My Current TBR Pile

My TBR (to be read) pile towers over the reading lamp on my bedside table. I always want to read more than there is time in the day. That said, I keep growing the pile, while reading a bit before bed every single night.

What I'm Reading
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What’s on my current TBR pile?

Well, here goes, and I’m breaking it into categories because I’m reading “for” a variety of different things:

For The Great American Read

Wuthering Heights

I loved this in high school and am excited to reread it for this challenge. (And, OMG, it’s so cheap for an incredible read!)

1984

This one’s on my Kindle, and I’m honestly not excited about it. I don’t know why. It’s staying on my TBR pile because I haven’t read it and feel as though I should, but it’s not at the top of the list, tbh.

For this challenge, I also reread Anne of Green Gables and Little Women and was swept away by both. I loved them as a young girl, but I adored them as an adult. I can’t wait to share these with Violet some day!

For OhMyDogBlog.com’s Annual Back-to-School Reading Roundup

You Lucky Dog

This was sent to me free so that I could read it and consider it for inclusion in my reading roundup. Definitely a beach read, and I’ve stashed it in my tote for our upcoming family vacation.

Another Good Dog

This one was also sent free for consideration, and I can’t wait to dig into this narrative about fostering dogs.

For the Modern Mrs. Darcy Reading Challenge

Dear Ijeawele, or A Feminist Manifesto in Fifteen Suggestions


I’ve slated this one for the “book you can read in a day” challenge, then I think I only have one book left (a book nominated for an award in 2018… any suggestions?) to complete this 12-book reading challenge.

For Violet

Dear Girl,

OK, to be completely honest, we’ve already read this one. Half a dozen times. It’s so good, you guys. Get this for the girls in your life.

For Personal and Professional Development

Nothing! Whoo, boy! This is a big, gaping hole in my reading right now. I’m typically switching between personal development and business books, but I don’t have any on my pile. It’s all novels and children’s books and dog books! What would you add to my TBR pile to fill out the personal and professional development category?

What’s on your current TBR pile?

How to Be a Better Blogger in 3 Simple Steps

Do you want to grow your influence and command bigger marketing campaigns?

That seems to be driving many bloggers these days. Bigger audience = bigger influencer = bigger payday.

Of course, the difficult piece of that equation is the bigger audience one, but it somehow gets overlooked for quick tips and tricks on monetization.

I think that’s a mistake. A big one.

It’s time to go back to the basics.

How to Be a Better Blogger in 3 Simple Steps

As bloggers, the only way–I repeat, the only way–to grow your audience is by creating authentic content consistently.

You can learn every fancy trick in the HTML book, but unless you’re creating quality content that is genuine to you, you’ll never grow an audience of loyal fans. And without them, you won’t build your influencer, and you won’t command those big paychecks.

So, let’s go back to basics, shall we? How do you grow an audience of loyalists? By upping your blogging game!

Here’s how to be a better blogger in 3 simple steps:

  1. Post quality content. Don’t post crappy content. It’s as simple as that. Be thoughtful and purposeful in what you write, and edit ruthlessly. Don’t get sucked into learning every little tip and trick and “hack” on Pinterest. Focus on the work. Focus on the writing and the imagery. Do your best with every single post. If you don’t feel like it’s possible to do your best on every post, you’re probably posting too much. Scale back so you can do your best. Which leads me to…
  2. Post quality content consistently. You know you need to publish your best work. But, you need to be cognizant of your readers’ time and attention. If a post pops every day for two months, then suddenly it’s crickets for a few weeks (or vice versa), you’ll lose readers. Decide how often you can create your very best work, and stick to that schedule.
  3. Be true to you. If a collab feels wrong, it is. If a guest post exchange feels off, it is. If a product doesn’t fit you or your lifestyle–even if it comes with a heft check–you have to pass. As a blogger, YOU are the brand. You’re putting yourself on the line with everything you write, and if you write things that are inauthentic, readers will know and will abandon you. Be true to you in all things. Then you can never fail!

I think many people jump into blogging because it seems or looks easy. We know it’s not. But publishing awesome content consistently and staying true to yourself ensures your long-term success. Stick with those three tips, and you will grow your audience, you will build your influencer, and you will command those big paychecks.

In the meantime, if you want to dig super deep into learning how to be an authentic blogger, check out my ebook, Authentic Blogging. It contains everything you need to harness your authentic voice and grow your audience by leaps and bounds!

What I’m working on…

What I'm Working on via MaggieMarton.com

Balancing a new baby–our daughter is now 16 whole weeks old!!–with work has been a juggling act! Some days, it’s super easy to keep those balls in the air. Other days, they clatter to the ground.

#dirtyhairdontcare

Honestly, though, I’m someone who has always preferred to be busy, so I don’t really mind the juggling act. That said, I have cut down on some projects.

Here are three recent articles I’ve gotten to write:

  • BlogPaws, of course: This active voice vs. passive voice post was my favorite one to write all July!
  • PAW5: I love writing blog posts about enriching your dogs’ lives. It’s a true passion for me!
  • Pet Age: I recently wrote this story about anxiety products for dogs, which was eye-opening for me and my training with Cooper. We started him on one of the products I learned about for the story, CBD treats from Austin and Kat.

Unfortunately, my own pet blog has been one of the biggest cuts. But, this is just a season. And, it’s funny, but it sort of has helped to write far less on my blog. For a while, I felt burnout setting in, and now I’m giving myself time to think and brainstorm. Big ideas are percolating! I’m sure they’ll all bubble to the surface when the time is right.

I’d love to see what you’re working on! Fellow writers, tweet me @maggiemarton with your current projects so that I can read and share!