The A to Z Challenge is one of my highlights of the year. I enjoy researching and writing my posts and love reading other people’s blogs and learning more about a wide range of interesting topics. The sign up list for the A to Z Challenge 2015 is now here – if you are interested or want to improve your blogging habits why not sign up now! I have 🙂
You can find my 2012 and 2014 blog posts on my A to Z Challenge Round Up Page.
Time for another round-up of some great kickstarter finds. Interesting new campaigns that have been added since my last round-up include:
This is the latest campaign from the VBOS. I backed their original storyteller notebooks.
Don’t forget there is still time to back these other ongoing projects if you haven’t already done so:
Everyone loves a bargain. B & M are selling an A6 Organiser for £1.29.
The Organiser is a week to view diary in the first half and an address book in the second half and there is also a pen included. The ballpoint pen is also included – which is a neat enough pen – no smudging like you often get with cheaper pens and writes quite smoothly on the paper. Of course you can simply swap the pen out for another if you prefer and the pen loop gives enough to hold most pens.
Both parts of the organiser slip into the cover which means if you don’t have much use for a written address book you can swap this out and include an A6 notebook instead. Most A6 notebooks should fit but bear in mind that the notebook has to slide inside the cover so some A6 notebooks may still be a few mm too big (like my rosehip notebooks).
Here I have swapped a Cath Kidston notebook into the cover so I have a diary and a notebook in one organiser which is very handy for carrying about in my smaller handbag in case I need to make notes while on the go. I might even try swapping back to an A6 Monthly Notebook. It is very easy to swap notebooks around depending on your needs. You might choose a different notebook if you are going out shopping, or going to work etc.
Visit B&M website to find your nearest store (UK).
There seems to be a repeat in my habits. Last year was not a great year for blogging – my focus was on buying a house, getting married and getting a new job.
So once again I am resolving to put the SPARK back into my blogging (yes I have bought a SPARK notebook on Kickstarter) but to help with my Blogging I am once again returning to using a Moleskine Monthly Planner to plan my blogging and social media strategy as well as record my goals using my How to Organise your Blog method from 2012 with a few modifications.
Keeping on Schedule
Since ‘growing up’ I have found it hard to blog regularly and consistently. I hope that my Moleskine Monthly Planner will help with this as the Month on two page spread allows you to get an overall picture. If you want you can work out when you have time to blog and when you might want to (or need to schedule posts). I hate scheduling posts (probably one of the reasons why my blogging has become so sporadic). Usually the only time I schedule posts is when I am doing the A to Z Challenge. The monthly view helps you plan ahead, spread your posts out evenly, and work out where you might find some time to dedicate to blogging.
Setting Goals (and tracking goals)
In 2012 I set a lot of goals & objectives. That didn’t work out. I didn’t track them, I didn’t review them. They stayed at the front of my Planner which I never looked at as I would reach straight for the bookmark and miss them completely. This year I am intending to use the ‘Notes’ Column in the Monthly View to help track progress and will record any measurable ‘stats’ at the beginning and end of the month – mailing list subscribers, twitter followers and blog views etc.
For example this is what the end of January looks like.
One of the reasons I keep coming back to this planner again and again is that there are a so few monthly planners on the market (i.e. with JUST a monthly view and pages). If you have any suggestions please let me know, otherwise, share how you plan your blog posts?
Welcome to the first Kickstarter Finds in 2015 and we welcome some fantastic new kickstarter projects to kick start the new year:
Another functional notebook from Printed Portal. This time a notebook to help you have more effective meetings.
I actually came across these guys on Twitter before I saw them on Kickstarter. Beautiful looking notebooks.
A book to help you to take the necessary actions to reflect on your life, make changes and set goals for 2015. A great notebook for the start of the year!
Don’t forget there is still time to back the following Kickstarters that I mentioned at the end of 2014:
You may have seen The Week Dominator on Kickstarter last year. Well the Week Dominator has not arrived yet, but my pledge level included the NeuYear.net Wall Planner of my choice and it arrived in December ready for the New Year.
I chose a Monday First Paper Version (dry erase is also available) which I have now proudly hung on my wall and as I am quite short I have gone for the Horizontal option (the calendar has horizontal on one side and vertical on the other). The calendar is very large (and very awesome). With one glance you can see and plan your whole year – perfect for goal setting and deadlines.
The calendar focuses on the weeks (not the months) with no spaces between the months. The bright blue month dividers are beautiful – in the flesh it really is an attractive calendar. The photograph does not show off the quality of the paper and the brightness of the blue – but hopefully you can still see how sleek it is. If you are looking for a wall planner – this is a top choice.
If you are interested you can still buy these Wall Calendars Online: Neuyear.net
The Pukka Pad Project Notebook is a cheap and easy notebook to use on the go. I bought this one in WH Smith in an airport – as I felt like writing on the plane.
This Pukka Pad Project Notebook is part of pukka pad’s stripes range.
- A5 (but is available in other sizes)
- 250 pages of 80 gsm paper
- Perforated Pages
- Moveable Dividers
The feature that makes this a ‘project notebook’ is the dividers. This means that you can split the use of the notebook. For example I have a section for Ideas and Things to do List, a section for Free-Writing, a section for content and a section for resources. The dividers can be moved so not all your sections need to be the same size and this is a great function that not all project notebooks have.
Overall, this notebook made a great addition to my monthly notebooks collection. It was suitable for scribbles and random notebooks and for tearing out pages when I needed a page on the go.
However, I was disappointed by the paper. It lacked something. My favourite pens did not glide over it and I did not enjoy the experience. I write because I enjoy to write and this was a disappointment.
I also found that some of my highlighters would be visible on the other side of page while some inky pens could be used (such as Stabilo Fineliners) others most certainly could not (a Sharpie bled through two pages).
If you are looking for a notebook to organise your writing and make you more productive – this project notebook has potential. It performs well as a notebook, with the useful features like the moveable dividers and perforated pages ranking it above other affordable options. However, as a notebook to use to enjoy the experience of writing – give this one a miss.