Category Archives: Tips

How Long Should It Take You to Write a Story


Crafting the perfect story is a delicate and time-consuming art. But how much time exactly should it take you to finish writing your story? Read my take on this subject: https://mbkeen.com/long-write-story/

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Hidden Costs of a FREE WordPress Blog


I’ve been planning something special for you guys for a while now. You know I’ve been blogging for some time and I had very positive reviews on my writing tips. So I thought I would compile my blog posts, add a few articles that I haven’t published yet and release a free e-book for you guys to enjoy. I collected the articles, wrote new ones, edited them, set up a photo shoot to add some cool images to the book, but once I started looking at the logistics, I had to take a step back. Suddenly, I discovered that my WP blog gives me very little room to achieve the things intended from this e-book in particular and my blog in general. And once I started adding up the cost of services I needed to buy to achieve those goals, I discovered the hidden costs behind a “free” WordPress blog.

Now, this article isn’t written to attack WP or dissuade anyone from joining. I have been on WordPress on and off for six years now and it has given me the opportunity to reach thousands of people that I wouldn’t have had the opportunity of reaching otherwise. So if you are a novice blogger, looking to learn and connect with a few people, then WordPress is a great platform that provides you with a small outlet for your talent. However, if you are an experienced blogger who’s looking to take their blog to the next level and start generating income from it, then a free WordPress blog is not such a great idea.

  
The reasons behind that are simple: WordPress does not allow you to advertise on your blog, the themes it provides are either too basic or too expensive, it does make it easy for you to create an email list, and its services are very limited when it comes to SEO.

So what’s the alternative? You can purchase a premium theme, upgrade your blog on WP, and transfer it to WordPress.org. But that will cost you somewhere between $300-500 and that is, of course, not to mention the recurring cost of the theme and the upgrade or any SEO services. Or, and that’s what I’m going to do, you can find a webhost that does the hosting for you.

What does a webhost do? They run your website basically. They manage the traffic, provide SEO, give you the option to have and sell ad space, some even have marketing services for small costs. Self-hosting your blog will give you the option to sell products on your website, create an email list, and even have tutorials and webinars on your blog. I recommend BlueHost. Their pro kit is around $3 a month (12-36 months due upon sign up), it hosts up to 10 website and they give you a domain name for free. You can transfer your website into WordPress and have everything WP has to offer while also enjoying all the services WP does not provide.

The downside of self-hosting a blog is that you’ll lose your WP followers. And when you post, your blog posts won’t appear on WP reader and you won’t be able to reach the users on that platform. But there is a way around that. Personally, I’m going to keep this WP blog and create a new one website. I will be posting on my new website and linking people from my old blog to my new blog. Once I know that all my friends know where my new virtual address is, I can close the old blog or leave it with all its posts and have a redirect link to my new blog.

So if you are on basic WP plan and struggling to make money out of your blog then no wonder! Look into self-hosting. BlueHost offers a discounted price if you follow this link. Follow this link and get your discounted price on BlueHost and start making revenue doing what you love.

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I hope you guys enjoyed this post. What other problems are you facing with WordPress? Please leave a comment and share this post if you liked it. Thank you!

Recap: Day 3 of 5 Day Book Writing Challenge 


I was challenged to write a book in 5 days. It’s the final day today and I’m almost done! Here are some moments from Day 3. 

  
In case you’ve missed it, here’s a recap of Day 2. Follow my journey on Snapchat. Add via the snapcode below 👇🏼 

screenshot and add via snapcode

Recap: Day 2 of 5 Day Book Writing Challenge 


So I took on a challenge to write a book in 5 days. I started on Monday. Today’s Wednesday and I’m going strong, halfway through the book, exhausted but ecstatic. I felt like sharing some of yesterday’s moments and hope it might inspire you to push harder this week. 

Early Rise   
A walk to clear the head

 Emotional moment…

 
If you guys want to follow my journey, add me on Snapchat via the code I’ll post below. Just screenshot the photo and add via Snapcode. I will be sharing moments of the day, tips on what to eat and how to incorporate exercise into your schedule even. And of course, writing advice. Scan code below 👇🏼

   

This Time-Management Tip Will Help You Get Things Done


Ever wonder why you can’t finish what’s on your to-do list. This tip will increase your productivity by 100%. Please, visit my other website, read about it, try it, and let me know how it works out for you. Don’t forget to follow The Positive Nation  for more motivation, tips on success and productivity, and more.

Source: This Time-Management Tip Will Help You Get Things Done

Meet the New Beauty Writer for Cliché Magazine


Hello everyone!

Did I mention to you guys that I am now the new beauty writer for Cliché Magazine? That’s right. I’m very excited for this new opportunity and I’m learning a lot every day. My first article, 5 Ways to Stay Healthy and Fit This Year, was published recently. Click the following link to read it: https://www.clichemag.com/5-ways-to-stay-healthy-and-fit-this-year/

Stay tuned for more lifestyle and beauty articles from Cliché brought to you by yours truly. Also, don’t forget to follow my new blog and my precious project: The Positive Nation for posts that will inspire you, motivate you and put a smile on your face.

What are you guys up to this weekend?

The Best Thing That Happened to Me as a Writer


After I finished writing my latest novel, I went through a dry spell. The novel I worked on was an emotionally and physically draining project that I have worked on relentlessly for most of 2015. Unfortunately, however, through that entire year, I wasn’t able to finish anything else—except for a screenplay that I co-wrote which is turning out to be a total waste of time but more on that later.

Things were changing. My living situation turned 180 degrees, my savings were running low, bills were piling up and I was unemployed. It’s safe to say, I had a lot to figure out and my writing had a setback.

For months, I looked for ways to make money. I modeled for the most part and I thought I could sustain that lifestyle of working a few days a month in a convention or something, making enough to get by, and writing the rest of the month. It was easier said than done, especially since I wasn’t signed up with an agency and had to look for gigs all on my own. So between searching, applying, going on castings and calls backs, and daily trips to the gym to make it all possible, I had the equivalent of a full-time job without even knowing it. So I decided to sign up with an agency, get employed and try to fit writing into my schedule somehow.

  

Finding the perfect job was a challenge on its own. Living in Vegas, the natural choice would’ve been for me to work as a cocktail waitress in one of the casinos or bars and since a good job in that industry would earn me a lot of money from tips. But that kind of job would demand a lot of time and physical effort, I doubted I would’ve been able to find the energy to make myself dinner by the time I got home let alone write—and I’m big on making my own dinners, by the way. 

It just so happened that my landlady had a friend who worked in the real estate business and they wanted an assistant. I applied and got the job. So now, for four hours a day, five days a week, I process mortgage loans. It’s a boring desk job that requires minimal thinking and offers an annoying boss that goes with it. And it’s the best thing that’s ever happened to me as a writer and entrepreneur. 

  

Here’s why. First of all, being that I get off work around 2:00 p.m., I arrive back home at a reasonable hour. It’s crucial to remember that I don’t have a car and a trip that takes 10 minutes in Vegas, takes me at least an hour with the bus. Being home early gives me time to cook, unwind and work out. Since the winter timing, I don’t go to the gym anymore, but I do have time to do at least an hour of exercise daily at home. After that, I have the evening to edit, read and work on an entrepreneurial project which I’ll share with you in due time. Also, since my job isn’t very demanding to begin with, I sneak a little note-taking time during work when my boss is gone or not looking.

  
 

“So when do you write?” you ask. Well, in the morning, of course. My work starts at 10:00 a.m., so I wake up at 6, sometimes at 5, write till 8:30, grab a bite and leave my house by 9:15. It’s all planned to the minute. I recently finished a screenplay. By writing two and a half hours in the morning I averaged around 5 pages. Not bad, right? Also, I get weekends off. So if I’m not shooting a movie or commercial or working at some convention, I get a lot of writing done as well. 

  

Oh, and did I mention that I’m now a writing intern for Cliché Magazine? That’s right, I’m their new beauty writer. Add that to my list of tasks. Within a few month, I went from an unemployed girl who had all the time in the world and didn’t know what to do with it, to a girl with three careers, two jobs and a nascent business who is able to take care of all her responsibilities with a little organization and the sacrifice of a few hours of sleep. 

It was important for me, being newly-employed and all, not to get discouraged by the relatively slow progress I was making as a writer. Usually, I’m much more prolific. But I had to lower my expectations and put less pressure on myself given the little time I had to accomplish what I wanted.

Another reason why this job has made me a better writer and entrepreneur is because I hate that job so much. God, I hope my boss doesn’t see this; she’s already on the verge of firing me for being “unmotivated”. Yes me. But anyway, that job is boring, monotonous, mentally limiting and I can’t wait to quit. And this dire urge to quit has made me work harder on my writing and other dreams. 

  

So if you have a job that you hate, a passion that you’re hoping to turn into a career, and the will to put the effort to make it happen, all you have to do is find that small time slot every day, however short it is, and get yourself one step closer to where you want to be. How are you guys balancing writing with a job?