This Week's Discussion:
Juggling Blogging and School
We will be talking about how we deal with it, tips, and just the overall constant struggle.
Dana: I am a freshman in college. THE STRUGGLE IS REAL! To top it all off I commute to school. I am not really complaining about commuting though. I love that I get all of the comforts of home and none of the horribleness of dorming, plus it is a hell of a lot cheaper than dorming in NYC. But it means that some days I am not at home from about 7:30 am to 8:00 pm. By the time I get home I am exhausted and need to eat, shower, get ready for the next day, and sleep. OH wait and do any school work from essays to required reading. So it has definitely been a bit of a struggle to say the least to try to read and blog. I do think I have been doing pretty well with keeping up almost daily posts and not falling behind on my goodreads challenge. I do have to thank Rachel for everything she does because I don't think I have every blogged this consistently ever.
Rachel: I'm a junior in high school. THE STRUGGLE IS VERY REAL! Junior year is the most important year of high school. It's the hardest year, and I'm taking the most rigorous courses. Also it's the year of testing. I have so many standardized tests to take this year I can hardly keep track of them all! My blog is already suffering because of my lack of time to put towards it, and my reading time is minimal. I just have so much work to do. I come home at 2:30 PM and sit down and do homework. Short breaks for food and water and I should finish homework by 9:00 PM. It hurts. By this point I'm so exhausted that I watch mindless tv, shower, then attempt to read. I usually get 15 pages in before I pass out for the night. Repeat. <---- My struggles. Blogging is basically a luxury that I can sometimes afford on the weekends.
How do we fit in time for reading and blogging?
Dana: I read mostly on my commute to school. I have an hour of uninterrupted reading time every morning and night. It is definitely really relaxing and calming for me to have that time. I usually also read before classes because I like to be early. Pretty much whenever I have free time I pull out my book and read. I also like to work on my blog in the honors lounge that I sit in during breaks to read. That hour or two between classes is when most of my review are written, posts set up, and ideas get written down. I also have no classes on Fridays which means Friday is the day that I reply to comments and am more active on twitter.
Rachel: We don't. Haha just kidding. Kind of.... I think the first step is getting into a routine with school and being productive. If you do those two things, you'll eventually save time so you can read and blog more. I usually find time to read during a school week from 11PM to whenever I fall asleep. Blogging mostly happens on the weekends since that's when I have prolonged periods of time when I can gather my thoughts and write posts.
1. Stay organized! This applies to everything. Keep a planner for school and write everything down in one place. For blogging, keep an up to date calendar of all of your posts that are scheduled. I like to try and plan ahead so all I have to do is hit publish everyday.
2. Take advantage of the in-between times and always have a book on you. For me that means my hour and a half commute, when ever I am early to a class, in between classes, and right before I fall asleep. I personally can't focus on too much school work on the bus. Even though it is one of those nice coach buses, I feel like I can't devote the same focus to academic reading on the bus as I can to entertainment reading.
3. E-books are your best friend. I love taking my nook with me to school. I love big books, but I am already lugging my laptop, notebooks, and school textbooks. My nook gives me a variety of books to choose from and is great when I finish one book because I can start another one.
4. This is not necessarily a tip, but having a co-blogger has made things a lot easier. Rachel is also here to nag me into posting and reading.
Rachel: What she said. ^^
To add to Dana's list:
5. Plan ahead. At the beginning of each blogging month, plan out what you want to post and when you want to post. When you have free time READ and BLOG and get those scheduled posts done ahead of time. If you finish all of your posts for the month, start planning and writing next month's posts. Then you can plan your posts far ahead of time and just hit "publish" instead of scrambling to create a post at the last minute.
6. Have back ups. Always have 2-5 posts ready that you can post at any time if you don't have time to write something else. They're safeties.
Dana: I personally feel that if you spend all of your time focusing on school you won't be able to put your best efforts into. I think you always need to give yourself an hour or two a day focusing on something fun and something you will enjoy doing. I do enjoy school work, but that isn't mindless and entertaining. Whether you spend an hour of your spare time watching TV, reading, or blogging it will allow you time to breath. If you don't spend time doing what you love rather than only doing what is required than you will be miserable. I try to squeeze in as much time as I humanly can to read, write, and blog. Also I try and cram a few TV shows in here and there.
Rachel: School is very important, and I think that you need to focus on it. It should be your main priority, but it doesn't have to be your sole priority. Find time to blog each day, or at least read each day. This will keep you sane while you're immersed in the busy school year.