what I was thinking when I chose to take out “Haven” in favor of the atrocious “Museum of Narcissism.”  LOL!  It makes me laugh now, but I guess I still thought of narcs as some kind of zoo creatures to be gawked at (which they certainly can be!)  I’m also not sure why I decided to put “The” in front of the title.  Whatever!   There were 679 followers by now.

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April 23, 2015

Not too many new changes, but by now I’d added the “Borderline” into the subhead title.   Due to the stigma, I’d been kind of in the closet about it at first, but had “come out” by now.  I still believed I had Aspergers though. I also notice I’d removed the idiotic “The” from the title.  776 followers.

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I didn’t want too many graphics in the same post, because it slows down load time, which is why it’s in two parts.

(Continued in Part Two)

 

Meet & Greet! When You Grow Up

Another blogger is hosting a Meet and Greet this weekend. Come share your link or just find new blogs to follow.

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The Richness of a Simple Life

Welcome back to another meet and greet weekend! For this event, I’d like to explore what you’d want to be “when you grow up” if there were no limits.

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How I decide what to post on my blogs.

choices

Most of you probably know I have two blogs.  This is my primary one, and the first one I started.  It’s now a year and half old.    It’s been through a lot of changes.  It started as a blog for journaling my feelings after going No Contact with my NPD/ASPD ex, and although I still post a lot about  narcissism and narcissistic abuse, I’ve expanded the scope quite a bit to include my own disorders (Borderline Personality Disorder, Avoidant Personality Disorder, Seasonal Affective Disorder, Complex PTSD) as well as the issues of mental illness stigma and mental illness in general.   After mental illness I probably write the most about blogging.  But these days I post about pretty much  anything that interests me, and that includes reblogged posts of others.  On this blog, I post primarily about the following subjects, in roughly this order:

  • Narcissism and narcissistic abuse — both informative and experiential
  • Borderline Personality Disorder / complex PTSD — informative and experiential
  • Personality Disorders in general
  • Mental illness and mental health (including the Sunday guest posts)
  • Mental illness stigma
  • Blogging and writing
  • Inspiration/spirituality
  • Social and cultural issues
  • Photography
  • Music
  • Humor
  • Anecdotal essays and general musings
  • Book and movie reviews (related to narcissism and narcissistic abuse)
  • Everything else

 

My other blog, Down The Rabbit Hole, is now 7 months old.     The articles on LOH and DTRH overlap quite a bit, and I do a lot of double posting.   Down The Rabbit Hole has a much narrower focus (and a much smaller audience), and has now become primarily a blog to document and journal about my journey in therapy, which seems less appropriate on a blog with as wide a focus as LOH (even though I do cross-post to both blogs).

Unlike LOH, on which I generally add new content at least once a day if not more, I may only add new content to DTRH once a week or so, though lately it’s been more often than that.   While anyone is welcome to read its content (please follow if you want!), DTRH is more personal and I write it primarily for myself.     For that reason it’s written more like a journal or diary.  Some articles which are too personal or which I feel are too controversial for this blog get posted on DTRH instead.     Like LOH, DTRH has also shifted its focus since I started it, moving from my experience with various types of self-healing following some upsetting self-discoveries to actual psychodynamic therapy.

These are the topics DTRH posts about in roughly this order:

  • Experiential and personal essays about my therapy sessions
  • Articles about treatments and therapy techniques for Complex PTSD and Cluster B disorders, mainly BPD and NPD
  • Subjective observations and essays about BPD and other cluster B disorders
  • Mental illness stigma, especially BPD stigma
  • New research about BPD, NPD, and personality disorders in general
  • Mindfulness and inspiration
  • Poetry about the therapy experience/living with BPD